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"Official" start of marathon training!

May 25, 2009

With the month of May coming to a close, I decided that it was time to look a bit deeper into different marathon training plans and finally choose one.

To some degree I think I’ve “been training” for quite some time, but was hesitant to actually call it “training” because I didn’t want people telling me that a training plan is usually 16-18 weeks. I totally understand that I need to be careful of “over-training” and hurting myself, but I know that I need more time to feel prepared to successfully complete the race. Last night I pulled out our calendar and counted down the weeks until the marathon – 21 weeks left from yesterday. I really felt the crunch to find something that I liked, that incorporated different a few different parts of training, and that only had me running three-four times a week.

I came across this training schedule and found that it had a lot of the different elements that I was looking for and decided that it was the one! I adjusted the running days to Monday and Thursday, interval/fartlek/speedwork on Wednesday, and long run on Saturday. My friend S, who is also running in the marathon but chose another training program, decided to shift her long runs to Thursday instead of Saturday (we are both teachers who will be off for the summer in just a few short but very long feeling weeks!). Such a great idea that I may consider it if C doesn’t want to come with me on some of the longer training runs. I made a lovely spreadsheet, but I can’t figure out how to save it to a document that would allow me to post it on here so if anyone knows how, please tell me!

I realize that some people don’t think that the interval/fartlek/speedwork training is necessary for my first marathon, but it really is something that I want to incorporate anyway. If I end up not liking it I may take it out, but I want to try it for a few weeks before making a complete decision either way. That being said, I know there are lots of articles in Runner’s World about how to do each of them (yes, I realize there is a difference between them all too!), but if anyone out there would love to share how they started and what they liked I’d be happy to listen!

Today’s run was really wonderful! I took S’s suggestion to not focus on my time at all and just enjoy the run. I wanted to make sure that I got my run in today because it was supposed to rain later today (of course!) so I went out around 3pm and it was HOT! For whatever reason I did not bring my Camelbak or a bottle of water/G2 so I was in serious need of hydration when I got home. Not smart! The other night I dropped some moolah on iTunes to get some new running music and I’m so thankful that I did because it really helped me get in the zone and just run.

Today’s stats:
Distance- 3 miles
Time- 40’39”
Pace- 13:34’/mile

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. teacherwoman permalink
    May 25, 2009 9:27 pm

    Marathon training sounds like fun! I think Fartlek/Interval training is a nice way to break up all the other runs. However it is harder on the body, so if you are feeling over-trained or exceptionally sore, I would can that run for the week!

  2. SweetPea permalink
    May 25, 2009 9:34 pm

    Thanks for the advice! I’ll def. have to keep that in mind.

  3. Hilary permalink
    May 25, 2009 9:49 pm

    AHHHHHHHHHHHHH This post makes it all the more real!

  4. Kelly permalink
    May 26, 2009 9:04 am

    I looked at that program too. I think I like it as well. Let me know how you like it, I probably should just jump into one here pretty soon too. When is your marathon? Mine’s in October.

  5. pchieng permalink
    May 27, 2009 8:28 pm

    I really want to start training for my first marathon too. You seem to be heading in the right direction with your program.

  6. whatissharondoingnow permalink
    May 30, 2009 4:46 pm

    A running fried at work is also doing a marathon in October (Marine Corps) the week after ours. He called what we are in right now pre-training and I loved the term. Pre-training!
    I’m so glad you tried ditching the watch for a run! Often when I’m too tired in the morning, I tell myself “I’ll let you go as slow as you want if just get out there.” and by the time I’m half way I’m totally into the run.
    I haven’t discovered the secret to interval training. When I’ve tried it, I think I don’t warm up enough and that’s what possibly caused my tight illiotibial (I.T.) band in the early spring. Perhaps if I tried a track…
    I do, however, enjoy Fartlek’s. I think this is because there’s no rules, really. I’ve done a Fartlek workout without even planning, but half-way through decided to push myself to the next telephone pole…and then after recovering how about to that tree… Fartlek’s have also helped me when I think I may be slowing down to make me realize how much stronger I can push myself. Lastly, I wouldn’t say that “you don’t need interval/fartlek/speed workouts because this is your first marathon!” Let me tell you that Team-In-Training was my first marathon (as is many other people’s!) and they schedule in Fartlek’s once a week too! It will totally help make you stronger…I should plop some into my schedule too!

  7. chris mcpeake permalink
    June 3, 2009 4:30 pm

    Good luck with your marathon program. I look forward to reading about your training progress. Just build your base miles carefully to help you stay healthy.

  8. October 19, 2009 12:17 pm

    I was looking for this info and was surprised to find your page was good. Great stuff. Thanks.

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