Wednesday, 20 August 2014

1 marathon down 2 to go, what have I learnt?

So after 1 of my 3 marathons in 3 months challenge where am I and what have I learnt? 

My challenge was to run 3 marathons in 3 months, I entered theses in early 2014 as I felt I needed something to work on and needed to achieve something positive and challenging prior to turning 30 in early 2015. My other motive was to give myself a great chance of running a sub 4 hour marathon, firstly so I can just say I have achieved this milestone and secondly so I could have the challenge of achieving this before turning 30. 

The first and third marathons in my mini series are trail marathons so the second marathon in Nottingham on the 28th September which is a standard city marathon on a flat course with strong PB potential was always going to be the ideal opportunity to crack the magical sub 4 barrier. 

I am pretty desperate just to get a clear run at a marathon and have a good crack at a sub 4. As you can read from my post run report of my first marathon it didn't quite go to plan and didn't give me any kind of chance of running a good time. 

As I train more and run more I continue to learn more about what it takes to train for a marathon and how to run one and I am increasingly eager to put this into practice and to try and run a 'perfect' race.

With the Notitngham Marathon coming up in September I know this city marathon will be my best chance of cracking sub 4 and probably my only chance of running sub 4 pre 30. 

So what have I learnt from my training and running the first marathon?

Drink more water - I am not talking about the actual race but more on a daily basis, although I have always drank a lot of water and stayed well hydrated I have realised I think I am not drinking enough especially when I am training a lot. So I have started to make a conscious effort to drink more before and after training as well as drinking more while at the gym as well.

Eat more protein - Putting in some serious mileage and training every day obviously puts a great strain on your body and your muscles and again I figured I wasn't eating as much protein as I could/should be. In the week or two before the marathon I started eating steak and chicken all the time as well as increasing the amounts of protein shakes I was consuming.

Now I am trying to pack my diet full of as much protein as possible with my main protein sources being chicken, steak, kidney beans, chick peas, hummus, brazil nuts, almonds, tuna, and mackerel.

Run more - I have finally broken some kind of mental block I had which stopped me from running on consecutive days and seemed to hold me back from running too much. Now I am quite happy running day after day within reason and have put together several 4 and 5 day plus runstreaks. It goes without saying really but running on more days means I am able to train more and get in more mileage which will benefit me massively. 

More strength training - A neglected part of my training regime as its hard and it hurts and its generally not as fun as running is. But unfortunately doing weights, circuits and body weight exercises such as press up, lunges and squats are integral to any training plan if you want to get faster and stronger and I am now making a real effort to include 2 or 3 strength training type sessions into my weekly routine.  

Thanks for reading and I hope you found this post useful for your own training.