With the October London Marathon coming up soon, running fanatics across the country will be putting their practice to the test.
At current, the 2022 London Marathon has received the largest amount of sign ups, with 50,000 runners set to do the traditional course from Greenwich to The Mall and an additional, 50,000 participants completing the 26.2 miles elsewhere.
It is sure to be a gruelling run for those involved, and it takes a whole lot of determination to get anywhere near that marathon level of fitness. Preparation for this event is months in the making in terms of intense training paired with strict meal plans, and so that determination spans well before the day itself.
Pretty incredible if you think about it.
But, to be frank, we’re not all mad enough to have that marathon drive, especially as the months start to get cooler.
It’s important to remember that one thing that almost all these runners will have in common is experience, and the great thing about experience is that it allows these highly trained athletes to not just inspire but advise and lead. In turn, the rest of us within the fitness world have to be open minded and ready to learn from that experienced knowledge bank.
So we’ve reached out and spoken to some of our Village Family ready to go the extra mile, and asked them: how do you do it? Here are their top tips and tricks…
IT REALLY COMES DOWN TO WHAT'S LEFT INSIDE OF YOU
“This London Marathon will be my third and as much as I definitely have a passion for running there, I would say marathon training is far more about what’s left after underneath that passion. Especially in terms of when the pain really starts to set in that last 10K. At that point, all you have left is this insurmountable exhaustion which no love can face off. Your mind is just repeatedly telling you, ‘I can’t keep doing this’...
This is where the real push and drive has to come in. This isn’t a gym session where you can just switch off the treadmill, you have to keep going. Marathons more than any other event I reckon, push you to a place where it really comes down to what's left inside you.
Being able to draw deep, recognise that this is it, this is what the training has led to, and pull something out of yourself is one of the most incredible things about marathons in general and is a major part of what separates the finishers from the quitters." - Aberdeen Village Member, 37.
Want some advice about how to reach this kind of ‘never give up’ mentality in your own fitness journey? Have a look at booking a consultation with one of our PTs, all of which are highly qualified in coaching members toward their varying fitness goals. We'll get to know what you hope to achieve, what you love and loathe, then put together a bespoke exercise plan to suit your style and schedule. Whether you want to be marathon ready, or able to move without discomfort, we’ve got you covered.
IT'S NOT REALLY ABOUT THE MARATHON
“Me and my wife are still relatively new to marathons. We’ve both always done some form of training, but she got me started on the running a few good years back before we got married and it was a great bonding experience.
The real push is always in the training, that’s what most people mean when you hear them say the whole ‘it’s not really about the marathon’.
But, and I think I speak for the both of us when I say this, committing to the constant training is the hardest part. Keeping the schedule with work commitments and all of that has been difficult. We both have our own stresses but even though it has been really hard at points, it’s been worth it just to share a struggle together and to work together through that struggle.” - London Watford Village Member, 29.
Looking at doubling up in your own training? There is no rulebook that says you have to sweat solo. In fact, as this member suggests a little bit of friendly competition or joint support can help push us to go that bit further. No more early darts home when the road gets tough. In fact, while the average individual session lasts around 38 minutes, the joint grind results in an extended 44 minute session.
BUILD YOURSELF UP
“Best advice I can give is to make sure your playlist is set and ready. My marathon music is very much power and bass, just all the tunes to really get me ready to run my legs off.
For me, I know the physical pain is going to set in regardless, so I’m all about building up myself mentally as much as possible. Music helps obviously but really that’s where the training comes into play but any experienced athlete will tell you that.
You have to discipline your mind as much as your body, if not more so.
By the time the big day comes, you want to be set. You can’t do anymore than what you’ve already done, you've done the hard work, spent time and effort building up in training. To be honest, most of the sessions coming up to the race tend to be so intense and gruelling that I'm eager to get the run over and done with.
I sometimes think maybe that’s the best way to look at training sessions in general. Not simply in terms of love of your sport or the motivation that gets you going, but just simply in terms of it being something you have to do. That way, regardless of how tired or drained you are, training is still just something you have to do. No getting past it then. It’s just part of your life, something you have to do.” - Liverpool Village Member, 35.
We want to wish all our Village runners all the luck this weekend. You're going to smash it!
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