Thursday, January 10, 2013

Marathon training plan

Today is exactly 2 months until my spring marathon! A majority of the marathons that I've done have been either part of ultra training, or just coming off running an ultra. This spring I really want to just focus on improving my speed in the marathon distance. Kari posted today about the training plan that we're both following while we virtually train. 

The plan seems to have three pretty intense days of running - the long run, and two semi-long runs, with speed work incorporated into one of those. The other days are two easy runs and two cross train or rest days. The plan only has speed work every other week, but my friend Matt, who created it, said to do it every week, and to really focus on mile repeats, 800s, and hill work. 

Let's look at this week as an example:

Monday: 10 miles
Tuesday: 5 miles
Wednesday: 11 miles
Thursday: 5 miles
Friday: cross train or rest
Saturday: 20 miles
Sunday: cross train or rest

So while the longer days are rough, they make the other days seem super easy by comparison. But make no mistake, the long days are a major challenge. 

Yesterday was 11 miles, and I started about 5:30am. Mother Nature decided to screw me with 85% humidity in 32 degrees. AKA the worst of the worst. This was one of the weeks I needed to add in my own speedwork, so I randomly choose 5 mile repeats. I ran 5 easy miles, at about a 10:00 pace, and then hit the track. 

According to McMillan, my mile repeat pace should be 7:38-7:50. Well, I failed miserably on that. My five splits were 8:24, 8:13, 8:16, 8:02,and 8:06, and the last mile was a cool down back to homeNot even a single mile under 8 minutes. Most were even slower than my tempo miles last week. In terms of effort, I can assure you it was there. I was gasping for breath so loud the walkers on the track probably wanted to call 911 and my legs were burning. I can only hope that my body will adapt to doing speedwork at that time and get better...sounds unlikely but it's all I've got. I'm just going to pat myself on the back for doing an 11 mile run before a 13 hour workday and move on. 

Right now the plan is pretty manageable, but things aren't quite in full swing yet. Pretty soon, I'll be teaching full time, working at the running store (very) part time, tutoring after school (separate from my regular teaching job), and taking two grad classes. So I'm a little nervous about how that will all play out, but plenty of people train for marathons with much busier schedules than mine. As long as I can fit in some sleep, keep up with the Biggest Loser, and regularly FaceTime with Harrison, I'll be a happy camper.

When things get busy, what fun stuff is essential and what gets cut out? My TV watching will fall by the wayside but I'll always find a few minutes for some blog reading/writing!


  1. Uh, no one is busier than you. You are a freaking machine.

  2. Your schedule is insane. So is your wakeup time.

  3. Also, I'm pretty sure that doing facetime during your spring marathon is going to be forbidden and DQ offense.

  4. Ran tonight. Long MP run. Was mid 40s but felt very cold - maybe humidity. Which might also explain how I wound up with the joy of discovering chafing in the shower.

  5. TV falls by the wayside for me too. I don't think I live in a safe enough area to run before dawn. I'm lovein reading other bloggers marathon training plans.

  6. The fact that you did 11 miles before work on Wednesday is freaking awesome. And yeah, TV is always the first to go. When I was in grad school, I allowed myself the time to watch one show a week as "my" show (aka The Biggest Loser), but everything else went out the window :)

  7. Wow, very tough schedule! That is a lot, I still don't know how you do all of that without going completely insane. Impressive though, very impressive!

  8. Seriously, you are amazing. I feel like I'm going to flounder with the training and I'm not even close to as busy as you.

  9. Don't be mad at me, but I saw the title of this post, and almost didn't click on it to read it.

  10. Good grief your schedule is about to get crazy. Props to you for running 11 miles and working 13 hours. That's amazing!

  11. When do you sleep?!?!

    Sleep and tv are usually the first thing to go, but I get cranky when I'm sleep deprived (no idea how Kara does it) so social media got cut this winter.

    Why do those job-things take up so much time?


Thanks for commenting! Comments make me probably more happy than they should.