BY DEAN KARNAZES
Marathon season has officially launched in the northern hemisphere. This year is projected to be the busiest ever with record numbers of marathons and half marathon toeing the line. Whether you’re training for the Boston Marathon or the Flying Pig Marathon, here are some time-honored tips that can help.
Tip 1: Obey the 10% Rule
During your mileage ramp-up don’t increase your weekly distance by more than 10 percent. Like many “rules” this is more a general guideline. But I’ve found it to be prudent advice for avoiding overuse injuries.
Tip 2: Cross Train
For me, cross training has become an essential component of my marathon preparations. As I’ve, well, matured I’ve found that cross training helps develop my cardiovascular system without the impact of traditional running. I would recommend cross training with things that most closely emulate running, like cycling or riding an ElliptiGO. I don’t consider running on a treadmill cross training because you still have impact from each footfall.
Tip 3: Recovery Matters
I used to pooh-pooh recovery as something reserved for the weak. After running myself ragged and suffering from acute lethargy and chronic exhaustion, I now embrace recovery. And my performance and overall health and happiness have improved as a result. Hammer Nutrition Recoverite has become an indispensable tool.
Tip 4: Sleep Matters Too
As with recovery, I used to discount the importance of sleep. I wish that I knew what I know now when I was younger. Sleep matters. Though after a hard day of training or racing, sleep doesn’t always come easy. Again I turn to Hammer Nutrition for some assistance. REM Caps help me get solid sleep without leaving me groggy or in a brain fog the next morning.
Tip 5: Try New Things
I’ve been a longtime user of Hammer Nutrition Endurolytes,HEED andPerpetuem , but only more recently discovered Race Caps Supreme and Anti-Fatigue Caps. If you always do the same thing it’s likely you’ll always get the same predicable results, so experiment during your training to find new things that can enhance your performance.
The last bit of practical counsel I’ll offer comes from personal experience. While I love dried figs, they’re not the best choice for snacking the day before a race. Let’s just say there were several unintended pit stops along the way (hey, the best lessons in life are not always pleasant). Still crossed the finish line, just a bit slower than anticipated.
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Dean Karnazes is an ultramarathoner and Hammer Nutrition Athlete. He has raced and competed across the globe and once ran 50 marathons, in all 50 US states, in 50 consecutive days. His most recent book is A Runner’s High.