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Me and Nancy are taking part in the London Marathon, our 1st one!!
Any support & advice welcomed to us 1st timers.....
We are both raising money for Dogs for the Disabled,
- Pilus Posterior
- Posts: 1055
- Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2006 1:25 pm
- Location: Epperstone, London, Brussels and beyond..!
This is my 3rd time and it is a fantastic event - the crowds really are an inspiration amd great throughout the course!!
All i would say is respect the distance and make sure you get the training in including some long runs in order to get your legs used to pounding the roads for that sort of distance & time!
Eat well on the week leading up to the race - plenty of carbohydrates, keep hydrated and don't have anything different for breakfast on the day of the race (unless you normally have a full fry up!)
There is loads of advice out there especially on the web but essentially so long as you do the training and don't put too much pressure on yourself i'm sure you'll have a great day!!
The equation to translate your half time to full is around 2.1, but I would add a big factor onto this as there are so many variables such as dehydration / fatigue / going off too fast / temperature effects / glycogen supply running out (ie hitting the wall with no energy left)
Therefore if you put too much pressure on and try and hit a time, unless you are lucky chances are you will suffer from one or a combination of the above. When going for a PB it is always a fine balance of pace / hydration / fuel etc for the marathon, unlike shorter distances.
That is why I would say to any first timers go and enjoy it, run it slower than you think you “could” run it, by that I mean take it really steady from the start. Drink plenty especially in the first few miles and try to take on board isotonic or energy drinks. You should get to halfway feeling fresh, if you are feeling tired, the second half will be painful, so run the first half within yourself.
Treat this as an experience, London is a fantastic marathon, the support you will get from the crowds along the whole route is brilliant and certainly helps in the latter stages. If you take it steady you have more chance of running all of it and enjoying it, as opposed to walking from mile 18, if you have hit the wall from going too fast.
Leading up to the marathon make sure you have done a few long runs, ie 18mile plus if you can, these can be really slow, just as long as you have had time on your feet, this will all help with endurance for those last few miles on the race.
Taper from 3 weeks from the marathon. So the last 3 weeks should be progressively less training than you have been doing by about a third each week.
Don’t try and cram everything into the last 3 weeks, the only thing that could go wrong from here is overtraining. I’ve gone into the last fortnight feeling tired before and heavy legged because I hadn’t cut down enough and suffered on the race. You need to rest and give your body time to recover from all the training in the last 2/3 weeks.
Eat and drink loads (no alcohol though!) 3 days before – as much carbs as you like and a big meal on Saturday night is good. Go to bed feeling a bit full. Seriously this will help!
Bloody hell sorry, I didn’t mean to write war and peace but as you can see I’m passionate about the marathon, don’t take any of this as gospel, just what I’ve learned over doing 12 or so and making all the mistakes.
I don’t mind giving any advice on training etc or talk to some of the other marathon vets at the club – ie Glen Coleman, Chris Robson, Andy McNeill, Sarah Crannage, Shaun, Ash – they will all give you sensible advice.
Enjoy it :-)
You do need a training plan and stick to it as best you can, alternating hard run sessions with slow plods.
Tue night club night is good for one hard session per week, lead by Chrisity in West Park, hills pyramids etc.
You are unlikely to do all in the plan but don’t be too upset or rigid if you miss the odd session. DO NOT play catch up for missed session.
Plans are available on line and through charities.
If possible book you and your supporters on the LERC coach trip. I have been on 4 of these and they just get better, very well organized and good value for money.
Get your name ironed on the front and back of the shirt you will run in. Cheaper to do this at home rather than at Expo on the Sat when you register.
You could buy Lucozade jelly beans here.
Free Lucozade Gels and Energy drink is available throughout the course so it would be pointless carrying any, you always see “luggage” dropped on the course.
Refuel on your training runs and confirm the Lucozade products “free on the day” are OK with your body.
Aim to run constant speed. It will seem very slow at the start. Practice this on your long runs. Free timing/pace bands are available at the Lucozade stands.
Greenwich Park, the start is a large area of wet grass. There are two schools of thought here:
1. Have your race shoes in your bag and get changed into them after crossing the park so as to start in dry shoes and socks.
2. Leave the hotel wearing your race gear so there is no chance of forgetting to mount your timing chip etc when nerves take over at the start.
Free Lucozade is available in the park before the baggage deposit. I like to have a Lucozade Caffeine 30 mins before the start then Nil by mouth.
DO HAVE A DRINK, every mile, even if it’s just a couple of mouthfuls from the 330ml bottles. Pour the remainder over your head. Caution if your phone is on your belt, I drowned one, wrap it in a plastic bag. Look behind you when ditching your bottles.
DRINK ALL the Energy Drink at every opportunity, 330ml given out at miles something like 5, 10, 15, 19 & 23. Its all in the race guide you collect at Expo when you register on the Sat.
See where the free gels are and have 1 at say 6, 13 18, exact location details will be in the race guide.
Consider leaving your watch and Garmin in your bag and enjoy the day. Your Garmin will probably lose sight of satellites when between the tall buildings in central London resulting in the mileage readout being less than it actually is, not only would this be demoralizing BUT if you are using virtual partner or average pace the calculation will be wrong. Remember constant speed. You will feel as if you are holding back for the first few miles and all those people who charged past you, you will sail past after mile 18 etc.
IF you go off too fast, in terms of effort 22 miles is half way!
I like Kendal mint cake, jelly babies OR lucozade jelly beans for the last 3 miles. I have half a bag at mile 23 and the other half at 25, works for me.
Raise your arms on the finish line for that memorable photo.
Just after the finish, do not forget to go to have your official finishers picture taken, it's all part of the portfolio of pictures you can choose which to buy or not.
London is not a PB course and can be very congested. Nottingham Full is my preference of the two.
Did notice the difference with being on my feet for that distance & time, the arches of my feet were aching slightly at the end
Got my registration form & a useful booklet today so its getting closer!! Nearly 4 weeks to go..........
You focus so much on the training & running; then you realise you need to think practical about the day, travel etc
Has anyone got any tips for spectator best places to be? as we will have family & friends coming down to support, I know Jane has mentioned some but I can't remember now..............
Mark isn't running it this year but it's a great day so I am going to watch anyway , a day trip and I have room in the car for two small people (it's a mini).Failing that , if you are running look out for me at Smithfield ........beware the bells!
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