5 week countdown to marathon – tips #GCAM15

Well the marathon is almost here and the last week or two have not been without drama as you will have read in my last post.

The blister went on to sideline me from a weeks training when distance was at its most crucial. I spent a frustrating week not running and visiting the podiatrist instead. I ended up switching and going to see the guys at InTraining as they are all runners and I figured they would be used to dealing with stressed out runners like me not wanting to rest and needing to run and I was right.

I was given advice of what I should do and what potentially if we fixed me up temporarily what I ‘might’ be able to do. Of course I went with the latter and some plasters and strapping meant i was able to run on the coast in Caloundra on Saturday with no pain! I almost cried with sheer joy! I ran 10k (oops sorry Roger I know I wasn’t meant to!) And then back in Brisbane on the Sunday I ran 20k after a visit to InTraining for restrapping on Saturday – and again no pain. So I am very hopeful about this weekends 36k….

With all of this going on I had a bit of a meltdown and my confidence in being able to finish the race started to wobble. I went out with friends on Saturday and just couldn’t concentrate and freaked out as questions were asked about training in a coffee place afterwards. The 20k run the next day helped squash the doubts and I am getting back on track thankfully. I also remembered a great quote from modern Olympic Games creator Baron Pierre de Coubertin – see photo  below, and it made me feel less stressed about everything. pierre-coubertin-quote

So 5 weeks until the marathon. Here are a few tips based on what I am doing at the moment that may be helpful:

Iron out any niggles with training kit and injuries 

This is the time to be sorting out any last minute niggles with kit and in general. I’ve almost got my kit sorted that RunStopShop kindly sent me and will be writing a separate blog post about what I will be using on race day but if you have any dramas with your kit – it needs to be sorted now! The same goes for any niggles with injuries etc. If an injury is still playing up and not looking like it is improving then I would say don’t run the race at this stage with only 5 weeks left to go. I really thought with this silly blister that I wouldn’t be able to run. Had it been the week before it could have been a real problem but thankfully it seems to be healing.

I’m also still making the decision of whether to run with my Camelbak or Fuelbelt. I often suffer with my stomach and things around my waist don’t help but I can’t decide at the moment.

Food and Drink

make sure you have nailed your food and drink now. Be happy with your energy gels if you are using them and be comfortable with how long you eat before your run and what you eat. I’m still working on mine. I am not a huge breakfast eater these days and so I struggle to eat a lot before a run – but I am getting there. Bananas are my friend at the moment.

Tapering to start soon 

Depending on whether you are following a training program or working with a coach your last longer run may well be this week. I have a 36km run on Saturday and then everything starts to go down distance wise. I need the run on Saturday to give me the confidence that I can do it especially after the last few weeks with issues.

Music

Go back through your music and start to pick our your playlist. I have started doing this as I find when I am struggling I need music to keep me going. Races aren’t too keen on you using your headphones but I always taken them with me for marathons in case I struggle.
Don’t panic! 

I had my melt down at the weekend and it can be overwhelming with the marathon around the corner, especially if it is your first. Chat to friends, feel comfortable in the training you have done/are doing and try to relax and mentally prepare yourself. I have found in all of my marathons that if I haven’t got the mental side prepared as much as the physical training side then I am in for a very tough finish. You’ve done the training, you’re ready to go so relax would be my advice – although I know it is easier said than done!

Anyway more posts coming – I have a lot to say in the next few weeks 😀 Have a great week and happy running! xo

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