This plan is designed to build fitness as an introduction to marathon running Athletes should use this plan if they already have a base level of run fitness and can complete 40+ minutes of consistent jogging. The plan follows a polarised training approach which means that athletes will spend 80%+ of their time developing their aerobic system.
The plan requires athletes to run in intensity zones based on perceived rate of exertion. Easy - an easy running pace, athletes should not be out of breath when conversing whilst running. Moderate - a small step up in pace from the easy zone. If running with a training partner you should be able to speak but some longer sentences will be broken by taking a breath. Moderate-Hard (MH) - speaking becomes difficult at this pace, you can manage one word answers or very short sentences. Hard - this pace is quite hard to sustain, you can potentially manage to hold that pace for a few minutes but no more.
The program includes information for athletes that may be wearing a heart rate monitor however this is not necessary as RPE is effective. If you do regularly wear a heart rate monitor when training, maximum heart rate percentage ranges are also provided with the RPE targets. To estimate your MAXHR subtract your age from 220 (e.g for a 30 year old, 220-30 = 190 beats per minute).
Simplifying the Heart Rate Zones, I like to have 3HR Zones. Z1 which is easy, sub-aerobic threshold work (where we want to spend most of our time), Z2 which is basically our no go zone in training and Z3 which is really hard work. If you are familiar with the 5 Zone method, think of Z1 as Z1&2 together, Z2 is Z3 and Z3 is Z4&5. I hope that makes sense and isn't too confusing!
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Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 03:44