Krista DuChene explains why running isn’t always about the numbers

Krista DuChene

Krista DuChene has a personal best of 2:28:32, which she set at the 2013 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon. At this year’s edition of the SWTM, she will attempt to challenge her previous mark, and may threaten the Canadian marathon record of 2:28:00 in the process.

But, as she reminds us, running is not always about the numbers.

As told to Alex Cyr

The more I practice as a registered dietitian and train for and compete in marathons, the less I rely on numbers. We can get far too bogged down by the fine details and miss the importance of what’s in front of us.

Frequently, I avoid asking patients for their height and weight. We both know they need to lose weight but making a number the focus can be discouraging, shallow and pointless. I encourage patients to think about how much better they will feel, how much more energy they will have, and how much better they will sleep if they make wiser lifestyle choices. We take the focus away from the number, trusting it can take care of itself as we strive to meet goals.

In case you missed Krista’s previous tips ahead of the 2018 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon

Krista DuChene’s DOs and DON’Ts of marathon training
Krista DuChene’s training, nutrition, mental and lifestyle tips ahead of your goal marathon

When runners ask me about how much they should eat, how fast or slow they should run, how much sleep they should get, or how much they should weigh, I respond by encouraging them to focus on being mindful, sensible, patient, trustful and intuitive.

Krista DuChene

Photo: Victah Sailer/Canada Running Series.

1. Be mindful

Take your time when eating a sweet or savoury treat. Chew slowly and enjoy the taste. Eating too quickly can take the joy out of eating.

2. Be sensible

If you find yourself eating or wanting to eat the entire bag of chips, you likely lack balance in your diet. Enjoy sweets and fatty foods, in moderation. Depriving yourself only increases the chances of overconsumption. Eating a cookie every day is sensible. Eating an entire bag of cookies in one sitting is not sensible.

3. Be patient

Steadily and consistently work toward your marathon goal. Persevere. Wait for it. It can and will happen.

4. Be trustful

Believe in your program and those who are helping you accomplish your goal. Believe in those who know what’s best for you. Avoid comparing yourself to others.

5. Be intuitive

Be in tune with your feelings, trusting them to direct your actions. Ditch the watch and run as you feel. While apps can be handy for several reasons, please do not forget to listen to your body! If you’re yawning and your stomach is grumbling, sleep and eat! Don’t wait for your smart phone to tell you.

Join DuChene on the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon start line on Oct. 21!