Everything you need to know to get to the start and finish lines feeling fit and ready to run your best.
1. BUILD SLOWLY
The training plan gradually builds weekly mileage and the distance of the long runs.This slow-but-steady buildup allows you to get stronger and go longer, without getting hurt or burned out. Some days you’ll want to add more miles, but it’s best to stick to the plan.
2. UPGRADE YOUR SHOES
Worn-out or ill-fitting shoes can lead to injury, so it’s best to replace yours now. Go to a specialty running shop, where you can get help finding the shoe that offers the fit and support that your feet need.
3. GO LONG
Each week, you’ll do a long run to develop the endurance you’ll need to cover the race distance. On these runs, focus on covering the mileage for the day, and forget about pace. Take walk breaks to stay energized throughout.
4. PRACTICE EATING ON THE RUN
You’ll need to refuel every 30 to 45 minutes during the race, so on your long runs, experiment with different brands and flavors of sports drinks, gels, and chews to find out which one suits best in your stomach. Be sure to try out the brand and flavor that will be offered at the race.
5. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY
Any soreness at the beginning of the run that fades as you go is probably nothing to worry about. But stop if you have any pain that persists or gets worse during a run, and call the doctor. Take the rest days on the schedule, and if you feel worn out on a run day, move it to another day.
6. EAT WELL
In order to run your best, it’s important to have a balanced diet. About half your daily calories should come from carbohydrates, like whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. About a quarter of your calories should come from lean protein, like dairy, lean meats, beans, and legumes. The remainder should come from heart-healthy fats like olive oil and avocados.