April 22, 2014 6:53 pm

Manitoba runners shape up for marathon after long winter

WINNIPEG – For many, spring means it’s time to lace up and shape up for the Manitoba Marathon.

But it’s been a tougher job than usual for some this year.

“Normally I would have started training late March,” said Jay Leslie, who is running the half marathon on June 15. “I’m just getting out now.”

Leslie, like most runners, is finally hitting the pavement after being cooped up for the last few months, suffering through the long, cold winter.

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“Usually, I run through the winter,” said Leslie. “But with it being -30 C almost everyday, you couldn’t hack an outdoor run.”

Despite a record-breaking winter, runners haven’t slowed down. Manitoba Marathon registration numbers are at the exact same point as they were at this time last year.

“As soon as there was any nice day, you saw people out training,” said Shirley Lumb, executive director of the Manitoba Marathon. “We were chomping at the bit to get out there and get going. Hopefully that means it’ll be a really good year for us.”

With a little more than 50 sleeps until race day, there’s still plenty of time to sign up.

But running a full marathon may be a little tricky for those only lacing up their sneakers now.

Instead, aim to train for a half marathon or 10K. Just remember to take it easy.

“That would mean doing a short run, taking a day off, another short run, taking a day off and then maybe doing your longer run,” said the Running Room’s Lynn Glowach. “And that would be once a week.”

Experts also recommend focusing on the finish line instead of the podium.

“You don’t have to be fabulous at it,” said Glowach. “You don’t have to be fast. It’s more getting out.”

Runners can register for the 36th Manitoba Marathon online. The annual event offers five different races and raises money to help people living with an intellectual disability.

© Shaw Media, 2014

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