You are only competing with yourself and not with others when participating in a marathon and this is the key factor that differentiates marathon running from any other sport in the world. You are either competing to achieve your personal best or to just finish the run before the countdown ends. For the ones who are trying to run their first, its all about sticking to basics and training regularly. Following tips are sure to keep you in right shape and mind for successfully running your first marathon.
1. Have fun while running and training
This is key to stay motivated during the course of preparation. Don’t see running as a task but see it as a lifestyle changes that you are bringing to your life. The more you enjoy your runs, the faster your body will respond to your training goal.
2. Don’t push trough injuries and wait to recover
Ask any runner and you will understand that how much injuries are a part of running. Not to let anyone down, injuries can be avoided or better dealt with by keeping patience. If you have any pain or discomfort while running, please have it treated and wait until you fully recover before you hit the road again.
3. Fuel your body appropriately
Proper diet and fuelling are a popular part of training for a marathon. You need energy, particularly carbs to see you through the long runs. Please make sure you are not running on 100% empty stomach. An energy bar or banana can act as a great fuel before your long run. Also, stay hydrated enough during your course of run.
4. Stretching and strengthening your core
Having a strong core helps a great deal in running. The stronger the core (area around abs), the better is your posture for running, thereby minimizing you chances of injuries. Stretching and resting are just as important to do before and after your runs. Stretching will help relax and calm your muscles making them ready for the run ahead.
6. Find a running partner
Its easier to train with other runners and especially the ones who might have completed a marathon before. Do check around with you family and friends and find the running mate for you.
Tips for Race Day
7. Reach the race venue on time and avoid unnecessary stress before your run
You should always arrive at least one hour before the start of the race to have to time for gear check, use the bathroom, reach the staring line and wait for final call. Before starting the run, do a bit of breathing exercise to calm your nerves. Close your eyes and focus on the course and your mental game plan.
8. Start slow and learn to pace
Control your anxieties and don’t get intimated by any person outpacing you in the initial part of the run. Take it slow in the beginning and increase your pace as you start feeling comfortable through the race.