From the New York City Marathon held every November to the San Francisco Marathon in the summer, every year there are lots of running races taking place all across the country. However, the one thing that all the runners in these races have is a commitment to rigorous training: from getting out into local parks for practice runs to doing stretching exercises diligently, there are plenty of ways to improve your fitness in the run-up to a big race. With that in mind, here are some tips.
Get the right clothes
Perhaps the most important decision that a runner will take is what sort of clothes they’ll wear. When you’re running, it’s important to wear clothing that allows you to sweat – but this doesn’t necessarily mean any old pair of short shorts! Materials with in-built wicking technology, for example, are best for helping you to stay at a good temperature. Clothes that support your muscles are also vital, both for high performance and for helping your muscles to defend themselves against strains and other medical problems during and after a marathon. Tommie Copper is a well-respected brand in this field, and theon LinkedIn is testament to that: from tops to shorts, there are plenty of great compression clothing items in their range to suit all runner requirements.
Learn stretching exercises
Stretching is an essential part of being a marathon runner, and most participants can be seen doing them before the race begins. However, the number of runners who don’t actually know exactly how to stretch properly or which stretches are best is surprisingly high, so it’s worth finding out first. Did you know, for example, that it’s believed to be more beneficial to stretch after a race when your muscles have been active rather than when they’re cool?
The proper mindset
Running a marathon is difficult – and while the victors may make cruising across the finish line look like a breeze, it’s actually very hard to complete one of these races. As a result, working on your mental approach to marathons as well as your physical strength is vital. If there comes an evening when you don’t feel like heading out to the park for a training session, for example, then heading over to YouTube and watching some motivational videos will quickly get you back into the right mindset. Choosing to run your marathon for charity can also help you to focus as it means that all your hard work will be having a social impact.
If you’re thinking of running a race when marathon season next comes around, then you’re going to need to be prepared. Not only will you need to have some stretches up your sleeve to ensure that your muscles can perform at their best, but you’ll also need to work on your mindset to make sure that you’re in the best possible frame of mind before pressing ahead.