August 4, 2010

Countdown to Philly!

Yes, I've been MIA for about a month now. And so much has happened in the last month, some of which I definitely want to fill you in on, and some of which I'd rather just keep to myself. So in the next few days or weeks, you may notice some posts about things I did a month ago. Go with it... ok? Cool. Thanks.

Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let's talk about the important stuff: Marathon Training! With less than 4 months until the big day, I am full speed ahead with my marathon training schedule. Here's the plan I've constructed based on reviewing a gazillion different beginner schedules.

I had to do some shuffling here & there for the Jewish holidays, weekend getaways, long run meet-ups and other plans. But the basic schedule is:
Mondays: aiming for complete Rest
Tuesdays, Thursdays & Fridays: Shorter Runs
Wednesday: Yoga (Hot or Anusara)
Saturday: Cross Training which is typically core work & kickboxing class, sometimes yoga as well
Sunday: Long Runs

Now here's where you come in.... Take a look at it again. Now RIP it apart! Yes, I'm totally serious. This is my first marathon and who knows, I might not have a clue! So please, let me know what you think. Not enough running? Are my long runs long enough? etc.. Let me have it- I can take it!

Last week was the first on my schedule and called for 16 miles of running, 1 day of cross training and two days of rest. Despite an emotionally difficult week, I got it done and even felt pretty good doing it. I was especially pleased with my long run on Sunday which I completed after walking 8 miles to & from the new Target in Harlem. By the way, all I bought was a soap dispenser for my kitchen. Ha! Anyway, Sunday's 7 miles made me feel like the full 26.2 is possible after all. I really needed that run.

Tonight was yoga at home and then a long date with Dante, my foam roller. I have a feeling Dante and I will be spending lots of time together for the next four months.

Until later... happy running!


  1. Hi Erica, looking over your plan...I think it's good and well thought out. Not knowing your running history, it's hard to give exact recommendations, but here are a few minor points for you to consider:

    - Long Runs are the most important part of a training plan. I see you have 1 18 and 1 20...I wonder if you can fit one more in there.

    - You have 6 weeks of 30+ mpw of running. I think you should have a rest week once every 3-4 weeks where you drop down the mileage by 20%. You'll need the break in between all that higher mileage running.

    - Maybe a 10K or a half week 13-11 just to give yourself a fitness test of sorts. Races are good to practice water stops, pacing, and the like. So 2-3 over the course of a training cycle is appropriate.

    - Are you planning any speedwork days or just general mileage?

    - For the mid range longer runs on Wed...instead of straight mileage increase from week to week, it'd be interesting to switch things up...ex. instead of 7,8,8,9,9, do 5,10,8,9, you don't get bored and give a little rest/recovery too.

    Just some of my thoughts. Good luck! I'm excited for you!

  2. Hi Erica,
    I'm really excited to follow your journey for your first marathon. I am working on a new half marathon goal (for number 6) so I can't give you advice specific to marathon training. But...(see how I'm going to anyway), similar to what the Laminator said I would encourage you to play with different paces (intervals or negative splits) during the week to build up strength and get you used to running on tired legs. I would feel more comfortable with adding a few longer Sunday runs that were closer to the marathon distance. I know that many training plans don't do that but I find my confidence increases and my anxiety decreases when I train with some runs close to the actual race distance. It just makes it all seem more possible.

    Besides all that...have fun. It is just a race. You want to feel great and enjoy the experience.

  3. Looks good Erica!

    Only thing I can think of is adding another long run. Those are definitely the most important thing about training. I noticed you didn't have any tempo/speed workouts which is totally fine if you are just focusing on finishing. I did not do speed workouts for my marathon either but looking back I'm kind of wishing that I would have. It'll help you get to that finish line quicker :)

    Keep it up! Lots of dates will be had with Dante.. and a pack of ice.

  4. nice program.
    i agree w Lam on throwing in one more distance run in. my only thought would be, on the week prior to the Diva Half, maybe ease up a bit so that you have a peak performance race.

  5. I have only done 1 marathon (Rock n Roll San Diego, 2003) and will probably not do another, as it almost killed me! Mainly because I didn't train properly. I am NO expert at all, so take what I say with a grain of salt....but I only did 1 20 miler before the marathon, and during the marathon totally bonked at mile 20 and walked most of the last 6 miles. (I also did other crucial newbie mistakes, like over-hydrating during the race and not having salt tablets or anything with me). Anyhow, I guess I'm wondering if you should add one more 20 miler or even a 21-22 miler. I don't want you to injure yourself though. And again, I am no expert whatsoever, just speaking through personal experience. You are a much better (faster, more disciplined) runner than I'll ever be. And good job not running on the High Holidays! I will probably do my run/swim/bike on those days, bad Jew that I am. ;-)

  6. I'm so glad you are back! I look forward to following your marathon journey as well. I have no pointers because I haven't done one, so it looks great to me! :)

  7. Hey Erica, looking forward to follow your marathon training.
    Very exited !!

  8. Hi everyone! Thanks for your comments, advice & encouragement! Looks like you have confirmed what I had suspected... re-working my schedule right now :)

  9. Oh those muffins look delicious!

  10. Hey, I actually just found your blog, but live in NYC and am doing Philly too! Too bad I didn't find you sooner as it looks like we're fairly similarly paced and it would have been great to have a running buddy! I hope you have a great race in 2 weeks (eek! I can't believe it's so close!).