Tag Archives: Marathon Training

Marathon Training Tips To Help You Run Your First Marathon In 2013

2013 is here and if you plan to run your first full marathon this year? Here are tips to make sure your dream is not just a pipe dream but becomes a reality.

Make sure you train

Okay, this sounds blindingly obvious and it will be considered foolish to most people to embark on running a Half Marathon without doing any training. However, it does happen and, of course, the people who do so are daft.

There is more to this point than those people silly enough not to train. Firstly, it is important to train specifically for running a Half Marathon. You may be fit already as a result of going to the gym, playing football, swimming etc, but if your body is not conditioned to running long distances on tarmac, over various road contours and in varying weather conditions, then you will not be ready for a Half Marathon run. Even if you are already fit and active, it is important your training is all about running. Well, not quite all, but the vast majority of your training in the months before a Half Marathon should involve running.

Finally, it is important to complete your training schedule and run on every day you are supposed to. Always remember it is those days when do not want to run but do so anyway that will mean the most on race day.

So, whatever your level of fitness or general motivation, this message is important: make sure you train.

Pick the right marathon training schedule

A Marathon Training Schedule is a great way to not only plan your preparation for race day, but to also ensure you do enough training. Marathon Training Schedules are tried and tested with every day of training planned out in advance, making it easier to build training sessions into your daily routine.

Selecting the wrong schedule, however, could be disastrous.

Firstly, be realistic about your abilities. It will be incredibly de-motivating to struggle to complete each day’s training. That is an important sentence as Marathon Training is as much about building mental toughness as physical fitness. By completing every day of training (even the rest days), you are one step closer to completing your ultimate goal. The sense of achievement will be particularly pronounced on the days with long distance runs.

To finish this point, it is also important to avoid schedules that are too easy. It is all about finding the balance – you will want a schedule that is challenging enough that you improve as you train while not being so difficult that you cannot complete each day’s run. It is also important to be realistic about the time you can allocate each day to training. It is no use choosing a schedule that will require an average of one hour training every day if your lifestyle does not allow that.

Stay hydrated

Studies have shown that being as little as 2 percent dehydrated can have a negative effect on your running performance. Being dehydrated can make you run slower and may make you feel sluggish and light-headed. You may also start to cramp. It is therefore important to make sure you take on enough fluids while Half Marathon Training.

Include strength training in your schedule

Leg strength is a key element of Marathon Training. It is one of the main factors in determining whether you run the marathon in the time you want. It is also a factor in determining whether you can complete the whole event running, without having to walk.

Strength training can take many different forms, including using a cross training machine at the gym or going to a circuits or spin class. It could also be much simpler, though. You could do plenty of hill work during your normal training runs – the steeper the hill, the better. Or, you could incorporate speed work into your normal training runs.

Any sort of strength training you do will reap benefits on race day.

Stay Positive When Training

Being mentally fit is as important as being physically fit when it comes to being successful in a Half Marathon run. It is no different to any other sport, or in fact any other aspect of life. If you are not in the right frame of mind, it is very hard to achieve your goals.

The most important things is to stay positive throughout your training. Tell yourself every day that you feel good, fit and strong. That may sound silly to some, but it does work. Treat every completed day’s training as an achievement and congratulate yourself for taking another step closer to your goal.

To Your Success! May you dream turn to reality in 2013.

Run Faster By Running Less

The goal of every runner is to run faster, the conventional advise on how to achieve that is clock hundreds of miles per week. A new breed of running coach is challenging that by saying you can run faster by running less.

According to Peter Lavelle, a certified personal trainer and co-founder of Boston-based Ultimate Bootcamp, runners should not run every other day. He talks of mixing up things:

Taking Active Rest Days During Marathon Training.

Some marathoners get by on just one long run and another shorter run per week, he said, by mixing in other workouts like swimming, circuit training with weights, spinning, or, heck, even Zumba. “It’s good to mix it up,” said Lavelle. “Cross training leads to less injury and lets you work out harder between runs by working different muscle groups.” This, in theory, can help runners cut minutes from their marathon times. From Boston Globe article.

Lavelle, claims his Boston Marathon time decreased from 3:53 down to 3:29 after began running less. He operates a boot camp which in addition to running, consist of jumping rope, step-ups on park benches, stair-climbing at T-stations, lunges, squats, push-ups and other exercises straight from military basic training.

Remember, Rest is just as vital as running when it comes to increasing marathon performance.

Make sure to check our Peter Levelle marathon training blog.

