From 5k To Marathon
Moving up from a 5km to the Marathon
There comes a period in the life of each 5k runner (or even jogger!) when he thinks about going on to the next level of running. That level would be the 10k and next the half marathon. The greatest objective will be to chance a complete marathon. While it is true that you can run the marathon, you shouldn’t think that it’s all about increasing your stamina in order for your body to take care of the demands placed by really long distance to be covered. The switch from running 5k to running a marathon demands an entire new means of running, a much better dedication of the sport, considerably longer and much more troublesome instruction and a very different mindset.
For anyone who is thinking about upgrading from 5k to the marathon, the first thing to do is speak to your doctor and acquire his clearance that your body can take any risk of strain and demands that’ll be placed upon it. While there is not age bar to running a marathon, the older you are, the more careful you have to be.
In case you have decided to try moving from 5k to the marathon, here are some conditions you will need to remember.
You must have been running 5k for at one (ideally two) years. The marathon places huge challenges on your body and unless of course one’s body has become conditioned with time to take the 5k stress, you simply will not have a base on which to build up to the longer distance.
- Step up from 5k in stages. Perform a few 10k runs and some half marathons to accustom your body towards the requirements of the distance.
- At least 3 months just before your first marathon, you need to be running no less than 25 miles weekly to condition yourself.
- Read up concerning the mental conditioning a marathon runner necessitates. Speak with those who are running the distance. As a beginner you’re running the race in times of over a lonely 3 hours. The mental efforts associated with this type of effort is enormous – its easy to become another victim of a trance like state and lose a record of what is occurring in the contest.
- Make sure your first race is under the right conditions. It should be in the exact climate and on the same styles of surface where you have been doing your 5k running. The body will be used to the conditions as well as the strain on it will be less.
- Make it a point in your thoughts as to why you are running. Whether it is to examine the body and face up to the challenge, that’s fine. If it’s simply for bragging rights or to lose weight (it won’t happen – marathon runners need a high calorie intake) don’t even bother to try. With that sorts of motivation all you’ll be performing is torturing your self.
Remember that running a marathon is not merely concerning hauling your half dead body on the finish line. If that happens, your motivation to run the distance again will evaporate. You’ll need to be both mentally and physically willing to run the race in order that towards the end of it, regardless of where you finish off, your body may be feeling fatigued but still feels good. And your mind should feel that it must be anything you want to do once again.
There’s no getting away from the fact that to finish a marathon, you need to get many training miles under your belt. However, most beginner marathon runners don’t realize there is more than one way to go about your training.
Beginners Marathon Training Schedule
Here’s What NOT to Do:
- Jump headlong into your training program letting your enthusiasm carry you along.
- Get on the road and grind out as many miles as your new running legs can manage.
- Calculate that you need to run X number of miles per week in Y number of sessions. Each session should therefore be X divided by Y in length.
- Get an experienced training partner and run together, constantly struggling to keep pace.
- Equate “Rest” with “Lazy” and train 7 times per week.
- The end result is almost always injury, I’ve seen people approach their first marathon this way. The end result is almost always injury. There’s a popular phrase: “Train Smart” and it perfectly applies to your beginner marathon training schedule.
The Thinking (Wo)mans Training Schedule
Slow and Steady. First and foremost, you need to build your weekly mileage slowly. Apply the 10% rule and aim to build both your weekly mileage and the length of your longest weekly run by no more than 10% in any week.
Easy/Hard, Easy/Hard. Structure your training program in a way that alternates between easy training days and more demanding training sessions.
Recovery Lets You Grow. While pounding the streets for miles helps develop your cardiovascular endurance, it is the rest and recovery between sessions that allows your body to grow stronger. Don’t make the mistake of over-training early on in your program.
Have A Plan. Training for a marathon is hard enough without having to constantly guess where you are in your running training. Make sure you follow a structured training program. The provides two main benefits: (i) you’ll always know how far you have progressed and how far is to go (a great motivational tool) and (ii) it will help you avoid injury by overtraining.
Respect the Long Run. The weekly Long Run is the cornerstone around which your entire training program should be built. It is this run that will build both mental and physical strength that will carry you through your marathon.
Mix it Up. You should incorporate Cross Training sessions into your weekly training program. This is particularly beneficial during the first few weeks of your training program as it allows you to develop your cardiovascular fitness while giving your legs some much needed recovery time.
The Structure of a Standard Training Week
Here is how a standard beginners marathon training schedule week should be structured::
- Monday: Rest day
- Tuesday: Medium training run
- Wednesday: Cross-training or short training run
- Thursday: Short training run with technique drills
- Friday: Rest day
- Saturday: Cross-training (earlier in the training program) or short training run
- Sunday: Weekly Long Run