Post Marathon Training Guide - Intermediate Schedule, Week 2
Monday: Cross train for 30-40 minutes today. Muscles recuperate best if given 48 hours to rest. This doesn't mean that you should not run more than two days in succession, but you should think seriously before running hard two days in succession. Regardless, Monday is always a day of cross-training for those in the Intermediate program, before or after the marathon.
Tuesday: Four easy miles for today's run. This is an increase of one mile from last week's Tuesday workout. I'm trying to get you back to a steady-state level, and one way to do it is to institute slight mileage increases. Sudden increases offer a route to injury.
Wednesday: Run 3 x mile, jogging 3-5 minutes between. Run your miles at about the pace you would run that distance during a 10-K race. This is a pace increase from the marathon pace I asked you to run these miles in last week. Slightly tougher, but still not that difficult a workout considering you are in your post-marathon recovery mode. You might be more comfortable running this workout on the roads rather than at a track.
Thursday: Go 4 miles, the same as you did Tuesday. You might say that these midweek workouts are like a sandwich. Two relatively easy days on the outside with a relatively harder day on the inside.
Friday: Total rest. Don't stay out too late tonight. You still want to catch up on any sleep you might have lost during the hard weeks of training and, especially, before the marathon, when nervousness might have prevented you from sleeping deeply. Sleep loss is cumulative, and it's time to catch up.
Saturday: Do a 35-minute tempo run today. Begin by jogging 10 minutes, accelerate gradually to marathon pace for a 15-minute period, then slide off the pace the last 10 minutes of the run. Keeping with the spirit of this second tapering week, whatever you do today should not be done with high intensity. You're still wounded from all the effort you put into the marathon two weeks ago. Stay away from beach volleyball games--which may not be too difficult to do if yours was a fall marathon and this is November. Regardless, don't injure yourself by doing something foolish.
Sunday: Run 60-90 minutes. The top optional end of today's training is an hour of running, as was the case last Saturday and will be the case next Saturday. The difference is the bottom optional end. I want you to do at least 60 minutes of running compared to a minimum of 45 last week. Slight increases in difficulty result in the most gain.
TIP OF THE WEEK: Once back with running, don't run too hard or too fast too soon. Dr. (Jack) Scaff recommends the 10 percent rule: No more than 10 percent of your total mileage can be spent in racing or speedwork. "After you've run a marathon, you need 260 miles of training before you enter your next event or start doing speedwork," he says. "For someone running 30 to 40 miles a week, that means six to eight weeks of recovery running. Someone used to higher mileage probably recovers sooner."
To purchase an interactive version of Hal Higdon's Post-Marathon Training Guide, click here.