Whether it is physical fitness, enhanced mental strength, fat reduction or fun which is finally motivating you to think of training for a marathon, running is a strenuous activity, and requires a strong will and a lot of dedication.
To train for a marathon, you need to practice for long weeks. Along with that, you need to follow proper nutrition, adopt safe training practices and stay motivated with the goal in mind.
Doctors Advice:Visit your family doctor for advice before you start. You may also need to do a few tests to ensure you are physically fit to sustain the long months of training. It is advised not to start professional training before you are used to running which means before you embark on the training program,you should build your base mileage with sufficient practice.
Build your stamina:Always start with small steps then raise your limits, challenge yourself for more. Begin with an easy conversational pace that gradually increases in distance over a span of few weeks. Increasing your distance and speed gradually allows your body to prepare your muscles, joints, bones, heart and lungs.
Engage in long runs:Your choice of tracks may range from quiet country track to noisier city streets with spectators cheering you all the way. Try running on both these kinds of tracks to get the real experience. Try a long run every week. After every long run, spend some days running shorter distances. This will help you to build confidence and teach your body to burn fat for fuel.
Choose your race:Most people like to opt for participating in marathons which are held during autumn when it is cool and pleasant. But it also means you must train all summer. Running on a hot and humid sunny day would mean an additional drain of energy. So, choose your race wisely. Check out for the location and track of the marathon before participating to avoid surprises.
On the race day:You need to check out couple of things on the day of the final race. Plenty of water the day before and the very morning is a must. Eat light carbohydrates on the day of the race and keep a calm mind. You could use petroleum jelly for areas which are prone to chafing. Normally, water is supplied on most tracks. If you still want to carry water, you must practice running with water beforehand. Music diverts your attention in a race when you should concentrate, so it is best to leave earphones behind.
Fuelling:You can carry water in a hydration pack or a belt. During a race your energy keeps depleting, so keep refueling yourself to avoid “hitting the wall”. Carry carbohydrates with you which can restore the levels of glucose in your body.
Adequate rest:A good rest is just as important as practice. A day of rest will ensure your body repairs all wear and tear you incur during the run.