Zack is my married to one of my favorite cousins. When my boyfriend and I used to live to in Chicago, the 4 of us would hang out a lot. They are such a fun couple and so caring and genuine. I’m lucky to call them my family.
On Tuesday I shared with you all my reasons for doing my first marathon. As soon as I told Zack I signed up for the Honolulu Marathon he’s been so supportive and encouraging. He’s given me so much specific information and answered all my questions. He’s really calmed my nerves and reminds me not to be so hard on myself. It’s been incredibly reassuring and beneficial to have him and all his knowledge in my corner.
I’ve really appreciated all of his wise and honest advice and I thought lots of other people could benefit from his advice too, so here you have it, my interview with Zack, the 10 time marathoner.
After high school
I just wanted to see if I could do it
Better put in my mind is why do I keep running or at least running marathons. There are several reasons that include better health, sense of accomplishment, stress relieve, because I’m able, strength (I feel strong), to enjoy nature/the outdoors, to feel like an athlete, and for some damn reason I just can’t figure out but I think it’s just a life thing for me. I need goals or things to strive for; not having something big to work towards just makes life boring in my mind. I’m actually trying to carry my running determination/work ethic into everything I do. Lastly, my biggest reason is to survive the zombie apocalypse.
The beginning. Adrenaline is maxed and the nervousness/butterflies fuel the excitement.
Trust me, it’s not a thrill. Relief might be a better word.
Sadly, they’re in boxes. I’ve yet to display them.
I mainly think about setting my goal pace and sticking to it. That also means avoiding taking off too fast! Most runners run the first few miles much faster than their goal pace and up paying for it later.
That I can do anything I set my mind to.
Crossfit or weight training
Never start fast, nutrition, and how hard I can push myself or the mental aspect of setting a pace or how to keep moving when walking/sitting/laying down all seem like much better options.
Ice bath, beer, and pizza
Toast or bagels. Banana/oatmeal. 2 meals. One when I immediately get up and one smaller meal (bagel) about 2 hours pre-race.
Gels, money/ID, and chapstick
Everything. The spectators, the runners, work, the finish line, the pain to come, am I on pace, ugh-another effing walker that just stops right in front of me, I hate this song-skip, food, etc…
Every 2 miles. Just water.
I don’t really have them. I don’t necessarily want to get pumped because I start running faster and it burns my tank up faster. I like to listen to 80s music. (I.e. Kyrie by Mr. Mister)
Concentrate on moving my feet. Walking out cramps if they come then running once they subside. It’s just taking it a step at a time.
I did it again!
They have bananas amongst other things at the end. I’m usually very eager to get the beer!!
Can’t say I do…. stretching after isn’t necessarily easy. I do try to visit a med tent and get a free stretch by a PT.
Get the right gear in order – shoes, shirt, shorts, body glide to prevent chaffing, tunes, running belt, and sunglasses. Your gear can make you really uncomfortable or even injure you (shoes). Cotton shirts on a really hot day for a guy can lead to a wet blanket and some bloody nipples.
That you’ll kill your knees.
– Do – train
Do – find one that’s flat for your first one
Do – destination marathon as it’s a great way to see a city and it’s more exciting
Do – run with a group or friend for your first few – it’ll help through the tough parts
Do – enjoy it
Don’t – run when you suspect injury
Don’t – stop running or make sudden lane changes (respect that others are very close to you) Don’t – start too fast
Don’t – be upset if you have to stop/run slower – finishing at all is a major accomplishment that many can’t or won’t do
I hope you all learned something from Zack, I surely did. If you have other questions I’m sure he’d be happy to answer them for you, please leave them in the comments.
And I’d also love more advice or words of encouragement before my first marathon next month!