In It for the Long Run

With the Calgary marathon coming up in 6 weeks, no matter which distance you're racing I bet there are long runs on your schedule.  It can seem overwhelming so here are a few things you can do in advance to go into your run feeling good.  You'll be surprised how much it helps to be prepared.  I made a ton of basic mistakes on my long run last week, it's easy when you're focused on life and work and a million other things.


Go to bed early for 3 or 4 nights before your run, if not the entire week.  You will want to be well rested and full of energy when you head out the door.  Feel free to let your cats/toddler/spouse/partying neighbours know this is the plan.  It can be hard, but even skipping a half hour of TV and reading in bed instead will help.


Long runs need energy, carbs are my best friends the week of the long run.  This is not a good time to be weighing in and dieting, your body needs energy.  Drink plenty water, avoid soda or vino collapso the week before.  If you eat clean and treat your body well you'll get a lot back from it.  Use the 'food as fuel' philosophy then treat yourself after your run.  (Yeah, that's a whole other post waiting to happen).

Post race cinnamon rolls? Okay!

Prepare clothes

Check out the hourly weather forecast (this is Calgary).  Set out what you will be wearing in advance, ensure nothing is new or has even the slightest potential to chafe.  This is not a good time to try out brand new purchases.  You may be running in cooler temps to begin, then warmer - arm sleeves or a top you can tie around your waist may be options.  Wear something that makes you happy, bright colours can be energizing.

Prepare run fuel

Pre-mix sports powder/drinks or pre-measure anything you will want during the run.  Will you take a handheld bottle or a hydration pack?  Most drinks can be mixed then kept in the fridge overnight.  Pack your gels and chews the night before so you don't forget anything.  Sometimes I feel like 'proper' food on a long run so I cube and boil potatoes the night before then pop them into ziplock bags with some salt.

Change up the route

Calgary has a ton of different options, for scenic river pathways run downtown or change things up and run in Fish Creek or Nose Hill.  Running over paths and trails you've never been on takes your mind off the miles.  Check your route in advance and save anything important, including water stop options, on your phone for reference.  You never know what you'll find on your journey!

Don't be intimidated, go out there and do what makes you happy.....RUN!


  1. the sleep is soooo important!!! well and the food part. everyone finds thier fav pre race or long run ritual. I envy those who never seem to be bothered by food and can eat whatEVERRRRR.
    always a good reminder. I am publishing a nutrition post tomoz. linking to this...oKAY!!! xoxo

  2. Great to see you out training today :)


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