1st marathon this wkend

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    Dec 01, 2011 11:55 AM GMT
    Experienced runners,

    Do you have any advice/memories, etc., of your first? Particularly about weather conditions in the low 40s F, and possibly some rain.

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    Dec 01, 2011 1:25 PM GMT
    If it's going to be cold, buy a cheap sweatshirt and gloves to keep yourself warm prior to the start. You'll probably be hanging out for a while. When the race starts, you can strip them off and throw them to the side. Everyone else will be doing that too. Most marathons are prepared for this, and they typically donate all the discarded clothes to homeless shelters.

    Enjoy the crowd. They help a lot! My one and only marathon happened to be on my birthday, so I wrote my name and birthdate on the shirt I was wearing. Spectators and other runners will yell your name as you go by.
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    Dec 01, 2011 1:45 PM GMT
    Thx, endo. I think I'll have to do the name thing. (And maybe an email address & ph # for the hot spectators icon_smile.gif)
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    Dec 01, 2011 2:16 PM GMT
    The sweatshirt idea is brilliant. Be very aware of puddles and other wet areas you may run through : if your feet get wet your chances of bad blistering will skyrocket! Oh, and if you are using energy gels, start with half of one and take it before you really feel you need the boost!
    Good luck, it's a blast running at that level!
  • in_this_corne...

    Posts: 704

    Dec 01, 2011 2:40 PM GMT
    First of all, congratulations on completing your training regimen (whatever it was). That's a challenge in and of itself that disrupts your life for months prior to this weekend!

    My first was Seattle in November 2010 - it was 40's and rained briefly. Definitely take some gear you don't mind losing. I threw out my gloves in the first 2-3 miles.

    A lot of people put their name and/or messages on their shirts - definitely helps with crowd participation. Where are you running the marathon?

    Pace yourself - it's easy to let adrenaline get the best of you which makes for a potentially uncomfortable final hour. Never fails - in the 3 marathons I did this year - people cramp and it doesn't look like any sort of fun I want to be a part of!

    The day/night before I ate a few bananas. I would hydrate a ton the 24 hours prior as well. I drank water and Gatorade and OJ = and did it again in the morning when I woke up. I woke up at least 2.5 - 3 hours before the race (especially if you want to get some toast/peanut butter and a banana or two in your system prior to the run).

    The day before - go check out the start, get familiar with where you need to go so there are no questions the morning of and you can focus on getting ready.

    Also the night before, lay out your equipment to be sure you don't forget anything in the morning. The morning of should be just about getting ready, hydrating, and thinking about the 26.2.

    It's a really great experience. Enjoy it. Good luck! Oh yeah, did I say hydrate?
  • Ironman4U

    Posts: 747

    Dec 01, 2011 2:55 PM GMT
    Start putting a little extra salt on your food the next couple of days.

    Hydrate more than usual leading up to the race, starting a couple of days ahead.

    Get a great night sleep two nights before because the night prior may be hit or miss depending on pre-race nerves.

    Mentally prepare. Think about all your training and how you've conditioned your body. Know and believe that you can accomplish this goal.

    Have fun! This is your first marathon. Enjoy the experience.

    Short Story: My best friend did her first marathon years ago and it was about 40 degrees as well. At the start line, she said she felt the first drop of rain. And then it continued and got heavier as the day went on. In fact, it rained throughout the marathon and there were puddles everywhere with runners bitching and complaining.

    My friend, however, was just so truly excited about running her first marathon that the rain didn't bother her. She hopped through and around puddles all day cheerfully saying to herself, "I'm running my first marathon! How cool is that!"

    In other words, she focused on the positives and had an amazing experience.

    Hope you do the same!

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    Dec 01, 2011 3:20 PM GMT
    I'll second what Ironman said: Hydrate early. Even with the lower temperature, starting the race in a well hydrated condition will be important for your race.

    With rain you might encounter a little more chafing so use some glide on any possible hotspots before you get started (including feet/toes).

    You've don the training, you're ready. Just remember your race plan and stick to it.

    Above all: HAVE FUN!
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    Dec 01, 2011 4:12 PM GMT
    I haven't done a full marathon yet, but I have done a couple of half marathons (I will be doing two this weekend). I agree with the cheap warm clothing idea. During the Disney Princess half marathon, people were throwing all their warm clothing on the ground as the race progressed. You might want to bring something warm to wear after (obvi), because you will be wet and it's going to be cold. Just have fun and a well deserved beer or bloody mary afterward!!!!
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    Dec 05, 2011 3:03 AM GMT
    Ran a 3:15.44 today! In the cold rain! Woot!
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    Dec 05, 2011 3:21 AM GMT
    Congrats! Great time.