Marathon Training, Week 1

What a busy week! On Monday, 17 brave souls place their half-marathon training in my hands. Seventeen! Many of them have been running longer than I have (I'm currently at 25 months as a runner), and a few of them have run half-marathons before. One actually completed a full marathon 8 years ago. The rest are beginners, 5K and 10K runners, who are ready for the next step. What they all have in common is they are seeking a group-training experience. The ones who have done this before KNOW and the ones who haven't SENSE that running 10, 11, or 12-mile runs will be much nicer in a group!

That same day was day one of marathon training. I have a pretty easy week with 2, 4, 2, 4 and 8 for 20 miles in all. I've had at least one 20-mile week in recent months, so it's not too much of a stretch. I LOVE the 2-mile days. I just hop on the treadmill in my basement and read a magazine or listen to SIRIUS music channels or watch a little t.v. and the two miles pass so fast.

I'm running between an 11 and 12 minute/mile pace which seems wonderfully easy. I know I'm in the base-building phase, but I wonder if I'm going to lose the ability to run an 8:35-9:00 minute mile. I guess since I'm training for a marathon, I don't really NEED to run an 8:35-9:00/minute mile. I suppose it's all in what your GOAL is. My goal is to finish a marathon at about a 10:20-10:45/pace feeling STRONG at the end. So, this is what I will do for the next 13 weeks--run a minute to a minute and a half slower than my goal pace. The last 7 weeks of the training program, I'll practice that 10:20-10:45 pace with some marathon goal pace runs. In the meantime, I imagine my August 5K is going to be seriously S-L-O-W!


Stacey said…
Sounds like you have a good plan!

How do you become a running coach? And if I was there, I would certify you in CPR/First Aid. Good luck with all you are doing. I am excited to hear about all your adventures!
Jenny said…
that's awesome! i start my half 'thon training on monday, and am looking forward to it :o)

i love reading about your becoming a coach---it's something that i'd like to look into someday, and can do it vicariously through you until then!
Lisa said…
Wow!! 17 people for your first coaching cycle. That is awesome!!

Don't worry about your 5K. Our teachers told us that often when you are building your endurance up, you'll surprise yourself with a fast 5K. Don't write your speedy legs off yet. I do know what you mean about worrying that you will lose the speed. My half marathon is in 3 weeks...I'll let you know.

Good luck with the coaching!
Wendy said…
Sounds like you have lots of exciting stuff going on!

I think coaching would be great!
I've always felt that if you can get your body used to long distance that the speed will come when you do shorter races. Just my 2 cents. Good luck with the coaching!
Anonymous said…
WOW - 17 people! That is great! So how does this work - do you all meet for one or two runs a week? With everyone at different running abilities, are they all doing a different training plan?

I would love to do this someday. I have a soft spot especially for 40-something women who suddenly find themselves with some time to take care of THEMSELVES, now that the kids are bit older and more independent.

Have fun with it!
Anonymous said…
Those sound like terrific goals to me. I think helping train the half marathoners will help you a lot too. Good luck!