May 062011

I think it’s important to establish exactly how I prepared for the Orange County Marathon, so that in the future I know exactly what not to do. My whole plan in training was that I was going to attack this marathon as a complete novice, knowing nothing about running and continue to do events until I learned a valuable lesson about training properly. Up to this point, my brother and I have completed a sprint triathalon and a half-marathon and we completed both with relative ease. In preparing for the marathon we made a variety of mistakes, take a look at the things we did prior to preparing for the race and see if you can offer up any suggestions for improvement.

  1. Most of my running was done at the gym on the treadmill or the elliptical.  I knew that I would have to practice doing street running, but every time I ran on the street I ran into problems with my knee.
  2. I ran about 15 miles per week up until about the middle of march and then I took some time off from running.  I wouldn’t say I got burnt out, but I would say that I lost motivation for a brief period of time. 
  3. I did run during April a few times trying to build up my endurance running in the street, but it was sporadic at best. 
  4. I forgot to eat dinner the night before the race. 
  5. For some reason, whenever I have some big event to do in the morning the next day, I have a tough time sleeping.  The night before the race, I fell asleep at 12:30 and woke up at 3:30 in the morning.  I don’t think 3 hours of sleep is too good the day before you run a marathon. 
  6. I did drink a lot of water the day before the race.
  7. I took some ibuprofen during the morning and during the race.  I heard that this was supposed to reduce swelling.
  8. We bought brand new running shoes and socks the week before the race.  We were told that was a bad idea.
  9. I did not have breakfast the morning of the race.
  10. We remembered to apply sunscreen before our race thank goodness.  Had we not that would have been disastrous.
  11. I wore boxers underneath my shorts.  I soon realized this was not the best idea.
  12. I did not do anything with my nipples prior to the race . . . led to bleeding nipples.  Ouch!
  13. We did bring some energizing food that we used during the race. I think the name of the type of food that I enjoyed the most was Shots, although I’m not sure if that’s what it’s called.  It’s basically energy food for runners.

I think that was it as far as our preparation for the race.  Please comment on things we did well and things that need improvement.  I know that my preparation for our next marathon needs to get better.  What are the best things we can do to improve our times and our capabilities for our next marathon?

Zeb High-Fiving Mom at The Orange County Marathon

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