Running a marathon takes hard work and determination, but few things bring greater satisfaction than crossing the finish line knowing you have successfully completed the whole 26.2 miles. While the challenge of a marathon may sound insurmountable, with proper training and using these five strategies to prepare for your first marathon, you’ll be well on your way to accomplishing a goal that many have but few achieve.
Find a Training Plan You Like
The ability to run 26.2 miles doesn’t happen by chance—it takes creating and following a plan far in advance of race day. Fortunately, many such plans are available in books and online. Simply find a plan that meets you at your current fitness level and works with your time frame.
Get the Gear
Running shoes only last 300-400 miles before needing replacement. A fresh pair of running shoes is a must-have for the miles you’ll be logging on this endeavor. Additionally, check that the exercise clothes you have are made for the task. Look for features like moisture-wicking fabric, additional arch support, and soles especially designed for long-distance running.
Whether from a running partner, a local running club, or an online running community, the support of others will go far in helping you prepare for your first marathon. Finding the fellowship of other runners can provide you with accountability, tips, and friendship on your journey.
Running can be hard on your feet. Make sure yours are well taken care of by visiting a professional podiatrist. A foot health specialist from Huntsville Podiatry AL says marathoners must learn how to properly care for their feet during training and racing, to reduce the risk of injuries like stress fractures and plantar fasciitis. If you encounter any problems, be sure to see your podiatrist early to prevent any injuries from worsening.
In addition to all the training you’re doing, be sure you are fueling your body properly. The intense workouts you will be doing to get ready for the marathon will require that your body have healthy, quality foods to run properly. You will burn approximately 100 calories for every mile run. While that is not an excuse to overindulge, it’s important to maintain proper caloric intake to keep your body going.
At times during your preparation for your first marathon you may doubt your decision to pursue such a challenging goal. Stick with these five tips and don’t be surprised if you are ready to sign up for your next marathon as soon as you finish your first!