Monday, March 12, 2012


To race your best and peak when you want to for important races it helps to have a plan. Most of the famous runners and race walkers will sell you a plan off their web sites. The problem with those are that they are for that "average' person, whatever that means. They also are on a set time table that probably will not fit your personal schedule. I know a lot of people that used a canned marathon plan and it took so much time out of their lives to train that they never did another marathon.

It's good to have a plan but it needs to be customized to you not that average person. to start with you need to decide how much time you can comfortably spend training and still have a normal life. You shouldn't have to give up having a life to make a life style change. You have to have time for a normal family life, working full time as most of us do and have plenty of time to sleep and recover from hard workouts.

Sounds impossible doesn't it? Well it's not. Making life style changes can be Incorporated into your normal life so you still can enjoy all the positive things you don't want to have to change. To start with look at a daily schedule of you current life obligations. I find that if I do my hard workouts on my days off that I can get everything accomplished and still train. Next look at your goal races. If your only going to be racing 5Ks then you don't need a lot of distance workouts. You also don't need to train like an olympian if your plan is just to finish a half or full marathon.

Even if you want to train to race and be competitive there are really only three basic workouts that you need to make sure you get in every week. The first is a track day where you do measured distance at speed. The next is a long slower day to build endurance. The last is kind of a mix where you go further than your target race, unless it's a half or full marathon, and mix in speed ups. An optional good fourth day for competition training is to do your planned race distance with each mile faster than the last. A fifth day of training if it fits into your schedule is a free form day where you just go for a run/race walk of 3 to 5 miles at whatever pace you feel like, even untimed, just let it flow. Then the last 2 days at least should be active rest. Those are the days you get errands done, do family things and get the chores done.

For marathon training you can combine workouts to get the time in motion. Like doing a slower 10 miler and then your yard work. Or a 10 miler and a walk/bike ride with your spouse. Give it some thought and you can come up with more ways to make a life style change fit your life.

Thanks for reading.

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