October 14, 2013

Journey to 26.2: Taper Plan (013)

I've been asking around A LOT for advice on tapering and prepping for race day, particularly considering that I'm about to take on my first marathon in 13 days!  Luckily, the running community is amazing and people have shared some great tips.  I've also spent lots of time perusing articles from running authorities to get additional ideas.
 
Awesome responses to last night's #runchat
This taper is different mostly because I haven't ever run 26.2 miles.  Normally I look forward to having more time, having fresh legs and the training break.  I used to LOVE taper during swimming season.  It meant less yardage and really quality sets.  I have a feeling the taper crazies may set in this go 'round.  I'm trying to prepare myself for nerves, anxiety and any semi-negative emotional responses.  Based on what I know about myself as a runner (and person) and how I handle stress, I tried to come up with things that will be best for ME.

1. Get sleep.  I have been running on fumes lately and that must change.  I am going to get back into the habit of turning off electronics 30 minutes before bed and reading or otherwise decompressing.

2. Eat right.  Like the sleep thing, I've been off lately (some travel and birthday celebrations are likely culprits).  I went to the store yesterday and stocked up on produce and healthy snacks.  I also cooked some food for the week so I won't end up noshing on junk if I'm in a hurry and need lunch or don't feel like cooking dinner.  I promised myself I would make time to prep and cook healthy foods.  On October 28th, I can eat whatever I want!

3. Be good to myself.  I've had more downs than ups over the last few weeks and just haven't been feeling terribly confident or positive lately.  That ends now.  Last night, I gave myself a ridiculously self-indulgent, 'I love me' pep talk.  Until the 27th, I'm going to be confident, kind to myself, and selfish.  Yup, I said it.  Selfish.  I'm gonna do things that make me happy!  After all, I have trained for this race for the last 4 or 5 months.

4. Trust the training.  This is a hard one but I'm going to keep reminding myself that I ran one 19 and two 20 mile training runs.  I'm ready; if I just feel telling myself that, I'll believe it, right?!  Plus this is one piece of advice that EVERYONE gave me!  And it's one that I often dish out about half marathons.  Hello pot, meet kettle!

5. Keep busy.  I know myself and I am totally a victim of that "idle hands" adage.  I'm planning some dinners with friends and a few easy house projects to keep busy over the next few weeks.

6. I get by with a little help from my friends.  I have a few friends that have been particularly kind and encouraging over the last few weeks.  I know I will continue to rely on their encouragement in the coming weeks for some pick-me-ups when the moments of doubt creep in.  I am grateful to have awesome cheerleaders!

What advice would you give someone prepping for their first 26.2?
{Christine}

19 comments:

  1. I'm going to be doing a lot of the same! I'm really going to try to focus on some restorative yoga, foam rolling and hydrating the next few weeks!

    I remember how nervous I was before my first full marathon, after a bad 20 mile run I almost decided not to go, but I did and I was fine! The trust your training part is so true!

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    1. Thanks girl! I have nerves mixing with excitement! Can't wait to run with you :)

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  2. I just ran my first full marathon on Saturday and have the recap up! I'd say relax, get lots of sleep, stay hydrated, and get everything planned out (transportation, visitors, expo plans) so that you can try and stay stress-free for race day!

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    1. On my way over to read it now. I started working on my logistics plan tonight-I'm on it! :)

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  3. We'll all get through this crazy taper! I am going to dedicate miles to people I know ;)

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    1. That is such a great idea Kat! Fingers crossed for good news for ya from the ortho!

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  4. The taper is so hard because you feel like you should be running. I remember that. Plus if you use running as a way to relieve stress or anxiety like I do, then it makes you more anxious and stressed because you're not running. But, you must trust your training, eat, rest and take Vitamin C. Keep your immunity strong, stay away from sick people and I even stayed home as much as possible a two weeks before WDW marathon, I did not want to get sick... You will do great! Can't wait to hear about your journey to 26.2!

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    1. Aw thanks Sarah! You are so sweet and supportive-thank you! Yes, vitamin C is a great point. Need to dig out my vitamins!

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  5. Take really good care of your body! My first marathon was part of goofy and I was religious about going to bed early, icing and rolling. On the morning of the full, my legs felt great!

    Have fun, soak it in and be prepared to start getting emotional around mile 20. ;)

    you'll do great!

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    1. Thanks Jaime! I'm actually headed to bed shortly so night 1 of early bed time is a success!

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  6. You're going to do sooo great!!! Remember to hydrate well! Enjoy the race! Don't try to rush through it! And take lots of pictures! ;-)

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    1. Thanks mindy! Probably won't take many pics-just start and finish line. My goal is to soak it in. :)

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  7. I think you hit the nail on the head Christine! You take care of YOU these next 2 weeks!! I know you will be awesome!! You've trained so hard and are totally going to rock that Marathon!!!

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    1. Thanks Allie!! Let's grab lunch or a run after OBX half. We can debrief our races :)

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  8. I like what someone said in runchat-have fun! You are never going to have a first marathon again! I'm so excited for you and SO impressed. I can't even imagine running 26.2 miles!!

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    1. Thanks Monica! I never thought I would run a marathon either. Amazing where a crazy decision and some training can take ya!

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  9. You were given so many great pieces of advice, I especially agree with the keep busy tip! You are going to do great...I can't wait to read about your experience! :0)

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  10. I LOVE the idea of writing important supports on your forearm. I remember running a 10k back in April with LLS Team in Training and just remembering my honored team mate and the struggle she was going through fighting cancer and that if she could do that I could run a freakin 6.2. :P What great tips! Thanks for sharing!

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  11. I don't have advice, I've only run halves to date. I AM bookmarking this post to revisit for my first marathon March 2014. Great advice from all!!!

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