hey! just so you know, i've been drafting this post for the entire week but i keep nodding off, signalling that it's time to sleep. otherwise, i have been cracking my head trying to be coherent with some suggestions that work for me.
Many moons ago
when dinosaurs still roamed the earth, I provided a running tip or two from a beginner's point of view. They were located at the bottom of this, this and this post.
As the years went by (SCKLM '13 will mark my 4th anniversary in running), I neglected sharing other tips for fear of sounding like a know-it-all, when I am in fact, still a lil' noob. *sad puppy face*
If we're looking at numbers, you may say that my achievements are rather dismal with 2 handfuls of 10KM runs, a handful of half marathons and full marathons. Consistently however, I seem to sign up for an average of 10 events per year in year 2011 and year 2012. Year 2013 on the other hand will not hit that same average as I am focusing to improve the 3 S's: strength, stamina and speed. Oh, and endurance, too.
Total BS, by the way. :D
It's mainly because registration fees are too effing expensive these days and secondly, I'm trying to participate in different events from the previous ones, save for SCKLM. :)
10 8 days to Nestle Fitnesse Malaysia Women Marathon (April 7th), and 24 22 days to The Island Ocean Marathon 2013 (April 21st) and dear first timers, are you ready to rumble? Yes, we are all nervous!
Disclaimer: The views and ideas below are expressly mine and catered for nervous beginners who would secretly like to have a hand to hold or a good luck kiss when they're at the start line. Be that as it may, kindly take note that experience may differ from case to case and may not work for you. Do whatever you're comfortable with.
10 days to go (to MWM)
If you have been sticking to a training plan, you should have completed your last LSD (long slow distance) run of at least 27KM last weekend and embrace the next 7 days of shorter runs. Don't forget that you'll have to do a final 12 - 16KM run this weekend.
By now, you should already understand your body (and legs) quite well, knowing how far you're able to push without too much pain and how to deal with your mental anguish. I swear a lot when I'm having a difficult time during the run, mainly directed at myself for being such a wuss. :P
Sleep and eat well, make sure you take your vitamins and supplements diligently, drink lots of water (1.5 - 2L per day) and stay away from sick people, because it is NOT the time to fall sick.
Nor is it the time to go hiking or trail running, lest you injure yourself. I was thinking about this point as I rumbled through FRIM last Sunday. I almost tripped over a stone and I swore that I was a knuckle-brain for going out there just 2 weeks before MWM. Thank goodness the ankles are fine. Phew!
Don't start carbo loading just yet or you may end up gaining an extra 1kg to run with. :D
And oh my gawd, please don't ask me about period! I am worried sick that the Time of the Month is going to come just a few days before MWM. *grim look* Let's see if the continuous consumption of pineapple and papaya will help to welcome it earlier than scheduled.
My friend swears that it does.
My friend swears that it does.
24 days to go (to the Island Ocean Marathon)
If you're sticking to a training plan, you should be hitting the second of your ultimate LSD runs this weekend, 32KM at the least. You need to complete it, by hook or by crook, because the experts (and my conscience) say, "Never compromise on your long runs." This is crucial for marathon training!
A friend of mine once ran 30KM on Saturday and 20KM on Sunday just three weeks before the KL Marathon as he hadn't been able to run LSDs regularly due to his work schedule. He did fine during the KL Marathon!
You have the option of doing back to back medium slow runs, say, 20KM on Saturday and 15KM on Sunday, or vice versa but then again, you might as well get it over and done within a day.
Worst case scenario, if you happen to have to go away for the weekend where you won't have the time and place to slot in a long run, run your LSD on a weekday evening after work. I did that once and it was an epic feeling of achievement and relief to accomplish it. No guilt during the weekend, then!
Try not to skip too much of your weekday runs but if you have to, at least do the LSD on weekends. Even if it takes you 4 hours or more to complete 32KM, at least your body knows how it feels to have ran 32KM and you're prepared for it come race day.