Running with Rob (Week 5) - Knowing the route and visualising success

Uncertainty is the enemy of success. Marathons and long distance races are run on the law of variables.

If your variables are low there’s a good chance your race strategy will go to plan, more or less. If they don’t, you could be looking at a big chunk of time difference either side of your target.

One of the things you can control on race day is your knowledge of the route and this is particularly important for the full marathon.

The great thing for city based people is that they are training right where it’s all going to take place on June 4. For those coming from further afield, it’s always a good idea to come into the city centre for a run and become familiar with some of the hills and inclines, just so you're a bit clued up and know what’s coming.

There’s nothing worse than feeling fatigued and turning a corner to be met with a hill. If you know the hill is coming, you can be mentally prepared for it. To be fair to the organisers, they have done brilliant job of keeping the race relatively flat in what is quite a hilly city.

 

There are some minor changes to the route this year as the change from the traditional bank holiday Monday to a Sunday race means that churches will have to be avoided.

It doesn’t affect the more visually pleasing parts of the route such as the run along the Marina, the Blackrock part of the route or the Carrigrohane Straight.

However, the last mile and finish will no longer go up Pope’s Quay, it will now head up North Main St, onto Washington St, Daunt’s Square and onto Patrick St.

This is quite a change and little alterations like that can throw a person, especially when they are tired, frustrated, dehydrated and in pain etc.

I would advise, especially if this is your first marathon, to run the last couple of miles of the race and know what’s coming. Visualise yourself feeling good and crossing the finish line to cheers from spectators at Opera Lane.

This will help to trick the brain into experiencing similiar feelings when it comes to the big day, no matter what pain or misery you’re feeling.

All changes to the marathon route to accommodate the change of day can be found at http://www.corkcitymarathon.ie/the-marathon/

As always, happy running.

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