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5 Things Every Runner Must Do in Preparation for His or Her First Marathon
So, are you about to run your first marathon soon and are you looking for do’s and don’ts? Running a marathon is not as easy as the smiling selfies of the winners make it out to be. Running a long distance is certainly a tedious task, and many who take up running don’t even finish half of it. So how can you run without facing the embarrassment of pulling up halfway through? The only answer is to train for a big run. Training is the way to go to run this 26.2 mile endurance race. If you fail to train, you’ve already proven yourself to be a bad runner.
It is a known fact that good long distance running cannot come suddenly. There are many among us who started jogging every Sunday and gave it up within a few weeks because we couldn’t deal with the physical challenges that the sport entails. A simple look at a runner after a few kilometers of running can give you a beginner runner. Here are some tips that can help you avoid some of the basic mistakes that most runners make and help you cover all areas of training and racing.
As I told you, the preparation for the marathon starts long before the actual run, so put on your sneakers and start running. If you want to successfully run a full marathon, you should train to at least run half of it in your training cycle. It’s true that you can start jogging casually and then run a full marathon within a few months, but it MAY NOT be. You should train professionally for a marathon, although many people have run marathons just by jogging in preparation, but there is no guarantee that this will work for you.
Marathons are all about endurance, and that doesn’t mean that everyone who runs marathons is injury-free. Even successful participants can face injuries, but those who take up running without training can face much worse. Their chance of hitting damage is too annoying. Yes, you heard right. Without training, participants are exposed to a very high risk of injury.
You should start training at least 4 months before the actual run, if you are not used to any form of physical training. To begin with, you should start running as much as possible at a downhill speed of 5 miles per hour. Slowly you need to run 20-25 miles every week for at least 3 months. If you can do that, you’re halfway there. This training is very important for your body to adapt to the needs of running. Your body may ask you to give it up at first, but soon it will not only get stronger but also give you a much better experience.
Get Perfect Gear
Before you even think about running, think about the equipment that will help you run. The shoes you wear should undoubtedly be the biggest focus when you start training and also during the run itself. Your feet are not like the tires on your car that can be replaced, but they are a gift from God – treat them well.
Getting the perfect pair of running shoes can be an expensive affair, but if something goes wrong with a cheaper pair, the cost to straighten your body can be much higher. And why not apply the teachings of the well-known English proverb “Prevention is better than cure”. You would definitely need other things and you can buy something that is just a step down without having to buy the most fashionable and expensive things. You will need shorts, hats, shirts, water bottles, etc.
Set your goals
Everyone should keep crossing the finish line as their main and most important goal. Aspiring for more than this might not be the right idea for novice runners. You will only worry if you think about time and other things, which would be too much of a task. Remember, things come slowly; Rome wasn’t built in a day!
Create a strong training plan
Sit down with an expert coach and write your plan. Alternatively, you can go and use the free plans available on the internet. The Nike+ plan is a good plan to look into. Depending on your lifestyle, time and habits, you should be able to identify one unique plan that you can implement effectively.
Get a Running Buddy
More than likely, if you run all by yourself, the task will fail. You can be overwhelmed by the exertion of the training process, especially if you are completely new to running. Having a good, strong and motivated friend as a partner is a great thing. You will train together and motivate each other to give your best in the run. However, if you find more people to join you, that’s great. Your motivation and determination will flourish every time you meet your team.
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