Are you planning on joining the next marathon event? Afraid that this will be your first time and don’t know the training you need to undergo?

Well, tons of people attempt to run a marathon every year. In fact, around half of the people in any given marathon are beginner marathoner. That means in the lead-up to the race, the majority of people have never taken on training for a marathon before.

There are things that you need to follow and consider when doing marathon training. It’s not an overnight change but it could surely help you get in shape at the day of the event.

In training sessions, the general rule of thumb is to keep our heart rate to between 60%-70% of your maximum heart rate, the reason for this is that if you train at a rate below this heart rate, then you will not get the most out of your sessions. However, if you go above these levels for your longer runs then your recovery period will extend and that is when you will most likely feel flat and tired during the day.

You need to follow training schedules that is designed for your own fitness level, the miles you get into your legs the fitter you will become. That is because you will actively improve your fitness and endurance levels when training for a marathon.

As a beginner you always start with a brisk walk then progress into jog then jog into run. It’s as easy as one, two,three. All you need to have is discipline and commitment.

Here are some training tips to follow in training for a marathon: (by Bob Seebohar)

  1. Goal Setting – I firmly believe anyone can complete a marathon as long as he or she is in good physical health without injuries. However, realistic not idealistic goals should be set from the start. I would encourage this athlete to set her primary goal as finishing without injury. Often times, athletes (especially first timers) will converse with other athletes to set race goals, but these are often idealistic goals that are sure to set the athlete up for failure. Once you convince her that this goal is the smartest way to begin her training, then and only then should you construct her training program. I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to have a well established and athlete supported goal before engaging in the training program.
  2. Assess Sport Background and History – This is even more important than program design because you will not know where to begin or how to progress the training program if you do not understand the athlete’s sport history. With so little time to train, the main goal I would have for this athlete would be injury prevention. She will finish the race even if she walks as I described above.
  3. Training Program – I will make the assumption that the athlete has not been running consistently (at least three times per week) for the past three to five years but does run one to two times per week at the longest duration of 30 minutes.
Week Walk Run Core Strength
1 2 times for 1 hour 2 times for 30 and 35 mins 1-2 times
2 2 times for 1 hour and 1 hour, 15 mins (hills) 2 times for 35 and 40 mins 1-2 times
3 1 times for 1 hour, 30 mins (hills) the day after the longer run 3 times for 30, 40 and 50 mins 1-2 times
4 1 time for 1 hour, 45 mins (hills) the day after the longer run 3 times for 40, 50 and 60 mins 1-2 times
5 2 times for 1 hour, 30 mins and 2 hours (hills) the day after the longer run 2 times for 45 and 60 mins 1-2 times
6 1 time for 1 hour, 30 mins (hills) the day after the longer run 3 times for 50, 60 and 70 mins 1-2 times
7 1 time for 1 hour (hills) 3 times for 60, 60 and 80 mins 1-2 times
8 1 time for 1 hour, 15 mins (hills) the day after the longer run 3 times for 45, 60 and 90 mins 1-2 times
9 1 time for 2 hours (hills) the day after the long run 3 times for 60, 60 and 110 mins 1 time
10 2 times for 1 hour each 1 time for 45-60 mins 2-3 days before race

    As you can see from the outlined training program, progressing from walking to walking on hills and gradually introducing longer but safer run volume are the keys for finishing a marathon successfully. I also typically recommend performing longer runs on dirt roads or paths whenever possible to lessen the ground forces when the foot strikes the ground. When it comes to preparing an athlete for a marathon with only 10.5 weeks, it is important to err on the safe side of injury prevention. Runs can always be substituted for long walks and should be considered if the athlete experiences any type of musculoskeletal challenge upon beginning the training program.