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The hardest part about running a marathon isn’t running a marathon—it’s tapering for a marathon! Three weeks prior to 26.2, all runners go through a period of insanity commonly known as taper madness.
No runner is safe. This necessary evil can push even the most seasoned athlete over the edge! From stressing and panicking to restless energy, there’s nothing worse than tapering! Getting ready to run a marathon? Here are the 11 fears you experience during taper time.
1. That you aren’t running enough.
You’re used to running all the time and suddenly, you’re hardly running at all! Understandably, running 50-85% less during your taper may stress you out.
2. That you’re going to hurt yourself before the race.
You look 12 times before crossing the street, take every safety precaution necessary and refuse to wear anything but sensible shoes. BETTER SAFE THAN SORRY!
3. That you’re going to get sick.
You’re never more than 5 feet away from sanitizing gel. When a friend tells you they have a cold, you start running in the opposite direction. IT’S NOT PERSONAL! I CAN’T GET SICK!
4. That you’re going to gain weight.
The runger is real and you find yourself stressing over everything you eat. LET IT GO! Keep eating those nutrient dense foods!
5. That you’re not ready.
Every time someone asks you if you’re ready, you fight the urge to scream, “NO! AND I DON’T KNOW WHY EVERYONE KEEPS ASKING ME THAT!”
6. That you didn’t practice your race day fueling strategy enough.
As you scour the internets for race day advice (we all do it), you start to question your fueling strategy. Don’t question it. Do what you practiced!
7. That you didn’t do enough speed or hill work so you fight the urge to cram.
“If I run these Yasso 800s now, I will be better prepared for my marathon next week!” – Famous last words.
8. That a bad run is an indication that your race day is going to be a disaster.
Yes it’s possible for a terrible 4 mile run to shatter your confidence. Shake it off. It’s just pre-race jitters.
9. You lay awake at night stressing about possible race day disasters including and not limited to pooping, chafing, pain, bonking, crying, pain, finishing last, sleeping through your alarm and, of course, pain!
No you’re not going to sleep through your alarm. Yes it will hurt (in the best possible way)! Try not to stress about it. Just TRUST YOUR TRAINING!
10. Walls. Physical or metaphorical walls.
Don’t be alarmed if you find yourself seeking wide open spaces. The fear of that 20 mile wall is very, very real.
“Do you have a goal time?” Your co-worker asks, smiling supportively. “I JUST WANT TO SURVIVE!” You scream back, fighting the urge to crawl in the fetal position.
Tapering may not be easy but we’re all in this madness together! You just need to trust your training, listen to your body (AND YOUR TRAINING PLAN!), eat delicious healthy foods and stay busy. The time will fly and the marathon will be here before you know it. YOU WILL SURVIVE! It’s almost over. Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat.
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