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Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Abbreviated marathon training

Since I decided to run a marathon with just six weeks build-up, and coming off not one, but two metatarsal stress fractures, I had to create a pretty conservative plan. Here's the basics:
Long-running in the rain (and our awesome new singlets)

1. No marathon speed work. I am doing our groups regular spring and summer speed work, which is short and fast rather than punishingly long. I don't want too many hard miles yet.
2. Low-stress long runs. My plan so far is to just get the miles in, either at moderate pace or with a very basic workout like a progression run. So far, I don't plan to do anything like "2x4 miles at marathon pace" or anything, although I may end up changing my mind. I've been running my long runs on the fast side, mostly because I've been keeping up with the group for part of it. But I've felt good. If I keep feeling good, then I might get fancy and add some speed in.
3. Mileage build-up. I am adding miles gradually by increasing my long run. I started at 16 miles, then 18, then 19, and plan for a cutback this week to16, followed by 20, 22, 12. I might swap the 22 for another 20, too - I don't really think I need to go up to 22 under the circumstances. These gradual additions are enough to get my mileage up; it probably will not go much (if any) over 60, which is ok. I don't think I ever even hit 60 miles per week until I did Hanson's in 2016, honestly.
4. Easy runs quite easy, but...for now, no days off unless I think I need it. I don't have time for that. But if I start feeling tired or injured, well, that's another story then!

All in all, I just want to get to the starting line healthy, and the finish line with a BQ. If I can do both of those things, then I'll consider this training plan a success.


  1. It sounds like you have a good plan. You're a pretty fast runner and you have such a lifetime of mileage built up that I think you're doing the right thing. Plus, you just want to finish and BQ, and I'm not saying that's easy, but you've done it before in races you've trained for and ran. It's not worth it to do the longer speedwork or super high mileage but not make it to the start or get hurt again.

  2. On 3-29 I signed up for a full on 5-6. I had run a half the weekend before, and figured I'd go 15-18-20-18-12-race, but then my life came to grinding halt and training has gone 6-0-0-10-16-(hopefully 12 this weekend). But I'm not going for a BQ, I'm just keeping a first-timer company. Should be an easy pace, but given that I have no base at all, there's a moderate chance it will be a complete disaster. Oh well, I'm sure I'll survive...

  3. Sounds like a solid plan for Buffalo! Good luck - I reckon if you get to the start line healthy, you'll have that BQ. (For some reason I had it in my head that you had a 2019 BQ from Twin Cities...and then realised you ran it in 2016. OMG, my brain is so scrambled.)

  4. Sounds like a great plan. I am confident that you will BQ since you are such a strong runner. I bet it feels great to be training for something again!!