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Archive | Listener Question

What counts as an official marathon?

race bibsHere’s a good question about when a distance officially goes into the marathon (or half marathon) count. This was featured in the quick tip on MTA Podcast episode #281.

For the sake of clarity most people only count officially organized races as part of their marathon numbers. In the course of marathon training most people will run the half marathon distance many times so those 13.1 mile (21.1km) runs go in the category of training runs. Continue Reading →

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Shoe Rotation During Marathon Training

When I was training for my first marathon I only used one pair of shoes and struggled on a number of levels. Since that time I’ve seen the value in rotating through different types of shoes in training.

I definitely advise runners to have at least two different types of shoes in your rotation and there seems to be evidence to back this up.

Here is what the research seems to say on this topic and some bonus tips on how to prolong the life of your running shoes.

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Some Help With Chafing

During the Juneau Marathon this past summer I totally forgot to apply anti-chafe ointment (you’d think after 50+ marathons I’d remember) and I got the most hellacious chafing under one arm.

By mile 20 I was running with my arms held away from my body like wings.

Unfortunately the race didn’t have much in the way of support and there wasn’t a spot to stop and glob some petroleum jelly on the area. Continue Reading →

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How to Stay Marathon Ready

Many runners I know do about two marathons per year -usually one in the spring and one in the fall. But what about adding in a couple more impromptu marathons?

Here is a great question we received from a runner who wants to be able to jump into a marathon at the last minute.

In the following post I share tips on how to go from one race to the next without injuring yourself. Continue Reading →

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Experiencing “Phantom Pain” During Marathon Training

Have you ever found yourself obsessing over little aches and pains as you get closer to race day? It’s not uncommon.

Here is a question from a reader wanting me to explain phantom pain in more detail. Happy to help!

I remember one time you talked about phantom pain. Can you explain it again? I’m almost positive I’ve been suffering from it. Thanks Brittany

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A Question About Heel Pain

Here is a question we received from a runner named Bill who is dealing with heel pain. I had an unpleasant bout of heel pain last summer when I ran the Juneau Marathon. When I got back home I was able to find a treatment that helped me to complete fix my heel pain (knock on wood) and I was able to run the Loch Ness Marathon without any issue. I’m happy to pass along what worked for me. Continue Reading →

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How To Avoid “Bonking” in a Race

Here’s an important question we received about bonking -that dreaded feeling when your body refuses to cooperate and no matter how much further you have to run your legs just feel like lead.

Hi Angie, My question is: Can you please recommend some tactics to deal with bonking at a race or even during a long run? I was lucky that Coach Athena’s training plan really worked for me at the Chicago marathon and I didn’t bonk a single moment. But I fear that I may run into a ‘wall’ in the future, as I have experienced during a couple of long training runs before, when I had to stop for a really long time before I could run again. Aside from repeating some personal mantras, what can one do to quickly get the legs moving again? Many thanks, Vicky

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Tips for Runners in Their 60s

Masters runners now represent more than 50% of all marathon finishers. 

A person is actually considered a “masters runner” from the age of 40 on up so I’m now officially part of that classification.  

However, I would say that there are a number of physiological differences between a masters runner in their 40’s and one in their 60’s. 

Some races actually break down the masters category more with 50+ being grandmasters and 60+ as senior grandmasters.  There is a push to make another category called veteran grandmasters for ages 70+.  The questions that we’d like to tackle have to do with runners in their 60’s.  Continue Reading →

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Listener Q & A with Angie and Athena


In this episode we do a listener Q & A session!

Angie and special guest Coach Athena Farias tackle questions about recovery, what to do in the off season, back-to-back marathons, how to train for a 50k, dealing with taper madness, and more.

Plus we will give you a quick rundown of the 2018 New York City Marathon. Continue Reading →

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How Do Boston Qualifying Times Work?

Here’s a great question we received from a listener named Anthony. We featured it in the quick tip segment of podcast #250.

“I really enjoy the web site and podcast, very inspirational. I finished my first half marathon in 2007 at age 45 with a time of 2:07. I stuck with it through the years and recently achieved a BQ at the Manchester marathon with a time of 3.35.47 a 6 and a half minute pb. I am in the 55-59 age category. What are the chances of this time getting an entry into the 2019 Boston Marathon? Keep up the amazing work.” Anthony

Here’s my best explanation: Continue Reading →

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Does everyone suffer the last 6-8 miles of a marathon?

Here’s a question from an Academy member named Lyndi about the later miles of a marathon . . .

I have lots of questions following my marathon yesterday. Does everyone suffer (horribly) for the last 6-8 miles and it is just part of the experience or is there genuinely a way to train so that it doesn’t end that way? I suspect there may be an unspoken code of silence about how bad it really is and, like childbirth, we highlight the high moments and wink quietly about the rest. -Lyndi

Continue Reading →

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