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Just a few weeks back I ran my very first marathon in Eugene, Oregon, crossing off one item on my list to becoming part of the top 1% of the world.

It was an uncomfortable decision come make. I’d never ran much more than 10 mile in my entire life and also I’d only ever before done that once.

To make matters worse, all the pros said I required to train at least 16 weeks for my first marathon in stimulate to be successful, but by the moment I determined to execute it, i only had actually 8.

The cards to be stacked versus me and also I have to admit, i was a tiny nervous. But I finished.

Not only did I finish it, yet I finished in under 4 hours, miscellaneous most human being (myself included) never expected.

A human being is not supposed to operation 26.2 mile – an ext than 50,000 steps – in ~ one time. However that’s specifically why I chose to execute it. I simply love to do things I’m not claimed to.

I don’t know around everyone else, however for me, to run a marathon has very tiny to perform with the enjoyment that running and also everything to execute with ending up being the master of my very own body and mind.

Learning to take it full control of her body and also your mental is a really crucial skill to build no issue what threat you’re soaking up life. Ns think anyone that wants to learn this should probably run a marathon as quickly as possible.

To assist you out, I’ve taken mine first-timer experience and also turned it into a 26.2 step overview to running your very first marathon. I hope it helps you in your very own quest to master your body and mind.

26.2 actions to to run 26.2 Miles

1. Go to to run a marathon.

The indigenous are straightforward to say, but it’s not almost as basic to live up to. It’s crucial to have actually a very great reason because that doing this or else it’s an easy commitment come break.

Many civilization that register for a marathon never ever even display up come the beginning line. Internalize your commitment.

2. Decide how much training time you need.

The experts say you must train because that at least 4 months prior to running your an initial marathon. You can stick to this arrangement if you want, but it’s not a hard and also fast rule.

There space plenty of human being who train because that as little as a month and some the don’t train in ~ all and simply display up the work of the race. Ns trained for simply 2 months and also I’m nobody special. Decide because that yourself how long friend need.

3. Get clear on why you’re act this.

You require a great reason why you’re running a marathon if you’re going to stick to her training plan. I did the in order to get greater control over mine mind and my body.

That was a great reason because that me, however there space plenty the other good ones, too. Probably you desire to gain in shape. Maybe you desire a physics challenge. This have to be personal. “Because mine friends are doing it” more than likely won’t obtain you an extremely far.

4. Pick a marathon and register.

I started with a marathon that was relatively close to my home in Portland, Oregon, yet there’s no reason you have actually to. In fact, it could be a the majority of fun to do a vacation out of the event.

Just keep in mind the it’ll be pretty hard to walk for a few days after the race.

5. Reserve your accommodations.

Along through the race registration, ns recommend friend make any type of hotel bookings or other accommodations girlfriend need before you even start training. This adds some extra an inspiration to the mix.

I remained on a friend’s floor who stays in town. I don’t really recommend this together it’s necessary to acquire a an excellent night’s sleep before the race, but when you’re on a budget plan you carry out what you have to do.

6. Construct a training schedule.

There space all type of resources out there to help you determine how you must be training. Most suggest running 4 times a week with 1 lengthy run every week the gets progressively longer. Here’s the schedule that i used.

Of course, i modified it to fit my own requirements by an altering it to just 8 weeks and also running just 3 times a week. Don’t be fear to readjust the schedule if you understand it will certainly ultimately advantage you.

7. Uncover an accountability partner.

Having a friend or family members member train and also race through you is ideal for maintaining motivation as the training gets more and an ext difficult. Of course, this isn’t always possible.

I trained by myself however had several civilization that knew mine schedule and also gently reminded me to store it up when I began complaining also much.

8. Eat and also sleep well prior to long training runs.

Once you acquire up to your 16, 18, and also 20 mile runs, you’re walk to need a lot of power to finish them. Numerous carbs and also sleep the night prior to will assist in this department.

I would not recommend any type of kind that carbonated energy drink prior to your run. Unpleasant.

