A marathon is an arduous event and can be dangerous, even under good conditions, if a person isn't adequately prepared. This program is a gradual expansion of training but is general in its conception and cannot take into account individual needs and differences. At best it is a general guideline and in no way represents the perfect solution to any single individual's needs.
ALL of the miles in the schedule should be run at an easy effort. An easy effort can be defined as a pace at which you can easily converse with someone running with you. You should be able to talk in easy sentences. The pace should feel very relaxed and comfortable.
Walking breaks are perfectly fine
The goal should always be to run and walk for the complete amount of time allotted for the workout. If you do walk, walk quickly and return to running as soon as you feel the effort level has returned to a controlled, easy level.
Buy shoes that work for your feet and replace them frequently
You can expect to get no more than 400 to 500 miles of running out of a pair of top end running shoes. Many injuries are directly related to worn out shoes so examine yours closely every time you wear them. Look for collapsed mid-soles and worn down out-soles. Use a specialty running store where you'll find good equipment and sales people that will find the right shoe for your feet. Wear your running shoes only for running.
Keep a record of your training
A running log is a great way to keep track of shoe wear and monitor your progress. Use a notebook, day planner, or calendar to record your workouts; both what you did and how you felt.
Find a training companion
There's nothing like shared motivation to help you through a marathon training program. Locate a training partner or group that has similar abilities.
Find a source of information about running
A training partner who has experience with marathons, Runner's World Online (WWW.RUNNERSWORLD.COM
), books, magazines, running stores… all offer information that will help you with answers to problems that might come up.
Drink on your long runs
Use a sports drink to help get you through runs longer than 60 minutes. Practicing with the sports drink you'll be offered in the marathon is always a good idea. Whether you carry a bottle or hide bottles alongside the road, using a replacement fluid can be the difference between a successful long run and a miserable experience. Drink a lot and drink often. You'll quickly learn how much you're comfortable with and that will help you during the marathon.