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5 tips for a successful marathon!

Organized every year in November, the Alpes-Maritimes Nice-Cannes marathon is a magnificent race with an exceptional route that runs along the Mediterranean for 42.195 km between Nice and Cannes. Here are 5 tips to be in top shape on D-Day!

Tip no. 1 to prepare for your marathon:

increase very gradually!

For lots of marathon runners the first challenge is to avoid arriving on the starting line with an injury… Muscles and joints are under great strain when running and injuries are relatively frequent (tendinitis, periostitis, etc.).
To limit the risks, very gradually increase the amount of training. If you haven’t done any running for a long time or are overweight, start your workouts with brisk walking, then alternate walking and running before finally running continuously.

Tip no. 2 to prepare for your marathon:

Extend the training distance!

The marathon is an endurance event, so one of the keys to finishing your first marathon and improving your time is long sessions.
Don’t hesitate to include a long session each week by gradually increasing the duration of the session. The objective is to run a final long session lasting from 2 to-2½ hours 3 weeks before race day.
These sessions must be run at a pace close to the pace you hope to run on D day. If you think you’ll be able to run your marathon in 5 hours, you should be training at a pace of 5 km/h (9km / h during the marathon).

Tip no. 3 to prepare for your marathon:

Don’t neglect your general physical preparation!

It is very important to reach optimal general physical condition for anyone that wants to get past the dreaded « wall » at the 30 km point.
General physical preparation is based on other activities than running: muscle building, swimming or cycling for example. If you don’t have time to go swimming or cycling, then you still have the possibility of muscle building using your own body weight (pumps, dips, abs, squats, lunges, etc.). This physical preparation will make it much easier to cope with the specific marathon training.

Tip no. 4 to prepare for your marathon:

Work on your speed!

If your goal is to improve your marathon time, then it’s essential to work on running speed, the famous maximum aerobic speed. In fact to go faster, it is important to train at speeds higher than your target marathon pace. This is where the interval training method comes in. This method consists of alternating fast-speed phases with active recovery phases. The best-known interval training is the famous 30/30 where you alternate 30 seconds at maximum aerobic speed with 30 seconds of active recovery with 10 to 15 repetitions. There are lots of possible combinations. If you don’t know how to go about it, contact a WTS trainer!

Tip no. 5 to prepare for your marathon:

Sleep and food!

The recipe is regular training, a balanced diet and good quality sleep. Nutrition is an extremely complex subject that can’t be covered in a few lines. Nevertheless, for most nutritionists, the quality of intake depends mainly on the diversity of foods consumed. Thus, some specialists have no hesitation in saying that by consuming 50 different foods each week you can cover all your needs – as long as you eat until you’re full without depriving yourself.

Tip no. 5 to prepare for your marathon:

Sleep and food (continued)!

Sleep helps the regeneration of physical and mental abilities. Which is why good quality sleep is essential to recover effectively from the day’s training. In practice :
> people who have difficulty falling asleep will benefit from a cool shower (20-22 ») which, by lowering body temperature, makes it easier to get to sleep. Conversely, sauna or steam sessions raise the temperature and hinder sleep.

Tip no. 5 to prepare for your marathon:

Sleep and food (continued)!

> Relaxation techniques are aimed at reducing muscle tension and slowing the heart rate and breathing… thus facilitating sleep. So don’t hesitate to do 10 minutes of abdominal breathing lying on your back on a carpet (in a quiet place) just before bed.
> The contents of your plate condition your ability to fall asleep quickly and enjoy quality sleep. Caffeine (coffee, tea, chocolate), some animal proteins (red meat, eggs) and very rich meals will disrupt sleep if consumed in excessive quantities at the end of the day. Conversely, light meals, starchy foods (potatoes, pasta, rice, cereals, etc.), and some soothing herbal teas (linden, valerian) will facilitate sleep.

The Alpes-Maritimes Marathon!