MyFit

Our MyFit Blog aims to engage and inform so that we can collectively empower everyday athletes to better their best with every run.

Basic formula for a great long distance running plan


You’re motivated, Your eager, and the running events you've been waiting so long for are looking at a non-virtual return, however you’re still unsure on what running event you want to enter, or what level of training you want to do for it?



Have I done enough for my first 10km?
Could I finish a 21.1km Half Marathon?
Have I got enough km's in the legs to tackle a full 42.2km Marathon?



What is involved for each of these distances depends on these three factors.

  1. Your running GOALS
  2. Your running EXPERIENCE
  3. Your current run FITNESS

Important thought;
If you have been out of the running scene for a while and you’re looking into making a return, your level of commitment and running involvement will vary quite dramatically compared to if you have maintained a solid running base



Whether your aiming for a 10k, 21k or 42k, find below a general overview of what level of involvement & commitment we would recommend.



10km

The beauty of a 10km race is that the training is comparatively short therefore it doesn’t have to take over your life. You can train up for a 10km run effectively in 12-weeks or less if you are an established runner (given injury free of course). 10km is also a good distance if one of your goals is to race hard and fast. Over the 12 weeks it is important to gradually build your running distance.


How a training week would typically look within 6 weeks of training.

  • Monday: Rest / Stretch Session
  • Tuesday: Shorter, sharper interval runs (30-45mins)*
  • Wednesday: Slightly hard run (Tempo Run 40-60mins)
  • Thursday: Rest / Core or Pilates session
  • Friday: Average paced run; still able to talk (45-60mins)
  • Weekend: Long, slower run tempo

* these times would change each week


How far and how hard you run really needs to be planned to allow a gradual build. Ultimately you would aim to have your weekend run up to 10km and possibly even a few 12km runs. Running the actual race distance not only helps you with your running confidence but you can see how your body copes.

Integrating stretching, core work, pilates and/or massage into your week will also help your body recover and help prevent injuries.



HALF MARATHON (21.1km)

If you are looking for a little challenge or you’d like to step up your running then the half marathon distance is ideal. The 21.1km will challenge your body and mind beyond the 10km distance and with that comes a great feeling of satisfaction. Running in a half marathon event is also a wonderful stepping-stone if you are looking to run a marathon in the future.

To train for a half marathon within a 12-week program I would recommend that you are already running around 15km-25km a week. That distance will gradually build to be around 30km-35km a week quite consistently so your running commitment has to be stronger than the shorter 10km events.

There is no “one size fits all” half marathon program out there, so it is important to look at your running base and what you are trying to achieve.  Are you aiming to finish or would you like to crack the 2 hour mark?  With clear goals and intentions more detailed focus and planning is required.  Again, I cannot over emphasize the importance of having a running coach to help you achieve your goals.


How a training week would typically look within 6 weeks of training.

  • Monday: Rest
  • Tuesday: Average paced run; still able to talk (60mins)*
  • Wednesday: Slightly hard run (Tempo Run 40-60mins)
  • Thursday: Rest OR short easy run (20-30mins)
  • Friday: Shorter, sharper interval runs (45-60mins)
  • Saturday: Rest / Other Cardio (Cycle, Walk)
  • Sunday: Long, slower run (90-120mins)

* these times would change each week


If you are trying to break a specific time (ie; 1:45hr finish time) then you really need to focus on your pace when you are running your interval and tempo runs. The long runs will help you train your mind and prepare you for any ‘darker challenging patches’.

Don’t forget to mix up your running – include hills, trail runs, strength training and drills into your program.



MARATHON (42.2km)

It is strongly recommended that you have a solid running base before you tackle a marathon program. Marathon training will tap into your ‘personal time’ so it is important that you have clear training plans, determination and perseverance so that motivation can help you build a strong body and mind-set.

A years worth of running in the legs is ideal, but you can train for a marathon in around 18-20 weeks dedicating around 10 hours per week to training.

The main difference between training for a half marathon compared to a marathon is the volume of running, in particular the long run. Your long run can build up to 28-32km. You need to learn to LOVE these runs as they are the key session of a successful program. 

When you are running long you are teaching your body to burn fat as fuel. Equally important, long runs help train your mind.   Thoughts of doubt will undoubtedly try to take over when you are running long. Taming and controlling these thoughts during training can help you hurdle over them on race day.


How a training week would typically look within 6 weeks of training.

  • Monday: Rest day (These days are extraimportant when marathon training)
  • Tuesday: Average paced run; still able to talk (60-75mins)*
  • Wednesday: Slightly hard run (Tempo Run 60mins)
  • Thursday: Rest, other cardio OR short easy run (45mins)
  • Friday: Shorter, sharper interval runs (60-75mins)
  • Saturday: Rest / Other Cardio (Cycle, Walk)
  • Sunday: Long, slower run (100-150mins)

* these times would change each week


When you are marathon training, it is highly recommended to keep a log of the km's covered in your shoes to avoid over using them. If you overuse your shoes, injuries might present themselves. A good way of keeping track are through running apps like strava or any brand specific apps, simply add your shoe/s to your profile and the app will keep you updated.

With good shoes, socks, a program and a can-do attitude, your marathon goals are within reach!

For any running event, seeking advice and a program from a running coach would also help you achieve your personal goals. 

Hopefully I will see you at the start line of a running event soon.

Happy running!


SHOP RUNNING
Basic formula for a great long distance running plan
Tags #training
Posted on 04-04-2021
By TheAtheletesFoot
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