10 Marathon Truths taken from Hal Higdon’s

“Marathon: The Ultimate Training Guide, 4th Edition”

 

  • Truth #1- Progressively Longer Runs Guarantee Success

            -During the build up to the marathon, or half marathon, weekly mileage increases along with the length of the long run. It is suggested to increase both the weekly mileage and weekly long run by no more than about 10%.

  • Truth #2- Rest Days Help Keep You Healthy

            -The purpose of training is to break the body down so it will rebuild itself stronger than before.  The musculoskeletal system generally requires 48 hours to recover after a hard workout. It’s when you fail to allow time for the rebuilding phase that problems occur.

  • Truth #3- Take One Step Back To Take Two Steps Forward

            -Taking rest days is not enough to guard against the dangers of overtraining; most successful marathon programs also include rest weeks in which runners both cut mileage and reduce/eliminate the weekend long run. Consider reducing your mileage one week after building mileage for 2-3 weeks.

  • Truth #4- Speed Training Serves As A Double-Edge Sword

            -Speed training can improve fitness level but it can also increase risk of injuries.

  • Truth #5- Learning Pace And Learning To Race Are Critical Skills

            -Running slowly at the start works well for beginners, but more experienced runners eventually must learn to fine-tune their pace to achieve peak-performance. The goal for many experienced runners is “negative splits,” running the first half slightly slower than the second half.

  • Truth #6- Consistency Counts In The Long Run

            -Consistency with a purpose is critical to success in the marathon.

  • Truth #7- Do Not Overlook Good Nutrition

            -If you make poor food choices you compromise your ability to train hard. Most successful marathoners follow diets that contain around 55 percent carbohydrates, 30 percent fats, and 15 percent protein.

  • Truth #8- Practice Everything Connected With The Marathon

            -Use your long runs and build up races to practice what food and replacement fluids work   well for you.  Additionally, use these runs to practice your warm up, drinking on the run, determining what shoes and clothes work best, and your race strategy.

  • Truth #9- Tapering Is Both An Art And A Science

            -The length of the taper can differ for each runner and can range from 10 days to 3 weeks. Tapering not only permits the healing of any damaged or fatigued muscles but also promotes maximum glycogen storage. Although mileage drops during the taper, the speed at which you run that mileage should not.

  • Truth #10- Without Motivation You Never Will Succeed

            -Motivation needs to come from within. Finishing a marathon requires courage and   commitment. You need to be committed to your training.

Beginner Full Marathon (26.2 miles) Training Plan 

(Advised to have been consistently running 3-4 miles 3 times a week for one year prior to starting this training plan)

Week

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Weekly Mileage

1

3 m

3 m

3 m

6 m

Cross

15

2

3 m

3 m

3 m

8 m

Cross

17

3

3 m

4 m

3 m

9 m

Cross

19

4

3 m

4 m

3 m

6 m

Cross

16

5

3 m

5 m

3 m

11 m

Cross

22

6

3 m

5 m

3 m

13 m

Cross

24

7

3 m

6 m

3 m

9 m

Cross

21

8

4 m

6 m

3 m

14 m

Cross

27

9

3 m

7 m

4 m

16 m

Cross

30

10

3 m

7 m

4 m

12 m

Cross

26

11

4 m

8 m

4 m

18 m

Cross

34

12

4 m

8 m

5 m

12 m

Cross

29

13

4 m

9 m

5 m

20 m

Cross

38

14

5 m

7 m

5 m

14 m

Cross

31

15

4 m

6 m

3 m

8 m

Cross

21

16

3 m

4 m

2 m

Race Day

Rest

35.2 

*Adapted from Hal Higdon Marathon training plans

*m=mile *Cross=Cross train- any activity, such as biking, that increases heart rate other than running *Akron Marathon assumes no liability for schedules. They are only guidelines. 

Beginner Half Marathon (13.1 miles) Training Plan 

(Advised to be able to run 2-3 miles 3 times a week prior

to starting this training plan)

Week

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Weekly Mileage

1

3 m

3 m

3 m

4 m

Cross

13 m

2

3 m

4 m

3 m

5 m

Cross

15 m

3

3 m

3 m

3 m

7 m

Cross

16 m

4

3 m

4 m

3 m

4 m

Cross

14 m

5

3 m

4 m

3 m

8 m

Cross

18 m

6

3 m

5 m

3 m

9 m

Cross

20 m

7

3 m

4 m

3 m

7 m

Cross

17 m

8

3 m

5 m

3 m

11 m

Cross

22 m

9

3 m

5 m

3 m

9 m

Cross

20 m

10

4 m

5 m

3 m

12 m

Cross

24 m

11

3 m

4 m

3 m

7 m

Cross

17 m

12

3 m

2 m

2 m

Race Day

Rest

20.1 m 

*Adapted from Hal Higdon Half Marathon training plans

*m=mile *Cross=Cross train- any activity, such as biking, that increases heart rate other than running *Akron Marathon assumes no liability for schedules. They are only guidelines. 

Beginner 5-Person Team Relay Training Plan 

(Relay leg distances: 3.9 m, 4.8 m, 7.5 m, 4.5 m, 5.5 m)

(Longer distance legs should train at the upper mileage ranges)

Week

Day1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Weekly Mileage

1

10-15 min

Walk/ cross

10-15 min

1 m

Cross

3-4 m

2

15 min

Walk/ cross

15 min

1-2 m

Cross

4-5 m

3

15-20 min

Walk/ cross

15-20 min

2 m

Cross

5-6 m

4

15-20 min

Walk/ cross

15-20 min

2-3 m

Cross

5-7 m

5

20 min

Walk/ cross

20 min

2-4 m

Cross

6-8  m

6

20-25 min

Walk/ cross

20-25 min

3 m

Cross

7- 8 m

7

20-25 min

Walk/ cross

20-25 min

3-5 m

Cross

7- 10 m

8

25 min

Walk/ cross

25 min

3-6 m

Cross

8- 11 m

9

25-30 min

Walk/ cross

25-30 min

3 m

Cross

8-9  m

10

30 min

Walk/ cross

30 min

4-7 m

Cross

10-13 m

11

25 min

Walk/ cross

25 min

3 m

Cross

8  m

12

20 min

Walk/ cross

20 min

Race Day

Rest

8-12 m 

*Adapted from Jeff Galloway’s 5k training Plan

*m=mile *Cross=Cross train- any activity, such as biking, that increases heart rate other than running *Akron Marathon assumes no liability for schedules. They are only guidelines.