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Running Fundamentals: Ways to improve your overall marathon time
The '26.2' Marathon Survey Results
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the key part of your training program
& run a
getting ready for the big event!
account of the race
26.2 Home Page
Click the photo for details
Info' On Upcoming Marathons
Ways to improve your overall marathon time
**** The '26.2' Marathon Survey Results ****
This is the key part of your training program
& run a better marathon
Tips on getting ready for the big event!
An imaginary account of the race
'26.2' - The Marathon Training Website:
Running a marathon takes its toll on you, both physically and mentally. How well you recover depends on how hard your race was, and your activity level and attitude during the weeks following the race. So what can you do to speed up the recovery process and get back to your regular running routine?
Although you probably don’t feel like it – you should walk around the finish area for fifteen minutes or so. Do some stretching as well to help your muscles gradually relax. Eating some of the post race snacks like bananas and apples is beneficial. Make sure to drink plenty of water and a sports drink like Gatorade.
If you want to take a bath, make sure the water is not too hot. Many experts say this can aggravate sore muscles.
If you have any sore muscles, try an ice pack for a few minutes. An anti-inflammatory like Ibuprofen may help. Treat blisters and chafes right away to avoid any infection that could occur.
You can look forward to a good dinner that evening with plenty of carbohydrates. My personal preference is to add some good quality protein like lean steak or chicken breast.
How soon after your marathon should you start running?
Some people swear that you shouldn’t run for at least a week. Others say run after a few days to clear out the lactic acid build-up in the calf muscles.
If you had a relatively comfortable marathon and finished without too much pain and
suffering then you will probably benefit from running three easy miles about three days after the race. Everybody is different though; so don’t push it if your body starts to complain after the first few steps!
Muscle soreness can actually get worse two or three days after the marathon.
You definitely need to take it easy if you feel this happening. After my first marathon, I couldn’t walk downstairs comfortably for almost a week!
If you do a walk-run combination (for example alternate running for 5 minutes then walking for the next 5 minutes) this will help a lot during the recovery period.
The Recovery Period
How long does it take to recover completely from the marathon?
A standard rule-of thumb is one day per mile, or twenty-six days, although I have known people who run another marathon within two weeks.
When you resume regular running after a week or two, expect to be tired, even on short runs. This can persist for a couple of weeks and the best thing is to simply listen to what your body is trying to tell you. Take it easy!
Once you get through this recovery period you will be feeling quite strong again, and ready for new challenges.
Tapering in Reverse
Just as you tapered off with decreasing weekly mileage in the weeks just prior to the marathon you need to do the opposite after the race. Here is a typical post race schedule:
è I have found walking breaks during my recovery runs have been extremely beneficial.
I believe that the lower impact from walking relieves the stress on your muscle tissue, but you still get the benefit of the increased blood flow from the exercise.
è You should also avoid running hills while you are recovering from the marathon.
If you have access to off-road trails, your legs will appreciate the softer surface.
After weeks of training and focusing on the race, it’s finally over. Now what?
After completing the marathon, many people experience a feeling of depression and lack of interest in resuming running. “I’m too tired” is a frequent rationale for not getting back into the regular routine.
This can be related to your marathon performance. If you met or exceeded your expectations and had a good race and easy recovery, you are less likely to feel this way. Whatever the case, it helps to recognize the symptoms and take action to minimize the problem.
A cross training activity can help because it’s different from running and that puts you in another mindset.
Talking about your experience with family and friends is also good. Don’t forget, the fact that you crossed the finish line puts you in a special ‘club’ of marathon finishers. This is a major accomplishment and you need to enjoy the moment.
A running club is anther great way to overcome the post-marathon blues. It’s interesting to learn about the other runners’ marathon experiences, and their plans for the next one.