After running a lot of shorter distance races in the summer it can be attractive to increase mileage aggressively to get ready for your upcoming marathon. Because of this we typically start seeing lots of injuries in the early fall, some that can even prevent participation in the marathon they are training for. We need to recognize how training for a marathon can increase our chances for an injury and be smart so we don’t end up on the injured list.
Increase Mileage in Moderation
An increase in mileage is an invitation to injury, so you need to be smart about increasing mileage too aggressively. Some people follow a 10% rule for increasing mileage slowly, but it would be smart to follow a training program that takes moderation into consideration, typically running consistent mileage with a longer run one day a week. A few good books we have in the story by Jeff Galloway that offer marathon training plans are “Marathon You Can Do It” and “Boston Marathon: How to Qualify”.
Plan You Marathon Accordingly
It usually takes most people anywhere between 12 to 18 weeks to safely get ready for a marathon. So, if you were training all summer for the Crim and decided to run a marathon the weekend after that probably wouldn’t have been a good idea. Depending on your current fitness level, make sure the marathon you are planning to run is far enough out to get in the proper training so you won’t even have the urge to aggressively increase mileage.
Ditch Your Old Shoes
If you are still wearing the same shoes you purchased in the spring it may be time to consider replacing your shoes. It is different for everyone due to your weight and stride and such, but after a few hundred miles of running over the summer your shoes have broken down significantly, even if they still look nice, and broken down shoes will also increase the chance of injury. If your feet are aching you are probably overdue, and if you are still wearing the same shoes from several months ago you may want to consider replacing to prevent aching feet and any chance of injury from your shoes.
Whether you are training for a fall or winter marathon, having a training plan to follow will deter you from increasing your miles too aggressively and make sure you are on track to get ready for your big race while reducing your risk of injury.
Run smart and safe!