Tapering can be torment but we Veggie Runners have some tips to help you enjoy the experience.
When you’ve been marathon training for months, tapering is miserable. It seems counterintuitive but giving your body a rest at this stage in the game can be pure torture. With the Yorkshire Marathon looming over us, we’re hitting the angsty torment that is taper time right now.
We’ve talked about this before in The Joy of Tapering (not). This time, though, we’re going for a major head shift. We’re going to embrace our taper and really, really, LOVE it! Yes, we know we said we hated it before but that was in the olden days when we were less zen (or maybe just less tired). We’re going to use this taper to enjoy some downtime and do things we haven’t had chance to do for ages.
If you’re tapering too, try some of these:
OK, this isn’t strictly resting but that’s alright. You’re not supposed to hibernate in the two weeks before your marathon, just rest up a bit. And the right kind of yoga stretches and relaxes you, which is exactly what you need. I’m lucky enough to have a Yoga for Runners session right here on my doorstep (the universe works in wonderful ways!) but any gentle yoga will do. Avoid energetic workouts and stick instead to hatha, yin, pranayama and moving meditation (or variations thereon – anything that makes your body move slowly and your brain virtually shut down).
Marathon training takes up so much time that dreaming up interesting, new, exciting recipes falls right off the radar. We eat well, you know we do, but when the mileage cranks up, the creativity winds down. It has to; there are only so many hours in a day! I’m looking forward to hanging out in the kitchen experimenting again – which, of course, means recipes ahoy. At this stage it’s all about the carbs so if you’re at the same stage in your marathon training, check out our 5 Amazing Vegetarian Carb Loading recipes – they’ll see you right!
I’ll admit I daren’t get a massage, just in case anything goes horribly wrong. I’d feel a proper twit if something in my finely tuned body pinged out of place at this stage… Nope, massages can wait until afterwards. However, I would like to give my body a treat and show it that I appreciate how hard it’s been working over the past few months. A facial maybe, or a manicure, DIY if I have to. The good thing about treatments like this is you have to sit still, which is something I haven’t been doing much of lately. I feel blissed out already. Go on, treat yourself too.
Another thing that falls by the wayside during marathon training is reading (well, it does for me, anyway). I always read a novel in bed but at this point I’m so knackered I read a page, fall asleep, forget what I read and read the same page again next night and on and on in a Groundhog Day stuck on page 4. Now, though, I’m going to make the most of the recovery time tapering permits. I’m not going to read anything about running though, and especially not about marathons or tapering. No, no, no, no, NO! Novels, lots of them, are piled up by my bed and I shall be reading all of them. Or at least if I fall asleep and don’t manage more than half of one, I’ll know its because I’m so relaxed…
Yes, cooking is incredibly rewarding and it’s great having the chance to experiment in the kitchen, but sometimes it’s nice to be fed, too. I’m going to need a lot of fuel to get me through those 26.2 miles, and I don’t necessarily want to make it all myself. We’ve recently worked with Housetrip.com to help develop a map of the very best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in London. The restaurants range from haute-cuisine fancy to traditional veggie diners – all delicious and unique. If you’re in the capital, hunt one of these down and be waited on hand and (blistered) foot.
If you see us tweeting or twittering on elsewhere about the misery of tapering, feel free to give us a virtual talking to. I hope that won’t be necessary though. I taper, therefore I’m happy 🙂