How Long Do You Have To Train In Order To Run A Marathon?

Training for a marathon is certainly hard work, but it is well worth the effort. If you have your sights on a specific race, you are going to need to start training well enough ahead of time. So just how much training is required? It is more than just about how soon you begin training, but let’s start there.

First, experts recommend that you give yourself at minimum 12 weeks to prepare for a marathon. Naturally, the training time can depend on the individual, and you need to be dedicated to the process. While 12 weeks is the minimum, closer to 20 weeks might be best. Remember, it’s also not just about how long you train but ‘how you train.’ No matter what, that 26.2 miles is a monumental task, and you want to rise to the occasion and complete this personal challenge.

While 12 to 20 weeks was given as the training time, that is just for the actual marathon. People often have themselves running about 30 miles weekly before they even step up to the plate and start training so to speak. Additionally, as you are ramping up to running a marathon, another thing you can do is start with smaller races. You might groan at the thought, wanting to tackle the giant instead, but running those distances is going to be part of your training anyway.

Soon, you will be running that marathon. First, you have to train. If you are currently out of long distance running, give yourself an entire year. Ramp up for half the year towards running 30 miles a week. Then, you will be ready to start a marathon training program. Don’t bite off more than you can chew all at once. You will get there, and while you do want to push and train hard, do so responsibly.

How To Make A Killer Running Playlist

There is no tried and true method of creating the best running playlist possible. A lot of it depends on the person. What kind of music do you like? How rigid or loose are you? Where are you running? If you’re taking a stroll outside in the Antarctic tundra during a blizzard, then you might be in the mood for something a little bit different than if you’re jogging in Death Valley during a season high. To each his own, but here are the best bits of advice we’ve accumulated over the years.

First of all, don’t go without. Exercise is a great way to augment your mood (among other more fun activities that need not be discussed here), and a great way to complement the benefits of exercise happens through music. Because you’re less focused on the exercise itself, the stress of that exercise is reduced as your attention is split.

The science is sort of iffy when it comes to whether or not you should choose music that synchronizes beats per minute with your running pace. If this sounds like something you think might help you, then first calculate your running pace by counting steps per minute. Do it on more than one occasion to ensure accuracy. Whatever number you get, that’s equivalent to the beats per minute of the songs you’ll want to add to your playlist. If this approach doesn’t get your mojo flowing, then that’s no problem. We still recommend you stay away from “Thousand” which holds the record for highest beats per minute, or any songs that you can only hear once every five seconds because they’re so slow. Be smart about what you choose.

You might opt to stay away from heavy metal. It might energize you, but it’s not exactly inspirational. Find something that puts you in a good mood, and stay away from sad songs that leave you feeling down in the dumps.

Like all playlists, it should tell a story–an exercise story. How do you run? Do you start slow and work yourself up to a decent pace? Do you sprint until you’re half-dead? Do you engage in a cool-down period toward the end of your workout? Take these questions into consideration when deciding what’s best for you. If you start slow, then the first songs you hear should be on the slow side too. If you end with a sprint, then the fastest songs should be at the end of the list. This is also a good way to plan exactly how long you want your runs to last. You do not want to be in a slip and fall accident in NY.

At the end of the day, a big part of your running playlist needs to be based off of what you like to listen to the most, even if it’s a little too slow or a little too fast for someone else. Maybe you prefer the absurdity of System Of A Down or the Celine Dion love song in Titanic or a grandiose boss battle theme in your favorite video game. Whatever floats your boat, that’s what you should do. What works for us might not work for you. What’s important is that you try new things until you do find what works, and then carry on running at a comfortable pace!

Bad Marathon Advice: Why You Should Ignore Everyone You Know

Our friends and relatives all have one magical thing in common. They’re fountains of perpetual knowledge, and they know better than common sense or a quick Internet search could ever prove otherwise. If you’re a health nut (and we mean that in the nicest way possible since we are too), then you probably share some of your exercise regimens or healthy habits with the people you know. That’s okay. But it probably means they’ve told you what they think you should do instead. These are the worst pieces of marathon advice you’ve probably already heard, will probably hear again, and why they’re all terribly wrong.

