What You Should Never Do During A Marathon

If we want to run a marathon, we need to be prepared. We must consider some frequent mistakes, learn from them and avoid falling prey to them. 
What You Should Never Do During A Marathon

Last update: 22 October, 2018

More and more people are running long distances and taking part in organized competitions locally, nationally and even internationally. If you are thinking about running a marathon, we recommend that you read the following guidelines. Here we’ll tell you about the typical mistakes made by beginners and how you can avoid doing this too.

What things should I never do when running a marathon?

Each city holds at least one marathon per year, where dozens of professional and amateur athletes participate in this sporting event. Maybe you are interested in running and want to ‘try your luck’ with a race? If so, keep reading and we’ll tell you about the most common mistakes that beginners make:

1. They trust too much and prepare too little

A marathon is an exercise that requires a moderate to high effort. Many runners believe that they are performing perfectly and they trust their ability too much. And that can cost them dearly!

Man running a marathon.

Even professionals can suffer from the consequences of this blind trust in their abilities. When you think that the marathon is too easy, it’s important to respect what is involved. You never know when you will suffer from a cramp, heat stroke or a fall. Remember this motto: “The marathon doesn’t end until you reach the finish line.”

2. Leaving in front of other runners

In most races, the runners are staggered according to their times. In this way, the fastest runners do not have to ‘surpass’ the slowest. And there’s nothing wrong with starting in the last place, you may even be the surprise of the competition!

A common mistake in a marathon is wanting to begin at the same time as the advanced runners. Everyone has their own time, pace and ability. If this is the first time you’re running a race, we advise you to start in the later groups.

Group of runners about to start a marathon.

3. Running champion

The marathon is a very strenuous test that requires concentration, effort and above all, commitment. Like you, there are other people who are giving their best to reach the goal. Therefore, don’t expect to be an instant expert, especially if you have no experience.

You may have high expectations for your first race, and you may even imagine that you will win it. However, keep your feet on the ground (or on the road) and make your goals clear and easy to achieve, at least in the beginning.

4. Start fast

Did you know that the first three miles are more important than the last three? That’s right, because in a marathon you must stagger your efforts when the distance is more than considerable (especially if it is your first time).

Many debut marathon runners make the terrible mistake of starting at full speed. This can be counterproductive for you. If you get tired at the beginning, you won’t be able to finish the race, your body will tire too quickly and won’t respond to your commands.

5. Abusing sports drinks

Of course, hydration is very important before, during and after the race, but the excess fluid isn’t good. Firstly because, a marathon involves several hours of exercise and in that time excess hydration can make you want to urinate. And there is no experience worse than trying to run with a full bladder!

Woman drinking after running a marathon.

In addition, another common mistake by beginner marathoners is to abuse sports gels, those that have proteins, salts and other nutrients. Why? Well, because they can cause unbearable stomach discomfort! Drink enough to not feel thirsty or become dehydrated.

6. Abandon the race or stand in the middle of the road

Of course, if you have an injury or you feel unwell, you should leave the race. However, you must do everything possible to continue and reach the goal. That’s the mental drive you need to get back to running another marathon in the future.

But in case you cannot continue and you are afraid of experiencing a bigger problem and you want to leave, don’t stop and stand in the middle of the road! Have respect for the other runners and for your own safety.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.