5 Things you must do for your First Danville Half Marathon

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Well the Danville Marathon isn’t too far away. With the race taking place every year in the month of May those looking to get fit and win it this year it’s about time you get off the couch and get running.

This marathon is about 10k long and though shorter than most half marathons still requires plenty of effort and skills to overcome the inclines and declines throughout the course. So here are few tips to help you get started.

A strong base is a must

No a 5 week training guide won’t get you across the finish line. To compete in any half marathon you’ll need to train well for at least 10-15 weeks considering you already have a good running base of about 4-5 miles. I’d recommend getting a rowing machine, if you’re not sure then read review of C2 rowers.

Not having a strong base will require you to put in extra effort and time raising the risk of an injury resulting from over-training.

Quality of your runs matter

Running 10s and 100s of miles isn’t the solution to your training here. It only leaves you injury prone and exhausted. HIIT runs or Tempo runs are the runs you should do 3-4 days in a week to build both strength and speed.

On other days focus on short 4-5 mile runs done at a slower speed. These runs are important to maintain pace and yet provide the body enough time to recover from the hard tempo runs. Learn more about tempo runs below.

 

Take rest seriously

I know most emphasis is always on the training and rest simply seems like putting on the brakes unnecessarily but trust me rest is a brake that’s necessary. To get back up and running your body needs to heal which only happens when you rest.

Any feeling of exhaustion, lack of strength or will power is a result of lack of rest. Over-training can result in a longer layoff so take rest seriously.

Join a group

Now you can either hire a coach who is training a group or you can find a couple of friends with similar goals to help you train better. Training in a group can often help you take it up a notch as you feel less tired and more motivated.

You’re more likely to be up and ready for the morning runs when you have bunch guys waiting for you plus you’re more likely to never have a dull moment when in a group.

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Know the track well

Irrespective of whether it’s the Danville Half marathon or any other the basic of research work you need to do is mostly about the course.  Find out where the course gets tough, places where the water stands are located etc.

Most details are available on the marathons official site. So make sure you check it out few days prior to the race. Half the race is won with the right planning.

5 mistakes every newbie marathon runner makes but should avoid

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Love running in marathons? Well then I have some great news for you. Spring is the season of runners and I am sure there are both experienced and newbie runners gearing up and trust me it’s going to get serious this year too.

Marathons whether half or full are tough and the most important aspect remains timing. Apart from that training right is also important and to help you get it all right I am going to tell you exactly what you should be avoiding.

Leaving out race day diet

On the race day you need to get everything right including your nutrition and while you can practice timing, speed etc. a mistake we often make is not practicing nutrition which later creates issues such as cramps, unwanted bathroom breaks etc.

You need to practice it for weeks. Keep trying new stuff to find out what works best. Each flavor, drink, food, etc. will react differently with the body under different weather conditions and thus experimentation during training is a must.

Not pacing correctly

Your entire marathon depends on one thing and that’s pacing yourself right but often runners simply suck at it. Being too quick too early or being slow out of the blocks can both hamper your overall body strength and speed.

Continuous practice is the only solution. You can also use running apps and trackers for more accurate info.

Maintaining the same diet

Your regular diet simply won’t cut it anymore. You’re a runner now and during a marathon you’re likely to be running longer which means your body will take longer to recover. Recovery mainly depends on rest and diet and thus constant monitoring of your intake and calories burnt are important.

Avoid junk food and increase your intake of healthy calories. Provide the body with proper fueling to cope with the runs and recover faster.

Setting wrong goals

This is a mistake I find almost amongst all newbies. Your goals are the basis for your preparation and thus it’s important they remain realistic. It cannot be based on a fixed time or number. Such goals are a recipe for failure as it often leads to injuries.

You timing goals should be based on your physical and mental fitness levels. Apart from that you’ll need good tools such a tracker or a pedometer.

Giving up too soon

You’re not going to have one bad day of training. There are going to be plenty but the important part is to not panic and walk away just yet. Avoid over thinking as it can often lead to over training.

Keep in mind that even pros have bad days. All you need to do is examine the cause and fix it. Each bad training session is a lesson you need to learn from. Fuel well, sleep enough and if needed don’t mind taking it easy.