T Nation

Training For a Marathon

Hi, i was wondering if anyone knew of any good marathon training programs/diet programs. I have never done a marathon but i am planning to do the Chicago marathon in October. right now my run is 6 miles so i am a beginner.

What program you use depends on what your goals are. Do you want to finish or finish in a certain time?

If you want to just finish, a great program is one where you do two half-hour runs during the week. Then one day on the weekend you do a long run. Eventually you do a 20 mile training run. You just keep increasing mileage until you get to 20, with some “backoff” weeks thrown in so–10 miles, 11 miles, 12 miles, 8 miles, 12 miles, 13 miles, 14 miles, 9 miles, etc.

1 day of complete rest.
1 day at the gym doing resistance training.
1 day run for as long time as you can tolarate before you hit the wall. I suggest a 2 hour run, if you can’t, try to build towards it.
1 day 10x400m sprints or short distance sprints.
3 remaining days try to get 1 hour runs.

I would personally concentrate on time as opposed to miles. If my brain knew I could run 5hrs a week, for three months solid, I would be pshycologically prepared to run the 26 miles for 5 hours in one go.

Eat carbs PLENTY and do not forget to replace the sodium you lose on endurance training.Drink PLENTY.

Give your age, sex, athletic history and the friends should be able to give more specific tips.

hi, thanks for your advice.
I am 19, male, and used to swim competitively in high school. right now i weight train, 4 times a week and run 4 times a week. doin 3, 3 mi runs and 1 6 mi run.

also, what should i do to build up to doing 10x 400m sprints?

[quote]Axel wrote:
What program you use depends on what your goals are. Do you want to finish or finish in a certain time?

If you want to just finish, a great program is one where you do two half-hour runs during the week. Then one day on the weekend you do a long run. Eventually you do a 20 mile training run. You just keep increasing mileage until you get to 20, with some “backoff” weeks thrown in so–10 miles, 11 miles, 12 miles, 8 miles, 12 miles, 13 miles, 14 miles, 9 miles, etc.[/quote]

Uh, just to clarify, a marathon is 26 miles… that’s definitely a good training program though,

http://jeffgalloway.com/training/marathon.html

go to runners world or do a google search. My wife runs marathons. She runs 5-7 miles/ 6 days a week. When she starts training for the race she usually starts running long runs one day a week working up to a 20 mile run. I ran with her once on a long one 16 miles and decided right then and there that marathon running is not for me! I like the iron better anyway!

IF you get in (which is unlikely due to demand) they will give you a standard type of schedule that will help, and buold up over time.

There must be some on a runners forum somewhere?

Thanks for asking though.

As a marathon veteran and coach for several years, I can tell you the majority of information you’re going to get from most sources (including major sport specific magazines) is less than optimal. Just like lifting and strength training in general, old habits die hard and the majoirty of resources and books are based on unproven, old school philosophies passed down from one runner to the next. To wit, most programs result in chronic overtraining, leaving the athlete depleted, often sick and less than healthy on race day.

If you’ve been on this site for any amount of time, you’ve no doubt come across some important fundamental principles from some great minds with regard to strength training. And the reality is the more those philosophies are implemented into your marathon training (quality workouts, adequate rest, solid nutrition), the more succesful you’ll be.

My athletes have been incredibly succesful using a three day training protocol with a 30-35 mile week max during peak training. Not only do they finish, but they finsih well and in much better condition than the overtrained athletes often crawling across the line.

If you need specifics, PM me and I’ll be happy to help with all that I can online.
Best of luck.