It’s that time again! The time of year when runners register and start training for what I like to call- “the beautiful fall beast” called the marathon

There are so many helpful tips and pieces of advice that I give beginner and runners of all levels that are training for their first or fifth half or full marathon. 

I actually have a tendency to overload them with TOO MUCH information.

I am one that wants to do everything right; while training and on race day-but that is not realistic. I always find myself evaluating my performance after every road races and there are always things I write down that went well and things that I could of done better during training and during the race.

You are going to have good days and you will have not so great days, but there are some things that you can keep and mind and practice during your training that can help you run and finish a successful race.

With that said, I have listed my top three tips that i think are very important to keep in mind while training. There are many other aspects that I think are also very important, but these are ones in my opinion are ones that every runner should live by, 

1) Warm-up and cool down.

Although many of us have a tendency to get excited in the beginning of training runs and go out too fast- i can’t stress enough just how important it is to warm-up for 5-10 min (1-2 miles depending on your workout for the day) before your run and also to properly cool down 5-10 min after your workout.
This will help you prevent injury and also help you conquer your endurance and pace, while also adding to your weekly mileage goals. It is also good for you to start to gauge your pace/comfortability level as you start to see changes/improvements throughout your training. Stretching after your cool down is also important along with hydration and getting in good nutrients.
Also, strides can be good as well. Strides are 60- to 100-meter “pickups” that runners typically do just before speed work or races. In these instances, they generally warm up well, stretch, and then use strides as a finishing touch to ease into fast-running mode.

2) Fuel your body with the right stuff. I can not say how important it is to stay hydrated everyday. Especially while training in the summer, you will lose a lot of electrolytes and you will need more water intake because you are most likely sweating more.

Make sure you drink a lot of water/electrolyte filled beverages while training AND during the race. One of the top things I tell runners is to make sure to stop and almost all or most water stations during a marathon, even if yuo are not thirsty, the fluids will carry you through your next 3-5 miles and keep you from cramping and getting that dry mouth feeling HYDRATE/fuel your body with good carbs

3) Know yourself; Keep your pace. 

If you are stubborn and know your common mistakes such as starting out too fast- discipline yourself to train ike you are actually running the 26.2 mile race(not distance wise but in your mile splits) during some(not all) of your workouts. You will improve and become a faster and stronger runner if you do this and also incorporate hill, temp and speed work in addition to your usual 3-10 mile training runs.

Aside from my top 3- so I guess my list should actually be extended to 4 tips; is to cross-train. I have seen the benefits from lifting weights/push-ups and doing leg exercises (squats, lunges, etc.)

I hope these tips help and give you a little more insight on how to best train and prepare for a successful half/full marathon on YOUR race day!

Hold FAST to Your Dreams,


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