Final Top Tips for your best London Marathon (or any race!)



Tomorrow morning …. you may be running the Virgin London Marathon (charities and competition at the bottom of the page!!), or you may be watching it, supporting, working there….(Kim is massaging the Official Virgin London Marathon Team)  whatever you are up to, it looks set to be a great day with wonderful weather!

Here are a few final top tips (which you can use for any race) from leading Sports Performance & Mental Strength Coach Kim Ingleby, to help you have your best, most enjoyable run – remember start in the state that will give you the best run possible……believing that you CAN do it!

* Take a big piece of paper and do a mind map with “How can I have my best run possible, and how would I like to feel” in the middle…… then spider off all your thoughts.  Include everything from time you are getting up, what you are eating, wearing, how you want to feel (ie. calm, confident etc), visualise each mile and the finish….

* Any areas of worry or concern from the mind map – write them as a list on the left hand side of the page – on the right hand side write the solution – then cross the left out.  DO THIS – I promise it will make a huge difference in your focus.  So for example – if you are really nervous – write down all the things you can do, feel and focus on to calm your nerves and store them as good energy!

* REMEMBER: You get what you focus on – so Focus on what you want to achieve, and forget what you do not want. You know its okay and normal to feel nervous, but have confidence in the possibility that whilst you may not have run a marathon before, if you focus on giving your best performance you will complete the marathon, and give your best time 🙂

* Think of 4 mental qualities you would like to have during the race to focus on – common things chosen by my clients are: Calm, strength, self confidence/belief, courage…. then when you have a difficult patch focus on breathing in the qualities that you want, and breathing out the qualities you no longer need – this will restore your confidence and focus, whilst saving energy

* Keep everything the same as you have done in training – eat what you always eat, drink what you always drink and run in kit you know is comfortable – if you never drink what they offer at the aid stations, dont try it tomorrow – take your own in a little belt 🙂 your stomach will thank you for it!

* Rest today!! Its really exciting to be involved in the race, with the Expo and all the other competitors but spend the day out of the sun, hydrating, relaxing and being calm -go to the cinema or read a book to quieten your mind if you are nervous…. then you will feel fresh and full of energy on the start line 🙂

* When you feel like you are having a challenging mile – as well as breathing in the qualities you want to have – imagine you are ‘modelling’ – being someone who you really admire as a person, who has the qualities you need at the moment – ie. strength, courage etc…. it can be anyone you like, someone you know, professional athlete, celebrity, someone special to you who has passed away – imagine they are with you, giving you what you need to regain your focus and strength to carry on, faster, quicker and stronger 🙂 This can be really fun and useful so try it!

* Start to visualise the each mile in your head, seeing yourself running each mile, knowing when you are going to hydrate etc….. and then see yourself crossing the finish lineImagine how you will feel completing your first marathon, or improving your marathon time.  Imagine what you will gain from achieving this – pride, fun, excitement, money for charities, reward, contentment …. you choose what you outcome is.  So when the going gets challenging, you remember the finish and outcome, and focus on this – then you will and can do it!!

* Finally and most importantly – relax, enjoy it, believe in yourself and be proud you are being part of an amazing race!

To sponsor Richard Branson and his Team, supporting Virgin Unite visit: – and if you donate £5 you could win a week on Necker Island as well as supporting a great cause.  This page also has the link to the rest of the Official Virgin Team including Jenni Falconer, raising money for CLIC and Virgin Unite..

To register for the 2011 London Marathon and find out more about the race visit: 

For Sports Performance and Mental Strength Coaching contact Kim on 07720 845849 or email her on – her clients include Premier League Rugby, BBC3 Last Women Standing, Blockbuster Stunt Women, GB Triathletes, Synchro Swimmers, BBC1 Strictly Come Dancing contestants and many more…. 🙂

We hope you find this Blog useful for any race you may be doing – let us know how you get on and may we wish you the VERY BEST OF LUCK and HAPPY RACING – the more you enjoy your race, the more you focus on what you want and the more you believe in your own potential, the better each race will be! ENJOY :-)!