Customizable Marathon Training Plan

Marathon Training Plan

One of my favorite things about signing up for a race is creating a training plan.

Kinda nerdy, right?

With exception of my first half marathon I’ve created all my training plans. I have done a lot of research over the last few years have continued to refine my training method.

I’d say it’s working out pretty well. In general I have improved my time on each race that I run. There are some exceptions, like just finishing Pikes Peak Ascent or the 90+ deg and humid weather at ZOOMA last year, but comparing similar races you can see a trend.

Wineglass Half Marathon 2013 – 2:16:17
Wineglass Half Marathon 2014 – 2:12:53
Wineglass Half Marathon 2015 – 2:05:08

Blue Ridge Half Marathon 2014 – 2:29:51
Blue Ridge Half Marathon 2015 – 2:19:04

Wineglass Marathon 2012 – 5:10:50
Myrtle Beach Marathon 2014 – 4:51:38
Philadelphia Marathon 2014 – 4:32:46

Marathon Training {again!}

Once again I am training for a marathon.
Once again I have made my own training plan.
Once again I have refined my method.
I’m running the Blue Ridge Marathon in April– woot woot!

Blue Ridge has a huge amount of elevation change {7,430 ft}. I applied some of what I learned training for the Pikes Peak Ascent and combined it with how I would train for a flat marathon. I’m pretty happy with my training plan this time around. I took 6+ weeks off from running between MCM and the Grand Canyon. I was slightly nervous to jump right into marathon training at the beginning of the year. Surprisingly, it has come back pretty quickly. During our 14-mile long run this past weekend I ran my fastest half marathon– 13.1 miles in 2:01:19. I must be doing something right. So What Goes into One of my Training Plans?

There are three major components:
. Strength
. Stretch
. Run

Every body is different and this is what works for me.

I find that I perform best when I have a balanced approach to training. Even during marathon prep, I’m only running 3 days per week. My overall mileage is pretty low. But what I have found is that “every mile counts”. I don’t run junk miles. Instead I fill that extra time with strength training or yoga. My running significantly improved when I started focusing more on strength training and stretching.

Here’s what the remaining weeks of Blue Ridge Marathon training looks like for me!

Each week I focus on three types of runs– speed/hill run, maintenance run and long run.

The purpose of the speed/hill run is to increase speed and endurance. The purpose of the long run is to increase endurance and train your body to work in a caloric deficit {it is also a great time to practice eating and drinking while running}. The purpose of the maintenance run is, really, to get you running more than twice a week!

If I was training for a flat marathon I would only include speed work in my training, but since Blue Ridge has a lot of elevation I am alternating between speed and hill runs.

Something that is different in this training plan is the “long hill run”. Again, since this is not a flat marathon I incorporate long hill runs into my plan. I do this workout based on time instead of mileage since the pace per mile is slower than on flat ground.

The neat thing about this method is that it is fully customizable! The target pace, incline and mileage can be adjusted to fit your race and running goal.

Do you have an upcoming race that you still need a training plan for? Are you looking for help? Has your running been stagnate? I’d love to work with you! Email me at and we can chat training plans.

“Loving this customizable #marathontraining plan via @amanda__maureen! #run #sweatpink” {click to tweet}

Oh! By the way, if you want to come run Blue Ridge with me in April– use promo code ‘TOUGHIS‘ when you sign up to get 15% off. The code is good for any of the three distances {10K, half and full}. You can register here.

Your turn! Do you make your own training plan, rely on something you found on the internet, work with a run coach?

♥amanda maureen

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