9. Build flexibility into your schedule.

No issue how tough you try to rod to your training schedule, life is walk to figure out just how to gain in the way, and probably much more than once.

Missing a training job isn’t the end of the world, but it provides it a lot simpler to miss out on another… and also then another… till the dream is all yet gone. Reschedule, don’t cancel.

I to plan on running on Tuesday, Thursday, and also Saturday, but often had actually to just suck that up and also switch days roughly when something essential got in the way.

10. Don’t race throughout your maintain runs.

It’s a good idea to store track of how long it takes girlfriend to complete each run, yet I wouldn’t worry around trying to gyeongju yourself if training because that your very first marathon.

Your training runs space going to gain increasingly difficult. Better to emphasis on finishing first and then worry about improving her time.

11. Collection a second goal.

Once you’ve perfect all her training runs, watch at your times and decide ~ above one that you’d favor to beat.

This is your second goal and also you’re walking to go after it as quickly as you know that your primary goal (actually finishing) is walking to it is in accomplished.

12. Get to city a job early.

If you’re travel to operation your marathon, execute not shot to gain there the morning of the event.

Marathons start very early and staying up every night driving just to gain out of the car and also start running is no the best strategy. You’ll be tired and out that it.

Get a hotel room, publication a hostel, sleep in your car if you have actually to, yet get there a job early. You’ll more than likely be forced to in stimulate to choose up your race packet.

13. Give up any kind of vices before the race.

I quit drinking alcohol for a complete month prior to I ran my an initial marathon. I quit eat candy and other sweets a full 2 mainly before.

I’m not going come pretend favor this is an absolute need for everyone. I recognize there space plenty of human being that have the right to party the night before and run a marathon when chain smoking cigarettes cigarettes, yet my body felt really great and completely prepared for the race by purging the stuff beforehand on.

14. Eat a hearty meal the night before.

The night before the marathon can carry up a the majority of nerves that kill an appetite, yet trust me, you want to shove as numerous carbohydrates and also proteins down your throat as possible without getting sick.

My friends and also I had actually banana pancakes v peanut butter. Delicious. Highly recommended.

15. Don’t obtain too much sleep.

It’s common to think that for together a large event you’d want to obtain as lot sleep together possible, but that’s not totally true.

Don’t readjust your sleeping pattern. Whatever worked because that you during your maintain will occupational now, too. Too much sleep deserve to make you groggy and that’s the last point you want on race day.

16. Buy brand-new shoes.

I can’t anxiety how important this is. You don’t must spend hundreds of dollars ~ above the Cadillac of running shoes, however you should certainly buy a brand-new pair prior to you also start training.

Your old, worn the end sneakers might work for the occasional run about the park, however they’re not going to reduced it for this kind of challenge. I bought my pair of shoes from a neighborhood running keep where I can test them out and also return castle if i had any type of issues through blisters or discomfort.

17. Practice getting up early.

Marathons usually start at 7:00 to be on a Sunday and you’ll must be there earlier than that if you want a an excellent spot in the starting line.

I’m a morning person, for this reason 7:00 is no problem for me, however if you struggle with waking up early, specifically on a weekend, I indicate some practice prior to hand.

18. Eat the best breakfast for you.

At the Eugene Marathon, they available a large pancake breakfast the morning that the race. It sounded tempting, but I knew from endure that eating a meal before running would cause a totality lot of unpleasant vomiting because that the very first 5 mile of the race.

Know what your stomach have the right to handle and also don’t shot to eat too lot the morning of. That’s what the huge dinner last night to be for.

19. Empty your bowels well in advance.

It’s not the most pleasant thing to think about, yet that large dinner from last night will most likely take a couple of tries to uhh… completely exit.

Start early and show up at the race in time to usage the bathroom again before the gun go off. Marathon porta-potties are absolutely disgusting, but it’s far better than desperately trying to find a shrub to hide behind when you’re running and the clock is ticking.

