Marathon Training Plans

TavistockToad
TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
Afternoon pals!

So after half jokingly saying to my running buddy that i want to do a marathon next year, she hasn't said no... and she's asked for some training plans to look at.

A quick google and Hal Higdon novice 2 looks ok, but what plans do people recommend??

My running back ground is 2 years of non consistent running with a couple of races and 2 years of consistent running with 3 races last year (2 half marathons, 1 10k) and 4 races this year (2 half marathons, a train 7 mile and a 10k). i run up to Half Marathon distance, and i know that my weekly mileage is woefully low for a full currently, so would need to work on that before i started a training plan. i currently run 3/4 x a week, cross train 1/2 x and strength train 2 x.

my running buddy has been running a lot longer than me, but her current mileage is lower than mine at the moment but she has done a lot more half marathons than me, so we'd be after something novice to intermediate.

thanks in advance
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Replies

  • polskagirl01
    polskagirl01 Posts: 2,010 Member
    The Hal Higdon plans have worked for me, and seem highly recommended by others, as well.
  • lporter229
    lporter229 Posts: 4,907 Member
    Hal Higdon plans are great for a first marathon. I am not sure how much difference there is between the novice 1 and 2 plans. My suggestion would be to choose the plan that offers you the most weekly mileage that you think you can handle without getting hurt. I know this is vague advice, but the there is a fine line between adequate training and over training. On one hand, maximizing your training mileage is going to give you the easiest time on race day. On the other hand, doing more than you are ready for will result in burnout or injury. For a first marathon, I would choose more miles over speed work. And also make sure that you are comfortable with the initial mileage. If you are stretching yourself to make the miles in the first few weeks of the plan, then it is probably too advanced. Your goal for your first marathon should just be to finish. There will be plenty of chances to improve on your time in the future. Good luck!
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    lporter229 wrote: »
    Hal Higdon plans are great for a first marathon. I am not sure how much difference there is between the novice 1 and 2 plans. My suggestion would be to choose the plan that offers you the most weekly mileage that you think you can handle without getting hurt. I know this is vague advice, but the there is a fine line between adequate training and over training. On one hand, maximizing your training mileage is going to give you the easiest time on race day. On the other hand, doing more than you are ready for will result in burnout or injury. For a first marathon, I would choose more miles over speed work. And also make sure that you are comfortable with the initial mileage. If you are stretching yourself to make the miles in the first few weeks of the plan, then it is probably too advanced. Your goal for your first marathon should just be to finish. There will be plenty of chances to improve on your time in the future. Good luck!

    Currently I could do week 4 of the hal higdon novice plans easily, which is comforting to know!
  • lporter229
    lporter229 Posts: 4,907 Member
    lporter229 wrote: »
    Hal Higdon plans are great for a first marathon. I am not sure how much difference there is between the novice 1 and 2 plans. My suggestion would be to choose the plan that offers you the most weekly mileage that you think you can handle without getting hurt. I know this is vague advice, but the there is a fine line between adequate training and over training. On one hand, maximizing your training mileage is going to give you the easiest time on race day. On the other hand, doing more than you are ready for will result in burnout or injury. For a first marathon, I would choose more miles over speed work. And also make sure that you are comfortable with the initial mileage. If you are stretching yourself to make the miles in the first few weeks of the plan, then it is probably too advanced. Your goal for your first marathon should just be to finish. There will be plenty of chances to improve on your time in the future. Good luck!

    Currently I could do week 4 of the hal higdon novice plans easily, which is comforting to know!

    Then I would say you should be good to go with that plan! Sounds like you have a solid foundation of running so if you follow your training schedule, you should have nothing to worry about.
  • spiriteagle99
    spiriteagle99 Posts: 3,654 Member
    edited October 2018
    If you have time to build your base before starting MRT, you might consider one of Higdon's intermediate plans. I did Intermediate 2 for my first marathon, because my base at the time was 30+ mpw. I didn't want to go backwards, and knew, from years of reading online forums, that more miles would make the race go better. I did great, both in the training and in that first marathon. Since you've already done some HMs, starting at 30 mpw shouldn't be a jump for you.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    edited October 2018
    If you have time to build your base before starting MRT, you might consider one of Higdon's intermediate plans. I did Intermediate 2 for my first marathon, because my base at the time was 30+ mpw. I didn't want to go backwards, and knew, from years of reading online forums, that more miles would make the race go better. I did great, both in the training and in that first marathon. Since you've already done some HMs, starting at 30 mpw shouldn't be a jump for you.

    My max mileage is around 20 mpw at the mo, so it is a bit of a jump. Which is one of the things that concerns me!
  • polskagirl01
    polskagirl01 Posts: 2,010 Member
    On Hal Higdon's site, he has good descriptions of each plan and who it's for. I went through all of the descriptions and decided which was best for me, but also printed out the easier plan as a backup if it got to be too much.
  • spiriteagle99
    spiriteagle99 Posts: 3,654 Member
    If you have time to build your base before starting MRT, you might consider one of Higdon's intermediate plans. I did Intermediate 2 for my first marathon, because my base at the time was 30+ mpw. I didn't want to go backwards, and knew, from years of reading online forums, that more miles would make the race go better. I did great, both in the training and in that first marathon. Since you've already done some HMs, starting at 30 mpw shouldn't be a jump for you.