Some idiot probably thinks you’re a prince or princess and that you need to look your best for that race you’re about to run–so naturally the idiot either provided an upgraded outfit or told you where you can find one that looks oh-so-good. Ignore this mysterious individual. Your fifteenth mile into a race isn’t the ideal time to realize that your crotch seam is slowly turning into the Grand Canyon during a flash flood event. Do what you normally do, whether it’s the clothes you wear or the food you eat. Change nothing.

Taking that one step further, don’t think for a second that this is a good time to upgrade your running shoes. Anyone who’s worth their salt on the track knows that a decent worn-in pair (we’re not talking duct-taped soles with no shoe laces) is better than a brand new pair. Then again, most toddlers know that. Why don’t your friends know that? Blisters hurt. Avoid them.

For some reason there are some very special people out there who like to “bank miles” during a marathon, i.e. start fast because you’ll tire later. It’s a freaking marathon, NOT a sprint. It’s one of the most used proverbs out there, and just maybe there’s a reason it exists in the first place. Most people who know what they’re doing start slow and gradually increase to their expected pace long-term. The best among us start at the same pace they finish with, but that’s no easy feat.

If you’re a beer drinker, then by all means enjoy a frosty tall boy at the end of the race–but don’t overdo it. There is research out there that suggests beer reduces the inflammation that arises from prolonged runs, but it uses non-alcoholic beer. If someone tells you that beer is going to make you feel better after the race, then that person probably just wants to laugh at you while you vomit in a grimy restroom.

One oft-mentioned tidbit of bad advice involves when you should start to eat or drink. Our bodies lose energy at a staggering rate during a marathon run, and if you wait until you’re hungry or thirsty to replenish the nutrients and electrolytes you need to finish the race, then your body won’t absorb them in time to do any good. Start refueling about a quarter of the way into the race and you should do fine.

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Tips For Starting Marathon Training

One question many people ask when they think about running a marathon is, “where do I start?” That is a very complicated question. Everyone starts somewhere different in their marathon journey, so it is important to be honest with yourself to see where your needs lie in the preparation for your big day. Here are a few tips that we think can help you greatly with starting marathon training and prevent you from needing to hire a personal injury law firm after the race.

1) Start Small

Starting small is a very important concept when it comes to training for a marathon. People often get a grandiose idea of running a marathon for the first time, but they are not ready to put in months of hard work to do it. Starting small is absolutely essential, as it can help you compartmentalize all of the things you need to do to get ready. By not biting off more than you can chew in the beginning, you set yourself up for success when you need to start doing something more challenging.

2) Have Fun

The most important thing about this is that you need to have fun while you’re doing it. If you’re not having fun while you’re training, why even bother? Training for a marathon can be a very scary thing, so putting in some fun exercises and drills can make the entire process much easier on you. In addition, it is a well-known concept that when you’re having fun, time seems to go by quicker. If you sprinkle in some fun activities, your workouts will feel shorter, which will help you continue to grow as a runner!

I hope that these tips will help you get started with your dream marathon training regimen. If you have any questions about where to start, please let us know, we would love to talk about getting you ready for the big day!

When it comes to training for a marathon, please don’t take Barney Stinson’s advice!

Things To Avoid When Running A Marathon

There are a variety of things that you need to avoid when you decide to train for and run in a marathon. These things can vary all the way from how healthy you stay in your run, to how tired you get, to preventing horrible catastrophes like wrongful death.

1) Eating Too Much Beforehand

It is very important that you eat something before your marathon, as we have touched upon in an earlier article. While this is true, it is important to do so in moderation. If you eat too much food, you might not only be slowed down, but you can put yourself in serious physical harm. Foods with high amounts of sodium, or with a lot of spice, can make you sweat a lot and cause you to lose valuable nutrients in your body. Even “healthy” snacks like protein bars can fill you up too much and give your body the wrong kind of energy.

2) Having a Running Partner

It is important to have a running partner when you are training, but when it comes to the real thing, you need to do it by yourself. Having a runner partner is good in theory, but in practice it means that both runners are always doing something to accomodate the other runner. For example, if one is naturally faster, the slower runner might tear a muscle trying to keep up. It is important to know your limits as a runner, but having a partner can throw that completely out of whack. You will be surrounded by other runners, so you should never have a lack of motivation when you are in a marathon.

I hope that this article illuminated some of the things you should avoid while running a marathon. At the end of the day, you need to trust your body and do what you feel is right. Don’t take this as gospel.

