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first marathon any tips.

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124

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  • pzarnosky
    pzarnosky Posts: 256 Member
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    bikecheryl wrote: »
    There's a reason they say to 'respect the distance'. A marathon is much more difficult than a half, especially in the last few miles. Good luck.

    What he said!

    They also say " 20 miles of hope, 6 miles of truth!"

    Having completed 4 fulls and an Ultra and can attest to the 6 miles of truth! ;)

    Try to enjoy and remember no matter how you feel.... smile at the finish line...... makes the picture look better. :)



    Side note....
    Ugh. I'm running my first marathon on October 15. I've trained quite a bit for it (at least I think I have). Longest run I've done is 20 and I can already see where that statement came from. I was over it at 18 and am still wrapping my head around 6 MORE MILES!!
  • MeanderingMammal
    MeanderingMammal Posts: 7,866 Member
    edited September 2017
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    pzarnosky wrote: »
    bikecheryl wrote: »
    There's a reason they say to 'respect the distance'. A marathon is much more difficult than a half, especially in the last few miles. Good luck.

    What he said!

    They also say " 20 miles of hope, 6 miles of truth!"

    Having completed 4 fulls and an Ultra and can attest to the 6 miles of truth! ;)

    Try to enjoy and remember no matter how you feel.... smile at the finish line...... makes the picture look better. :)



    Side note....
    Ugh. I'm running my first marathon on October 15. I've trained quite a bit for it (at least I think I have). Longest run I've done is 20 and I can already see where that statement came from. I was over it at 18 and am still wrapping my head around 6 MORE MILES!!

    To a large extent you've just got to have faith in your training. You need to look at more than the long run, but take into account cumulative weekly mileage and how the runs are structured. My first marathon plan had me doing a lot of back to back longs, so Saturdays and Sundays which could easily total 30-35 miles in two days.

    Partly it's about your fueling strategy as well, to minimise your risk of hitting the wall.

    My third marathon was the one where it all went wrong and I folded badly at mile 18, largely from being worn out from an Ultra a couple of weeks before and not letting myself properly recover. I then screwed up my fueling.
  • Hoshiko
    Hoshiko Posts: 179 Member
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    lsutton484 wrote: »
    sitting here today I've got some time to think and I've been doing just that. I have no choice but to go back there next year and run the race I wanted to run. I ran the race I deserved this year and my friend had to run the race she deserved for throwing me into this with no prep time but next year we're both gonna have our race even if I have to drag her with me.

    Watch out, this is how they get you!

    Just kidding. Good job on finishing relatively uninjured and toughing it out! A finish is great, but I'm also relatively impressed with your time given the circumstances. I'm sure next year will be much better for you overall, too.
  • dewd2
    dewd2 Posts: 2,445 Member
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    pzarnosky wrote: »
    bikecheryl wrote: »
    There's a reason they say to 'respect the distance'. A marathon is much more difficult than a half, especially in the last few miles. Good luck.

    What he said!

    They also say " 20 miles of hope, 6 miles of truth!"

    Having completed 4 fulls and an Ultra and can attest to the 6 miles of truth! ;)

    Try to enjoy and remember no matter how you feel.... smile at the finish line...... makes the picture look better. :)



    Side note....
    Ugh. I'm running my first marathon on October 15. I've trained quite a bit for it (at least I think I have). Longest run I've done is 20 and I can already see where that statement came from. I was over it at 18 and am still wrapping my head around 6 MORE MILES!!

    It really depends on how much you've trained and how hard you run the marathon. If you have sufficient training and you don't run the marathon "like a race", you can cruise to the end. The last 6.2 miles will not be much harder than the first 20. However, if you are really running for a time, then the last 6.2 are indeed the hardest ones you will ever run.

    Don't let that scare you. Take it easy in your first marathon. Go a little slower than you think you need to and you will finish and have fun doing it.

    Good luck.

    To the OP - I'm glad you made it and I think you now have a better understanding of what we were saying. Absolutely train for this race next year and you will have much more fun. Just be careful.... This running thing becomes addictive. :smiley:
  • pzarnosky
    pzarnosky Posts: 256 Member
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    I appreciate any advice given in the replies to my post. As much as my emotional side is freaking out and telling me I'm an idiot, my logical side rules me and I know I've prepared well for this. It will be tough, I will be sore, but I'll make it. I've been running for a few years now and finally decided this was the year I had the time to dedicate to training for a marathon. I've listened to a lot of runners give me advice and feel pretty confident in the blend of all of it I've utilized :)
  • spiriteagle99
    spiriteagle99 Posts: 3,698 Member
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    pzarnosky - two things: 1) Taper makes a huge difference. You'll go into your race rested and anxious to go. If you pace it right, the first 10-15 miles will feel super easy. In training, when you do your 20 miles, it's in the middle of training. The plan I was using had a 10 mile MP run on Saturday and 20 miles on Sunday. I had a really hard time getting through the 20. On Race day, I slowed down at the end, but it wasn't as bad as the end of my 20 miles. 2) You may have a hard time at mile 20, or mile 23, or mile 15. That doesn't necessarily mean that the rest of your race will be awful. Second wind is real. In my first marathon, I slowed down at 19, really slowed down at 22, but 24-26 I was fine.

