Sunday, January 13, 2013

3-Days-Per-Week Marathon Traning Plan

You heard me right, 3 days per week. That is all I run when training for a marathon, which I am right now in case you haven't heard. I am running the London Marathon on April 21, 2013 for the Battersea Dogs and Cats Home (you can donate to my cause here).

I constructed my 3-day-a-week marathon training plan based personal experience training for triathlons, my natural injury prone-ness, and advice from Runner's World magazine. For my body, the MOST IMPORTANT thing is completing the long runs. All those other miles (shown as Run #1 and Run #2 in the table that follows) are there just so I can drink wine and have dessert. 

This really works for me. I used this same sort a plan a few years ago to qualify for Boston when I had to run sub 3:40 at the California International Marathon (I ran a 3:36 fairly comfortably there).

So here is my loose plan. I am technically on Week 2 right now.


Week
Run #1
Run #2
Run #3
1
6
6
14
2
6
8
10
3
4
8
12
4
6
4
16
5
8
6
12
6
6
6
14
7
4
4
18
8
8
6
8
9
SKI WEEK
10
4
8
12
11
4
4
18
12
4
8
14
13
4
4
21-23
14
6
8
13
15
6
6
10
16
2
2
RACE

There are a few caveats/important details involved in this plan since it is rather abbreviated. First and most importantly, all runs are done with a goal/structure. All the runs are done "fast" (well, in relative terms). 

For example, the Short Runs (#1 and #2) are done as:

  • Fartlek workouts, generally running fast from one landmark until another with a comfortable pace in between.
  • Track workouts involving 1/4s, 1/2s, and miles depending on my mood.
The Long Runs (#3) are done as:

  • Tempo-style runs, e.g. 4 miles easy then 4 miles hard, and repeat.
  •  Races like the Barcelona Half Marathon - and I hope to throw another few races in there for good measure.

There are no "easy miles" or LSD (long slow distance) runs. Also important, I had to carve out a break for my upcoming ski week in Zermatt, no long runs immediately before or after 6 days of skiing. That would be a recipe for disaster/injury. Plus Dave would probaly ditch me on the slopes if I couldn't keep up due to tired legs.

I also intersperse 2 days of swimming per week (from 1,500 to 3,000 meters per workout) and Bikram Yoga maybe every two weeks (I know BIKRAM, yucky - but it is cold here and the studio is very close to my house).

I don’t have a GPS unit or anything, really - I can barely remember to bring my keys when I head out the door. However, for mileage and pacing purposes here in London, I have recently taken to using my Ipod Nike fitness pedometer. It isn’t entirely accurate, but at least it is a gauge of  mileage and pace of some sort. 

So I am off. Happy running all.

2 comments:

FinnyKnits said...

Dude. When did you run Boston? It seems obvious to me now that you would have, but I never knew. You're too modest ;) Here's to good luck, good training and no whammies - and a great week in Zermatt.

Marc Dunn said...

Hey Amie, Good luck with the training. Let me know if you need any treatment before the run.
All the best
Marc - osteopath/ dry needle guru.