Pre-Marathon Preparation Tips
Make sure you're ready when the gun goes off with these pre-race tricks from Dr. Greg Wells
The key to getting faster during your taper is to eliminate fatigue from your body and brain. I have a friend who even refused to walk up stairs in the weeks before the Olympics.
Physically you need to decrease the volume of training. You can do shorter workouts and you don’t need to run as far. Your weekly training volume can decrease from 50-80% over the last 2 weeks before your race. Trust your training, let your body recover and get energized.
It’s also important for you to let your brain recover and regenerate as well. One of the only reliable predictors of which athletes will improve their performance at the Olympics are those with the lowest stress levels in the weeks leading into the Games. Relax and chill out. Meditate, read books and enjoy!
This is also a great time to make sure that you help your body heal so that you feel great on race day. Massage therapy is a great option to decrease inflammation in the body and speed recovery. The closer you get to race day the more you need to make sure that your therapist moves from deep tissue massage to gentle relaxation and mobilization work.
From a nutrition perspective the main thing is to stick with your normal routine. This is not the time to try a new spicy dish. You might want to decrease your total caloric intake so that you meet your race weight, but in general just eat what you normally eat. Make sure you are well hydrated all day long in the days leading into the event.
Taper time is the best time of the year for athletes, if you trust your training. You’ve done the work, now reap the rewards!
By: Dr. Greg Wells, www.drgregwells.com