7 Marathon Training Essentials

How was your weekend? Did anyone race?

This weekend my sister visited Seattle and we spent the weekend exploring around the Cascades, city, and the Eastside. More on that later this week! Today, I want to share a few things that have become marathon training essentials. What works for me of course will not work for everyone, but I always find it interesting learning what things people rely the most on during training. So, here are 7 of my marathon training essentials. 

Marathon Training Essentials

Nuun Active Hydration

Hydration is essential for strong athletic performance and healthy marathon training! A glass of Nuun after a run provides me with all the necessary electrolytes but without lots of sugars or calories. Currently, I’m loving watermelon Nuun—so refreshing after a hard run! 

Portland Marathon Training



A Good Night’s Sleep

I’ve read before how you should add a minute of sleep each night for each mile you run per week, and I certainly feel that now that I’m running 60 miles per week. A good night’s sleep makes such a difference in how my workout goes, how productive I am during the day, and how well I manage runger. 

Beautiful Trails

Beautiful trails keep all my miles interesting, which for me is essential for preventing marathon burnout. The Eastside of Seattle has dozens of miles of uninterrupted trails with lots of trees, fresh air, beautiful scenery, water fountains, and no traffic.  

Portland Marathon Training

Training Log 

I keep a hand-written log to track time, distance, pace, specific workout splits, what I ate and drank, the weather, and how my run went overall. This log has helped me pinpoint what works and what doesn’t along with keeping me accountable for my running. A log also helps me track my progress—it’s motivating to see how far I’ve come so far in training!

Family Support

I don’t know how I could do marathon training without the support of my family. Ryan is incredibly supportive of my running. He makes me breakfast after long runs, gives me calf massages, and listens to me share every detail of a workout. On race day, he drives me to the start line, cheers me on along the course, takes photos, and meets me right at the finish line, no matter the weather. My mom sends me running gear and new shoes as gifts. 

Yoga Mat

The more miles I run, the more I need to do yoga, and the gentler that yoga needs to be. Recovery yoga, just like sleep, is like hitting a reset button on my muscles after a hard workout. Yoga helps lower stress levels, and controlling cortisol levels is vital for proper recovery. Yoga prevents injury by stretching my IT band, releasing tight hips, and smoothing out muscular imbalances. 


A little indulgence here and there keeps marathon training from becoming too exhausting or strenuous. A glass of beer each day is a nice, relaxing treat that won’t ruin my marathon training nutrition but gives me a bit of feeling of indulgence that then motivates me to stay disciplined in my training. Plus, beer is a good source of carbs! 

Portland Marathon Training

Portland Marathon Training Week 11

Monday: 11 mile workout with a 2 mile warm-up, 6 x 1 mile at half marathon effort (7:33, 7:29, 7:31, 7:30, 7:28, 7:26) with 1/4 mile recovery jog, and 1.5 mile cool-down. 

Tuesday: 7 mile recovery run, 9:36/mile average pace, followed by 20 minutes of recovery yoga. 

Wednesday: 11 miles workout with 2 mile warm up, 8 miles at goal marathon pace, 1 mile cool down. PM: 20 minutes bodyweight strength training.

Portland Marathon Training

Thursday: 7 miles easy, 8:57/mile. PM: 15 minute kettlebell workout

Friday: 8 miles easy on the treadmill, 0-8% incline, 9:20/mile average pace.

Saturday: 16 mile progressive long run, 8:29/mile. PM: 2 mile easy hike. 

Sunday: Rest day with probably 4-5 miles of walking around Seattle and Redmond.

[Tweet “7 #marathon training essential from @thisrunrecipes #fitfluential #runchat “]

Questions of the Day:
What are your marathon training essentials? Name anything: gear, intangible things, or food! 
How was your week of running/training? 

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16 Responses

  1. I love nuun and beer too…and wine of course:) I wish I had better places to run without any traffic/lights. When I lived downtown there as a stretch along the harbor where I could run for a few miles without having to stop…now I have to drive to get anywhere like that. Great list!

  2. Awesome week of training!! I am going to need to refer to your blog as a great resource when I run my first marathon! I love Nuun and also love your thought that indulging a bit in something you enjoy like beer is key to not burning out. Life doesn’t need to stop just because you’re working towards a big goal!

    1. Thank you! Are you running your first marathon soon? 🙂 And yes, you’re so right – life doesn’t come to a stand still just for a goal, and that’s what makes achieving goals even more satisfying! 🙂

  3. I agree with you on all of your training essentials. Sleep, especially, makes a huge difference for me: both in my athletic stamina, but also my brain stamina! I really like nuun after workouts, but I tried drinking it while I was running and the carbonation made me really sick. Lesson learned! Looks like you had another great week of training – very inspiring!

    1. Yes on sleep and brain stamina! My brain is mush without sleep. I’ve never drank Nuun while running, so I’ll keep that in mind. And thank you so much, Lauren! 🙂

  4. Compression socks! Even when it’s hot out in the summer, I blast the AC and pull those babies on… always help my calfs and feet feel rested especially after a long run!

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