2011 Stanchart Nairobi Marathon Training Week 7

“The marathon is a charismatic event. It has everything. It has drama. It has competition. It has camaraderie. It has heroism. Every jogger can’t dream of being an Olympic champion, but he can dream of finishing a marathon.” Fred Lebow, New York Marathon founder.

After seven weeks on marathon training for 2011 Stanchart marathon, everything is going like clock. I have been very consistent with my training: 3 speed works in a week plus a long run on Sunday. Every day am feeling more confident of achieving a sub 3 hours marathon.

The last week consisted of intense speed works. I did Basso 800 on Wednesday, followed 10ks speed runs on Thursday and Friday. I feel am getting more benefits from this speed work because they are really challenging my body. During the runs I can feel the strain on my lungs and feet but at the finish I feel relaxed and satisfied.

I have been working on my feet movement, especially on my landing, to try and get the perfect foot strike. I have tried landing on my forefoot, mid foot, heel and I have found landing on my heel seems to work for me. There is no answer to the perfect foot strike, you have to experiment and see what works for you.

Another important area of focus is hydration. I have been seriously water loading. Drinking plenty of water is important to ensure quick recovery.

This week I will miss my Sunday long run because I will be traveling. The trip had been planned months in advance and there is no way I can cancel it. I don’t plan to try to recover it when I come back, I will just skip it and restart my training next week.

upward and forwards.

 

 

Stanchart Nairobi Marathon 2011 Training Week 6

“Where there is anger, there is always pain underneath”

After six weeks of mild training am now moving to the next stage of training. As part of my preparation for 2011 Standard Chartered Nairobi marathon, I have been doing slow weekly runs, once in a while I would do intense work outs and once in a week I did a long run at a slow pace.

The purpose of the slow run was to strengthen my legs without risking any serious injury. I now feel this has been achieved and the body is prepared to cope with intense work outs for the next three weeks.

Intense work outs and running faster

The intense work outs are speed works around a track plus a long run at a high pace. I also plan to include some serious hill running. The theory behind this high intensity work out is, in order to get stronger, the body needs to be challenged at a level above it’s ability. It works in muscle building whereby, to develop bigger and stronger muscle, the athlete needs to keep lifting heavier and heavier weights.

No Pain No gain

The next stage will involve some level of pain because I will be pushing my body beyond its’ limits and this will call for great mental strength. My mental trick is to see it all as necessary and not a bad thing. If you associate the intense running as a bad thing that is when you will feel the real pain. But if you see it all as a necessary evil you willl endure.

Upwards and forward!

Boston Marathon Training Diet & Nutrition

Boston Marathon is known for being a tough race. So what type of diet is best suited for runners training for Boston marathon?

In a series of 2011 boston marathon group winners, Running Times magazine asked the group winners various question but one question caught my interest :-

What kind of pre-race and mid-race nutrition plan did you follow?

The best answer was from, Rami Bardeesy, 42, from Canada whon finished in 2:32:19.

I took in a slight increase in protein-rich foods during the last three weeks and a minor decrease in total calories in proportion to reduced running volume. Pre-race day consists of normal breakfast, followed by a massive carbo-load mid-day (~450g of carbs: maltodextrin, bagels, M&M’s, pretzels, hydrate, hydrate, hydrate) then light pasta dinner. On race day, I had a breakfast of coffee, juice, a bagel, a banana and more coffee, and then stayed hydrated until the race. On the run, I consumed a chocolate GU and water at miles 9, 15, 19 and 21 and some Gatorade every mile other than 1, 9, 15, 19, 21 and 25.

Left Knee Pain While Running : Cause & Treatment

I was reading the latest US president Barack Obama Health report, the doctors certified him “fit to rule” but one item that caught my knee was this one : Obama suffers from occasional pain in his left knee. Medics call it chronic tendinitis.

Left knee pain is a very common injury in people who run. I remember my first year of marathon training, the left knee pain dogged me right to the day of the race. I still remember turning up at the start line holding an anti inflammation gel on one hand and the other hand rubbing the gel on the knee.

Why Left knee and not right knee?

My guess as to why the left knee and not the right knee is affected has to do with the fact that majority of humans are right handed. We use the right leg to kick stuff around and that effort makes it stronger. On the other hand, the left leg is never used seriously, leaving it a weak partner. Have you heard of the statement “USE IT OR LOSE IT!”? It makes sense to me.

Cause of Left Knee pain while running

Apart from my theory of “neglected left knee” medics say the cause of knee pain is due to excessive training; running too much. Another cause is when you suddenly switch from running flat routes to running hilly routes.

