In ONE WHOLE WEEK I will have finished the LONDON MARATHON.
*que long ass squeal*
I still am having to pinch myself; in seven days time… I will have run one of the worlds greatest marathons.
Like with any other marathon, there is a TON of ‘prep’ that needs to be done prior to a race, but with this particular race (the one I have been wanting to take part in for years!) I needed to make sure that everything was to go to plan. Or at least, for it to run as smoothly as it possibly can do…
We all have specific rituals before we take on a long distance race; whether it be a certain diet, a ‘detox’ or simply just setting aside some much needed ‘me-time’ so there is comfort in knowing that your body is at its ultimate best.
For me, there are some must-do rituals to complete in order to be relaxed and secure. I want to be at peak performance, and it is all about PREPARATION. I am sure you’re all aware of the taper time and how we should make good use of it?
After months of training, your body is completely exhausted. You don’t seem to realise until you slow it right down, and your body starts to enjoy the down time, much more than expected. So this is the best time to delve into a little self care; plus you need to fill up that free time, don’t ya think?
- Book in a massage.
A sports massage may be too much in the lead up to the marathon (save that one for afterwards) however, if you’re feeling tight, there is no better way to set yourself up with a full body massage.
I took myself to Marshall Street Leisure Centre‘s Spa for a relaxing morning. As someone who exercises (almost) daily, I was very much looking forward to giving my body the TLC that it deserved.
The leisure centre is less than a five minute walk from Oxford Street tube station, tucked out the way from the hustle and bustle. I stepped into the spa, which was a small, but intimate area, and liked what I saw. It was cute and quaint, you could smell the aroma therepy oils burning away from the rooms ahead. Vidya took me to the massage room and asked me a few questions, so that she could treat the right areas appropriately.
Anyone who knows me, I do not take a lot of time out to relax, so when I book myself in for a massage, I make sure I let myself really enjoy the moment.
My muscles needed a wiggle about, although not too much, as I did mention about the upcoming marathon. I felt completely relaxed in the enviroment around me, and even nearly had a nap on the heated bed! Vidya was very comforting and made me feel at ease (I want to shout a huge big thank you to her especially as she had to endure within my marathon chat!)
The prices are completley affordable for central London, and Vidya really did know her stuff. I shall definitely be revisiting!
Check out the details on their website HERE!
- Look after your temple.
Whether it is using the steam and sauna rooms, or going to the beauty salon for a pampering session, THIS IS THE TIME to look after number one. I find this is where I do the things I don’t normally have time for, like getting my hair cut, going for a wax or even getting a pedicure. All that is on the to-do list for when my time free’s up, seems to get done whilst on the taper!
Funnily enough, I treat marathon day like a special event, almost like a birthday of some sort. If I look and feel good on the day, then I will be confident all around. As silly as it sounds, doing theses things make me feel complete.
Millimetre Salons have been my go-to pamper station recently as its close to work, making it easy to pop in to before going home. (Check out their Notting Hill and Harrow salons!)
- Prep up your ‘post marathon’ back pack.
In the days leading up to the marathon, you’ll have made sure your running outfit is laid out, with your name printed on the front (especially if you’re doing the run via a charity) and your accessories are at the ready (stopwatch, earphones…) but we don’t tend to think so much of what we may need post-marathon. I have a list of items that I need to make sure I pack prior to the big day, knowing I’ll want/need these things when it’s not so quick and easy to get home to.
Clean clothes or extra clothing will help if you’re staying out for the post-race party. You’ll need to keep warm to avoid your body picking up anything nasty along the way. Which means, wet wipes and body spray can come in handy too. I also make sure snacks and extra hydration is packed just in case I’m unable to get to a store quick enough after the finish line.
Getting in contact with friends and family may also be difficult on the day as it all gets a little bit hectic with so many bodies in one area, which means carrying loose change and a battery power charger with you may be quite the life saver. Think ahead to avoid any issues that may dampener the day.
Doing all the preparation keeps my mind at ease, knowing that I have made sure every moment is thought about. This makes everything a little less stressful during the marathon experience. Race day is a huge nervous bubble as it is, so eliminating all potential problems will have a knackered version of you, very happy indeed!
Don’t over pack, but double check that you have all that you need, and be sure to take in your baggage number details on the morning of race day, so that you are able to store your items securely with the London Marathon team.
I recently received an American Tourister back pack which fits in ALL my essentials and is super lightweight! Highly recommend this brand if you’re wanting something easy to travel with.
Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail.
Although this statement is a little drastic, I tend to keep it in mind as it gives me a huge kick up the butt to do things during the week of tapering, so all I have to do on Sunday morning is simply, put one foot in front of the other.
Visit Marshall Street Leisure Centre for great spa and beauty treatments via their website in the highlighted links above!