Training for a marathon requires dedication and perseverance.
Over time you will build the necessary traits needed to complete your first marathon and to continue on to run in more.
You should train for a marathon by creating a workout plan that includes running with proper warm ups and cool downs.
Use the workout plan finder now to get started training for your marathon.
Preparing for a marathon does not happen overnight and to be successful you need to work routinely, a few days a week, working out longer and running further with each day.
Additionally, you need to learn proper techniques for stretching, warming up, and cooling down.
It is also critical to learn how to run correctly in order to avoid injuries.
What exactly is a marathon?
A marathon is a long distance running competition. In order to qualify as a marathon the run must be 26 miles and 385 yards in distance. The origin of the marathon dates back to 490 BCE, from where it also takes its name.
It is rumored that after the Greeks won the Battle of Marathon, a messenger was sent to Athens to deliver the victorious news. The messenger supposedly made it all the way without stopping, although he died immediately after his journey from the strenuous run.
Today the marathon is held as an Olympic event. It is also held at different times in worldwide locations for athletes of varying skill level. For most marathons, everyone is invited to participate. However, without proper training it is not advised to run in a marathon.
Mini marathons may be a better introduction to the novice, although marathon training is strongly suggested. A mini marathon is 13.1 miles long in distance, so it is still a challenging journey.
What is the proper way to warm up and cool down when training for a marathon?
No matter if you are training for a marathon or just exercising for health and fitness, it is imperative to warm up and cool down at the beginning and ending of each workout. Without proper stretching you can seriously injure your muscles and tendons and put undue strain on your joints.
Warming up is done before a workout, and is thus called so because as you perform these initial stretches and exercises you warm your internal core temperature and your muscles, preparing them for the workout that is about to begin. The increase in blood flow is also beneficial for your oxygen levels.
In order to warm up when you train for a marathon, you should start with a light activity for up to ten minutes. Follow that up with some basic stretching and then perform a warm up activity that is targeted specifically for running. Just before your workout, stretch your calves, hamstrings, quadriceps, and your buttocks.
After you finish your marathon training routine, you need to complete your workout with a proper cool down. After your training run, slow down to a jog and then a brisk walk. After you come to a complete stop, start stretching right away while your muscles are still warm.
Perform calf stretches, quadriceps stretches, hamstrings stretches, groin stretches, lower back stretches, outer thigh stretches, and inner thigh stretches within fifteen minutes of completing your run. Hold your stretches until you feel a gentle pull, extending the time of the hold when you start running longer distances.
What is the proper technique for running in a marathon?
If you are training to run in a marathon, you need to learn how to run the correct way. Unlike running on your toes for short distances or sprints, you need to run flat footed or heel to toe for any distance running. Keep your feet low to the ground.
Although your arms should be bent at a 90 degree angle, they should be relaxed during your run. You will need to make a conscious effort throughout your run to keep your arms relaxed. With your mouth open, focus on a regular breathing pattern. Holding your breath depletes your body of the oxygen it needs in order to keep your muscles working.
Another trick when training for a marathon is to focus on an object in the distance. If the object seems to be jumping up and down, then you need to focus on propelling yourself forward versus vertically. Your chest should be slightly forward while your back is straight and your head kept high.
A complete marathon training routine requires you to use correct running technique as well as proper warm up exercises and cool down stretches. Use the A-Z exercise finder now to help you prepare for your marathon training.