If you’ve registered to run a marathon, of any length and however near or far the date of the run is, you’re to be commended, especially if you’re taking part to raise money for a local charity or another ethical and worthy cause.
To help you with your training, continue reading to learn four professional tips when preparing for your first ever marathon.
- Start Small
Whether you’re someone who always makes time for thirty minutes exercise every single day and consider yourself to be fairly physically fit and able, suddenly running over twenty-five miles in one day is a sure-fire way to do some serious damage.
Instead, you should first start running smaller, more manageable, and less time-consuming distances and when you train for a 5k, you’ll learn the same training techniques and exercises which will be useful for longer distances too.
- Always Eat an Hour Before You Run
Even if you’re trying to fit in your training before work, or in the evenings before you sit down for a family meal, you should always eat something, preferably high in carbohydrates and low in fiber, around an hour before your training session.
This will give your body enough time to properly digest the food you consume and will drastically reduce the chance of aches and pains in your stomach whilst you’re running. Moreover, if you’re going for a longer run of over an hour or more, then you should consider adding more protein into your pre-run meal, such as one or two boiled eggs or a peanut butter sandwich.
- Rotate the Intensity of Your Workouts
Another really valuable tip when preparing and training for your first marathon is to change the intensity of your exercise regime each day.
If, for example, yesterday you ran for a couple of hours and were concentrating on pushing your body to its maximum potential, then today you should go for a much slower and more controlled run, for a shorter time.
This is the best way to build up your body’s resistance and stamina gradually and will definitely yield the most effective results in the long run (no pun intended!).
- Motivation is Everything
Finally, once you’ve committed to running your first marathon, you will inevitably experience an emotional journey to race day and it’s important to be aware of your trigger points which make you feel as if it’s just too hard.
Work hard to think of a mantra you can repeat to yourself, however long or short, which focuses your mind on the end goal. Additionally, you should spend time creating a playlist which you only listen to when you’re training. When you’re at work or out with friends and you hear an inspiring song, add this to your playlist.
Even on the days when you simply can’t face heading out in the cold weather, remember your reasons for signing up in the first place and always focus on the end goal.