20. Hold ago for the first half that the race.

It appears counterintuitve, but this is a long race and also the first couple of miles will certainly be filled with adrenaline. If you race off too quick in the beginning, you’re walk to hazard not do it to the end.

21. Uncover a good pace.

Try come recall the pace you ran during your training and also stay just a little ahead that it.

Almost every marathons have actually runners assigned to run the entirety course in ~ a specific pace. Uncover one that’s a good fit because that you and also hang just a little behind them until you know you’re in a great position to pull away and also finish the marathon.

I say cave behind the pace setter since if you shot to operation in front, you’ll it is in constantly looking back to make certain you’re not acquiring too much ahead.

22. Don’t eat or drink too much during the race.

You’re going to find that there is a terminal with water, gatorade, or some kind of energy food every various other mile in ~ the start of the marathon and practically every half-mile towards the end. I made a big mistake of trying to avoid at all of them.

It’s really tempting towards the finish of the gyeongju to suck down every once of liquid you can acquire your hand on, however it’s tough to run with a gallon the water sloshing around in your stomach. Take it what girlfriend need only once you require it and nothing more. Trust me on this one.

23. Disconnect her body from her mind.

This is what the marathon is all about for me. In order come finish, you have actually to get incredible regulate over your mind and also its capacity to tell your body to store going.

Some world do that with music. Some usage meditation. I’ve uncovered that I have the right to literally have actually a conversation v myself while I’m running and also I prefer to usage it to occupational out ideas I’ve been reasoning about.

This write-up is a direct result of a long conversation I had with myself in between miles 11 and also 15.

24. Blast through the wall.

Every solitary marathon runner experiences what’s referred to as “the wall.” It’s the allude when your body up and also says, “Okay, I’m done.”

It’s almost always at least a couple of miles before you finish and usually to adjust in approximately the distance of your longest cultivate run. Over there isn’t a the majority of advice ns can give here except “don’t stop.”

Not really helpful, ns know, however that last tip around disconnecting her mind from her body is absolutely critical to gift able come tell you yourself to save going.

25. Take any type of encouragement you deserve to get.

Invite all your friends and family come come cheer you on. If they can’t do it, simply pretend that they’re there.

All follow me the course, there will certainly be civilization on the sidelines watching and also cheering for the runners together they pass by. It was really beneficial to pretend favor they were cheering specifically for me. It offered me a substantial boost when I really require it it towards the end.

At one point in mine delirium, i actually began saying “thank you.”

26. Destruction deep and finish strong.

I don’t recognize what it is, yet no issue how worn down you are, something around the excitement and also anticipation of finishing really adds some rocket boosters to her shoes in the last mile. Take benefit of this.

I really want to finish under 4 hours, yet fell behind in ~ mile 24. If i hadn’t taken advantage of that boost in the last mile and also given that all i was worth, I never ever would have been able to catch back up and also meet mine time goal.

26.1 Rehydrate slowly.

Like I claimed earlier, it’s really tempting come chug every little of fluid you can fit in her stomach as shortly as you’re done. Uneven you want to execute it again after friend puke it every up the very first time, take it easy and rehydrate slowly.

Fill yourself up, yet leave plenty of time to carry out it. That gatorade isn’t going anywhere.

26.2 Party prefer a rock star.

You go it! You simply mastered her mind and your body and also finished your first marathon. That’s a huge accomplishment, and also now its time to walk nuts.

Your body is walk to it is in begging you to lay down and go to sleep nice soon, but shot to overlook it until you’ve had actually a possibility to storage the reality that you just obtained one action closer to joining the top 1% the the world.

I’d make certain the next day’s schedule is nice clear.


There you have it. That’s 26.2 advice for running 26.2 miles. If it’s a small overwhelming, don’t problem too much about it. Simply take what girlfriend can and also leave the rest.

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It’s much more important to get started working towards it than to get everything exactly right.

Good luck!

Now end to you: have you considered running a marathon? What encourages you to take on a difficulty like that?