Posted by: Joe English | March 26, 2010

Training — Tips for Dealing with Fatigue in Marathon Runners

Coach Joe English

Coach Joe English

One of my athletes wrote to me yesterday asking for some quick tips on things that might help with fatigue. Because I manage her training schedule, I can rule out over-training in this case. I thought that I would share with you readers some of the tips that I give when people are looking for ways to cope with fatigue that is impacting their marathon training.

Before we jump into issues that cause fatigue and things that you can do to improve the situation, let’s start by saying that some level of fatigue is normal in marathon runners. Fatigue is part of the process of recovery from intense workouts. However, fatigue should not be so severe that it prevents the runner from achieving good quality workouts. If fatigue is so bad that the runner is skimping on runs or not able to run at their normal paces, then there is an issue that needs to be addressed.

Here are a few things to think about and watch for in your daily routine that will cause fatigue or can combat it:
1) Over-training — make sure that you are getting adequate recovery between your workouts, especially between intense quality (or speed) workouts. The amount of recovery varies and depends on your level of fitness.
2) Sleep — make sure that you are getting adequate amounts of sleep. Sleep is a critical time for the body to repair itself and recover. A lack of sleep can dramatically impact your recovery.
3) Nutrition — ensure that you are eating enough carbohydrate in your daily diet to fuel your workouts and getting enough protein after-ward to help your recovery. Runners should aim to consume 15 grams of carbohydrate within the first hour of the end of their workout to help with recovery. For more on eating for recovery, click here to read my tips on the best foods for recovery.

To continue reading, click here.

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