Advice and Support from Tina Howard - Sports and Remedial Bodywork Therapist
With the London Marathon just around the corner and all of those months of hard work, training on frosty mornings, cold dark nights and months of fundraising behind you are you feeling prepared?
Hopefully you have got through your training without injury, or with a few minor niggles that have been addressed along the way.
Most of you are now only one or two long runs away from the all-important taper.
Use these last long runs to think about your water intake. How much can you take on before the run? At which miles do you need to take the water on? Remember, if you feel thirsty, you will already be dehydrated. It’s important to take the water on, before this happens, and best to know your optimum, so you can plan when and where your water stations are on marathon day. The same with fuel, know when you need it, remember your glycogen stores can’t possibly last for 26.2 miles.
For the marathon veterans, I’m sure you know your ideal tapering period.
Tapering is about giving your body time to recover, you have the miles in your legs, don’t be tempted to add an extra-long run in just so that you know you can do it. Because, you can!
Use your taper period wisely, keep yourself ticking over, keep up at least one core session per week. This would be a great time to come in for sports massage, to make sure you are lining up with the healthiest set of muscles possible, releasing any unwanted tension does prevent injury and encourages your body to work as economically as possible, therefore allowing you the best performance and recovery.
We can also discuss any race day concerns you have with your body. If you are carrying any weakness into your marathon we can use Kinesio Tape to support or facilitate your muscles, or mechanically correct to allow your body to function at its best.
Post marathon, it will take a few days for your muscles to calm down. You need to concentrate on rehydration. Although you may have a post marathon massage on the day, it is a good idea to have massage in the week post marathon, to aid recovery and restore muscle balance and know how your body really came out of it. Recovery runs do work, if you’re are up to it! Do remember it takes your body at least one day per mile that you ran to recover from a marathon… so go a little easy for at least 26 days!
By Tina Howard – Sports and Remedial Bodywork Therapist – Halos Clinic Team member