It's T-minus 6 days until the Virgin London Marathon 2014 this Sunday. After months of running and strength training race day is looming ever closer. I have done all I can in terms of fitness. But I'm not about to sit around and do nothing, in fact this week if you're anything like me - a first-time marathon runner - you'll A) be feeling increasingly more nervous as the minutes tick by and B) feeling the need to be more organised than ever with an anxious feeling that you're bound to forget something.
First, find someone, anyone who has run the London Marathon before and get their take on the race. From people I have spoken to it is as much a mental battle as it is a physical one. Gain as much advice and insight from them as possible. Here are some of the useful tips my friends and colleagues have shared:
- Take a hoodie with you on race day that you will keep on until the start line and discard when you start running (apparently all the layers are rounded up and given to charity).
- Pack a black sack too, this will keep you fairly dry if it rains.
- If you have friends and family watching, station them around mile 18 onwards as you'll need as much encouragement as you can get on the last third to quarter of the race.
- Listen to music when you race? have a back-up so your iPhone and iPod, in case one malfunctions.
- Avoid the temptation to text and tweet everyone you know that has sent you well wishes at the start of the race - you need the battery at the end when you're trying to find your friends/family in the crowds after. Even better - set a place to meet and stick to it after the race, signal is notoriously bad as there are so many people at the end.
- Think positive - the atmosphere on the day is apparently like nothing you will probably have experienced before. All you have to do is keep moving, soak up the atmosphere and erm, keep moving until you reach the finish line.
Tonight: Make a list of everything you think you will need on race day (I love lists, my boyfriend will attest to this). Plus, decide when you are going to collect your race pack - don't leave it until late Saturday. Try not to drink wine.
Check in tomorrow for my kit tips...