By Forerunners


The last week of your running program is mostly a week of recovery from the past three months of hard training. Here is a list of last minute suggestions that can improve your race time.


1) Reduce Level of Intensity and Distance.

Run at a moderate effort level in your workouts including any final speed workout. During the final 5 days you can’t whip yourself into shape with a hard workout because you won’t have enough time to recover before the race. Hard work + recovery = improved performance. No recovery = high fatigue = reduced performance. if you run speed work in the final week, then run it at an easy effort; 90% of usual pace. Your longest run should be 10km or less. Run an easy 5km to 8km during the final two days before the race.

2) Reduce Cross Training.

There is little benefit to cross training (spin, cycling, swimming, weights etc.) the final 5 days before the race. If you do cross train keep the workouts under 30 minutes. At this point you should want to maintain your aerobic fitness and reduce any fatigue built up from the higher distance workouts.

3) Other Sports.

Totally avoid other sports the week leading up to a marathon. There is no need to risk an impact injury or a twisted ankle.


4) Fueling to Run Faster.

For high performance you need to fuel up for the race two days in advance. If you are racing the half marathon, eat double your regular daily calories for two or three days before the race to store excess energy in your muscle tissue. If you don’t like to overeat, drink 600 to 1000 calories of a complex carbohydrate such as CarboPro to top up your stored fuel levels. Don’t gorge yourself the night before the race to avoid bloating on race morning, and pit stops. Lower fiber high carbohydrate foods such as white rice or pasta work well.

5) Shoes and Gear Race Ready.

Prepare your running gear well in advance to avoid scrambling the day of the race. Keep them in a sports bag or separate place in your home. Have your running clothes, shoes, gels, drinks, special foods, Xact nutrition bars, etc. ready a few days before to help you stay relaxed on race day.

Racing shoes – There is time to improve your race time; consider carbon plated racing shoes and run in them during final workouts to break them in. The New Balance RC Elite V3 (available now) is a step up from version 2. They are lightweight, with plenty of cushioning to soften the road and a carbon plate to help you race faster.”

Read tips more at Forerunners.ca