The Marathon – Pre-Race
I did it! I ran the Toronto Scotiabank Waterfront Marathon and I qualified for Boston! I have lots of pictures and stories to share, but I thought I would break down the event in the same way I broke down my half marathon race series – into PRE, COMPETITION and POST event.
The days leading up to a big race are the ones that really count. Any preparations you want to fit in on the race day are too late! You have put in the hard work, the long miles and the rock solid discipline and once you hit the one to two week mark, it is time to start tapering! (This timing varies from athlete to athlete).
Here are a few things I did to prepare for the marathon.
1. RESTED. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw last week that I had an achilles injury. I was freaking out to say the very least.
I scoured the internet, talked to my sports doctors and chatted with my favourite local running store and they all said the same thing:
- Ice. 10 minutes on, 10 minutes off. Repeat 3 x. Up to four times daily.
- Elevate. Allow the inflammation to relax.
- Use KT Tape.
- Compress. I used compression tights, CEP compression socks and tensor bandages.
On my last week, I was supposed to do a few runs at race pace and a light jaunt the day before the marathon. Instead, I did a couple bike rides, cycle classes and an elliptal session to keep the blood flowing. Other than that, I was resting. I was shocked at the amount of extra time I have in my day that I have while tapering and I found myself feeling a bit like this:
2. Drink water.
Like a camel.
H2o helps to keep inflammation at bay, flush out your system and keep you hydrated for race day. I focused on making sure I was adequately hydrated everyday in the week leading up to the race.
I somehow managed to get at least 8 hours of sleep a night the week leading up to my race and it felt so good that I am going to try and keep this ball rolling! I felt refreshed, productive and full of energy! It gave my body extra time to restore balance, repair muscles and get ready for the race!
4. Increase carb intake.
I started amping up my calories from carbs on the Friday night. I wanted to make sure that my glycogen stores were fully stocked and ready to go! With a gluten intolerance, I opted for rice and sweet potatoes and had a ball. That being said, I didn’t eat a big meal before the race, but was careful to chose food to make my meals count and eat regular portions heading into Sunday.
5. Remember details.
Small pre-race things like trimming your toenails, packing a snack for immediately after your race or orchestrating a meeting place for all the amazing people who are coming to cheer you on can get lost in the excitement, but slow down and come up with a race plan so you don’t miss anything.
And most importantly, HAVE FUN!
Up on Wednesday, a race recap and a bit of a talk on how to strategize a race for your optimal performance.
And the moment you have been waiting for: Who won the North Coast Naturals gift pack?
Congratulations, Deirdre! Please send me an email at email@example.com and I will arrange the shipping details so you can enjoy your prize pack:
Raw Hemp Smoothie (in whatever flavour you chose)
Iso Protein (in whatever flavour you chose)
Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat says
CONGRATUFREAKINGLATIONS again Jess! I’m so so proud of you. Sounds like you did some perfect pre-race prep. Since I recently found out I’m gluten intolerant, I’d have done the same carb strategy as you. I’ve never been one to eat a ton of pasta and the thought of it has zero appeal to me! But sweet potatoes… I could eat them for days! I hope you’re enjoying some nice recovery time, and perhaps even a massage this week? 😉 Have a great Monday!
Definitely a massage on deck this week. I had some gluten before the race and felt awful! This is why we are awesome together – I have never loved pasta either.
And you are spinach and gluten intolerant! We need to have a chat and discuss your new eating regime!
Danielle @ Labelsarefortincans says
Congrats on finishing! What an accomplishment! Love all your tips too.
Thanks Danielle! 🙂
I’ll probably be bragging about “my friend Jess” until the end of time…SO PROUD!!
Funny. I do the same with you.
But thanks, lady. 🙂 Means a lot!