Sorcha Loughnane

We spoke to National Champion and all round running legend Sorcha Loughnane about how to approach marathon training. Here’s what she said.

Many people who run with Sanctuary Runners might take on a marathon for the first time. What advice would you give to first-time marathoners?  “Consistency is the most important thing about marathon training! Try to be regular about your running. Better to do 3 days a week and stick to that rather than 6 days one week and 1 the next. It’s hard when you’re working, or minding kids, but if running can be part of your routine, it will get much easier”!

How should people start to prepare now if they are planning to run a marathon in the next 7 or 8 months? “When you are 7 or 8 months from a marathon, make sure your running is as slow and easy as possible. Lots of famous marathon runners say “you have to run slow to run fast!” The best way to make sure you are running as easy as possible is to run with other people and do lots of talking! If you can chat while you are running, you’re going at the right easy pace”!

What advice would you give on how to approach marathon training alongside a busy schedule? “When we are busy, it can be hard to make the time for running, and if you are training for a marathon, you might feel pressure to do everything! Listen to your body. If you are tired, rest — rest is probably the second most important part of marathon training after consistency! But  sometimes running can help relieve stress – so if you’re feeling very stressed and wound up, sometimes a little run is the best thing to do”.

Can you describe the feeling of crossing a marathon finish line? “It is a lot of emotions all at once! Relief, happiness, elation, pride, excitement, sometimes even sadness, because the thing that you have been focusing on for so long is over! But that’s why so many people sign up for another marathon as soon as they’ve finished! Marathons are an amazing experience so enjoy every minute of it and soak up that finish line feeling”