Marathon Training

Marathon training is different to all others, in duration and intensity.  The training plan for each runner depends on age, background, health and previous achievments together with the target time, so has to be tailored by individual. 

The plan below was for an athlete whose previous best was 4h 05m, achieving 3h 50m. Generally speaking, you will have a pretty good idea of the likelyhood of you achieving your target time if you can maintain ALL of the plan ALL of the time. There is some leeway when rest days can be used, but the runs shown for Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday have to be undertaken.

Must stress that every individual needs their own plan.

Dates Week Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
  1 30 min 145bpm 45 min 145bpm   45 min 145bpm 30 min 150bpm 60 min 145bpm  
  2 30 min 145bpm 45 min 145bpm   45 min 145bpm 30 min 150bpm 75 min 145bpm  
  3 30 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm   60 min 145bpm 30 min 150bpm 90 min 145bpm  
  4 45 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm   60 min 145bpm 45 min 145bpm 105 min 145bpm  
  5 45 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm   60 min 145bpm 45 min 145bpm 120 min 145bpm  
  6 45 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm   60 min 145bpm 45 min 145bpm 135 min 145bpm  
  7 45 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm   60 min 145bpm (@ 10 min insert 1 min sprint,then jog 1min for 5 reps) 45 min 145bpm 150 min 145bpm  
  8 45 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 3×400 @10k pace with 200 jog intervals)   60 min 145bpm (@25min insert 30 min at 5:25) 45 min 145bpm lesser of 2:45 hr or 16 miles @145bpm  
  9 45 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 3×600 @10k pace with 200 jog intervals)   60 min 145bpm (@15min insert 40 min at 5:25) 45 min 145bpm lesser of 3:30 hr or 20 miles @145bpm  
  10 60 min 145bpm 75 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 3×800 @10k pace with 400 jog intervals)   75 min 145bpm (@15min insert 50 min at 5:25) 60 min 145bpm lesser of 2:45 hr or 16 miles @145bpm  
  11 60 min 145bpm 75 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 3×1200 @10k pace with 400 jog intervals)   75 min 145bpm (@10min insert 60 min at 5:25) 60 min 145bpm lesser of 3:30 hr or 20 miles @145bpm  
  12 60 min 145bpm 75 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 3×1600 @10k pace with 400 jog intervals)   90 min @145bpm (@15min, insert 70 min  5:25) 60 min 145bpm lesser of 2:45 hr or 16 miles @145bpm  
  13 60 min 145bpm 75 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 3×2000 @10k pace with 400 jog intervals)   90 min @145bpm (@5min, insert 80 min  5:25) 60 min 145bpm lesser of 3:30 hr or 20 miles @145bpm  
  14 60 min 145bpm 60 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 2 x 1600 @10k pace with 400 jog interval)   60 min @145bpm (@15min, insert 40 min  5:25) 60 min 145bpm 120 min 145bpm  
  15 60 min 145bpm 45 min 145bpm (@ 10 min, 2 x 800 @10k pace with 400 jog interval)   45 min @145bpm (@20min, insert 20 min  5:25) 45 min 150bpm 60 min 145bpm  
  16 60 min 145bpm 45 min 145bpm (@ 10 min insert 1 min sprint,then jog 1min for 5 reps)   40 min @ 150bpm (@ 10 min insert 1 min sprint,then jog 1min for 5 reps) 20 min @150bpm in morning 21 min @150bpm in morning Race

Graeme Loudain – October 2019

These notes are published as a general aid to all endurance runners. They are guidelines based on current best practice, intended to illustrate the points in the articles rather than provide a precise training schedule. They are written in a way to be of help to runners. Individuals will have their own requirements and the content of the notes will not suit all. Please use them in the spirit in which they are intended and modify them to suit your own needs. If you have suggestions for improvement, amendments or comment, please email gladmin@btinternet.com.