When preparing for a marathon, many first-timers disregard the value of having a regular training program, and the importance of adding distance to their weekly runs in a slow planned and gradual way. Training for a race requires a lot of time and effort, but also a lot of discipline and motivation. If you lack a motivated mindset, then chances are your training will not be successful.
Something you will face when you learn how to train for a marathon is wondering why you decided to do this, so make sure you pick a goal that will get you to push yourself even when you feel like quitting. Once we engage with a training program, it is very important to follow through every step of the way, if we really want to be prepared for race day and, most important of all, if we want to avoid injuries. Keep in mind that a regular training program should have a light run early in the week, a moderate run in the middle of the week, and a long run at the end of the week, where we add distance gradually as weeks go by.
Not having a proper training program, or lacking the time to follow one, can result in serious injuries or even leaving us outside of the race. I recently read about a marathon first-timer who followed up on a training program, did well for the first two months, but then found himself missing a couple of weekly long runs. In order to catch up and to be “prepared” for race day, he found himself adding 2,5 to 3 kilometers every week to his weekly long runs. One month before race day, the unavoidable thing happened, an injury left him out of the competition.
It is very easy to be injured if our body is not used to long runs, that is why we should start with a training program early enough, leaving some room for a couple of unforeseen events that may cancel our park or treadmill appointment. Keep in mind that, just like in Murphy’s law, from weather to work to social events, there are many unforeseen events waiting to ruin our training routine. Be preventive, have different choices available. Being able to rain outdoors is a great thing, but don’t undervalue the benefits of a good spinning class or treadmill session to make up for that teacher-parents night. Keep in mind that it is not only about building up distance: an effective training program should also include cross-training as part of our routine to help to build up upper and lower body strength.
The art of long distance running is an art form that is acquired at an early age and requires plenty of training. There is also plenty of honing of skills. Many a good runner have been exercising, training and learning skills and techniques for a good number of years. There are many reasons why people choose to become long-distance runners. Most usually have some talent and will be looking for opportunities to hone their skills and improve on techniques. Others are keen runners who love to keep fit and enjoy a good run.
Running Long Distances
Some individuals choose to become professional athletes and decide to take on running long distances for purposes of competing in events that come with cash awards. One of the most renowned long-distance running events is the marathon. This tradition of running about 41km for men and 35km for women started back in ancient Greece. A messenger ran from the city of Marathon to Athens to deliver a message regarding an impending invasion. Shortly afterward, the man fell down and died. Marathons and run across the world in his honor.
Marathon runners need to learn about endurance and how to run without tiring easily. This is achieved by running with only mild panting. The training also involves running in sloppy or hilly areas as well as at high altitude. This is excellent practice and preparation for long-distance running events and competitions involving running long distances. The reason is that running at high altitudes such as in the conditions in tropical Africa or South America will help the lungs open as a result of low oxygen levels at altitude. This offers an advantage at lower altitude.
Runners training for long distant, none marathon events such as the 5000 meters or the 10,000 meters need to train equally hard, just not for that long. These long-distance runners require plenty of energy yet they have to learn what foods and food supplements to use and what food substances and food supplements to avoid. This is because some are banned by the athletics federation such as the IOC or International Olympics Committee and the International Amateur Athletics Foundation or IAAF.
Athletes running long distances need to know and appreciate the need to avoid drinking plenty of water or eating foods that will affect their running. All these are skills, techniques and running long distances tips that are learned, mastered and honed over time.
If you are considering running your first marathon, then it’s important to know how to train for a marathon. By knowing and using the proper training techniques, you can prepare your body and your mind for the challenge and avoid getting any injuries that will slow down your progress or keep you out of the marathon.
The first important thing to do before you start training is to get your head into it. Develop a great belief in yourself and your ability to do well in the marathon. If you believe it, then you can do it, but if you don’t believe in yourself, you probably won’t do as well. The belief that you can do it will help you gain the confidence you need to attempt such a challenge, in spite of what people may say or thoughts that may try to sabotage you. Then, once your belief is in place, get motivated and …stay motivated! Finding a good support system for yourself will help you stay motivated and keep you going when things get tough.
Learn How To Train For A Marathon
You need to warm up every time you run and stretch your muscles within 15 minutes after you run. You should familiarize yourself with exercises to stretch your calves, hamstrings, groin, quadriceps, inner and outer thighs and your lower back. By using proper stretching techniques you can prevent many injuries when you learn how to train for a marathon. You should also make sure you wear good running shoes, maintain good running form, and give yourself adequate recovery time after your workouts.
Maintain a good running form, heels touching the ground with each step, arms relaxed and at a 90-degree angle, good posture with chest pointing slightly forward. Then maintain a good training schedule with days spent working hard and days off when needed. It is a good idea to vary your route or track when in training. Cross training is also recommended such as rollerblading, cycling, using an elliptical machine or running in water are great, with weight training recommended as well, but not absolutely necessary when you learn how to train for a marathon.
The last thing that you need to pay close attention to is your nutrition and hydration when learning how to train for a marathon. You will need to eat proper nutrition and do some carb loading to prepare for running a marathon. It is vitally important to keep your body hydrated when you are running and training. You need to drink water in the two hours before you run and the two hours after you run, as well as during your running time. Try to drink only the water or sports drinks for hydration because coffee and alcohol do not stay in your system as long and provide the necessary hydration when you learn how to train for a marathon.