Liz And Martin YellingMartin & Liz Yelling
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Martin Yelling (PhD) is the official Virgin Money London Marathon coach and has helped thousands of marathon runners make the finish line every year. His wife, Liz Yelling is a two-time Olympic marathoner and Commonwealth medalist. Together they know their way to a successful London Marathon finish!

As we slide into 2020 ‘how’s your marathon training going’ probably isn’t the first thing you’re thinking. But we do know that your confidence to tackle 26.2 marathon miles probably is not super high right now and certainly not where you’d like it to be.

Don't panic. This is totally normal and can be both daunting and exciting at the same time. But, you are running the Virgin Money London Marathon in April 2020 so there’s no time like now to get going!

January training lays the foundations on which you build over the next few months. These early miles, routine and consistency building develop your mental confidence and physical competence to crack the marathon. It takes time to get used it so start gently.

Doing too much, too hard, too soon, more often than not ends in injury, frustration and disappointment. Think of your training as a slow layering process. You need to build up the time you are able to run for over many weeks and months. In doing so you are building a strong body and mind that’ll be more than capable of completing 26.2miles. Be gentle and progress slowly at first. This is especially important if you’re a beginner or new marathon runner.

Progression means gradually and appropriately increasing the duration, intensity and frequency of your running to optimize long term performance and allow gradual overload and adaptation. Appropriate progression takes time, patience, discipline and planning. Good progression is balanced, seamless and smooth.

Your priority is to build a running routine that works for you throughout January. Setting yourself a weekly target of 3 runs to complete is a good place to begin.

Becoming a marathon runner is a mixture of patience and persistence. Set yourself a small target each time you leave to run and don’t be daunted by the challenge you have set yourself. The more you do, the easier it gets and the more achievable your marathon finishes becomes. Keep your pace controlled, walk when you need to and gradually build time on your feet.

Get out and get started and you’ll soon find that once you get into it you’ll actually want to go for your run. Each time you do leave the front door run with purpose, passion and intent.

Read Martin's previous post