Marathon Tips During the Final Week
Congratulations you have been training hard for months building up for your big race! Maybe it’s your first marathon or you have run many before. All the hard training and dedication you put in could be lost if you don’t prepare well during the last week. Below are a few tips to help you to prepare and get the best out of yourself on race day.
- There is no point in trying to make up for any missed training or trying to add extra training runs in thinking it will make you go faster or perform any better. Anything hard you do in the last week is not going to improve your performance, it might even make you too tired or you could injure yourself.
- Don’t do lots of walking or site seeing during the last few days, stay off your feet as best you can, maybe do some light stretches and use a foam roller.
- Rest a day or two before the big day and maybe do a short easy run the day before of up to 20 minutes to get the legs moving.
- Stick with you usual sleep and eating routine, try not to change things too much and don’t eat anything the night before that you aren’t used to as it could upset your stomach on race day.
- In the few days before the marathon, eat complex carbs that your stomach is used to like brown rice or wholemeal pasta, quinoa and sweet potatoes. Eat vegetables and some protein. Don’t suddenly eat large amounts of pasta as your stomach might not like it. Eat a good meal the night before the race so your body has enough fuel stored in your muscles and liver to help to reduce the risk of fatigue and hitting the wall on race day.
- On race day stick to a breakfast that you are used to such as toast, cereal, oats, bagels and maybe a banana.
- Take fuel such as gels or sweets during the race but only take what you have practiced during your training, as anything you take on board could upset your stomach. Ideally 30 – 60g of carbohydrate per hour.
- Start off at a bit easier pace so the first half of the race feels easier and to help you to avoid depleting all your fuel too quickly and hitting the wall. The rest of the race could be painful if you do.
- Hydrate well but don’t over do it or you could risk depleting your body salts which can be dangerous.
- Enjoy the race, you have done all the hard work you need.