It is now less than 2 weeks until the 2021 London Marathon. I cannot believe how fast the time has gone from gaining a place until now. I will be the first to admit my training has not gone to plan, and I wish I had done more – I think everyone does. Now is the hardest part of training, in my mind at least – tapering. After all these months/weeks of gradually building up pace and distance, us runners need to reduce training load… it seems counter-intuitive as we yearn for race day, but it isn’t.
Tapering is a key component of preparing for a race. All the previous weeks of intense training culminate now. At this point you cannot really prepare any better by running more – in fact, you will be restricting your chances of running the race you dream of, and have been dreaming of (nightmares?!?), for a long time.
Tapering allows your body to relax, recover, and re-build itself prior to the race. There are a lot of blogs/advice out there on this so I will not repeat here. Suffice to say, I taper (even though it is hard to do, especially restricting oneself) for two good, and a very simple, reasons:
- I do not want to injure myself now
- I want to be on best form on race day
So no matter how hard it is to hold yourself back, please do taper. By all means keep running – but keep it short, easy, not over energetic or strenuous, don’t do hill repeats or sprints – enjoy the runs as you look forward to race day.
I am running the 2021 London Marathon to support a wonderful charity – MapAction.
Please do help me support MapAction in anyway you can. Please direct folk to my blogs and social media, and more importantly spread the word of the incredible work MapAction do. If you feel able, I would be grateful of any sponsorship you feel able: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/EdwardWallington. I look forward to seeing fellow runners out there!
For those that have not heard of MapAction, they are a non-profit organisation that collaborates with partners around the world to help anticipate, prepare for and respond to humanitarian emergencies. They strive to ensure governments, regional and local disaster management agencies and humanitarian responders have access to the information and analysis that they need to make key decisions, at the right times, to save lives and alleviate suffering.
MapAction believes that applying geospatial expertise to humanitarian situations can greatly improve outcomes for the people affected.
Example COVID-19 map from MapAction (c) MapAction
Global humanitarian needs outstrip resources. Expert geospatial and data analysis can help stretch those resources for maximum impact. Many professionals want to donate their energy and skills to help. MapAction is the bridge which enables them to do so effectively. You can read more about how MapAction provide support here.
It is also worth a read of the support activity around COVID-19, to name one of many support situation over the past year.
The work of MapAction resonates with me. I work for a leading geospatial company, and am aware of the value location can provide to a range of situations, especially humanitarian and emergency responses.