    Lsutton - I'm glad you were able to finish. The cramps were your body's way of telling you it wasn't sufficiently trained for what you were demanding. Hopefully next time you will do the training to have a good race and you won't cramp and suffer for several miles. It really does make a difference. Take it easy for the next several weeks. You can still run, but keep it mostly short and easy - no speedwork. A lot of marathoners get hurt after their races by pushing their body too soon. The rule of thumb is one day easy for every mile of your race. I always have a hard time recovering after races and though I get my mileage up fairly soon, it can take several weeks before running feels truly easy again.
  • timtam163
    timtam163 Posts: 500 Member
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    pzarnosky wrote: »
    I appreciate any advice given in the replies to my post. As much as my emotional side is freaking out and telling me I'm an idiot, my logical side rules me and I know I've prepared well for this. It will be tough, I will be sore, but I'll make it. I've been running for a few years now and finally decided this was the year I had the time to dedicate to training for a marathon. I've listened to a lot of runners give me advice and feel pretty confident in the blend of all of it I've utilized :)

    Your grit is amazing. :)
  • Riplenater
    Riplenater Posts: 19 Member
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    I've ran 9 marathons. It's a mental game. I always take 3 Advil and take them at 13 miles. I don't change anything before the race, including shoes. (Done that, bad decisions). I stay hydrated but do not overhydrate. Gu gel with caffeine thru out run. Go somewhere mentally. Sometimes I do math. Sometimes I solve current problems. Sometime I imagine I've won the lottery and what I would do.

    I do my best not to let those bad thoughts creep in (why am I doing this, am I crazy, this is crazy)

    Don't over due It! You've got 26.2 miles to go. You don't need to push hard at the beginning. Save your energy.

    That's my advice.
  • lporter229
    lporter229 Posts: 4,907 Member
    edited September 2017
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    rybo wrote: »
    timtam163 wrote: »
    Don't injure yourself. I did a half easily, coming in at 2:00:48, but the two full marathons I did were torture. The first one was alright, I think we came in around 4:12 with consistent training and a focus on nutrition, but the second one was 4:35 because I didn't take training as seriously/consistently. There was an enormous difference. The risk of injury goes up exponentially once you pass your longest long run distance: I trained to 22 miles so the last 4 were horrible, and if you've only done 13/15 (assuming) you'll be putting yourself at risk of injury for the last >10 miles.

    But you do you, and we'll cheer you on; stay hydrated, stay loose, aim for a negative split.


    Most interesting, and what is actually horrible horrible advice for the person in the the given situation is suggesting they aim for a negative split. That's almost as bad as saying start out as fast as you can & hope for the best. In order for a negative split, you've got to be pretty well trained and have an idea of pacing, and what you are capable of. A 1st time marathoner who's severely undertrained has 0 chance of a negative split unless they walk the 1st half.

    I am going to have to disagree with you here. Well, at least partially. I agree with your statement that a first time marathoner who's severely undertrained has 0 chance of a negative split, but the suggestion that they make that their aim is not necessarily bad advice. It's basically the same thing as saying start out a lot slower than you think you can run, with out the negative connotation that they are pretty much doomed for a suckfest. Let them start out slow and let the second half play out as it will, which will likely still be a suckfest, but maybe not quite as bad as if they had started out faster.

    Also, the suggestion of taking NSAIDs prior to a marathon is not a good one. I am glad that it has worked out okay for the above poster, but if you Google "NSAIDs and marathons" you will see there there is much well documented evidence that taking NSAIDS prior to or during an endurance event can have pose many risks to your health.
  • pzarnosky
    pzarnosky Posts: 256 Member
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    timtam163 wrote: »
    pzarnosky wrote: »
    I appreciate any advice given in the replies to my post. As much as my emotional side is freaking out and telling me I'm an idiot, my logical side rules me and I know I've prepared well for this. It will be tough, I will be sore, but I'll make it. I've been running for a few years now and finally decided this was the year I had the time to dedicate to training for a marathon. I've listened to a lot of runners give me advice and feel pretty confident in the blend of all of it I've utilized :)

    Your grit is amazing. :)

    Aww thanks :) I think all runners are amazing, and a little crazy ;)
  • MichelleWithMoxie
    MichelleWithMoxie Posts: 1,817 Member
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    @lsutton484 great job, well done! I'm glad you proved so many on here wrong! I'm sure next year you'll have no trouble besting your time from this year.
  • dewd2
    dewd2 Posts: 2,445 Member
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    MichSmish wrote: »
    @lsutton484 great job, well done! I'm glad you proved so many on here wrong! I'm sure next year you'll have no trouble besting your time from this year.

