Since my lecture and discussion on "How To Prepare for Marathon Day" at Barnes & Noble in Hoboken was upstaged by the Yankee pennant clinching game, I wanted to send along some important advice to those running the NYC Marathon on November 5.
The marathon run is a completion of a six to eight month training program. If you are sick, injured or feel you have not trained properly, it's okay to back out or run part of the course. This is not a time for heroics.
On the morning of the race, at least four hours before race time, make a blended drink of bananas and grape juice with some protein powder. Do not eat solid food. Take green powders or electrolytes before, during and after the race. The Natural Living Running and Walking Club members take green juices throughout the race provided at our aid stations. You can take green capsules or any other electrolytes you have trained with. Don't try anything you haven't trained with.
During the race if you get hungry eat small bites of banana or cut up pieces of protein bars.
Drink at least 16 ounces of water before the start of the race. Then sip water at every station. Do not gulp down large quantities; you could get stitches (intestinal cramps) if you gulp air as well.
You'll get free water at the start. Try to get two bottles. Just a sidebar about bathrooms. Everyone has heard about the longest urinal -- it's the Verrazano Bridge. If you are running from the below start. Don't. Either of the above starts is highly preferred, just ask. When you arrive, check in, get your water, start drinking your water and line up for the bathrooms. After you go, line up again and you should have no problems for a while. If you run in new shoes, make sure they are comfortable and fit properly. Buy them in the late afternoon after you've been on your feet all day, so you'll be fitted properly. Otherwise, choose the best shoes you've been training in. Worn down heels can lead to tendinitis. Dress properly to the weather conditions. If you think you might be longer than four hours, take some clothes for the cooler temperatures.
Unless it's really cold, you can usually accommodate the early morning cold by wearing a trash bag. It's usually good for rain too, and it's not heavy.
Next to your body wear clothing that wicks. That means it will keep your skin dry and release moisture. When you wear cotton, your sweat will chill your body as the temperature dips.
Before the race clip toe nails to prevent injury to the nail or even cutting your toes; put petroleum jelly around your heels, the balls of your feet and all over your toes. Use it on your groin, breasts, armpits, any place where there will be friction (between the legs.) You will want to put bandaids over the nipples to prevent abrasions; in small plastic bag (pinned to the inside of your shorts) put electrolyte tablets, charcoal tablets (gas), tissues.
Our club usually goes out dancing after the marathon so we have a special bath after we've completed the race. Here's the recipe: In a warm tub, not hot, put the contents of at least two and one half gallon containers of Epsom Salts (magnesium relaxes muscles) and six to nine bottles of hydrogen peroxide (hydrogen peroxide oxygenates the tissues, especially sore, achy muscles.) Luxuriate for at least 30 minutes. You may want to do more. Get up and go dancing and celebrate. You did it!
I hope this helps you.
Maia Mikhaili, Coordinator
Natural Living, Running & Walking Club, Hoboken