Training Tips London Marathon

Training Tips Running A Marathon

RUNNING A SMART RACE From a Marathon Expert 

In addition to managing the start of your London Marathon or  Any Marathon Race { although now potentially Postponed 2020 due to global pandemic of COVID-19 virus. in order to avoid starting too fast and blowing up well before the finish line, there are a number of other things you would be wise to remember on race day. Nothing beats the feeling of crossing the finish line and then receiving a “Bespoke Sports Medal“, and if you are lucky enough you will also have a custom printed ribbon with the medal also.Wooden Sports Medals

RUNNING  The Miles | Training Advice 

The shortest distance between two points is a straight line, yes? Sorry for the flashback to your high school geometry class, but this is important. Odds are, the route you re running for your race isn’t going to be a straight line. And that is why running the tangents are beneficial. The tangents are the shortest route around the turns of the roads/paths of the course. And a certified course is measured along the tangents. If you fail to run the tangents, your actual race distance will be longer than the 13.1 or 26.2 miles you signed up to run. So what are the tangents for a race? Simply put, the tangents are the inside of any corner or turn. Turning to the right? Get as far to the right as you can. Going left? Be left.

Using Your Garmin For London Marathon

Pretty simple, eh? And in case you are wondering how much of a difference running the tangents makes, it can be huge. In my second marathon, when I got to the finish line my Garmin read 26.68 miles. By not being focused on running the tangent lines of the course, I’d added almost a half of a mile to my race.

Getting To The Finish Line

And at the end of a marathon, a half of a mile is a lot! And when it comes to your PRs or BQs, you can’t just stop your watch and call it a day when your watch shows you’re at 13.1 or 26.2 miles. You’ve got to get to the finish line for your time to officially count, so you might as well, do so as efficiently as possible. Run the tangents, as much as you can, to avoid adding any extra distance to your race.

PLAN FOR THE HILLS

Very few races are legitimately pancake flat. Sure, there are lots of races that advertise themselves as a flat and fast run, but most of those races have some incline/decline that you’re going to have to navigate during your race. So be prepared. And I don’t mean to be prepared in the sense of making sure you run some hill repeats and maybe include a couple of hills in most of your training runs. I mean be prepared in the sense of knowing when they are coming and what you are going to do when you get to them. Believe me; there is a difference between a hill at Mile 2 and the same hill at Mile 20.

Hills At The Start Of Marathon

If the hills are early in the race, you know you’re going to need to stay composed and avoid using up too much energy while you' re going up to them. But if they are late in the race, you may have an easier time "allowing" yourself to walk up the hills to save
a bit of energy for a finish line kick and if you know that the finish is right on top of a little hill at the end of the race, you know you can sell out completely when you get to the final hill.

FUEL/HYDRATION STRATEGY | For Marathon Training 

Another aspect of your race day strategy that you need to account for and that is easy to overlook, is your fueling/hydration strategy. When I was new to running and racing, I used to never worry about how Id fuel at a race. Races had water/sports drinks available, and most events handed out food at a new place along the course as well. Yeah, that may not be the best course of action. Yes, most races will have some provisions available during the race. And there nothing wrong with using what’s available as necessary. But unless you' ve been training using the exact fuel sources/brand of drink that will be available, you will be running the risk of having some GI issues from ingesting something different than usual on race day. This is especially true if you have a sensitive stomach.

Correct Fuel For Running 

A proper fuel/hydration strategy is much more than just worrying about what you’ll take in during your race, however. You also need to think about the foods you' consuming a day or two before your race and what (if anything) you' re eating in the
morning before your race. And when is the best time to figure all of this stuff out? During your training, and specifically during your long runs. Keep notes of what you’re taking in the night before, the morning of, and during your long runs and how you feel during your training runs.

Keeping a Diary For Running 

If you keep notes and aren’t afraid to experiment, you’ll start to see a pattern emerge as to what you need to do to run your best on race day. Me? I can pretty much eat whatever the night before, as long as I'm staying away from things that are overly greasy. On the morning of the race, I need to eat. Not just a bagel or a piece of fruit either; I need food! All the eggs! All the potatoes, or piece or two of toast! Coffee by the pot! And then during the race, some fruit (especially an orange) is the perfect fuel source or me. Mix in some sports drink, the stronger the better, and some water and I'm ready to go. I found all of this out through trial and error while training for a race. The mornings I ate a big breakfast, and specifically one that did not include bacon or sausage, I felt like I could run forever. You need to do the same thing. Try running after a big breakfast. Try running without any breakfast. Try running with a small bite and a consistent source of calories throughout.

The tips of the story with your fueling strategy are that you need to experiment during your training, and that’s important to note so that when race day comes, you can dial in on exactly what you need to do, and then you need to do it.

Best Tips For Running Marathon 

1. As the race approaches, it’s a good idea to take the time to make sure that you’re ready to go mentally as well as physically. Feelings of nervousness before are perfectly normal. And in some cases, that little bit of nervous energy can be beneficial. But too much nervous energy can quickly turn from a positive to a negative.

2. As a reminder, make sure to look back at the quality of your training cycle now that the heavy lifting of your training has wrapped up, how did it go?
Were you able to stick to the script pretty closely, or did life cause you to missa few too many of your scheduled runs? Now is the time to be 100% honest with yourself about how your training has gone. Look back at your data on Strava or RunKeeper or wherever you sync
your watch and analyze the quality of your workouts. Were they better than expected? Not so good? Somewhere in the middle? Taking the time to look back will help you to move forward to the race. Reassess your goals

3. Are the goals you set at the beginning of your training cycle still the right goals? That depends on how the training cycle went. Based on your honest reflection on the past few months of training, it’s time to decide whether your original goal is still the target or if you need to reassess things before the race. If your training cycle was fantastic, maybe you should think about setting your sights a little bit higher. If training went according to plan, stick to the original goal. But if your training took an unexpected detour along the way, it may be wise to walk back your expectations slightly. Clearly, backtracking on your goals isn't the ideal scenario. But sometimes life happens. And when it does, you may have to adapt your plan to the current situation. Hate to say it, but that’s another glorious example of running imitating life. Re-check the course profile Double-checking the layout of the course you will be racing is important to ensure that there are no surprises on race day. When you looked at the profile of the course you are running in the early stages of writing your plan, you were looking for the general layout of the course. You were seeking to get an idea if the course was mostly flat or if there were hills you needed to train for during the race. But now, you want to look for specifics.

 

4. Remind yourself exactly where the climbs are. Know where you’ll get the benefit of a long gradual downhill or a pretty flat section. Pay attention to where the long, straight sections of the course are located, or if there are any u-turns that you’re going to have to navigate.
Know where these areas of the course are so that you won't be surprised by some giant hill with only a mile or two to go. If you know it's there, you can make sure to save some energy to power up that last climb (and pass a lot of people in the process). Strategy for race day The final thing you need to do before race day is to dial in the strategy you will follow for the race.

Are you going to try and negative split the race? Run it even? Go for broke with the understanding that a crash and a burn may be in your future? Whatever your strategy, have it nailed down before you get to the race, ok? Opting to try and “figure it out” as you go is most likely going to end poorly for you. There’s no guarantee that having a solid strategy in place is going to result in you hitting your goals every time, but it will certainly help. If you’re not sure you need to take the time to plan your race out before you get to the starting line, I have one piece of advice for you: make it happen. And let’s not forget, in the week before your race you’re not going to be running as much as usual, so you will have the time available. At this point, you've done the physical work. Don't let that work be done in vain because you failed to prepare mentally for the race you're about to run.

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