> I am 29, and have been running for about 10 months now. I have been
> running about 15 to 20 miles per week. I recently ran a 10K in 57:55.
> I am interested in starting to train for a marathon before I turn 30,
> just as a goal, in August. If anyone has any suggested routines I
> should follow to insure my preparation, I would appreciate the advice.
> D. Hart
Hi. I am training for my first marathon this April for my 40th
birthday. There are lots of theories - check out the Marine Corp.
marathon web page. To my mind none make nearly as much sense as
the training ideas laid out in "Galloway's Book on Running."
So far things are working fine, I'm up to 18 mile runs at slightly
better than a 9 minute/mile pace, without any real aches or pains.
Jeff Galloway's training advice, if the goal is to finish, is
simple. To start with, to train to race 26 miles you need to
have trained at 26 miles. You also need lots of rest to recover
from long or hard runs. The most important thing is to run a long
slow run every other week, each about 2 miles longer than the last,
with at least one 26 miler, and no long runs within about 3 weeks
of the race. On the off weeks do a run at half the length of the
last long run. Only increase weekly milage by 5-10% per week, on
average. You should not do back to back hard/long runs, and you
should not do back to back hard/long weeks. The weeks should go like:
long, decrease by 30%, longer, decrease by 50%, longer yet, drop
by 30%, ... with the drop 50% weeks being very easy to give full
recovery. So the weeks might go like:
20 miles, 14 mile, 22 miles, 11 miles, 24 miles, 17 miles, 26 miles,
13 miles... Given 6 months of this will work you to plenty of weekly
At first I found it hard to drop back the 30% much less the 50%,
but my weak link (left knee) told me to do it anyway and I have not
had any trouble with my knee in weeks (knock on wood).
Given the amount of effort it will take to run a marathon, the $15
or so for the book is a minor cost, so I'd recommend you pick up
a copy. Also, don't save money on your shoes.
Good luck (and the same to me!)