    My max mileage is around 20 mpw at the mo, so it is a bit of a jump. Which is one of the things that concerns me!

    It depends on which marathon you plan to do. If you are doing a race in March, you don't have time to build your base much before starting a plan. If you aren't doing one until October, you have plenty of time.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    edited October 2018
    If you have time to build your base before starting MRT, you might consider one of Higdon's intermediate plans. I did Intermediate 2 for my first marathon, because my base at the time was 30+ mpw. I didn't want to go backwards, and knew, from years of reading online forums, that more miles would make the race go better. I did great, both in the training and in that first marathon. Since you've already done some HMs, starting at 30 mpw shouldn't be a jump for you.

    My max mileage is around 20 mpw at the mo, so it is a bit of a jump. Which is one of the things that concerns me!

    It depends on which marathon you plan to do. If you are doing a race in March, you don't have time to build your base much before starting a plan. If you aren't doing one until October, you have plenty of time.

    September/October probably.

    I have a half in May already payed for.
  • MobyCarp
    MobyCarp Posts: 2,927 Member
    If you have time to build your base before starting MRT, you might consider one of Higdon's intermediate plans. I did Intermediate 2 for my first marathon, because my base at the time was 30+ mpw. I didn't want to go backwards, and knew, from years of reading online forums, that more miles would make the race go better. I did great, both in the training and in that first marathon. Since you've already done some HMs, starting at 30 mpw shouldn't be a jump for you.

    My max mileage is around 20 mpw at the mo, so it is a bit of a jump. Which is one of the things that concerns me!

    It depends on which marathon you plan to do. If you are doing a race in March, you don't have time to build your base much before starting a plan. If you aren't doing one until October, you have plenty of time.

    September/October probably.

    I have a half in May already payed for.

    Well . . . if you build base for a marathon between now and the half, and get to where a long run of 16 miles or so is routine, you'll be in pretty good shape to train for a fall marathon. That, and when a 16 mile long run is routine, a half marathon race isn't nearly as big a deal as it was when your longest run was 13 miles.
  • spiriteagle99
    spiriteagle99 Posts: 3,654 Member
    So between now and your HM, you can easily build your base from 20 mpw to 30-35. There's plenty of time for that. Then you start an intermediate level marathon plan that starts at 35 mpw and builds to a peak of 50 mpw.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    MobyCarp wrote: »
    If you have time to build your base before starting MRT, you might consider one of Higdon's intermediate plans. I did Intermediate 2 for my first marathon, because my base at the time was 30+ mpw. I didn't want to go backwards, and knew, from years of reading online forums, that more miles would make the race go better. I did great, both in the training and in that first marathon. Since you've already done some HMs, starting at 30 mpw shouldn't be a jump for you.

    My max mileage is around 20 mpw at the mo, so it is a bit of a jump. Which is one of the things that concerns me!

    It depends on which marathon you plan to do. If you are doing a race in March, you don't have time to build your base much before starting a plan. If you aren't doing one until October, you have plenty of time.

    September/October probably.

    I have a half in May already payed for.

    Well . . . if you build base for a marathon between now and the half, and get to where a long run of 16 miles or so is routine, you'll be in pretty good shape to train for a fall marathon. That, and when a 16 mile long run is routine, a half marathon race isn't nearly as big a deal as it was when your longest run was 13 miles.
    So between now and your HM, you can easily build your base from 20 mpw to 30-35. There's plenty of time for that. Then you start an intermediate level marathon plan that starts at 35 mpw and builds to a peak of 50 mpw.

    you mean i need to run over winter... what was never part of the plan!!!! :laugh: :laugh:

    thanks for all the input so far everyone... i am meeting my running buddy for lunch in a couple of weeks and i will see if she is actually seriously up for doing it - as i would like to be signed up for something at new year so i can plan it properly.
  • smeebles
    smeebles Posts: 21 Member
    I’m going to probably do the novice 2 plan next year. I’m currently at 30 mpw, and could probably do intermediate 1, but don’t want to hurt myself by overdoing it
  • docsallen
    docsallen Posts: 159 Member
    Good luck!
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    Just booked the hotel for the night before the race.... new pants please!!!!

    who's idea was this!?

    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
  • eleanorhawkins
    eleanorhawkins Posts: 1,642 Member
    Just booked the hotel for the night before the race.... new pants please!!!!

    who's idea was this!?

    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

    Entirely yours :p and you told us all about it so you can't back out now!
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    i've paid for it, i have absolutely no intention of backing out!
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    Thought i would resurrect this thread for another question!

    I haven't started training for my marathon yet, but i have chosen my plan - Hal Higdon Novice 2 (but without the speedwork as my legs don't like it, but i want to do the mileage over doing Novice 1) - which includes a Half Marathon race half way through the plan.

    What are the benefits of doing a race half way through the plan? is it just race experience? (of which i feel that i have plenty) are there any other benefits i'm missing out on if i just run 13 miles that weekend?

    thoughts, suggestions, ideas from more experienced runners would be appreciated!
  • IM_in_training
    IM_in_training Posts: 49 Member
    Hal Higdon's training plans are good novice, get-to-the-finish plans. If you're in it for the long haul, though, I suggest trying some training plans that help you build a better base. They take more time, but you'll be glad you did. Here is a good base-building "pre-conditioning" training plan by Pasadena Pacers: https://www.runpacers.org/pasadena/training-programs/pre-conditioners/