Chicago Marathon is coming up quickly, October 8th. That means for all of you registered and ready to run, you are probably halfway through your training. You have started your really long runs, and if you are like me, you are looking forward to tapering.
Don’t worry though, mid-marathon training burn out is normal. At least, in my case it is. However, you only have a few long runs left until the big day, and here are a few training tips to have your best race day:
- It’s okay to skip a workout– sometimes as a runner, I become very type A and strict to my schedule. However, I try to remember that life is important too and that if my friends have fun happy hour plans, it’s okay to skip a run. In addition, if I am feeling any sort of pain, I try and take a rest day to let it recover. Then, I will analyze the potential injury after a day off of training. Remember to give yourself and your hard working body some grace and flexibility in training.
- Eat well– make sure to properly fuel yourself during training. A few years ago, I learned that bananas were very important to my training nutrition. Bananas help your body regulate your heartbeat and prevent muscles from cramping. Protein is also very important for endurance athletes. Runners should get 75-120 grams of protein a day.
- Stick to your long runs– as much as possible, try to run the long runs on your schedule. Often times, new marathoners are anxious about the distance of the race. Running long will help you overcome that anxiety. I always learn a lot about my mental running state on long runs. These runs are important for building muscle. With that said, if you get injured, do not worry about long runs at all. Work on recovery first.
- Rest is important– make sure to embrace your rest day. I have grown to love my rest days over the years. On workout days, I push my body, and then I really allow it to relax on rest days. Your body needs this day off to recover and rebuild its muscle fibers.
If you follow these (relatively) simple tips, you will have a great race day running through the neighborhoods of beautiful Chicago!