Prevention of knee pain

I believe prevention is better than cure. One way to prevent a sudden attack of knee pain is switch your running speed gradually. A sudden change of pace will be a shock to the system leading to injury.

Four step Treatment of knee pain.

  1. Icing – The first line of treatment, sometimes this alone is enough to fix it!
  2. If the pain is too much take a pain killer
  3. Rest – take a break from running.
  4. Strength training exercise, see my video demonstration of how to strengthen your knees

If you don’t get well soon (one to two weeks), see your Doctor/ physician.

Meb Keflezighi Marathon Training : Altitude Training

Meb Keflezighi won the 2009 New York Marathon. Meb Keflezighi became the first US man to win the New York City Marathon since 1982. Meb has come a long way from being just a good runner to a great runner.

In 2000 summer Olympic games in Sydney he finished a disappointing 12th at 10,000 metres, a race that was won by Haile Gebrselassie.

After Sydney his coach, Bob Larsen realised if Meb is to compete with the East African runners he had to change his training tactics.

The Training Regimen That Boosted Running Speed and Power

According to an old New York times article of Meb Keflezighi, In 2001, Larsen persuaded Keflezighi to begin training at the 7,550-foot altitude of Mammoth Lakes to increase his oxygen-carrying capacity. Shortly after his first training regimen here, he set the American record of 27:13.98 at 10,000 meters.

Training at altitude took Meb from a good athlete to a great athlete

Paula Radcliffe Marathon Training : Weekly Runs : Gym Training

Paula Radcliffe trains on an eight-day cycle, working for seven days and then enjoying one of complete rest.

Paula Radcliffe Daily Runs : Weekly Miles

She runs some 22 miles a day (12-15 in the morning and another seven in the early evening) with Lough (her husband and coach) at her side, on his bicycle;

Paula Radcliffe Gym Training

In between, she does an hour-long session of core strength exercises.

To Run faster and stronger – Rest, Rest & Rest

When she is not training, she sleeps – a lot. ‘I’m usually in bed by ten and I don’t get up until around nine,’ she says. ‘Then I have another two hours sleep in the afternoon. You really need that sleep when you train as hard as I do.

Sorry, instead of rest I should have said, Sleep, sleep and sleep.

Source : Paula Radcliffe Interview Courtesy of Guardian Newspaper UK.

Nike Lunarglide + Shoe : Nike Marathon Running Shoe

Long time among ago I loved Nike running shoe but I fell out of love with Nike the day I bought my first Saucony Running shoes.

I still think Nike shoes are good for racing but when it comes to marathon training I prefer Saucony.

Latest Nike LunarGlide+ Shoe.

NIKE, Inc. have introduced the Nike LunarGlide+ Race Collection to celebrate the brave achievements of marathon runners worldwide.

The Nike LunarGlide+ Race Collection features nine shoes that combine city-inspired design touches.

Nike LunarGlide+ shoe

The collection includes shoes for Beijing, Boston, Chicago, Honolulu, London, New York City, Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo along with a shoe for the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco.

Nike is celebrating the unique individual flavour of the world’s top marathons with color and iconic imagery that represent each city.

They have  a Nike Lunarglide shoe for men and a Nike Lunarglide shoe for women.

If your city is not on that list, DONT BUY THE SHOE……off cause am kidding!!!!!!

Nairobi Marathon : End Of Training 2009

All good things must come to an end.

After 5 months of marathon training, I have brought down the curtain on my training and now am looking forward to Sunday? race.

In the last two weeks I have run three 10Ks, the first one was a slow recovery run, followed by a Sunday run which I finished in 43 minutes then yesterday  morning I ran a final 10K run in 40 minutes flat. I feel lucky my legs are in great shape, no injury! I believe I have done enough to run a sub 2.45 marathon.

The only scare was a cold I suffered during the weekend. I made a mistake of going for an afternoon swim and I paid the price. I used alternative medicine to treat the cold before it got worse. A daily diet of soup mixed with hot pepper fixed the cold in 5 days.

With three days to go my plan now is to stay hydrated, eat plenty of carbohydrates, rest and most importantly stay physically fit.

To stay physically fit I will do two speed works on Thursday and Saturday morning. This will be in form of 1K runs around a track. I will also do daily stretching and massaging to maintain muscle flexibility.

I can only wish myself good luck. To everyone who is running 2009 Nairobi Marathon, GOOD LUCK!