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3 Week Marathon Taper (Club and fun runner)

Author

Dr Garry Palmer

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Length

4 Weeks

Plan Specs

running marathon intermediate advanced masters

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Plan Description

This is a three week taper designed for club and fun runners targeting a 3:30 to 5 hour road marathon and has been prepared by Dr Garry Palmer

Over the period of 22 days, the taper in achieved by reducing both volume and duration of the sessions, whilst maintaining intensity.

The plan is best targeting to runners who have been running a minimum of 40 km (25 miles) per week for at least the previous 8-12 weeks in preparation phase. It also assumes they will have previously undertaken at least 2 long steady runs over at least 28 km (18 miles).

The plan uses a combination of target distance (for interval sessions) and heart rate based zone running (for longer aerobic efforts), but the athlete can easily switch these metrics to use the plan as duration based or pace based training sessions.

The plan is suitable for any road based marathon. However, please note, it assumes that race day is on a SUNDAY. The plan can be reused for future races.

The sessions prescribed are based on Dr Palmers book Elite Performance Running; From Middle Distance to Marathon



Stats

Average Weekly Breakdown

Workouts Weekly Average Longest Workout
1:26 hrs 1:15 hrs
1:30 hrs 0:30 hrs
—— ——
Workouts Per Week Weekly Average Longest Workout
1:26 hrs 1:15 hrs
1:30 hrs 0:30 hrs
—— ——

Training Load By Week


Dr Garry Palmer

Sportstest

Sportstests' Dr Garry Palmer provides the ultimate personalised coaching & sports testing for cyclists, triathletes and runners. Whether you're a beginner or an elite athlete, knowing your personalised training zones will help you improve faster and to a higher level.

Testing provides a wealth of information such as your Vo2 max, aerobic threshold, lactate threshold, aerobic capacity and much more. Knowing how hard to train and where your weaknesses lie will help you become a better athlete.

Sample Day 1

18.64mi
Long Steady Run

This is your FINAL long steady run and should be done very close to target marathon race pace, or around 15-20 seconds per km slower.

This is an excellent opportunity to check your race day kit is not causing any problems, rubbing, blisters or sores.

If possible, do the long run as part of an organised event, so that you can benefit from running with others, and have access to water and feed stations. If needed use a shorter event, such as a 10 mile run, or half marathon, and do a pre-event run to add the distance, but time this well so that you get to the start line as the event starts, or a few minutes after the events has started.

Sample Day 2

0:30:00
Roll and Stretch

As you get stronger you will also get stiffer. It is really important you maintain mobility and are fully aware of any niggles that could potentially hamper your performance. Get on top of them before they halt you in your tracks!

If in doubt get advice from a Sports Physiotherapist who has experience of working with runners, and get them to show you some specific stretches that are relevant to you.

Sample Day 3

1:15:00
65TSS
75 mins Steady Aerobic Endurance

The bread and butter of your fitness is to develop the best cardiovascular fitness possible. These sessions may (at first) appear tedious, but holding a fixed heart rate will ensure you get an excellent whole body work out. At the end of the session your legs will know they have worked, but with good post-exercise recovery practices you should recover really quickly.

Sample Day 4

0:30:00
Roll and Stretch

As you get stronger you will also get stiffer. It is really important you maintain mobility and are fully aware of any niggles that could potentially hamper your performance. Get on top of them before they halt you in your tracks!

If in doubt get advice from a Sports Physiotherapist who has experience of working with runners, and get them to show you some specific stretches that are relevant to you.

Sample Day 5

1:00:00
50TSS
60 mins Steady Aerobic Endurance

The bread and butter of your fitness is to develop the best cardiovascular fitness possible. These sessions may (at first) appear tedious, but holding a fixed heart rate will ensure you get an excellent whole body work out. At the end of the session your legs will know they have worked, but with good post-exercise recovery practices you should recover really quickly.

Sample Day 6

0:30:00
Roll and Stretch

As you get stronger you will also get stiffer. It is really important you maintain mobility and are fully aware of any niggles that could potentially hamper your performance. Get on top of them before they halt you in your tracks!

If in doubt get advice from a Sports Physiotherapist who has experience of working with runners, and get them to show you some specific stretches that are relevant to you.

Sample Day 8

12.43mi
Long Steady Run

This long steady run and should be done very close to target marathon race pace, or around 15-20 seconds per km slower. It is shorter than the run you did last week, and you should be comfortable running this significantly shorter distance.

This is another excellent opportunity to check your race day kit is not causing any problems, rubbing, blisters or sores.

If possible, do the long run as part of an organised event, so that you can benefit from running with others, and have access to water and feed stations. If needed use a shorter event, such as a 10km or 10 mile run, and do a pre-event run to add the distance, but time this well so that you get to the start line as the event starts, or a few minutes after the events has started.

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