With the BCS Marathon now only 38 days away (eek), there is no denying that I am under-trained and nowhere near where I would like to be fitness and training wise. While I don’t recommend running your first marathon (or any marathon for that matter) without proper training, I just want to share with you that there is hope and it can be done! Rather than freaking out over the lack of time left to train, I am sharing how I am making the most of the 39 days I DO have!
The run walk method is your friend
Made popular but Jeff Galloway, the run walk run method is a great way to go farther with less injury potential. Chances are, if you are under-trained, you will end up walking parts of the marathon anyways. If you incorporate the walking into your training it won’t be so hard to start running again during the race!
Don’t worry about time goals
With a short training window the goal should probably be to finish in one piece rather than trying to break records. While I do have a loose goal to PR my marathon at the BCS Marathon, it is not anything set in stone! The real point here is that you need to set realistic goals. Feeling like you are failing is a quick way to lose motivation!
Focus on the things you can control
You can’t up your mileage quickly without risking injury, but you can drastically overhaul your nutrition and hydration plan. While this might not seem like something that will make a dramatic improvement on your running ability, proper nutrition and hydration leading up to a race can be huge factors!
Don’t skip rest days
Tempted to cram more days of running in? You now your own abilities best, but think twice about this approach. Your body needs time to heal between runs and skipping rest and recovery days might leave you more susceptible to injury…and we all know injury doesn’t help you toe the starting line feeling ready!
For a bonus tip, just remember that this is supposed to be fun!
This is where I am the worst at following my own advice. I tend to get overwhelmingly stressed out trying to control the situation and make the impossible happen. But at some point you have to step back and remember that this is a hobby and it’s okay to just have fun with it. You can’t go back in time and change your training. You can’t freeze time to give yourself more training opportunity. What you can do is take a deep breath, train the best you can, get to the starting line injury free and just enjoy the moment!