The New York City Marathon is right around the corner, and as the Sunday, Nov. 3 date approaches, marathon runners can take solace in knowing they’ve already done most of the hard work in their training, and all that’s left to do now is make a few final preparations before taking the 26.2 mile plunge.
While each runner should prepare in their own way with whatever works best for them, Dynamic Sports Physical Therapy in New York City provides some tips below to help ensure all runners are ready to go on race day:
- Tapering is a controlled decrease in mileage and intensity that allows the body to repair itself and restock its fuel supplies before racing
- It’s usually recommended to start tapering 3-4 weeks before a marathon, so if you haven’t started already, begin tapering now
- Reduce mileage gradually to the point that you’re running 30-40% of your peak mileage during the final week before the marathon
- Staying fueled before and leading up to the big day is essential for a successful race
- Focus on certain foods and avoid others, and as a rule of thumb, try to consume 50-65% of your calories as complex carbohydrates (e.g. whole grains), 20-25% as lean protein and 15-25% as unsaturated fats
- If you’re hungry in between meals (which is completely normal for marathon runners) eat healthy snacks like mineral-rich fruits and vegetables and stay away from processed foods and sugars
- Be sure to stay properly hydrated before, during and after the race
- Drink at least an entire bottle of water on race day before it starts
- Be careful not to overdo it, however, as over-hydrating can lead to hyponatremia (water intoxication)
- Trim your toenails a few days before the race to avoid blisters and other foot problems
- Check the forecast and prepare your clothes and shoes appropriately; make sure shoes and laces are in good shape and dress in layers if necessary
- Eat a light meal about an hour before the race (e.g. bagel, toast, banana)
To work out any last-minute aches or pains, feel free to visit us at Dynamic Sports Physical Therapy in New York City. We wish all marathon runners a healthy and successful race.