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There are many Comrades Marathon clichés and this is one of them.  There is a lot you can do up front to prepare yourself for race day.  Learn as much as you can about yourself, your running and the route.  In your training you need to be aware of how you are feeling both mentally and physically.

How does your body react to certain conditions?  Likewise, how does your mind react?  What about the Comrades route?  How well do you know it?  If you live along the route you’ve pretty much got things sussed, but what if you live 2000km away and have never set foot on the route?  Well it’s quite simple really, print out or download a Comrades route map and pin it up in your office.  Look at it everyday and start memorising the place names.  Make a note of where the hills are, how long and how steep they are. 

If you can get hold of a pacing chart before hand, study it.  See how much time is given for particular sections of the route.  You may need to tap into this information on race day.  Get to know what works for you in terms of energy replacements.  Learn how your body deals with salt loss.  You can find the answer to a lot of questions during your long training runs

Besides your own training, there are other means of learning more about Comrades.  There are a number of books available about the Comrades Marathon.  There are quite a few running forums on the web.  Speak to experienced Comrades runners.  The more useful information you can store in your head (mental goody bag), the better.  See my page on the "Buffet table" for deciding which information is useful.  Remember, knowledge is power

Key words: running Comrades Marathon, Knowledge is power, Comrades route
Internal links: route, route map, long training runs, salt loss, energy replacements, Comrades route, mental goody bag, buffet table
External links: Official Comrades Marathon website




Copyright Nikki Campbell 2008
alsoran@webafrica.org.za