If you fancy challenging yourself in a new environment, then why not run a marathon abroad? Tina Muir reveals what to think about if you sign up for an overseas marathon
There are some key points to consider as you leave the comfort of your home city to run a marathon abroad. Here are just a few:
There may be a language barrier
Trying to figure out where you are going when locals are using another language can be stressful. Get organised and get a guidebook or an app to help you. Making sure your phone is equipped to go abroad is also important.
Think of the time difference
Depending on where you are going, there may be a time difference. This might not seem like a big deal until you realise you are usually sleeping when you are going to be racing. Start to adjust your body the week before by going to bed earlier or later and moving your runs to be as close to the time you will be running as possible.
Get to know the area
It can be incredibly frustrating trying to figure out how to get to your hotel and how you are going to find your way to the start line the next day. Combined with the language barrier, you may be in for a stressful pre-race experience. Read blogs and travel guides ahead of time so that you have some knowledge of the area.
Eat the same foods
A different country may not have the same foods you would normally eat. As much as you can, take your pre-race foods with you, and stick as closely to your usual eating style as you can before the race. Afterwards, feel free to try out all the local delicacies, but it’s always best to hold off trying out the black squid ink paella or any other exotic local dishes until you know you are safe. It’s just not worth the risk!
Prepare for the temperature
Look at the local climate and prepare for it in the months beforehand. Although we can never truly predict the temperature, look at previous race day weather and average temperatures for that time of year, and work out what gear you will need to take with you. If you know it is likely to be hot, but it is still winter at home, start layering up so that you get used to sweating. If it rains a lot, start looking for a poncho to use before the race and decide which anti-chafe product you are going to use.
Have your race-day strategy planned out
Know exactly what you are eating and drinking and when, how you are getting to the start line, and where you are going to meet your loved ones afterwards.