Train for a Marathon in One Day; A Personal Trainer’s take

Miracles have been known to happen, however a Marathon is nothing to take lightly. One day of training is not going to cut it, but at Active Lifestyle we can show you how to better prepare yourself for your next Marathon. With your marathon just a couple of weeks away, you should be starting to taper down your running and strength training loads. Notice, I said “Strength Training”.

Are you that runner who believes that running alone is the key to better times? Are you that runner who thinks that simply running harder is going to make you faster? Well think again. Running requires muscle power and endurance as well as technique. The only way to increase strength and power is by increasing the load and demand on the muscle.

I have become notorious for my emphasis on Glut training, but studies show that it is the Gluts that are the major driving force behind forward propulsion and acceleration; hence, sprinters have large gluts. If you want to decrease your times, you will first need to increase the potential power output of your gluts.

Running is also an exercise that is done on one leg. Yes, you heard me correctly. Fifty percent of your time is spent either on one leg or the other. So working through strength exercises that target single leg movements have been shown to lengthen stride lengths, which cuts down on the number of steps so that your body takes less of a pounding. This translates into quicker recovery times and increased stamina as the muscles are not being activated as many times as they were previously to do the same amount of work.

When a person is running the body works to transfer power diagonally across the body. So our right arm moves when our left leg moves and vice versa. The power from the ground and upper body are transferred through the core of the body and across the abdominals with a bit of rotation. For this reason rotational and cross body exercises are important. The proper balance of strength and flexibility of the core muscles, gluts, abdominals, lower back, hamstrings and hip flexors, translates into more efficient and powerful running.  At Active Lifestyle we work mainly on full body exercises that address core strength, joint mobility and flexibility. We work the posterior chain which normally is weak in most athletes, training hamstrings, gluts and the muscles of the back.

Finally, running requires a tremendous amount of joint stability from the smallest joints in the feet all the way to the joints of the shoulders and neck. For this reason we must be certain to work through exercises that strengthen joints, increase muscle endurance across as many joints at the same time as possible. This can help you reduce postural issues in those late stages of the race, which inevitably slow you down and don’t allow you to finish strong.

Feel free to leave your comments, questions or your own personal input in the comments section below.

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By Rich Thurman, B.Sc., MA, CSCS, CPT.
With a Bachelors degree in Physiological Science from UCLA a Masters in Sports Management from The University of San Francisco, Rich has over 10 years of experience in General Health Fitness & Fat loss, Sports Performance & Movement, Injury Prevention and Rehabilitation. Rich is a health & performance coach and personal trainer for Active Lifestyle Co. Ltd in Bangkok.


About Rich Thurman III B.Sc, MA, CSCS, NSCA-CPT
Rich has a Bachelors of Science in Physiological Science from UCLA and a Masters of Sports Management from USF. He is certified by the National Strength & Conditioning Association, (NSCA) as a Personal Trainer (CPT) and Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). He is primary author of The Fitness Library and writes for various other publications, including the San Francisco Police Officer's Association. Rich is the founder of Xodus Fitness, which offers Fitness Consulting & Personal Training, Urban Body Transformation Bootcamps, Corporate Wellness. Rich also conducts Workshops and an annual lecture at the San Francisco State University Kinesiology Department. Please feel free to contact through any of the links below to inquire about professional services or opportunities.

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