It’s the final countdown. You’re excited, nervous and all things in between. The final weeks and days leading up to the main event are crucial – it’s time to prepare your body and relax your mind ahead of race day. To help – here are some tips on what to do during your Marathon countdown!
The last few weeks before the Marathon are when all the little details count.
Test and learn
In any longer runs you have left you should be practicing your race nutrition so that you don’t have any problems with it on the day. It is also a good idea to work out exactly what meal you’re going to have on the morning of the Marathon and have this before your runs so you can tweak it if it’s not right.
A lot of people don’t have much to eat on the morning of the race which is a mistake as your body needs fuel. It’s a good idea to consider having a higher fat meal before your runs too. This primes the body to metabolise fat, thus sparing precious carbohydrate stores. Eggs on croissants with butter are my personal favourite.
Comfort is key
You still have time to get new bits of kit for the race!
Running a Marathon is hard enough, without running in something that is not as comfortable as it could be!
Strike a balance
Now is the time to make sure you are allowing your body to recover. It’s important to strike the right balance of training, as if you do too much you will go into the race tired; but you do too little, you might lose some fitness. Keep your running consistent. It’s better to do more runs that are slightly shorter than less with a lot of miles. This will keep your body fresher!
Avoid panic training at all costs. It’s an easy trap to fall into if you’re worrying about your mileage, but it has dire consequences on the body. Doing some speed work in your sessions can help to give your fitness that last boost before the race. Intervals of 3-4 minutes are the optimal length of time for these sessions.
Make sure you’re taking a recovery drink after key sessions as you cannot afford to deplete your body’s stores too much. It can take up to 48 hours to replace the energy you use in a run. Don’t do anything differently as well. For example, don’t suddenly start doing lots of stretching or foam rolling. Get as much sleep as you possibly can as your body recovers during sleep so you will feel better on the day.
A Marathon is a big test but if you’ve done the training then it is just a case of putting one foot in front of the other on the day. Be confident in what you’ve done and get ready to enjoy the experience!
Visualise crossing the finish line and try to picture this from your own eyes (not watching yourself cross the line). This will drive a more intrinsic sense of motivation, which has been proven to be the best type and will help you in the difficult parts.
Good luck! We’re with you all the way!