So you’re interested in signing up for a half marathon in Malaysia and you’re a total beginner, how do you start? A half marathon of about 21.0975km, requires a huge commitment to train for. First, ask yourself, are you ready to give your next few months to running routinely? If you answered yes, take a look at how you can begin your journey to becoming a marathon runner.
Have the Right Fuel
If you were not monitoring your diet, now would be a good time to do so. Food will be your fuel to power through your training. Over the next few months, you will be pushing your body to run for a longer time and distance each week. Consuming a higher calorie intake is necessary for your body to keep up.
Eat meals that consist of lean proteins, carbohydrates and healthy fats. Cook a healthy portion of whole grain carbohydrates like oatmeal or brown rice. Your choice of protein may be turkey, lean pork, eggs, fish and white meat chicken. Pair that with a side of healthy fats like avocado, olive out and nut butters. Munch on some vegetables for added nutrients. Then, finish off your meal with some organic fruits.
Get 2 Pairs of Running Shoes
Since you will be running often the following few months, consider investing in two pairs of sports shoes specifically to run in. This is so that you do not share the lifespan of your running shoes with going to the gym or other sport activities. Having 2 pairs of running shoes means that you can alternate between them every week. This will also ensure that you’re always having proper support when you run. You will always have a backup pair in case anything goes wrong with the other pair.
Track Your Progress
Whether it is an easy run day or a long run day, keep track of it. There are plenty of running apps out there to record your route and running time. Pick one and let it track you while you finish the distance for the day. Keeping tabs of your run time will help to see where you are at in terms of progressing your running endurance.
Listen to Your Body
Don’t be afraid to stray away from the norm and try unconventional means in training. It would be best to listen to your body and adjust according to what your body needs. If you find it difficult to eat with someone else’s meal plans, change it to be more appetising for yourself. If you can’t keep up with the training plan, try giving yourself more days to get to the targeted kilometre. Listen to what your body is trying to tell you and don’t be too hard on yourself. Build your body up with patience and flexibility within reason.
Not only do you need to build your endurance running, but you also have to be in a healthy mindset to keep going. Find a training plan that works for you and follow it. Consistency is key to see a drastic amount of improvement. The first few weeks might be difficult for you to get used to your body’s pain, but don’t give up! The best motivator is your mind. Look for a strong reason as to why you want to compete in a half marathon. Keep that thought in your mind and constantly remind yourself to push through with that echoing motivator.
Consider participating in 5k and 10k runs throughout your training as it could become a progress checkpoint for you. Ideally give yourself at least 2 months to prepare for 5k and another additional 2 months for 10k. The average preparation time for a half marathon upon finishing a 10k is about 12 weeks. Before you know it, you’ll be crossing the finish line!
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