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12 Ideas To Contemplate Earlier than Working Your First Half Marathon — Katie Anne Mach Weblog

Only a pleasant reminder that the IMT Des Moines Marathon race collection is presently nonetheless a go for October 17 and 18 and registration is open. Their half marathon race can be the right race so as to add to your bucket listing if you happen to haven’t dedicated to 1 but! You’ll be able to head right here to register and be taught extra about their race day choices.

It doesn’t matter what race you propose to run this fall, I assumed it will be useful to compile 12 ideas I want somebody would have advised me earlier than I ran my first half marathon years in the past.

1. You may need to stroll on race day, and that’s OKAY

I needed to stroll throughout my first half marathon and I felt like I had failed myself and didn’t prepare onerous sufficient. My one aim for the day was to not stroll however I had to–I wanted to that day. I want I’d have identified what I do know now; that aim in all probability wasn’t reasonable given the circumstances throughout that race. It was 99 levels out and intensely humid. My solely aim ought to have been having enjoyable and crossing that end line. Who cared if I walked just a little?

In any case, that is my pleasant reminder to whoever wants to listen to it. Strolling is OKAY and doesn’t make your coaching or effort any much less significant than somebody who doesn’t stroll. Sure, possibly your time can be higher if you happen to didn’t stroll in any respect throughout your race, however you already know what, if you happen to end the race, that’s all that basically issues ultimately.

2. A coaching plan in your first half marathon, and even your fifth, half is crucial

I’m massive on creating an total plan. I really feel like when you’ve got learn any of my previous weblog posts on this, you already know that I’m all for creating targets and strategic plans to attain them. Setting the aim to run a half marathon is nice however do your self a favor and discover a coaching plan that you just KNOW you’ll stick to. I’ve personally at all times actually favored the Hal Higdon coaching plans. There’s a nice one for novices and I’ll hyperlink it right here!

3. Coaching for a half marathon doesn’t have to take over your life

Though coaching for a half marathon does take time and dedication, it doesn’t want to manage your complete private/social life. Plan your runs/exercises forward of time every week, full them when you’ll be able to, after which transfer on. If one run or exercise doesn’t go as deliberate otherwise you get caught up doing one thing else that day, that’s okay too. Life goes on and one missed coaching run or exercise isn’t going to spoil the whole coaching course of. Give your self some grace and simply get again on monitor the following day.

4. Don’t eat something new on race day

I shared this in a earlier weblog put up, however I realized this one the onerous means. I at all times eat the identical factor on my future mornings that I do on race day morning. I sometimes don’t eat earlier than shorter runs, however earlier than I head out the door for my Saturday lengthy runs, I eat a bit of toast with gentle butter and jelly. I additionally could have straight up black espresso. That. Is. It. Discover what works for you and stick to that! Belief me, if you happen to take any of those tricks to coronary heart, that is the one you don’t wish to skip. The very last thing you wish to fear about is having abdomen points whereas working 13.1 miles.

5. Be ready to coach in all components

Like I discussed above, I wasn’t ready (mentally or bodily) to run in 99 diploma climate. Sadly, except it’s lightning on race day, you’re going to be working irrespective of the circumstances. Attempt to prepare or run in several components as finest as you’ll be able to. My husband and I ran a future for our Boston half marathon within the snow one Saturday morning. Was it best? Heck no. Was it type of enjoyable? Really, sure! The ethical of the story right here is that you just by no means know what the climate would possibly do on race day and also you don’t need that aspect to take over your mindset or the end result of your race day expertise.

6. Have a race day plan

Similar to a coaching plan, attempt to have a race day plan. Are you able to inform I like plans?! 😉Look over your race day course. Discover your water stops. Resolve if you wish to take your power chews or no matter it’s you can be utilizing to gas your physique throughout race day. Know if you would possibly have to stroll just a little. Know the place the hills are. Having a plan forward of time will permit you to benefit from the second just a little bit extra, somewhat than stressing about when/the place your subsequent hydration cease goes to be.

7. Your half marathon race must be FUN

I stress this a lot in all elements of any kind of exercise or health exercise, however race day must be FUN! Get pleasure from it. Take all of it in and be happy with your accomplishments after every mile. Attempt to not stress or fear an excessive amount of and belief that your coaching has ready you for this second greater than you would possibly understand.  And chortle at that individual with the “By no means belief a fart” signal. The human physique is fairly wonderful, and also you shouldn’t let your time aim or the circumstances get in the best way of the truth that you simply did one thing wonderful.

8. Plan for hydration stops not solely on race day however throughout your coaching

That is tremendous necessary. It’s not solely necessary to know the place your hydration stops are all through your race course, however it is very important considerably parallel your coaching with comparable hydration stops as properly. I personally carry a water bottle with me and can cease to take hydration breaks the place I plan to cease and seize the water on race day. Simply as a heads up, most hydration stops could have water AND Gatorade. I personally solely prepare with water, so that’s what I seize once I cease at hydration stops, NOT gatorade. Once more, I made this error throughout my first half marathon and obtained sick. I by no means skilled with an power drink like that in my coaching runs and so I should not have switched issues up on race day. Consistency with the meals and liquids you resolve to gas your physique with is necessary. 

9. Gas your physique throughout coaching, not simply on race day

That is type of alongside the identical traces as tip quantity eight, however it would be best to discover one thing that works for you to gas your physique all through your coaching runs and all through race day. For my lengthy runs, I like utilizing Gu Chews. I’ve tried the liquid Gu and HATED it, however my husband doesn’t thoughts it. Once more, you’ll simply wish to discover what works finest for you and be sure you prepare with that and produce it with you on race day as properly.

10. Energy coaching is necessary…don’t skip it!

I want I’d have figured this out just a little sooner. I can not let you know how a lot energy coaching has helped with my total working efficiency. It has not solely made my mile splits quicker, however I really feel stronger and really feel higher whereas doing it too. You are able to do this via a health class or lifting weights at your native gymnasium. You’ll want to issue that into your total coaching plan and most plans will designate these exercises at “cross coaching days.” I personally love hitting all the most important muscle teams of the physique to hit my resistance coaching targets all through coaching.

11. Correct trainers are important

One other tremendous necessary tip, and if you happen to take something to coronary heart, let this be it too! I can not stress how necessary an excellent pair of trainers are to not solely having a profitable coaching and enhancing your time, however decreasing the potential for any bodily harm. I do know they are often type of costly, however they’re well worth the funding for the 10-12 weeks you can be coaching in them.

12. You need to put on your medal to brunch…it’s an unstated rule

Final however not least and doubtless my favourite tip (I imply who doesn’t love brunch?!), put on your medal out to eat after your race! It’s at all times so enjoyable going out with family and friends after your race and carrying your medal out and about within the metropolis you simply ran in. It’s best to really feel proud about your accomplishment and carrying your medal out to brunch afterwards is simply the unstated race day rule 😜

I hope you discovered the following tips useful! As at all times, when you’ve got any working associated questions or have any questions in regards to the IMT Des Moines Marathon race day collection, please let me know.

With love,


*This put up was created in partnership with the IMT Des Moines Marathon crew. Please be aware that when you’ve got a particular working/athletic associated harm and are attempting to get again into the game, I at all times advocate looking for recommendation out of your private physician and/or a skilled skilled working coach.*



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