Training for an upcoming half-marathon or marathon event. Be it the Upcoming Sydney Half Marathon, Gold Coast Marathon, the Sydney Sun Herald Marathon, the Melbourne Marathon or any other events; there are 5 types of exercises you should include in your training program.
1) Tempo runs
Tempo runs improves our metabolic fitness, which is a crucial physiological variable for running success. Tempo training increases your body’s lactate threshold, which is the point at which the body fatigues at a given pace. The result, being able to run farther and faster.
You should be running at a comfortable fast pace, one which you feel you can maintain for an hour. Most runners make the mistake of making their tempo runs too short or too slow. If you reside in Wollongong, use the markers along the Wollongong to Thirroul Bike Track to calculate the distance for your runs.
2) Interval training
A little speed work can help you run smoother and faster. Doing intervals once or twice a week can bring you fast results. Some tips for interval training are to pace yourself, pick the right distance, keep it short and gradually reduce your recoveries.
3) Long distance runs
Of course if you’re training for a marathon, the most important thing is to get the mileage up. So you will need to include long distance runs in your training program. A fellow runner once told me that the first half of a marathon is the first 30km and the second half is the last 12km, that is so true. If you’re training for a marathon, try to do a long distance run at least once a week (usually on a weekend) and slowly work your mileage up to around 35km. Ensure you have adequate rest after the long runs too, to allow your body time to recover.
Flexibility is important to runners. Running relax is the secret to running faster. Stretching helps improve flexibility and also reduces injuries. The best time to stretch is after your muscles have been warmed up. So running for 5 to 10 minutes before stretching is best. However if you prefer to stretch before the run, just be careful not to over-stretch. -You should not be feeling any pain while stretching. Also it is good practice to stretch at the end of the exercise.
Tapering is a critical component of marathon training that is so often overlooked. The final 3 weeks are the most important in any marathon training program. Training is about progressively adapting your body to stress. Tapering allows your body to recover from that stress and be in prime condition during race day.
So those are the 5 types of exercises you should include in your marathon training.
If you’re doing the upcoming Sydney Half Marathon, there’s a 10 weeks beginner’s guide for a half marathon.