Marathon Tips


With the Virgin 2013 London Marathon fast approaching Stagg Physiotherapy have written their ten top tips that should help anyone embarking on marathon running.

Whether you are training for the London Marathon or another high profile event these tips have been put together from significant experience in coaching and endurance running and from a physiotherapy injury prevention point of view. If you require any help or advice don’t hesitate to contact a physiotherapist or fitness advisor/coach at Stagg Physiotherapy.

    • 1) Build a good foundation: this means that you will need to build your mileage up slowly over a period of time. A running plan from a qualified coach will ensure you are guided successfully to your goal. You can get this advice from our UKA level 2 running coach Mike Stagg at Stagg Physiotherapy, who will be happy to help you tailor your plan.
    • 2) The 10% rule: this rule is tried and tested! Only increase your mileage of longest run by 10% per week. This may seem like you are only increasing your mileage/distance by very little, especially at the beginning, but it helps to condition your body so you don’t do too much too soon and prevent injury.
    • 3) Always warm up for 10 minutes, then complete your planned run, then do an active cool down for 10 minutes.
    • 4) If you know you have an injury do not leave it untreated. Seek physiotherapy advice as soon as possible, preferably from a physiotherapist with experience of treating endurance runners. Clare Thomas-Stagg has worked on the London Marathon Medical Team and treated numerous national level athletes.
      At Stagg Physiotherapy you will receive treatment and advice to get you back on the road ASAP. You then won’t miss too much of your marathon training and loose valuable fitness! A good rule to remember is; “the length of time you have had your injury is the length of time it will take for you to get better.” Therefore if you have an injury for a week it will generally take about a week to fix. If however you leave it for 8 weeks it could take up to 8 weeks to get better, which may well jeopardise your marathon fitness.



    • 5)Cross train; this will increase you overall strength and fitness and reduce your risk of injury
    • 6) Your training plan should aim to increase the time on your feet; after all you may be out running for four hours or more.
    • 7) Stretch and/or join a weekly yoga class; this will help you reduce your chance or injury. This can also be enhanced with sports massage and stretching advice which is available at Stagg Physiotherapy.



  • 8) Think about using Pilates to increase your core strength. A physiotherapist at Stagg Physiotherapy can guide you with this, and it will help you reduce your chance of injury.
  • 9) Buy a good pair of trainers. You may need to update them regularly (every 500 miles). Clare Thomas-Stagg ( MCSP, M.Sc, B.Sc.Hons Principal Physiotherapist) worked for Runners Need for over 5 years and has extensive knowledge about choosing running trainers. Clare will be able to analyse your gait and advise you on the type of trainers you need and support required. Advice and orthotic fitting can also be arranged.
  • 10) Buy decent running kit. Material that wicks away sweat will stop you getting chills and chaffing, all of which lead to injury.




This document was put together by Clare Thomas-Stagg (MCSP, M.Sc, B.Sc.Hons Principal Physiotherapist) and UKA level 2 running coach Mike Stagg, both of whom will be happy to advise you through your marathon journey in order that you reach your goal! Good luck!!!

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