For more information, please check out the following video:

Three Foods You Should Never Eat Before A Run

Let us first salute you for getting out and doing your body good. Whether rain or sun, you have been trying to run a=on a daily basis to burn off those calories from the times you have indulged. You are trying to eat healthier, but did you know some of the foods you are eating for your health are the worst for your exercise routine. Below are three of the worst foods you can eat before an invigorating run.

Leafy Greens

There is no question about the health benefits of leafy greens. In fact, they are on just about every list for healthy eating. However, raw greens like kale and spinach tend to cause serious discomfort to runners. This is due to the high fiber content contained in these vegetables. If you are looking to run but would prefer not to have the gas and bloating that will come from these vegetables, you may want to consider a green smoothie. You will get similar health benefits minus the discomfort and embarrassment.

Spicy Foods

Unless you happen to have a stone stomach, you more than likely experience some heartburn after a spicy meal. While there is nothing wrong with indulging in a feast, these types of foods take an extra long digestion time, which you will want to plan for your run. Because there is nothing worse than heartburn during a run!

Protein Bars

How many people do you see at the trail grabbing a cool water and protein bar before they start off on their run? More than likely a good number and that is due to the marketing that has made protein bars into a healthy food. These bars typically contain more sugar than protein and are simply going to cancel out your run.

Famous Male Marathon Runners

Many marathon runners don’t get the appreciation they deserve. To win a marathon, you need more than speed and an immigration attorney; you also need endurance. These famous male marathon runners are spectacular athletes, and their accomplishments should be celebrated.

Wilson Kipsang Kiprotich

Kenyan runner Wilson Kipsang Kiprotich has won an astounding number of marathons. Between 2010 and 2014, he managed to win 11 races in a row. He has broken world records and earned a number of medals.

Dieter Baumann

Dieter Baumann is one of the finest runners to come out of Germany. He managed to win the 5000 m race at the 1992 Olympics, even though the competition was incredibly fierce. Baumann’s wife helped to coach him as he trained for his big win.

Viktor Röthlin

Viktor Röthlin is a Swiss runner that has won a number of Olympic medals. He is known for his amazing endurance. He doesn’t seem to tire out like other runners do during marathons; he can keep on running for as long as he has to.

Abebe Bikila

The late Abebe Bikila is a runner that still inspires people today. This Ethiopian runner is a two-time Olympic Marathon champion. While many of his records have been broken, his accomplishments are still very impressive.

Stylianos Kyriakides

Greek runner Stylianos Kyriakides is known for his speed and endurance, but he is also known for his charity work. The late runner used his talents to raise money for needy children.

Haile Gebrselassie

Ethiopian runner Haile Gebrselassie is a legend in the marathon world. Over the course of his running career, he shattered a number of records. Today, he serves as the President of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation. He is working to train a new generation of athletes.

Marathon runners are incredibly talented. These famous male marathon runners worked hard for their accomplishments. If you’re preparing for a marathon, you may want to look at how these men trained.

For more information on male runners, check out the following video:

Famous Marathon Runners That Were Female

Not all successful marathon runners are men. Here are some famous marathon runners who were female.

Bobbi Gibb

Bobbi Gibb is famous for being the first woman to run the Boston marathon. However, running the marathon isn’t her only accomplishment. She actually managed to win the marathon a whopping three times!

Olga Appell

Mexican-native Olga Appell is well-known in the Twin Cities area. She has won the Twin Cities Marathon twice! She was also the winner of the woman’s marathon at the 1991 Pan-Am Games.

Amy Hastings

Amy Hastings isn’t an ordinary marathon runner; she is an Olympian athlete! She is considered to be the ninth-fastest American marathon runner of all time.

Maria Trujillo

Maria Trujillo is a championship marathon runner. She placed in the 1991 IAAF World Championships. She gave a number of athletes a run for their money.

Marla Runyan

Marla Runyan was the first legally blind runner to run in an Olympic marathon. While that is a major accomplishment on its own, she was also the winner of the U.S. Marathon Championships in 2006.

Jenny Spangler

Jenny Spangler’s running career took many people by surprise. She came out of nowhere to win the U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon. She continued to run and win for many years after that.

Linda Somers Smith

Linda Somers Smith hasn’t just run in an Olympic marathon once. She is a seven-time U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon runner.

Kara Goucher

The New York City Marathon is incredibly competitive. That’s why so many people were surprised when Kara Goucher took third place in the 2008 marathon. She is an Olympic medalist and an incredibly talented runner.