    Who was wrong? Did you miss the recap? It kinda sounded painful.

    I still would not advise anyone to try this at home. Bad things can and usually do happen.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
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    MichSmish wrote: »
    @lsutton484 great job, well done! I'm glad you proved so many on here wrong! I'm sure next year you'll have no trouble besting your time from this year.

    Yeah that's totally what happened.... :laugh:
  • MichelleWithMoxie
    MichelleWithMoxie Posts: 1,817 Member
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    lol. sometimes i forget how touchy the population of mfp is. Just congratulating the OP - chill out you two.
  • curlsintherack
    curlsintherack Posts: 465 Member
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    Thank you. It was hard. I've done smarter things.
  • janejellyroll
    janejellyroll Posts: 25,763 Member
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    dewd2 wrote: »
    pzarnosky wrote: »
    bikecheryl wrote: »
    There's a reason they say to 'respect the distance'. A marathon is much more difficult than a half, especially in the last few miles. Good luck.

    What he said!

    They also say " 20 miles of hope, 6 miles of truth!"

    Having completed 4 fulls and an Ultra and can attest to the 6 miles of truth! ;)

    Try to enjoy and remember no matter how you feel.... smile at the finish line...... makes the picture look better. :)



    Side note....
    Ugh. I'm running my first marathon on October 15. I've trained quite a bit for it (at least I think I have). Longest run I've done is 20 and I can already see where that statement came from. I was over it at 18 and am still wrapping my head around 6 MORE MILES!!

    It really depends on how much you've trained and how hard you run the marathon. If you have sufficient training and you don't run the marathon "like a race", you can cruise to the end. The last 6.2 miles will not be much harder than the first 20. However, if you are really running for a time, then the last 6.2 are indeed the hardest ones you will ever run.

    Don't let that scare you. Take it easy in your first marathon. Go a little slower than you think you need to and you will finish and have fun doing it.

    Good luck.

    To the OP - I'm glad you made it and I think you now have a better understanding of what we were saying. Absolutely train for this race next year and you will have much more fun. Just be careful.... This running thing becomes addictive. :smiley:

    I think this is totally true. I did my first marathon last year and I ran the first twenty miles way too fast (and didn't fuel sufficiently). The last six miles were truly the hardest I have ever run. I've doing another marathon in a couple of weeks and I'm going to pace myself appropriately this time.
  • Orphia
    Orphia Posts: 7,097 Member
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    lsutton484 wrote: »
    Thank you. It was hard. I've done smarter things.

    Thanks for coming back and admitting it wasn't exactly smart. It was interesting to read how NOT to train for and run a marathon.

    I admire your guts and honesty, and like your plan to do it properly next year.
  • tanyaltrl
    tanyaltrl Posts: 42 Member
    edited September 2017
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    If you've done 20 miles, you got this. I was fine with having only run 15 miles max. Don't think too much about the 20 mile mark. I think 50% of that is actually due to glycogen, the other 50% is the mind constantly hearing "WALL AT MILE 20!" I mean really. I was okay-ish at 20, it was 23 that it got tough. My skepticism saved me 3 miles of agony. Stay present. Get spiritual. Visualizations are your friend. Instead of picturing your knees getting hammered on the downhills, imagine the impact vibrations massaging your sore muscles. Have a mantra like "pain is only a sensation" Imagine women giving birth with no anesthetic, allowing pain to take them to altered states of consciousness. Tell yourself: Of course it's painful, I'm running a f***ing marathon.
  • bendyourkneekatie
    bendyourkneekatie Posts: 696 Member
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    tanyaltrl wrote: »
    Get spiritual. Visualizations are your friend. Instead of picturing your knees getting hammered on the downhills, imagine the impact vibrations massaging your sore muscles. Have a mantra like "pain is only a sensation" Imagine women giving birth with no anesthetic, allowing pain to take them to altered states of consciousness. Tell yourself: Of course it's painful, I'm running a f***ing marathon.

    Oh my god no thank you. Giving birth without an epidural is something I'd rather forget doing than visualise while running....
    Also, OP's *weekly* mileage was 20, not a single long run. Also, OP has already done the marathon.

  • fishgutzy
    fishgutzy Posts: 2,807 Member
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    I only have one tip. Don't have a heart attack.
    A former colleague who was a life runner, built like a marathoner, high school and college track.
    At the age of 31, he was running a half marathon. He died jyst a couple hundred yards from finishing. Cardiac arrest. Never had any previous heart problems. Always ate healthful foods.

    Train well. Be well