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4 Taper Tips: Focus on Controlling What You Can Control

Get to the start line ready to roll with these taper tips

The Taper. If you’re unfamiliar, tapering refers to the reduction in volume and intensity of your workouts leading to race day. You’ve been running for months, increasing your mileage, getting better and better. Your body is in training mode and it can be difficult to turn that off. Follow these taper tips to effectively utilize the extra time you now have. Continue to follow your training plan, implement these taper tips, and get to the Ascension Seton Austin Marathon or Austin Half Marathon start line ready to run your best

Take care of yourself

This is vital and something you should’ve been doing since you began training! However, it becomes even more important leading up to Feb. 16th. Your training has introduced more miles than normal, early wake-up calls, and a reduction in time for yourself. Tapering your miles means you’ll have more time for self-care. Spend an extra 30-60 minutes a day foam rolling and stretching. Schedule a massage. Make sure you’re getting plenty of sleep.

Dial-in your nutrition/hydration

Keep an eye on your calorie intake! You burned more calories during training than you will when you taper. Adjust accordingly so the pounds you shed during training stay off! Focus on a balanced diet of moderate carbs, quality protein, and healthy fats. Start hydrating NOW. You should drink 8-10 glasses of water a day. Continue including electrolytes like you’ve done during training. Carry a tube of Nuun with you, pop a tablet into your reusable bottle, and make your water count! Make sure you try the on-course fuel, GU Energy Labs.

No new workouts

Just like nothing new on race day, no new workouts when tapering. This includes everything from a pick-up basketball game to lifting heavy weights at the gym. You don’t want to run the risk of spraining your ankle or pulling a muscle. Stick with what’s comfortable. If that’s running or cross-training (swimming, cycling, etc.), focus on less-intense and lower-volume workouts. 

Sidetrack yourself

An increase in your mileage could mean you’re behind on your favorite show. Maybe you haven’t read those new books you got for Christmas. Now’s the time to distract yourself from the fact that you aren’t running as much as you have been. Spend a couple of hours binging your favorite show. Grab that new book and read at your favorite park. If you find yourself getting antsy because you’re not moving, try to foam roll or stretch while watching your favorite show. Or try reading your book while riding a stationary bike.

Follow these taper tips so the taper doesn’t frustrate you or stress you out. The sudden addition of extra time and the feeling that you should be running can be confusing. Follow these taper tips and focus on controlling what you can control. What do you do to get to the start line ready to roll when you taper? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter.

Austin Marathon Announces Third Round of Accepted Elite Runners

Third round of elite runners competing for $23,200 prize purse

The Ascension Seton Austin Marathon presented by Under Armour introduces the third round of accepted athletes for 2020. This program, in its fourth year, creates a competitive field of elite male and female runners while discovering emerging talent, pushing the entire talent pool to reach Olympic standards. FloTrack’s live coverage highlights the competition amongst the elites, following male and female marathoners and half marathoners. Elites are listed below along with their qualifying time. The 29th annual Austin Marathon, owned and produced by High Five Events, will take place on February 16, 2020.

“The Austin Marathon is an incredible race and I take any opportunity I have to toe the line and test myself here,” said Becki Spellman, 4-time Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier (2008, ‘12, ‘16, ‘20). “I love the city, the crowd support, and the race; it always feels like my home away from home!”

The third round of 2020 Austin Marathoners include: 

  • Bryan Morseman – male Elite Athlete Program (2018 Glass City Marathon – 2:23:23)
  • Asia Shah – female Elite Field (2017 CIM – 2:57:41)
  • Elena Oslund – female Elite Field (2019 Eugene Half Marathon – 1:21:58)
  • Kyle Allen – male Elite Field (2019 Halfsy Half Marathon – 1:12:40)
  • William Bertrand – male Elite Field (2019 Austin Marathon – 2:29:28)

The third round of 2020 Austin Half Marathoners include: 

