A Beginners Guide To Training for a Marathon

A marathon is one of the highest forms of physical activity, involving a miles-long run in a circuit with multiple turns and varying paths. The marathon is not an easy feat to accomplish and requires a lot of training to achieve the fitness level suitable for such a long exercise period. Your speed, endurance, and cardio will need to be at a high level of excellence, and your training will require multiple aspects to prepare your body for this time-honored sport.

What Makes a Marathon?

The average marathon involves a long-distance run that spans miles across a city or cleared path. These paths may involve different turns and angles depending on the location.

Multiple participants compete for first place in the race and will use various running tactics to try and outpace the competition. This sport puts endurance and speed to the test, and will involve the judgment of your pacing and determination to use more energy.


Each marathon varies depending on the location, but the average is around 27 miles. Most marathon committees will try and make the running path as simple and straight as possible to ensure a fair run for every participant. There may be the occasional turn or bend to maneuver through the land or city, but it should not be very sharp.


If you want to win the marathon, you must have great speed at a steady pace. However, this doesn’t mean you have to be the fastest throughout the entire race.

People have jogged a marathon because of their body’s limitations, such as the elderly and physically impaired. The goal of a marathon is to finish first, but if you want to run to complete the marathon, then that is perfectly fine, and you may go at your own pace.


Every person who finishes the race will receive an item to show they competed, such as a sash or medal. Most marathons award trophies, medals, or cash prizes depending on a person’s final place—be it first, second, or third—so many people compete.


Training for a marathon requires serious commitment, especially if you plan on winning. You will need to stick to a strict training regimen to have the best chance of keeping up with the competition. Even people who only wish to participate and have no plans of winning should still brandish their running skills, so they at least have a chance of completing the marathon.

Time Spent Training

You should train at least five months before the marathon and spend about five to eight hours each day on a track or on the path where the marathon will take place. You should train daily, involving different exercises to strengthen your legs and improve cardiovascular and muscular endurance. Make sure you have good running gear, such as comfortable running shoes and clothes that will wick away sweat.

Running Practice

The months you spend training for a marathon will involve running for long distances. You’ll want to start with the longest distance you can run to establish a base, so get some good rest, and eat a healthy meal to get the best estimate. Then, you’ll need to work up from this baseline in increment goals.

Your goals will depend on your fitness level, determination, and end goal before the marathon. Plan out how you want to practice, and don’t feel fear when pushing yourself; every extra foot you run is progress. If you train daily and allow yourself one rest day throughout the week, your milestones could include a distance increase of about 25 to 50 yards weekly.

Tracking your progress as you train will help you observe any improvements or areas you need to optimize. Using a notebook, pedometer, or distance tracker on your phone will help you track your running practice’s effectiveness.

Leg Workouts To Build Your Muscles

To increase your stamina, you must boost the muscles in your legs to handle long-term stress. Focusing on leg exercises with little to no weight will hold the best results since you won’t need to focus on strength when running the marathon. Start with light ankle weights that allow your legs to move with little resistance, and work your way up to higher weights when you feel comfortable.

Using different machines such as a home treadmill or elliptical will allow you to train at home if necessary. Both machines offer a great workout with a running simulation for long periods. In preparation for the marathon, you may want to combine machine workouts with exercises using no equipment, such as squats, calf raises, or lunges, to improve your thighs and calves.


Stretching is an essential part of any workout or training. You don’t want to cramp up when running the marathon Stretching promotes blood flow and loosens your muscles, preventing spasms or strains.

You use more muscles when running. It’s best to always stretch before intense physical activity to be flexible enough to adapt to any changing situations. Stretching is also a great warm-up to get your blood flowing; your body won’t have as much of a shock from the time you start running, and remain in a good rhythm as you continue.


A healthy diet will help you conquer some of the most difficult tasks, such as long-distance running. A balanced diet with protein, vitamins, minerals, and fatty amino acids will increase your overall health and give you an excellent energy store to use during the race. Try your best to stick to your diet as you train so your body will become used to the nutrients it receives and knows how to use them as you exercise.

Rest and Recovery

Your body will need rest after training so hard, and if you train daily for multiple hours, it’s good to have a rest day. Get eight hours of sleep and eat a healthy, filling meal to restore your energy. Doing a relaxing activity such as reading or watching a movie will also boost your serotonin levels and allow you to feel motivated when you begin your next workout.

Marathons take a large amount of work to complete and succeed. The way you train will significantly impact your results on the day of the big race, so make sure you know how to train and prepare yourself properly.

A Beginners Guide To Training for a Marathon