Monday, 17 September 2012

Marathon Training

It is running season and yes signing up for a run is the best way to get motivated.  I have listed some tips that might help as well as a link for those who want a training program for 5K, 10K, Half and Full Marathons. I'll speak from my experiences and through a personal trainer (that is what I am) haha.

Inside my head: Okay so Chicago Marathon is my 2nd marathon that I've been training for, the race is Oct. 7th 2012. I am freaking out here!!! No one tells you that your second marathon is SO much harder to train for! I ran my first marathon at the SF Nike Women's Marathon last year, my goal qualify for Boston.......simple enough right?!? Well no, its not, I miss it by 1 minute... really 1 minute come on body why did you break down on me, why in the heck am I having to train for another marathon to reach my goal?!?!

Personal Trainer: Being competitive with yourself is healthy and look at what great shape you are getting into. You are accomplishing doing an event that not many people can say they did. Stick to your program and you will reach your goal. Thats what training is for, training for a marathon is a second job of course but I told you that from the beginning, you will have to make sacrifices every weekend, during the week when you want to chill after work or a long business trip, nope you get out there and get that run in. But when you finish that race you will feel amazing, it will be an out of body experience that no one can take from you.

Inside my head: Right, I get it training is very important and I know I have to get these runs in but no one tells you that for your first marathon you are dedicated, determined, eager, excited.... you don't know what to expect you follow your program to a T and when race day comes you are so excited and nervous because you don't know what to expect. For your second marathon.....a whole different ball game... you know exactly what to expect, you don't want to train, its easier to justify missing a run, you know what that 20 and 22 miler is going to feel like in your training. You start to hate the people who get to wake up on Saturday and enjoy their day off breakfast, probably hung over from the friday night and you are getting up at 7am just to get a 3-4 hour run in before you waste your whole day!!!!!!!!!!!

Personal Trainer: You don't want to be lazy and waste your Saturday morning laying around in bed you are an active person and being outside and enjoying the weather is so much better than laying in bed wasting away your morning. Plus think of all the places you will see, all the nature that will rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul.

Haha ok reader's this is just a small sample of what goes on through my head every day and for the past 16 weeks. Welcome to my world. I am a motivator, I inspire people everyday, I know just what to do about training, nutrition, and staying motivated........but even us Trainers need help LOL!! All trainers benefit from having a trainer:) Anyways bottom line I'm having a hard time staying motivated for my second marathon, and most of the time I feel my goal slipping away from my fingers. But I remind myself of these 5 tips and it helps.

1. Trust your training program. This is huge, whichever training program you choice stick to it, and get the runs in. They are built on the simple fact that they work! A marathon is not a distance that you can't just wake up and say "yeah I think I'll do a marathon today". You will crush your body and chances of injuries is very high. So trust the program.
2. Take care of your body. This is not just stretching here and there, maybe icing once something starts to hurt, nope it's about taking ice baths, doing yoga, cross training, acupuncture, massage, getting enough sleep, and eating healthy to optimize performance. If you do these things throughout your training, come race day you will feel so much better.
3. Train with someone. This is huge especially if this is your second or third marathon. This is the best way to stick to your long runs or having a killer playlist. Training with someone not only holds you accountable but you are able to get lost in conversation, have someone else there that won't let you quit, someone to chase after when you are falling behind, someone who can call for help if something happens while out on the road for 3-4 hours haha just kidding :)!!!!
4. Eating proper nutrition. This is HUGE. So many people keep eating the same way they did before they started training or start to notice that they are losing weight and therefore they think that eating less will continue that decline. Its FALSE!!! Please please EAT, as our milage increases you need to eat more calories, and complex carbs is very important. You don't have to carb load (that's very old fashion) but having brown rice, sweet potatoes, quinoa, or whatever at dinner maybe at lunch is a great way to get energy for your runs. Eat plenty of fruits and veggies as well as lean meats. We are depleting  all kinds of nutrients when we run that long that unless you properly fuel your body it WILL break down on you and you will NOT perform to your best. So promise me that you follow a good nutritional plan.
5. Make sure to taper and take the week before the race off. This is very important, I know you will feel like you have forgotten how to run and you will be anxious with nerves as well as feeling like if you stop running that you will not finish the race. YOU WILL FINISH!!! You need to go back to tip #1 and trust your program, you are about to put your body through one of the hardest things it will have to do willingly. You need to recover from all the training in order to have peak performance on race day. Trust me if you do not take a break from running the week of the race you will feel it in your race and not in a good way. You will do your shake out run the day before this is when you can reassure your body that you know how to still run. Believe me I know how it feels and when you are sitting at home or at work and its Tuesday before your race, you are going to be bitting at the bit to get out and run, take a yoga class or get in the pool or take a spin class, but rest your body from running.

Good luck to all my marathon runner's it is an amazing accomplishment and when you are done its ok to cry, laugh, smile, hate the world, feel like you are on could nine.... you will probably feel all of this and when you feel like you want to break down and cry at mile 21-23 its ok! I did and most people do, once you have run your first run let me know if that happened to you, I know it did me :)

The link with my training programs, for the distances above.


  1. Marie thank you for this post!! Seriously, I need this. I needed to know that it is ok to cry. I did on my first 20 miler. I stood in the middle of the trail and I cried for about a minute. I yelled at my boyfriend and I told him I was stupid for trying this. I told him that I can't run a marathon and that I should have run a half instead. Once I got that all out I felt better. Thank you for reassuring me that I am not totally crazy because I thought I was I thought I am going to be a total failure. I was like am I the only one that resents those people that can sleep in on a Saturday morning. Thank you.

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