  • Becki Spellman – female Elite Athlete Program (2018 Richmond Half Marathon – 1:14:56)
  • Caren Maiyo – female Elite Athlete Program (2019 PSPB Delhi Half Marathon- 1:14:19)
  • Allen Sumrall – male Elite Athlete Program (4th place, 2019 Austin Half Marathon – 1:06:54)
  • Michael Morris – male Elite Athlete Program (2:19:33 – 2019 CIM)
  • Benjamin Sathre – male Elite Athlete Program (2018 Houston Marathon – 2:15:06)
  • John Kingstedt – male Elite Athlete Program (2019 Valencia Marathon – 2:17:56)
  • Jen Frankmann – female Elite Athlete Program (2018 Houston Marathon – 2:44:15)
  • Kathryn Fluehr – female Elite Athlete Program (2018 Indy Half Marathon – 1:14:00)
  • Alex Lee – male Elite Field (2019 Las Vegas Half Marathon – 1:17:48)
  • Mitch Ammons – male Elite Field (2019 3M Half Marathon – 1:16:39)
  • Natasha van der Merwe – female Elite Field (2019 3M Half Marathon – 1:23:26)
  • Nicholas Chase – male Elite Field (2019 Florida Shamrock Half Marathon – 1:17:12)
  • Bree Schrader – female Elite Field (2019 Houston Half Marathon – 1:20:05)
  • Alan Zhou – male Elite Field (2019 Chicago Marathon – 1:33:49)
  • Melissa Morey – female Elite Field (2018 Des Moines Half Marathon – 1:24:05)
  • Tyler Morey – male Elite Field (2019 Des Moines Half Marathon – 1:10:34)

The third round of 2020 Manzano Milers include:

  • James Ngandu – male Elite Field (2019 Austin Half Marathon champ – 1:04:32)
  • Anna McDonald – female Elite Field (3rd place, 2019 Manzano Mile – 4:53.89)
  • Bryce Richards – male Elite Field (2019 Ryan Shay Mile – 4:12.88)
  • Oscar Garcia – male Elite Field (2018 BU Season Opener – 4:32.67)
  • Lizzie Bird – female Elite Field (Stretford (GBR) 1500m – 4:16.32)
  • Jesse Chettle – male Elite Field (2019 Manzano Mile – 4:33.93)
  • Brian Llamas – male Elite Field (2019 Music City Distance Carnival – 4:12.41)
  • Michael Davila – male Elite Field (2019 Long Island Mile – 4:10.26)
  • Samuel Murphy – male Elite Field (2019 Run for the Water 5K champ – 15:40)
  • Dylan Doss – male Elite Field (6th place, 2019 Manzano Mile – 4:18.87)

The prize purse breakdown follows: $15,000 for the marathon, $5,000 for the half marathon, and $3,200 for the Manzano Mile presented by Dole Packaged Foods. Runners not accepted into the Elite Athlete Program are still invited to run in the Elite Field. Runners that are not accepted to the Elite Athlete Program or the Elite Field are not eligible for prize money. Read about the first and second round of accepted elite runners.

The Austin Marathon will celebrate its 29th year running in the capital of Texas in 2020. Austin’s flagship running event annually attracts runners from all 50 states and 30+ countries around the world. The start and finish locations are just a few blocks apart. They are within walking distance of many downtown hotels and restaurants. The finish line is in front of the picturesque Texas State Capitol. Austin Marathon is the perfect running weekend destination. Registration is currently open.

Austin Marathon Announces Second Round of Accepted Elite Runners

Second round of elite runners competing for $26,000 prize purse

The Ascension Seton Austin Marathon presented by Under Armour introduces the second round of elite runners for 2020. This program, in its fourth year, creates a competitive field of elite male and female runners while discovering emerging talent, pushing the entire talent pool to reach Olympic standards. FloTrack’s live coverage highlights the competition amongst the elites, following male and female marathoners and half marathoners. Elites are listed below along with their qualifying time. The 29th annual Austin Marathon, owned and produced by High Five Events, will take place on February 16, 2020.

Image of Jessica Allen running in a recent race. She is one of the runners accepted with the second round of elite runners for the 2020 Austin Half Marathon.

Jessica Allen was accepted to the Austin Half Marathon Elite Athlete Program.

“I am so excited to run the streets of Austin as my final tune-up race before the Olympic Trials marathon,” said Jessica Allen, who ran an Olympic Trials qualifying 2:41:34 earlier this year. “I always hope to set a personal record when I toe the line, but more than that I want to get used to the level of pain I will need to be comfortable with to achieve my goals at the Trials.”

The second round of 2020 Austin Marathoners include: 

  • Mark Pinales – male Elite Field (2017 3M Half Marathon champ – 1:06:51)
  • Eliud Mwangi – male Elite Field (2017 Napoli City Half Marathon – 1:01:21)
  • Ryan Normand – male Elite Field (2019 Grandma’s Marathon – 2:29:13)
James Ngandu crosses the 2019 Austin Half Marathon in first place. He is one of the runners accepted with the second round of elite runners for the 2020 Austin Half Marathon.

James Ngandu is seeking his second Austin Half Marathon victory in as many years.

