Your Half/Full Marathon
tips for the weeks approaching the big event
You have been training for several weeks now and the big event is literally RIGHT around the corner...the MARATHON! Everything changes once you have set the goals and marked the date.  The way you eat, train and schedule your day is all a necessity and as strict as it may be, you have to admit it. . .YOU LOVE IT! I know that I do.  Right now I have to live vicariously through my running buddies because my schedule has been so ridiculous,  this blog entry is dedicated to all the Carlsbad Marathon runners (coming up this weekend, January 27th) and my favorite running partner Jeffery Heard.  
Nic and Jeffery AFC 1/2

Even though many runners are down to the wire. . .stay focused and know that however you cross that finish line, you have accomplished something that is FANTASTIC! I always remind myself after every marathon that only less than 2% of the population can say "I ran a marathon today.".  That says a lot!

Here are a few tips to remember for running coming up on their last couple of weeks the marathon.  These tips will keep you focused and ready.  To ALL the runners this weekend. . ."GOOD LUCK" and know all GOOD VIBES are coming your way!

Tip 1. It's good to TAPER your training load.  A lot of times new runners think, the more the better as you get closer to your event but that is not true.  A good running plan will show that a runner needs to taper down the week before the marathon to give your legs rest and receive all the benefits of your hard training the day of the marathon (2-3 weeks prior is a good timeline before the event).

Carlsbad 2012
Tip 2.  Work on Running Mechanics.  Making sure you have the right posture that will work for you from your foot strike to your chest lifted. . .it's never too late to practice the mechanics of your running.  Take what you have learned through each long run / training sessions and apply them to your race.  As you taper down, feel how your body moves when running and think about how you will breath at mile 5, what can you do with your legs at mile 10 and how to use your arms to get through your last couple of miles before the finish line.

Tip 3.  The Nutrition Factor.  What foods worked best for you before your long run and what definitely did not? I remember training for a full marathon several years back and I had the hardest time running after downing plain oatmeal and toast.  It would stick to my ribs like I thought it would and my stomach would cramp horribly after my training run.  After doing a little research and talking to my coaches who knew me best, I found out that I was digesting too much fiber and not enough protein.  I changed my diet quickly and what a difference a day a makes! I added peanut butter to my toast and reduced the amount of oatmeal.  Remember, this may not work for everyone but it definitely worked for me and I haven't changed it since.

Tip 4.  Check out your Race Date Gear.  Make sure you wear what you have trained in, especially if you are new to running a marathon.  You have to be comfortable and wearing something brand new the day of the race can be disastrous.  Getting a wedgie from those new shorts to nipples bleeding is not only a bad look but an uncomfortable ride.  Check your shoes and make sure they will live up to the 13.1+ miles coming your way in a week!
One of the BEST marathons in California
Tip 5.  Practice Starting Slow mentally and physically.  If you have run these events before, you know EXACTLY what I am talking about.  The crowd of runners usually clump up right at the start and stay that way for nearly a mile or two.  Unless you are in the front and can bolt your way out of there, it's a safer chance to start slow mentally (you competitive types know what I am talking about) and physically so that you don't get trampled or pushed around when starting your race.  When you are surrounded with other crazy runners, everyone just wants to get it started.  Savor every moment and that includes the start!

Other than that. . .have FUN, run your own race and SMILE for the camera at the end of the race! Happy Running!