Regular Runner
16 Week
Training Plan

This schedule is for you if you are a regular runner with moderate levels of motivation, and is looking to push a few boundaries. You’ll have the time, motivation and commitment to run 5 times each week.

Easy or recovery runs. (less than 60% effort)

During an easy run, you should feel relaxed. You should be breathing comfortably and be capable of holding a conversation throughout the run. If you’re a new/novice runner then you’ll probably be questioning whether any runs feel easy and holding a conversation may feel impossible. Slow down, walk if necessary and control your effort.

Seady runs. (60-70% effort)

These are the bread and butter of your training, the ‘miles in the bank’. Steady runs build the aerobic base that acts as the foundation for the rest of your training. Conversations are still possible at this pace but in sentences rather than long gossip.

Tempo runs (70-75% effort)

Running at tempo pace is great for improving your running economy. It’s a sustained cruise pace that requires concentration but you can hold on to. You will find them slightly uncomfortable and they’ll require concentration but they are well worth the effort.

Threshold running (80% effort)

This is a little harder than tempo running. You’ll only be capable of uttering a four or five words as you run. As you get fitter and more experienced you’ll learn how to find your own threshold pace and this will change the fitter, stronger and faster you get. These runs are all about ‘controlled discomfort”.

Long runs.

These are a real focus of the build up. They should be used to develop strength and endurance but also to practice your target marathon pace (TMP – 8 minute mile pace) and control.

Remember, training plans are not set in stone. Be flexible and adaptable. Tweak the plan and change the days to suit your needs and circumstances. Learn to listen to your body. Always have lighter days after hard days. For the best marathon results be consistent and bank your long runs.

16 weeks to go: The first 4 weeks are about setting the foundations for more marathon specific sessions.
Mon: 30 min easy.
Tue: 12 min easy run. (5min steady, 1 min tempo ) x 5. 12 min easy run = 54 min
Thur: 30 min steady.
Sat: Run 10 min, easy 20 min steady, 10 min easy = 40 min
Sun: 6 mile easy

15 weeks to go:
Mon: 35 min easy running.
Tue: 12 min easy run (2 min at threshold, 2 min jog) x 6. 12 min easy run = 48 min
Thur: 40 min steady
Sat: Run 10min, easy 30min steady, 10min easy = 50 min
Sun: 8 mile easy

14 weeks to go:
Mon: 35 min easy running.
Tue: 12 min easy run. (3 min at threshold, 2 min jog) x 6. 12 min easy run = 54 min
Thur: 1 mile easy (1 mile steady, 1 mile tempo run) x2. 1 mile easy
Sat: 10 min easy, 10 min steady, 10 min hard, 10 min easy = 40 min
Sun: 10 mile easy.

13 weeks to go: An easier week to allow for adaptation.
Mon: 30 min easy
Tue: 40mins easy
Thur: 30 min easy
Sat: 30 min easy
Sun: 8 mile easy

12 weeks to go: Increasing the intensity will bring on your fitness levels, just remember to make the easy runs easy so you can get your recovery in.
Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tue: 12 min easy. (4 min threshold, 2 min jog recovery) x 5. 12 min easy = 54 min
Thur: 60 min steady
Sat: 12 min easy (3 mile tempo run) 12 min easy.
Sun: 12 mile easy run.

11 weeks to go: When doing fast intervals make sure you find a good surface to run on, that is traffic free with minimal twists and turns. Canals and cycle tracks are ideal for this.
Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tue: 12 min easy. (60 s hard, 90 s jog recovery) x 8. 12 min easy = 44 min
Thur: 12 min easy (8 min tempo, with 3 min easy jog recovery) x 3. 12 min easy = 57 min
Sat: Run 10 min easy, 30 min steady, 10 min easy = 50 min
Sun: 15 mile easy run or a half marathon as a training run.

10 weeks to go: You are well into your marathon training now. Ensure you are eating for recovery and getting good quality sleep.
Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tue: 12 min easy. (4 min tempo, 2 min jog recovery) x 6. 12 min easy = 60 min
Thur: 65 min steady
Sat: 12 min easy (Hills: 45s hard up hill, jog down to recover) x 10. 12 min easy
Sun: 17 miles steady paced long run. Practice your fueling and hydration strategies.
9 weeks to go: The hard long training runs make you mentally tough for race day.

Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tue: 12min easy (70s hard, 2 min jog recovery) x 10. 12 min easy = 55 min 40 s
Thur: 12 min easy (7 min, 6 min, 5 min, 4 min, 3 min, 2 min all at threshold pace with a 2 min jog recovery) 12 min easy = 55 min
Sat: 10 min easy, 20 min steady, 10 min easy = 40 min
Sun: 20 miles steady. Run the last 4 miles at target marathon pace. Practice your fueling and hydration strategies.

8 weeks to go: Make sure you vary your pace throughout the week to maximise your fitness gains.
Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tues: 12 min easy (3 min at threshold, 90 s jog recovery) x 4, then do 15 min at marathon pace. 12 min easy = 57 min
Thur: 70 min steady
Sat: 10 min easy, 10 min steady, 10 min at marathon pace, 10 min hard, 10 min easy = 50 min
Sun: 13 miles steady.

7 weeks to go: Consider getting a sports massage to help with injury prevention.
Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tues: 12 min easy. (90s threshold, 30s hard, 2 min easy) x 8. 12 min easy = 56 min
Thur: 12 min easy (10 min tempo, with 3 min easy jog recovery) x 3. 12 min easy = 60 min
Sat: 40 min easy
Sun: 20 miles steady. Aim to run the last 3 miles faster.

6 weeks to go: Race a half marathon to get an indicator of your form.
Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tue: 10 min easy (5 x 3 min tempo with 2 min jog recovery) 10 min easy = 45 min
Thur:20mins easy
Fri: 15 min easy run.
Sat: Rest
Sun: Race Half Marathon. A good opportunity to practice your race day

Preparation and routines. What is your marathon race pace? Your finish time in this half marathon event will give you an approximate indication of your marathon finish time. To give you a guide and something to aim for multiply your half marathon time by 2 and add 15 minutes to give you an expected finish time. For example, your half marathon took you 1hr 30mins hrs a fair marathon target time would be 3hrs 15mins.

5 weeks to go: This week is a delicate balance of recovery from the half and putting in some good running, just listen to your body this week and cut back if you need to.
Mon: Rest if you raced a half the day before.
Tue: 12 min easy (6 min threshold pace with 2 min jog recovery) x 5. 12 min easy = 64 min
Thur: 80 min steady
Sat: 10 min easy, 15 min at marathon pace, 15 min faster, 10 min easy = 50 min
Sun: 21-mile run. Just bank the miles.

4 weeks to go: It is time to get familiar with your marathon race pace. Know what time you are aiming for and get used to running at this pace in training. Learn what your race pace feels like and dial it into your system.
Mon: 40 min easy running.
Tue: 12 min easy. (4 min at marathon pace, 1 min faster, 60 s jog recovery) x 6. 12 min easy = 60 min
Thur: 12 min easy. (2 min at threshold, 2 min easy jog) x10. 12 min easy = 64 min
Sat: 40 min easy
Sun: 2-hour run. (Run 1 hour steady in one direction, then turn and try to run home faster for the second hour)

3 weeks to go: The long run is tapering off now and you have banked the hardest weeks, so just look after yourself in the final weeks and don’t overreach.
Mon: 35 min easy running.
Tue: 12 min easy (3 min threshold, 90 s jog recovery) x 8. 12 min easy jog = 60 min
Thur: 60 min steady run.
Sat: 10 min easy (20 min steady, 20 min at marathon pace, 5 min fast) 10 min easy = 65 min
Sun: 90 min easy run

2 weeks to go: You are well into the taper phase now. Do not be tempted to do more, trust the training and let your body recover from the hard training you have been doing.
Mon: 30 min easy running.
Tue: 10 min easy, 15 min at marathon pace then (4 x 60 s threshold, 60 s walk recovery). 10min easy = 43 min
Thur: 10mins easy run (5 x 2 min tempo, 2 min jog recovery) then 10 min at marathon pace. 10 min easy = 50 min
Sat: 30 min easy run.
Sun: 70 min easy run.

1 week to go: Race week‐ Taper your running and rest up. Leave all your jobs until after the marathon and use the spare time to put your feet up.
Mon: 20 min easy running.
Tue: 10 min easy, 2 miles at marathon race pace, 10min easy.
Thur: 15 min easy
Sat: Rest or optional 10 min easy
Sun: Race your marathon; Good luck. Start at your target marathon race pace and look to feel good at half way. Dig deep and aim to run strongly in the last 6 miles.

© Yelling Performance 2014

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