Delaware Marathon Training: And So It Begins!

I hope you all had a wonderful New Years! I don’t care if it’s cheesy or cliched, but I’m really excited about 2016. Things are lookin’ up around here!

Despite all my nerves and indecision about training for a marathon through the winter, I feel good about my choice. I am opting to follow the plan that my mom used when she trained for Baystate this fall, from the Runners World Big Book of Marathon and Half Marathon Training (<- A great resource that I highly recommend!) However, I do plan to play with the workouts a bit.

Hansons Marathon MethodAfter hearing so much about the Hansons Marathon Method, I knew I wanted to pick up this book and learn more about the Hansons marathon training regimen. I haven’t made my way through the whole book yet, but so far, many of the concepts and workouts make a lot of sense to me. However, I know it’s not realistic for me to attempt this training plan for Delaware. There are a few reasons for this, but the big one is that I work 8:30-5:30 during the week, and this plan has HEAVY mid-week mileage. I think I would drive myself crazy waking up at the crack of dawn to run 6 days a week, and I don’t want to experience marathon burnout. I do like the idea of the strength runs though (these are runs that are completed at around 10 seconds/mile faster than goal marathon pace). It makes sense to me that if you can get through longer workouts at this faster pace, then on raceday, your goal pace should (in theory) feel easy.

So I’ll probably be adding some of these strength runs into the Runners World plan, and I’ve also boosted some of the early mileage in the plan to reflect my current fitness level. I’m planning to incorporate lots of cross-training during some of the prescribed rest days as well.

While the plan doesn’t officially kick in until January 18th, I’m already thinking of my workouts as the beginnings of my marathon training! Last week, my mom and I went on a great 10 mile run, completed entirely at her goal marathon pace (9:15/mile). We did a great job maintaining the pace, even with some tough hills thrown into the mix.

Now that I’m back to my apartment, I’m beginning the work of dialing into my own goal pace – 8:05/mile (otherwise known as scary fast.) On Friday, I did a 6 mile tempo run, with 4 miles at goal pace. I ended up averaging 8:04, 8:07, 8:09, and 7:58 for those miles, which I was pleased with, especially considering I was up pretty late for New Year’s Eve the night before! I paused before my cool-down mile to take this photo to commemorate my first run of 2016 –

2 Generations Running | Running in BostonI followed it up with a long run on Saturday – 9.3 miles at 8:37/mile. I think my legs were tired from the tempo run the day before, and this was pretty tough. I spent the rest of the day in my compression socks, and groaning in pain anytime I was forced to walk up or down stairs. Guess I should get used to that since that will probably be the new norm for the 16 weeks!

Sunday, I decided to give my legs a much deserved rest, but did go to the gym to get a little cross-training in.

Overall, a pretty solid start to 2016!

How was your New Years? Any big resolutions this year?

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