- You Don’t Need To Run 26.2 Miles Before The Big Day
Believe it or not, capping your long runs at 20 or 22 miles is enough, Fitzgerald says. “Your best marathon is the result of weeks and weeks of work done over the entirety of the training program,” he says. It is not based on any single run.”
- Adopt Cross-Training
Running is, of course, the best way to prepare for race day, but your runs will do more for you if you pair them with other forms of fitness. Fitzgerald recommends yoga and stretching, in particular. “Yoga is a great way to get your body moving and do something restorative the day after a long run,” he says. “Incorporate this early to receive the benefits throughout the program.”
- Don’t Forget Mental Training
Hear this: You’re going to have bad runs.
Training for the marathon is a 20-week affair, and it’s bound to have ups and downs. “It would be great if all of your runs were spectacular, but they won’t be,” Fitzgerald says. “It’s the cumulative training, the entire body of work, that builds a marathoner. There is not one particular run that needs to be perfect.”
Let yourself off the hook if you have a bad day, or if you need to walk during an outing. It’s okay.
- Find A Hydration Balance On The Marathon Day
“Proper hydration starts before race day,” Fitzgerald says. “Be sure that you are not in deficit leading into the big day.” Have water with each meal and carry a bottle for when thirst strikes.
That said, it is possible to hydrate too much. Use common sense. “Don’t guzzle gallons of extra water. We don’t want to flush your system,” Fitzgerald says. “Avoid long stretches without water. It’s all about preparedness.”