RUN HACK: How to Deal with Taper for a Half or Full Marathon

How to Deal with “Taper Crazies” aka that extra energy you have at the end of marathon or half marathon training that often ends up making you worried, anxious, moody or other feelings as your race day gets closer.

1. Be Productive with Non-Running Activities —

Use your extra energy to do something you may have neglected during marathon training. The few weeks before your race you’ll have less mileage on your plan and more time on your hands. You’ve been busy running, eating and recovering so there’s a chance that you’ve put off other activities. If this is you – consider using this time to catch up (and if you’re like me… clear your conscience about being a bad friend).

Non Running Activities I’ve heard people do: 

  • Get a hair cut / manicure / other maintenance
  • Call your parents
  • Meet up with a friend for coffee or cocktails
  • Wash your car
  • Wash your dog
  • Wash your dog’s car
  • Decorate for the season
  • Go to the dentist / doctor
  • Go to church
  • Volunteer
  • Wander around your fave store
  • Visit or call your older relatives to check-in
  • Read a book (or a blog about running!)

Half Marathon Training Taper Tips

2. Be Productive with Running Related Activities that are NOT Running —

You may also need to do running related things to prepare you for race day, but are NOT running! Dealing with these help ease race day nerves because you’ll feel well prepared if all the details are out of the way. Or you can do runner-y things that aren’t actually running (or active). Here are some ideas for inspo…

Running Related Things that are NOT RUNNING

  • Plan your race goals, pacing & fuel
  • Plan your race day outfit (lay out your flat runner)
  • Look into Expo & Race Day logistics [start time, directions, parking, etc]
  • Watch a Running Movie (here’s a list of the 13 Best Running Movies!)
  • Read a blog or book about running (like Run Eat Repeat!!)
  • Create a Race Day Playlist
  • Review the course map
  • Let your friends/family know how to track you for the race
  • Read Race Recaps from other runners who’ve done your upcoming race
  • Look over your Running Log to remind yourself that you’re ready!
  • Say good-bye to your toenails

Half Marathon Training Taper Tips

3. Run Your Mind

Once you’re in the taper part of a training plan – the hardest, longest runs are DONE. You have to let your body rest so you show up on race day feeling well rested. Doing extra running now will hurt your race performance NOT help it. TRUST YOUR TRAINING.

Consider using this time to train your brain and work on your mindset. A big part of running is mental so this is important (and something many training plans don’t include). Luckily you have time during taper to get your head in the game (or… um, the race).

Mental Training Ideas for Runners

  • Choose a mantra you’ll use for race day
  • Pick 3 Power Words to repeat on race day
  • Visualize yourself running the race & hitting your goal
  • Listen to inspirational talks or books
  • Pray (consider a short prayer you can use at the race too)
  • Practice staying positive with everyday challenges (traffic, long lines, difficult people)
  • Put up positive post-it notes around your house

Let me know if you have any last minute questions before your race! DM me on Instagram @RunEatRepeat or leave a comment on the latest post for the fastest response.



Keep Going with these RUNNING INFO POSTS

Half & Full Marathon Must Haves

List of the 13 Best Running Movies

Best Affirmations for Runners List


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