28 Week Intermediate Marathon Training Plan (6 month)

This 28 week, or 6 month, marathon training plan involves 4 runs per week, along with 2 resistance training sessions. Even though it is not required that you do a marathon prior to this program, you should be able to run 45 minutes without stopping, and also be used to exercising on a regular basis. This plan would suit a 2:50-4:30 marathoner.

Sample Day 1
Use this day to look ahead, practice any drills you see, and famliarize yourself with the next few months, which will form the crux of your marathon prep.

Sample Day 3
Test

Go to a track. Warm-up easy jog 15-20 minutes. Subtract 20 beats from your blood lactate threshold, then run 1 mile (4 laps) at that number. Do not stop running, but split your lap at this point and record time, avg heart rate and rating of perceived exertion on a 1-10 scale during that first mile. Do this again for the second and third mile, staying at that aerobic heart rate range. Also record avg heart rate for the entire 3 miles. Cool-down run 10-20 minutes.

Sample Day 5
Test

Go to a track. Warm-up easy jog 15-20 minutes. Subtract 20 beats from your blood lactate threshold, then run 1 mile (4 laps) at that number. Do not stop running, but split your lap at this point and record time, avg heart rate and rating of perceived exertion on a 1-10 scale during that first mile. Do this again for the second and third mile, staying at that aerobic heart rate range. Also record avg heart rate for the entire 3 miles. Cool-down run 10-20 minutes.

Sample Day 7
Aerobic practice

Find track or open flat space. Warm-up 20 minutes, then run 2-3 miles with the heart rate as low as you can get it. Observe what type of changes you can make to your relaxation, your forward lean, you stride frequency and stride length, and arm movement to allow yourself to still run, without the heart rate rising up into Zone 4. Once you've figured it out, leave the flat space and run another 2-4 miles on a flat or slightly rolling course, continuing your easy gait. Cool-down jog 10-20 minutes.

Sample Day 8
Easy recovery jog.

Monday or Tuesday, complete easy recovery jog in Zones 1-2 for 45-60 minutes.

Sample Day 9
Multi-Sport Stability Ball Force

Superset all exercises in this routine, beginning with pushups to planks. The final exercise (the sit ups) will be done solo, with just 30 seconds rest after each set.

Sample Day 10
3 minute drill

Complete the following 3 minute drill prior to your run:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8nW_9dgPpLo&feature=related

Now, when you run, focus on:

The center of head, shoulder, hip and ankle are all in vertical alignment while in support

Contact with the ground is made by the ball of the foot first, with the heel slightly elevated. This allows the ankle and Achilles tendon to act as a significant spring

Contact with the ground is as close to the center of mass
(Underneath the body) as possible

The ankle, knee, and hip are all somewhat flexed while in support

The upper body is relaxed with arms hanging naturally

Ben Greenfield
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Ben Greenfield

I coach groups, teams and individuals from around the world for triathlon, cycling, swimming, running, obstacle racing, adventure racing, bodybuilding, muscle gain, fat loss, anti-aging and cognitive performance.

A full list of my consultation, coaching and training services is at http://greenfieldfitnesssystems.com, where you can see my concierge Ultimate coaching , and also 20 and 60 minute consultation and pre-written training and nutrition plans.