Tips and Tricks for Surviving the Taper Madness

With my peak mileage weeks behind me, my final really long, long run done, I am heading into my taper and although I’m (honestly) welcoming it with open arms, I’m hearing the taper is not all it’s cracked up to be.

I’ve been logging my highest mileage weeks ever throughout this training cycle, which makes sense since it’s my first full marathon, so the prospect of lesser mileage totals seems appealing to me right now. But, hey now, stop right there, my coworkers say, the taper is the hardest part of marathon training.

Why is this, you ask? Well, while you’re training for a marathon you get used to always having a very long run on the weekends. You get used to logging double workouts to hit your midweek mileage goals. And, you get used to spending most of your time running. Then the taper comes and all of a sudden you have some free time and you don’t know what to do with it. Some people start to doubt their training and others just enter into the taper crazies.

Upon hearing all of this, I thought I’d seek out some advice to avoid taper madness and hopefully make it out alive- and more importantly, make it to the starting line at Big Sur confident in all of the training I’ve put in during the last few months. Here’s what I found:

So moral of the story? Find a way to distract yourself from the fact that you’re not running as much as you’re used to. Whether that means catching up with friends, reading a good book or straight up sleeping through the taper, try to get your mind off the fact that everything you’ve been doing for the last few months is about to culminate in one goal race. I’ve told many people before to trust in their training once the training cycle starts to wind down and race day slowly approaches but now, it’s my turn to trust in my training. And the extra naps don’t sound too bad either!

Do you have any tips for surviving the taper? If so, mention them in the comments section below!

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4 thoughts on “Tips and Tricks for Surviving the Taper Madness

  1. Those are all really great tips! I absolutely hate taper and just try to remind myself that it’s for a reason and it will be over before I know it. It isn’t fun for anyone but if I’m bouncing off the walls, then it’s working!

  2. I think it’s really easy to overthink the taper. Some of this advice, honestly, is baffling because it’s not like you suddenly have tons of time on your hands. You’re just running a little less.

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