1. Carbo Load At The Right Time
Carbo loading sounds like a fantastic reason to have two dinners at one go and chew into another hotdog bun during a movie. The thing is, carbo loading involves more science than that. Our muscles contain glycogen stores, which starts getting depleted only after 90 minutes of endurance exercise. If you’re preparing for a half or full marathon, you should know about when and what to carbo load with. Here’s an infographic for you to get a quick overview.
This last phase to your training starts as early as 3 weeks out from your actual race. Reduce your total weekly mileages by 20 to 25 percent during this week. This gives your body a chance to recover from all that hard work you’ve accumulated in the previous weeks. Even though your longest runs till then might be just 35km or below (for marathon), you need to consider that your weekly mileages can go up to 50 or 60km. So tapering allows you to restock depleted glycogen supplies and repair tissue damage. You should feel increasingly recharged and energized as your race day approaches! Continue to cut back your weekly mileages by 20 to 25 percent in the next few weeks.
3. Just Chill Lah
Do you know how much time you’ve spent running? Imagine a regular 6min/km pace. If your weekly mileage (for marathons) is 60km, you’d have been running for about 6 hours in a week. One of the best (and worst) things about running is that you get to spend a lot of that time being with yourself or with your running buddies. But minus the 6 hours and the time you’re working and sleeping, that isn’t much time left for other activities. In the weeks leading up to race day, watch a movie! Or have a sleepover with your friends and just chill.
4. Stay Hydrated
Keeping the body hydrated helps the heart pump blood more easily through the blood vessels. It allows your muscles to work more efficiently. The more hydrated you are, the less hard your heart has to work to deliver blood to your muscles. So, avoid alcohol since it leaves you dehydrated. Drink lots of water, but not so much that it causes a stomach upset. The best rule of thumb is to use your thirst as a gauge.