Running a Marathon For Dummies
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As one coach used to say, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Plan for running a successful marathon with this checklist of things you don’t want to forget on marathon race day:

  • Eat a small breakfast containing 300 to 400 calories of carbohydrate and protein 1.5 to 2 hours before the start.

  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Drink 16 ounces of water or a sports drink 2 hours before the start and keep sipping until about 15 minutes before the start.

  • Check your gear at the start.

  • Go to the bathroom.

  • Warm up only a little to get rid of pre-race jitters. Walk or jog for about a half-mile and do some dynamic stretching exercises, moving your legs through their range of motion.

  • Apply BodyGlide to inner thighs, nipples, and below armpits to prevent chafing.

  • Pin your race number to your shirt.

  • Stick a couple of energy gels in your shorts pocket.

  • Attach your timing chip to your shoe.

  • Double knot your shoes.

  • Find your pace group at the start.

  • Remind yourself to have fun.

About This Article

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About the book author:

Jason R. Karp, PhD, is a nationally recognized running and fitness coach, freelance writer and author, and exercise physiologist. He is the owner of, a running coaching and personal training company, and the 2011 IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year.

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