So, you registered for a marathon. Now what?
I signed up for my first marathon – the one at Wal Disney World in January. I’ve never gone more than 13.1 miles at once, but something, somewhere in my little ambitious mind was like, “Let’s see what happens when we run 26.2 miles in one day.”
And of course, I was like, “Yeah. Sounds like a plan.”
So, I did the “easy” part and registered for my first marathon. Well – marathon challenge. As if 26.2 miles weren’t enough to run in one day, I also made the conscious choice to register for the Goofy Challenge: run the half marathon the day before running the full.
Did I mention these things require you to be at the busses by, like, 3 am?
So, I registered for a marathon. Now what?
Train Like Hell
I’ve read many posts about how if you’re healthy-ish, you can bang out a 5K, 10K, or (if you really want to stretch it) a half marathon with minimal training. You’ll probably be walking a lot of the half and may be miserable by the end, but you’ll have finished it.
Marathons, though – who in their right mind does those?
No one. No one in their right mind does them.
Training is very important (honestly, for any race your do to avoid injury, illness, and burnout) – this goes for nutrition (before, during, and after runs), hydration (before, during, and after runs), strength, mobility, and – you know it – endurance.
Where to Begin?
I got myself a coach. So far, it seems to be working out pretty well. She developed a training schedule to help me with pacing (because my self awareness sucks and I tend to run too fast right out the gate), endurance, speed, and mindfulness.
It’s a little easier for me to stick to my running plans because: A) someone is monitoring me closely. B) Why cheat the training when I’m paying for help? C) I would like to not die or need a stretcher at the finish line.
But every runner is different. So, what works for me may not be what you need – it’s good to take the time to do some trial runs (pun intended) with either online coaches, running groups, friends who run – whatever resources you have access to. There are Couch to 5K programs, YouTube and TikTok channels dedicated to running. Even the runDisney site offers training plans for races.
Come With Me
So while I’m not tackling the 2023 Dopey Challenge (running 48.6 miles in 4 days) this time around, join me on this horrible journey. I promise there will be plenty to laugh at. And, maybe – just maybe – I can teach you something.