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Running a Marathon? Here Are Some Race-Day Tips

January 06 2017
Running a Marathon

Marathon tips to help you perform your best on race day

Running a marathon is a big thing, especially if you are doing it for the first time. Typically, a marathon is run for a distance of 40-45 km, a huge distance indeed. But if you do it right, you will not only finish the race but enjoy the experience as well.

There are a set of basic rules and tips that need to be followed on the race day. Along with a certain amount of discipline, they can be achieved easily. Some of these tips are:

Keep Yourself Warm

Many big marathon events start early in the morning to avoid the midday heat. This means that you will probably be at the start line when it’s cold. Bring along some warm clothes that can be discarded later. By that, we mean, clothes that you can wear over your running gear only to given away just before the race starts.

Do Warm-up Exercises

The body needs to be sensitised for the arduous workout, which is the marathon. To prepare your body, do some light exercises like stretching and gentle running for 15-20 minutes. Try to focus on hamstrings, calves and lower back muscles but don’t overdo it. Remember that the point of doing all this is to start the race comfortably.


This might not sound like the ideal thing to do before a marathon, but is an important part nonetheless. Relaxing will help you to collect your thoughts, go over the race plan and give a boost to your motivation. In this free time you can also chat with other participants (if you’re in a group) or just soak in the race atmosphere.

Re-hydrate Yourself

This is to be done after the race has started. Running leads to perspiration and loss of fluids from the body. Dehydration will cause fatigue as less fuel and oxygen is delivered to the muscles. Study has shown that an exercising body needs 236 ml of water for every 20 minutes of exercise. The supply of water needs to maintained for you to keep the desired pace. Resupply of these fluids can come in the form of sports drinks, energy bars or gels.

Finish the Race

If you’re a first-time runner, it is better to not get caught up in the complicated task of timing yourself. Your sole focus should be on finishing the race. You’ll have plenty of time to improve your performance in the future. Many runners get caught up in this jumble and end up either not finishing the race, or not enjoying the experience at all. So relax, try to enjoy the event, and develop a love for the sport, so that you may train harder for the coming year. Finishing the marathon on your first outing is a big achievement in itself.

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