So now that you’ve signed up for a marathon – what’s next?! Well, doing a  marathon may seem like an intimidating and exhausting goal, but with the proper planning and preparation, you can make it through the enduring miles that in the end will leave you feeling accomplished. Here are 5 of our best tips to get you started!

Don’t just run:  Yes, that’s right – running is not the only way to prepare for a marathon. Cross training at least two days a week with low-impact workouts will improve your overall fitness level. Building a strong core is important to finish those long miles.

Give yourself recover days:  It’s about training smart not training seven days a week. Try to be strategic about your run days so that you can fully rest on the days you don’t run. A study proved that four-time-a-week runners performed just as well in a marathon as those training six times a week and covering 20 percent more total miles!

Keep a log:  For training, keeping a calendar log with days off, miles per day, and cross-training activities will help you see your progress and also the areas you need more on.

Eat your carbs:  People tend to forget that prepping for a marathon requires you to more than what you usually do because you’re typically burning more calories. To stay healthy and recover well during marathon training, you need to fuel your body efficiently.

Prepare yourself mentally:  Training for a marathon can be very hard. Training physically is only half the challenge! Preparing yourself mentally is also important because all runners will hit a wall during the race that will make them want to stop. So staying positive and making sure to invite friends and family for encouragement can also help to boost morale and keep you going throughout the process.