Clonmel solicitor and marathon runner Kieran Cleary continues his series on preparing to run your first Dublin City Marathon
By now all intending marathon runners should be getting quite fit, running four to five times per week and if not running swimming or cycling, all are highly beneficial to a marathon runner.
It is terribly important for the next four weeks to stick to a plan of action as during this four week period the basis for completing the marathon is set in concrete.
It is important that you stick to the training five days per week which can be annoying and boring but it is very important to get the ‘time on the road’ sort of speak into your legs.
Marathon running for the average contestants is not about speed, in fact it has nothing to do with speed, it is about conserving energy during running and being able to continually move at a reasonable pace for between four to five hours.
The only time during the week that you should wear a watch or use a watch is in one four to five mile session and during particularly the long run which is generally done on a Saturday or Sunday morning - you should never use a watch as it can completely distract the contestant who if they don’t achieve their set time will feel demoralised.
On the day of the marathon the weather can be gloriously warm or very wet, you can get hampered in by other runners, anything can happen. Completion is the name of the game, not the time done.
Also the marathon itself starts at 9am. and you have to be in your position at the starting line by 8am so it is very important when you are doing your long run every week it should commence at 9am to allow your body to acclimatise to early morning running.
It is quite extraordinary how your body can react to different times of the day in that some of us are more alert in the morning and others are evening people. But the marathon is an early morning start so you have to train for that.
The schedule itself is adaptable but the crucial one is the long run and indeed if you can add two long runs into the week then all the better as it will really increase your stamina.
In relation to stamina, you must conserve your energy at all times and to this effect actually scuffle at a speed in that there is no point in sprinting or even moving at speed up a hill or even down a hill, nothing is achieved by that. Stick to the same rhythm all the time and you should be able to run at talking pace.
It is worth noting that the fitter you get the less you will feel tired after a training session but marathon training is hard work and you really do need a serious amount of sleep and early nights.
It is ten weeks to the Dublin City Marathon again any one can do this, is feadh laith, just do it.
WEEK 1: Monday 4m, Tuesday 4m, Wednesday 5m, Thursday rest, Friday 8m
WEEK 2: Monday 4m, Tuesday 4m, Wednesday 6m, Thursday rest, Friday 5m, Saturday 10m
WEEK 3: Monday 4m, Tuesday 4m, Wednesday 6m, Thursday rest, Friday 5m, Saturday 12m
WEEK 4: Monday 4m, Tuesday 4m, Wednesday 6m, Thursday rest, Friday 5m, Saturday 12m