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Trainers recommend that beginners maintain a consistent running schedule for six weeks prior to even starting a marathon training program. The purpose of this is to allow the body to adapt to the various physical demands of long distance running. First-time marathon runners should train by running four days a week for at least four months, increasing distance by no more than ten percent weekly. As race day approaches, runners should taper their runs, reducing the strain on their bodies and resting before the marathon. It is important not to over exert yourself during training because that can lead to injuries. Most common injuries are spraining of the knees and ankles. These sprains can hinder the training.
Before the race, it is important to stretch in order to keep muscles limber. Staying hydrated is also important, but there is a danger in drinking too much water. If a runner drinks too much water, they may experience a dangerous condition called hyponatremia, a drop of sodium levels in the blood. So only drink water when you are thirsty. During the race, trainers recommend maintaining a steady pace. It is normal to feel sore after a marathon. Light exercise will help sore muscles heal faster.
The health benefits you gain from training are tremendous. Your core muscles, or deep muscles of the torso, grow stronger and you will have tighter thighs and glutes. Your heart will be much stronger and you can maintain lower cholesterol, a waxy substance produced by the liver, and blood sugar levels. Over all you will look better and become healthier.
Nothing can explain how people feel when they reach that finish line at the end of the race. All the hard work and months of training feel worthwhile. The feeling of accomplishing something great overtakes you. It is great to run a marathon but it is even greater to finish it.
In the first paragraph, what is the best definition of "taper"?
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