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1028 Views 9 Replies Latest reply: Dec 20, 2007 10:32 PM by kudzurunner
milty043 Rookie 6 posts since
Jan 12, 2007
Currently Being Moderated

Oct 10, 2007 9:39 PM

how much should you warm up before a marathon

I was wondering how much people run before the start of a marathon to warm up? You want to keep your energy right.

  • jonathanCSU Rookie 32 posts since
    Apr 20, 2003
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Oct 10, 2007 9:42 PM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    At most a little bit of brisk walking to get loose.  If you are loose at the beginning you will be more efficient form-wise, but you do not want to expend any excess energy by doing anything too strenuous.

  • milkbaby004 Rookie 447 posts since
    Jul 28, 2003
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Oct 10, 2007 11:07 PM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    I don't like to do anything more than walk to the start line.  That forces me to use the first couple of miles as a kind of warm up and keeps me from going out too fast.  It may not be the optimal warm up, but it's worked okay so far...

    I found this at the Manitoba Marathon website, and it looks a lot like something Bob Glover or Pete Pfitzinger has written:
    Before a marathon, the need to warm up is counterbalanced by the need to conserve your carbohydrate reserves, which are a limiting factor in marathon performance. Fortunately, your warm-up only needs to prepare you to run at marathon pace, and that can be accomplished by running easily for about 5 minutes, gradually increasing your speed up to marathon pace, followed by some gentle stretching. Finish by performing 1 to 3 sprints at race pace.

    On a warm/hot day however, you are probably better off finding somewhere cool to wait before the race than doing a warm up.

  • Brian McN Amateur 240 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Oct 11, 2007 7:26 AM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    I found that when I ran them slow (for me) I did not need much of a warm up.  Now that I run them faster (again for me) I need at least to jog for a couple of minutes as Phitzy suggests.  Kind of tough in the bigger Marathons though when you are all jammed at the start.  A little jog in place is all I can handle.

  • runninirish Amateur 222 posts since
    Feb 26, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Oct 11, 2007 8:41 AM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    10x400 at mile pace...

    !http://www.coolrunning.com/forums/smile.gif|src=http://www.coolrunning.com/forums/smile.gif|border=0!
    I usually do a few strides, try to find a little room to jog for 5 mins tops...some strechiing...

    ----



    "Fortitudine vincimus"

  • Jim Sullivan032 Rookie 504 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Oct 11, 2007 8:59 AM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    The only running I do before a marathon is literally to "warm up". Since most of my marathons have had a temperature around 40 at the start, and I'm out there in my shorts and singlet, I'll often jog very slowly for a couple of minutes just to get more comfortable.

  • GoDawgGo Rookie 123 posts since
    Jul 1, 2005
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Oct 11, 2007 10:06 AM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    I usually get out of bed, swig some water, get my running stuff on, and go for a slow 10 min jog.  Then, eat my last meal about 3 to 3 1/2 hours before the start.  I will then walk around a bit before the race just to get the blood moving a bit.

    I have found when I have warmed up too much, I usually go too fast in the first mile.

  • Long Run Nick Amateur 277 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    7. Oct 11, 2007 12:17 PM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    I have found over the last 3 decades that it seems to take longer to warm up as time passes by(I am 64). I have spoiled myself over the years in my training runs by going out 2-3 minutes slower than my "normal" pace for at least the first 1-2 miles. Shorter races 5K/10K I run 3-4 miles and do some pick ups prior to the start. The marathon at least 1 mile warm up. UltrasI would go out the way I trained and get warmed up as I go.<br /><br />I have a marathon in December and plan on "practicing" running a little quicker when I start my training runsthough I hate to change what ain't broken. I attribute my longevity in runningwith over 64,800+ milesin part to my slow warm ups--and often running 2-3 minutes slower than race pace (5-10K) on over 90% of my runs. Nick

  • DanMoriarity Rookie 805 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    8. Oct 11, 2007 1:45 PM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    Personally I just do a very light 5 minute jog to get the blood flowing a bit. I think that's all you really need. As others have said, if you're too warmed up, you're likely to go out too fast.

  • kudzurunner Rookie 525 posts since
    Dec 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. Dec 20, 2007 10:32 PM (in response to milty043)
    Re: how much should you warm up before a marathon

    I generally follow Pfitz's pre-marathon routine.  I think a warmup is important.

    But here's something to think about.  The first two or three minutes of any run are about bringing the aerobic system on line.  But the aerobic system, starting from its resting rate, can't come on line that quickly.  So there's a small but real spike in blood lactate during those first few minutes; you're essentially running anaerobicallyIF you do anything but shuffle at a very slow jog.  This is why people who know nothing about running and who begin their runs at a brisk pace talk about the "second wind."  The second wind is evidence that they have experienced an exaggerated version of this lactate spike, and that, once their aerobic systems have come on line, their lactate falls.  <br /><br />Good runners don't have second winds.  We know how to avoid them.  We do as the Kenyans do, and as John Kellogg advises us to do:  we begin every runEVERY runat a stumbling slow jog.  Insofar as possible, we avoid that early-run lactate spike.  We bring everything on line slowly and gently.<br /><br />Peter Coe's book, BTW, has a wonderful visual that shows this lactate spikeone of its many graphs.

    How is all this relevant to the question of whether and/or how to warmup for a marathon? What's key, above all, in any such warmup, is to avoid ANYTHING that feels like a lactate spike. Because what you're really doing to create such a spike is burning glycogen--muscular and/or liver.

    A VERY slow jog for five minutes is a good way to bring your aerobic system on line without burning much glycogen. It prepares you NOT to encounter any lactate burn of any sort in the first mile or two of the race. The key thing is to make it slow. Very slow. Four minutes below marathon pace, for example.

    If you don't warm up in this way, you run the risk of burning glycogen excessively in the first five minutes of the race as your body struggles, without you even realizing that it's happening, to bring all systems on line.

    [http://This message has been edited by KudzuRunner (edited Oct-11-2007).|http://This message has been edited by KudzuRunner (edited Oct-11-2007).]

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