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I recently got excited about the idea of running a marathon on an elliptical machine after reading this post on livestrong.org:

Colonel Mastrianna, the U.S. Air Forces in Europe Manpower, Personnel, and Services deputy director, completed 37.5 miles in five hours on an elliptical machine. http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123215029

I would like to ask how should I prepare to run a 26.21 mile marathon on an elliptical machine. So far I have done up to 2/3 in 3 hours, not feeling any knee/ankle pain, which is the reason why I am doing this in the elliptical machine and not a road marathon.

What clothing should I wear or avoid?
What/when is best to eat beforehand?
What is best to drink during?

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How does one keep from going bonkers when stuck on an elliptical machine for that long? I could only take so much SpongeBob. –  jp2code Feb 1 '12 at 19:06
    
hehe @jp2code, yes, having good movies or TV series on one's media player is important... –  130490868091234 Feb 2 '12 at 14:13

2 Answers 2

Your questions suggest to me that you have not done major distance on an elliptical machine (or the road) before. Therefore, I strongly recommend that you treat this like a road marathon and follow all the normal advice for that e.g. if you can do 10km now then a 4 month programme will have you in shape to complete this.

Clothing, nutrition and hydration: As part of your training you will be doing long workouts. Trial a range of options and find what works for you. The standard marathon advice will apply.

Lastly, what don't you just do a road marathon? Much easier to train for than being in the same room for hours.

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So far I have done up to 2/3 in 3 hours, not feeling any knee/ankle pain, which is the reason why I am doing this in the elliptical machine and not a road marathon. –  130490868091234 Feb 1 '12 at 6:22
    
@avilella If you train properly for a road marathon and don't have any biomechanical abnormalities, you shouldn't get any knee or ankle pain. –  user2567 Feb 1 '12 at 17:51

Congratulations! I am doing the same thing although I am starting with a half marathon. I am new to running for long periods of time. I made sure I had a good base running of 30 minutes four days per week before I started the training for the half. I then picked a half 12 week training program for a half marathon that slowly increases by distance each Sunday. I have two rest days per week. I am entering week four so now the real work begins. Best of luck to you and I am so happy to see there are others who want to run on the elliptical.

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Awesome! After that I'll try to break Colonel Mastrianna's record :-) –  130490868091234 Feb 28 '12 at 13:18

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