Make sure you have new shoes and replace them every 3-4 months when marathon training. If you have not been properly fitted get an expert to do a gait analysis for you and then test run in what they recommend to make sure they feel perfect. You should never have to break a shoe in, it should fit well right out of the box if it’s the right shoe for your foot type (arch/shape).
Same as above (no cotton socks!!) There are lots of different types and this is more of a personal preference in thickness and length. Generally though, a really thick sock is a thing of the past. Buy one pair of a few different types and see which you like best and then come back and buy a bunch (you can never have enough socks when training for a marathon)
A non petroleum based lubricant that prevents blisters and chafing. An essential tool on those long runs for men and women!
Portable complex carbohydrates that you can suck down with water or an electrolyte drink to help replenish your glycogen stores. Start using these in training now and play around with the flavors and brands (especially if you have stomach issues).
Fuel Belts/Hydration Packs
An essential tool for carrying water/Gatorade during those long runs. The 4 bottle belt is what I suggest (you can always take a bottle or two out for your shorter long runs at first).
A great tool for massaging and manipulating the tissue and fascia. Helpful for breaking up any adhesions in the muscle or for lengthening or stretching out the fibers in general. It’s what I call the poor mans massage, but an essential tool for any marathoner (I highly recommend you buy one and use it daily!!).
Heart Rate Monitors
Personally we would recommend the Polar RS100. There are lots of other Polar models out there, but the RS100 is easy to use with a percentage of Max function and an auto summary at the end.
We like the Garmin GPS watches as they are the most user-friendly and all-in-one (you don’t have to wear a separate receiving unit). The 405 or 405cx with heart rate is what I would recommend.
One thing that is not essential, but that we highly recommend. You will be a lot more relaxed when running with sunglasses on your long runs and on race day.