As you know, the Chicago Marathon is less than a month away. It’s been a brutal 16 weeks of training, but the light at the end of the tunnel is finally starting to shine through.
The last month of training for any marathon is where everything really starts to come together. Your endurance is already up there, speed training is starting to make a difference, and it really becomes a lot less about training the body and more about training the mind.
Now is the time to relax, take it all in, and just trust your training.
To ensure a great final month and to prevent any way of jinxing myself come race day I like to keep the following 5 things in mind.
1. No more pedicures until after race day.
This is a piece of advice Bobbi gave me right before my first marathon and it’s one I still live by today. Think about it. You’ve worked hard to build those calluses around your feet, why smooth them out now? Those calluses are protecting your feet during your runs and with out them you’re likely to develop blisters and bloody toes. Imagine running a 20 mile run in new feet – not good.
I suggest hitting the nail salon the week after and getting the full treatment, but until then skip the pedicure and just get a polish change instead. Trust me – your feet will thank you. 🙂
2. Go on one long run by yourself.
Whether you’ve been training with a group or have plan of running with a friend, you just never know how you’re going to feel on race day. It’s better to do at least one long run (10+ miles) on your own ‘just in case.’
3. If you need new shoes – buy them now.
Most people wear down their shoes while training for a marathon. The typical shoe should last 300-400 miles and, depending on when you started training, those 300-400 miles may be long gone. What ever you do do not wait until two weeks before the marathon to purchase shoes. Give yourself at least 3 or 4 weeks to break them in and make sure to complete at least one long run before race day.
4. Test out your race day outfit.
The week before my first marathon I was handed my purple Team in Training shirt and completed a 6 miles run with out any problems. The shirt was great for the short run, but for 26.2? Not so much. That was the only race I’ve ever ran where I was practically in tears over the chafing. Turns out the shirts arm hole were too baggy and kept rubbing under my arm pit. By mile 20 I wanted to cry from the pain.
I would suggest running your 20 miler in your race day outfit just to make sure it pasts the test. What works for a 6 mile run, may not work for another 20 after that.
5. What- ever you do: Do Not Stress!
This is the time to relax. Trust you training and remember to have fun. Don’t worry if your taper week is longer or shorter than someone elses. Don’t worry if your training plan hasn’t been perfectly executed. And don’t worry if you didn’t listen to steps 1-4. This is your race – no one elses – and you will rock it. 🙂
I think that about covers it. Please feel free to add any of your own advice to the comments!! 🙂
My morning started with a simple 5 mile run and was followed by two slices of toast for breakfast.
One slice was covered with Dark Chocolate Dreams Peanut Butter, Raisins, 1/2 a pear and Granola.
The other had Almond Butter, Chocolate Chips, 1/2 a pear, and Granola.
This was too filling. I ate one and a half slices and gave the rest to Maddie ( the almond butter half minus the chocolate chips)
I still don’t know what to think about Gossip Girl last night. It should be an interesting season. 🙂