As the last of the winter frost is passing through, it leaves runners ready to get back outside and train for an upcoming spring marathon. There are things you can do to help prepare yourself for training to make sure you will toe that starting line with confidence.
If you have taken a break from running or from running outside, you will want to take a trip to your local running store to be fitted for a running shoe. If you had switched to treadmill or shortened your outside distances due to winter weather, bring your current running shoes with you. The sales associates are trained to help you find the perfect shoe that fits your needs, shape of foot, and gait. If you bring your old running shoes with you, they will be able to examine the wear patterns on your old shoes and use that information to help find you the perfect pair. Gaits can change and form can change over time and it is always a good idea before distance training to make sure that your shoe is custom fitted for you. A shoe that fits well can help prevent blisters and other minor discomforts that could have a negative impact on your marathon training.
After you have your shoes and are ready to run, you will want to ease into your marathon training plan. If you try to do too much mileage too quickly, you will put yourself at a higher risk for injury. Is it better to give yourself enough time to do the training plan as planned and to stay on schedule so that you will have a positive experience and stay free from injury. A good training plan will not have you increase your weekly mileage by more than 10% each week. Any plan that increases mileage by more than 10% can increase your risk of injury.
When you get into the meat of your training plan and your training runs last longer than an hour, you will need to remember to have some sports nutrition with you. The average person should consume close to 200 calories in hour to replace the glycogen stores in the body. Glycogen is what your body uses for fuel. Runners than neglect the nutrition portion will not be successful at long distances and will struggle with the shorter distances too. There are many choices to try during your training runs so that you will know exactly what works for you during training. Every runner is different and every person can handle foods differently. You have to experiment a little to find out what works best for you.
Preparing yourself for a spring marathon is easier than you think. Make sure you have good fitted shoes to prevent any foot injuries. Find a good training plan that works best for your schedule. Remember not to increase mileage by more than 10% each week to help prevent injury. And lastly, don’t ignore your nutrition!