Clair N. posted some great pre-marathon questions as a comment on my blog today. Having only run one marathon, I can give my two cents, but would love some feedback from you all more experienced marathoners:
Question #1: What to eat in the week/days leading up to a marathon?
I took advice from the Ultramarathon Man ("50 Marathons in 50 Days") on this one. I do think it helped me during my run. Usually I am a GI mess when I run longer than ten miles, but during my marathon I had none of that and had only one pit stop (just to pee). Also my energy was good for the entire race. This is what I followed:
Question#2: What to wear.
Running through the Colorado winter I learned a lot about layering. I also learned that it is much better to start out cool/cold and warm up than to overdress. Starting temp for my marathon in Phoenix in January was 40*. I brought throw away clothes that I discarded on the sidelines once the run started. My rule of thumb is that if it's going to be an average of 50* or higher, go with the shorts and minimal layers that you can toss.
Question #3: To iPod or not to iPod.
I was dead set on not using my iPod during the marathon. Felt like I might want to be social and I'd want to take in the sights and sounds of the experience (hah, hilarious I know). When I told Ken this the night before, he looked at me like I'd lost my mind. He kindly reminded me I would be running for at least four hours, and that I might like the option of music. I took my shuffle with me tucked in the teeny front pocket of my running shorts (I'm kind of anti fuel belt if I can get away with it). It was the best decision ever. I found the last thing I wanted to do was to be social or to take in the sights and sounds after about mile seven. That's when the headphones went on. I swear, repaying Green Day, AC/DC, etc saved my ass and kept my energy up.
Any advice for Clair on these issues (or any others)? She is running the Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach on Sunday.