The second round of 2020 Austin Half Marathoners include: 

  • James Ngandu – male Elite Athlete Program (2019 Austin Half Marathon champ – 1:04:32)
  • Gonzalo Parra – male Elite Athlete Program (2nd place, 2019 Austin Half Marathon- 1:05:36)
  • Jessica Allen – female Elite Athlete Program (2019 Grandma’s Marathon – 2:41:34)
  • Anita Perez – female Elite Athlete Program (2018 Grandma’s Marathon – 2:29:39)
  • Taylor Dare – female Elite Athlete Program (2019 Grandma’s Marathon – 2:42:17)
  • Hattie Schunk – female Elite Field (2019 San Antonio Half Marathon – 1:23:56)
  • Sierra Snyder Elcock – female Elite Field (2019 Austin Half Marathon – 1:26:34)
  • Cheryl Serena – female Elite Field (2018 El Paso Half Marathon female champ – 1:27:47)
  • Ben Munguia – male Elite Field (2019 3M Half Marathon – 1:16:39)
  • Melinda DuBose – female Elite Field (2018 Richmond Half Marathon – 1:26:11)

The prize purse breakdown follows: $15,000 for the marathon, $5,000 for the half marathon, and $6,000 for the Manzano Mile presented by Dole. Runners not accepted into the Elite Athlete Program are still invited to run in the Elite Field. Runners that are not accepted to the Elite Athlete Program or the Elite Field are not eligible for prize money. Read about the first round of accepted elite runners.

The Austin Marathon will celebrate its 29th year running in the capital of Texas in 2020. Austin’s flagship running event annually attracts runners from all 50 states and 30+ countries around the world. Having start and finish locations just a few blocks apart, being within walking distance of many downtown hotels and restaurants, and finishing in front of the picturesque Texas State Capitol makes the Austin Marathon the perfect running weekend destination. Registration is currently open.

Dedicating His First Marathon Will Push Him to the Finish Line

This runner is dedicating his first marathon to his biggest supporter

Runners dedicate their training and running to others all the time. Their dedication can show loved ones how much their support means. They can also dedicate their running to supporting a charity of Austin Gives Miles presented by Moody Foundation, the Ascension Seton Austin Marathon’s philanthropic program. Rene Arguello is dedicating his first marathon, the Austin Marathon, to his wife Veronica. She’s his biggest supporter. Read Rene’s edition of My Running Story to see how much he and his wife has been through recently and why he’s dedicating his first marathon to her. Are you dedicating your Austin Marathon to someone specific? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter.

Time to sign up for the Austin Marathon

Image of Rene Arguello and Veronica, his wife, next to a Christmas tree. He's dedicating his first marathon to her!

Rene and Veronica.

I started running about 15 years ago when someone told me that I would never finish my first half marathon. Is that reason enough to prove someone wrong? The real reason I run is to be an example to my family. I want to show them that running has great health benefits. Every now and then my wife and daughters will join me on a run. Currently I’m training for my first marathon. I have completed ten half marathons and everyone says it is about time I sign up for a marathon. 

I usually like to dedicate my training and racing to someone. When you dedicate a race to someone it gives you the motivation to finish. I am dedicating my first marathon, the Ascension Seton Austin Marathon, to my wife. Veronica  is my biggest supporter. She always waves to me or blows a kiss when I am on a training run. My wife even goes to every running expo with me. She knows exactly where I am on any given racecourse and pops up to say “Hi!” on any given street corner. Veronica knows my running so much that she know what foods I need to eat during training and what gear I should wear based on the weather and the distance. 

My wife has been through a lot recently. Her favorite cousin recently passed away from a drowning accident in Port Aransas. Prior to that, her uncle passed away. My wife helped coordinate her uncle’s funeral and the music, no questions asked. 

Running with a heavy heart

This year I am running with a heavy heart, but still staying positive about my training. I like to keep loved ones on my mind and dedicate miles to them during the race. My overall training has been going well. I am following a racing plan and definitely have been enjoying my long runs. Running is contagious. I have several coworkers that have started running and have already signed up for races. They say that I turned them into runners. Maybe I have turned them into runners because I am always talking about it and I am always happy to answer any running-related questions. 

It’s funny, whenever I tell someone that I am running my first marathon I always get a crazy look. I know I will finish my first marathon. I have no doubt about it, especially since I’m dedicating my first 26.2 miles to my wife.

My Running Story is a series of blog submissions from runners just like yourself. They submitted their inspirational running stories as part of a contest to win an entry of their choice to the 2020 Ascension Seton Austin Marathon. Their stories range from crossing their first finish line to drastic lifestyle change due to running. Everyone’s story is different and unique, impacting them in a specific way. While each story is specific to the author, everyone can resonate in some form or fashion because of the power of running. Other My Running Story submissions include Kayleigh Williamson, Kirsten Pasha, Michael Coffey, Samantha Santos, Tom Hamann, Erica Richart, Angela Clark, Rebecca Galvan, Jeremy Tavares, Axel Reissnecker, Blair Nagel, and Brittany Drennan.