Preparing for a marathon can seem daunting, especially if it’s your very first one. There are some key elements to a successful marathon that every runner, particularly first-time or rookie runners, should keep in mind during the training period and the day of: staying positive and motivated throughout, training smart, and maintaining proper nutrition and hydration. Keeping these things top-of –mind during your entire marathon journey will give you the best advantage towards personal success.
But, first things first, you can’t attempt to start the journey without the proper pair of running shoes. Luckily for you, Zappos Running Central is a one-stop shop for everything you need, starting with the bare essentials: the perfect pair of running shoes for your feet.
It’s always best to start your training period with a fresh new pair of running shoes, especially if you’re new to the game. The first thing you need to determine when shopping for a new pair of running shoes is your pronation type. This step is crucial for finding the proper cushioning and support.
Pronation is the natural flattening of your foot arch after your heel strikes the ground. This is illustrated by the foot's tendency to roll inward or outward at the end of each stride.
Runners with normal arches typically have normal pronation, which means the impact after the heel strike goes slightly inward toward the big toe and distributes evenly through the remainder of the foot.
Runners who have high arches are typically under-pronators, where the foot has the tendency to roll more outward, pushing off harder with the outer toes to begin another stride. Normal and under-pronators benefit from shoes designed for neutral to mild pronation such as the ASICS GEL-Nimbus®-12, ASICS GEL-Cumulus® 12, and and Brooks Glycerin® 8.
Runners with low to flat arches tend to overpronate, meaning the foot rolls inward. This puts more pressure on the big toe and ball of the foot as it strikes the ground. . Stability or motion control shoes will help stabilize and cushion an over-pronator’s foot properly. For stability, try the ASICS GEL®-2160, ASICS GEL-Kayano®, Saucony ProGrid® Guide, or the Brooks Adrenaline™ GTS11. For motion control, try the Brooks Beast® for men or the Brooks Ariel® for women.
As you start your marathon training, remember that it starts first and foremost with a positive attitude. It’s as much about mental stamina as it is physical. Staying motivated is key. Always keep in mind that it’s a journey that not only requires the right gear, like the right pair of running shoes, but also the right attitude.
Don't forget to sign up for the Zappos.com Rock 'N' Roll Marathon this year. It will be run on the Strip at night for the first time! Sign up HERE. Good luck, and may you have many healthy miles ahead of you!