6 steps to running your first marathon!
So, you’ve been inspired. You’re sorely tempted to enter a marathon. How do you take that shedload of inspiration and make it to the medal-in-your-mitt finish line selfie with 26.2 miles behind you?
Here are our top tips for completing your first marathon:
Enter the ballot for the London Marathon
Entries are open now for the ballot for next year’s race but only ‘til Friday so get your skates on! Enter here.
Apply for a charity place
If you’ve got your heart set on a place at London, start looking at charity spots now! Last year there were 414,168 applicants for ballot places in the London Marathon. Once you account for club runners and all the charity spots, there are only a limited number of ballot places available. This puts your chances of success in the ballot at slim to almost impossible.
Running for charity is a great way of supporting an amazing cause with all your sweat and effort. More info on charity places here.
Pick another marathon
There are loads of other fantastic city marathons in the spring of 2020 with great support and atmosphere. We at StrongHer recommend the Edinburgh Marathon Festival – a whole weekend of running fun with race distances from 5km to marathon - and Manchester Marathon so check them out.
Start training now
Whether you’re a regular runner or someone who’s setting out for the first time, it’s time to start building up your mileage so that you’re in the best shape to take on the official 16-week training program in the run up to your chosen race.
Find your WHY?
Maybe you’ve entered and you’re thinking ‘what have I done?’. Maybe your mouse is hovering over the ‘Enter now’ button and you’re not so sure. Make sure you know WHY you’re taking on this crazy challenge. It’s great to be inspired by what you see on the TV for one weekend in April but there’ll be plenty of struggles through the long miles of training, the Sundays sacrificed to long runs, the invitations for Saturday night drinks declined, not to mention the soul searching out on the course on the day.
Make sure you know WHY you’re taking on this challenge. Write it down. Revisit it regularly. You’ll get there.
Join a running group
There will be lots of experience amongst the coaches and other runners that will help you through your training and race planning.
I know we’re biased but we’d recommend StrongHer Strides. We borrowed our motto from the African proverb ‘If you want to go fast, go along, If you want to go far, go together.’ And let’s face it, the marathon is pretty far!