Many women have successfully completed marathons. A lot of these women have even set records, though many suffered from personal injury and loss during their careers. Now that you know more about famous marathon runners who were female, you can use these women as a source of inspiration.

Should You Have A Pre-Run Meal Before A Marathon?

It’s difficult to complete a marathon. Many people that start a marathon don’t wind up finishing it. If you do want to finish a marathon, you’re going to want to show a lot of caution.

A lot of people worry about eating prior to a marathon. Should you have a pre-run meal before the marathon begins? Here are some of the pros and cons of eating before a marathon.

Food Can Provide You With Fuel

Our bodies are fueled by the food that we eat. If you sit down for a pre-run meal, you’re doing more than filling your belly. You’re giving your body what it needs to get through a long run.

Foods Can Lead To Stomach Distress

It’s hard to finish a marathon under ideal conditions. If your stomach is upset, running may be impossible. You should definitely eat before your run, but you should take steps to avoid nausea or other stomach issues. Eat a light meal that’s nutrient-rich.

Avoid foods that cause gas or upset your stomach. You should also stay away from foods that you’re not familiar with. Trying new foods can be great, but you shouldn’t do it before you start a marathon.

Food Can Give You Energy

Running a marathon is draining. You need to make sure you have enough energy to keep running. Don’t load up on coffee before a run; it can dehydrate you. Instead, pick foods that can give you more energy.

It’s a good idea to eat lean proteins before a run. Protein can keep you feeling full for a while, and it can give you all the energy that you need.

Having a pre-run meal is a great idea. With that said, you need to be careful about the kinds of foods that you eat. Select foods that won’t cause any issues for you.

Water Or Gatorade For A Marathon?

Marathons are sort of like Happy Hour: It’s 5 o’clock somewhere.

It is marathon season virtually year-round, with many major cities having their 26.2-mile runs at virtually all times of the year depending on the weather. And during all times of the year, those who run in these marathons are training five to six days a week, running 80 to 100 miles (or more) every week in order to get ready for the next big race.

One of the questions that have floated around on the internet for years is the great debate for a marathoner: Should a runner drink water or Gatorade during a long run?

Water has its benefits, especially as our bodies are anywhere from two-thirds to 80 percent water. Gatorade, however, supplies sodium and carbohydrates that get lost when we burn energy and sweat during marathons.

Is there a definitive answer?

Maybe.

There is value in using both during a marathon. You are not restricted to one or the other, but keep a couple things in mind.

First of all, when you sweat, you don’t just lose water; your sweat is concentrated salt water, so you are losing sodium, and if you let your sodium levels drop too low, you get nauseous, dizzy and perhaps have seizures or even death consistent with hyponatremia, or what is called overhydration – where you drink so much water that the sodium in your body gets diluted and sweat out and is not properly replenished.

On the other hand, water has no sugar or calories, while Gatorade or other sports drinks have calories and sugar (one 8-ounce cup has 63 calories and 13 grams, respectively), not to mention electrolytes and carbs. A couple of these are valuable during a run, but others (like the sugar and calories) defeat the purpose of the run in the first place.

What has been recommended when it comes to using both fluids is to mix and match. One runner’s forum gives suggestions to alternate between first-aid stations, drinking water at first then switching to Gatorade and back, in order to keep a good electrolyte balance in your body so you don’t let your sodium level get too low, while you take in enough water to keep you hydrated.

The key issue here is to try out both during your training runs and see how you feel afterward because we don’t want you to become injured. The heavy sugar and carbs in a sports drink can upset some stomachs while running, so it’s good to make sure you are plenty hydrated before you run. Tank up on water before you run, and maybe bring a small bottle of Gatorade or other sports beverage while you run, then drink more water after you run to balance out the sodium intake. In general, water is suggested to be sufficient for runs that last 60 minutes or less, but incorporating Gatorade or another sports beverage into your long runs will prove valuable. Perhaps using that 60-minute yardstick as a guide you can find the right balance for your body.

Every body is different, and knowing your body well in terms of what it uses during a run will help you find the right combination that will keep you focused and energetic to finish that marathon, no matter where and what time of year. Be willing to experiment during your training runs and then try to simulate that combination during your marathon and you should be well-equipped to achieve that personal-best every time.