Monday, January 18, 2010

Marathon Training Program: Weeks 1 - 3

I began my marathon training program on 28 December, 2009, 18 weeks from my scheduled race, The Gusher Marathon, in Beaumont, Texas, May 1, 2010.  I've been using Hal Higdon's Intermediate 1 marathon training program, and set it up on a Google calendar, embedded in this blog. (See the "Marathon Training Calendar" post from 9 December). 

The program consists of 5 running days per week.  The structure is: easy cross-training (no running) on Monday, a short run Tuesday, a medium-distance run Wednesday, and another short run Thursday.  Friday is a rest day to prepare for a medium-distance Saturday run, followed by a long Sunday run.  So the cycle is short-medium-short-rest-medium-long-easy.  That alternates the stresses up and down, and brackets the back-to-back medium and long with rest and easy.  The structure makes a lot of sense.  The mileage builds from an early weekly low of 22 miles to a weekly peak of 44 miles.  The weekly mileage increase follows a cycle, also.  In each three-week period, two consecutive weeks increase mileage, and the third week steps back a little to provide a little recovery before the next push upward.  Mileage tapers off in the last 3 weeks to allow recovery from the training.  The process will culminate with the marathon race at the end of the 18th week.

At the end of three weeks, my training has stayed on track.  I've had two weeks of increasing miles, and last week was the first stepback week.  Next week adds 7 miles.  So far, I've missed one 3-mile run on one occasion to give a sore knee an extra day of rest, but have also added an extra mile here and there when I was really feeling good.  So far, so good--  3 down, 15 to go!

In the future, I'll blog less about individual run details, and instead post more of a summary (like this post).  If you want to look at the plan, it's in the calendar in the footer below all of the posts on this page.  If you click on the title of a daily run, the full description of that day's plan will pop up.  A second click will minimize it.  I've recently started using to log workouts, so if you want to see individual workouts, click  the dailymile widget on my sidebar.


mike said...

Go for it, Vern! I too am following Hal's training for my first full marathon on March 26 in Tel Aviv - but for Novice level, based on only four days of running per week. Minimal effort and minimal risk, I hope! Much success to you and me and all first Timers!

Travis and Teniah said...

Sounds like a great training plan! Can't wait to continue following your progress - you have already been so faithful to the plan! - Your marathon is going to be a huge success!

Vern said...

@Mike: Thanks for the well wishes, and best of luck on your March marathon! Thanks for visiting Running Green, and come back again!

@Teniah: Thanks so much for your continuing support! With all the amazing people that are behind me, I have no option other than success!

Barbie said...

Vern, your determination and courage to reach your goal are totally inspirational. When it comes time to run your marathon I have no doubt in the world you will succeed beyond all your wildest expectations. GO VERN !!!

Vern said...

Thanks, Barb! I appreciate the your encouragement!

Keith Peters said...

I'm enjoying watching your progress. I hope to be in at least a somewhat similar place in the latter half of the year. Enjoying getting a preview of what I might be in for.