TAPERING FOR THE LA MARATHON
Tapering For The LA Marathon: Recovery And Peak With only two weeks left before the 2016 Skechers L.A. Marathon, all competitors should now be in final preparations for race day. With the last long run completed, now it’s time to taper your workouts and let your fitness evolve. But contrary to popular belief, the taper period is not just for recovery. The goals of the taper period are actually two-fold: to allow for full recovery, and to sharpen your fitness. The first week of the taper is to allow for full recovery from the last fitness building block of workouts – specifically, the last long run. The second week of the taper is to take your newfound fitness out for a spin, and test all the high gears. This will push your fitness up even further. The key to these workouts is to perform them in a completely recovered state, and keep them short. After each workout, you need to recover completely before moving on to the next one. So instead of your key workouts being every 48 hours, as they were in the earlier training periods, you now will provide more time for recovery and allow 72 hours between challenging workouts. Light recovery workouts between the short, hard efforts will help. These can be easy runs or short workouts on a stationary bike or elliptical machine. Swimming and water running are also good for recovery. The week of the race, with your training loads further reduced, you need to put that extra energy into recovery tactics. Start with at least eight hours of sleep each night, keep your days short, and get off your feet. Stretch every day (even if you don’t work out), and focus on the tight and problematic areas with use of the Forster Edition Addaday foam roller, massage sticks, and other recovery tools. Follow these efforts with icing sore and tight areas for 20 minutes every night. Ice baths are very effective for recovery, and will help you rebuild fresh legs. If you are experiencing pain, you must actively seek a resolution. Rest alone does not fix running injuries. You have plenty of time to address the mechanical deviations that caused your injury. It’s best to arrive at the starting line healthy but with a little less fitness, than to arrive injured because you ran through pain. Cross training will deliver the same fitness value in the last few weeks of training as running, and may spare your injury from worsening.