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2015 Boston Marathon training plan, 12 weeks

I was worrying over how to train for the upcoming Boston Marathon, as I recently hit a plateau, and then got slower (which I shall discuss in another post) and decided I needed to switch things up. I recalled that the B.A.A. website had training plans. I went there, and they have removed the old programs they once featured, but they do provide reference to training plans created by “High Performance Coach Terrence Mahon” via the miCoach platform. 

I went through the steps, which involve registering, watching videos, picking your way through several screens and answering some basic questions about your goal and then, there is a calendar with a program in it. It looks like a good program, but the long runs are on Mondays and rest days are Tuesdays, and if you want to change that, it requires some tedious maneuvering, as far as I can tell.

Also it is very glitchy — for example, the whole training program ends on April 13, despite placing the race date on April 20, and random 3:20 minutes of intervals show up on some days; they are not intentional, designers acknowledge in the “help” forum.

Anyway, I spent the last two or so hours tweaking this program for myself, moving long runs to Saturday and the rest days to Monday (I am not used to taking weekly rest days, but this will be part of the change up for me), and also incorporating a couple of races I want to do.

I figured since I spent so much time on this, I’d share. If you are a coach or otherwise running geek, I’d love to get your thoughts in the comments:

Blue Zone = easy, ranging from about 8:00-9:00 min/mile pace

Green Zone = harder, ranging from 6:50-7:45 min/mile pace

Yellow Zone = more harder (smile), under 6:50 min/mile pace

Red Zone = hardest

I have not yet determined goal pace. Current half marathon pace is about a 7 minute mile, just to give you an idea of what I’m working with. (Strength and flexibility workouts added Sunday, Tuesday and Fridays). I have not added up the mileage in this program, as it goes by time, but it is at a glance lower mileage than I did last season. High mileage worked greatly for me, for a while. But over the last year, I think my body began to wear down. I am hoping a lower mileage, yet still pretty intense, program will help restore the spring to my steps.

Wednesday (Jan 28)

15 min in Blue Zone (easy, ranging from about 8:00-9:00)

20 min in top of Green Zone (hard, ranging from 6:45-7:45)

3 min in Blue Zone

90 sec x 3 in Red Zone (very hard, at close to 100 percent) up hill

After each hill, jog easily back to base (10-15 min total)

10 min in Blue Zone

Totaling a little less than an hour for entire workout

 

29 Thursday

8 miles in the Blue Zone “… this a recovery day. You had a harder run yesterday and today is about recharging your body. No need to go too fast.”

 

30 Friday

20 min in lower Blue Zone

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone

 

31 Saturday

2 hours 30 min in the Blue Zone

 

Sunday (Feb 1)

45-60 minutes in the Blue Zone

 

2 Monday

Cross train/ easy jog/ walk dog/ whatevers

 

3 Tuesday

70 min 

4 Wednesday

15 min in Blue Zone

5 min in upper Green Zone (6:45-6:50) x 6 with 2 min recoveries

15 min in Blue Zone

 

5 Thursday

60-75 min recovery run in Blue Zone

 

6 Friday

20 min in lower Blue Zone

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone

 

7 Saturday (incorporate DRC race) 

2 hrs 30 min run

70-min warm up (lake loop)

5-mile race (35-40 min 8 a.m. at Winfrey Point, 7:15 average pace) then 6 miles/ incorporate hills 

 

8 Sunday

40 min recovery

 

9 Monday

Rest

 

10 Tuesday

35 min in Blue Zone

Hill repeats x 6 on steeper hill than previous sessions – 60 seconds each with a 1 min recovery

10 minutes in Blue Zone

 

11 Wednesday

8 miles blue zone 

 

12 Thursday

15 min in Blue Zone

6 x 1500 repeats on track in Red Zone

15 min in Blue Zone

 

13 Friday

50 min easy

 

14 Saturday

60 min in the Blue Zone

5 x 5 min at about 6:45-6:50 pace with 3-min recovery in between “Increase your stride rate and maintain good form as you run at this higher intensity.”

15 Sunday

45-60 min easy

 

16 Monday

Rest/whatevs

 

17 Tuesday

70 min in Blue Zone

 

18 Wednesday

15 min in Blue Zone (8:30-8:40)

20 min in Green Zone (7:15-7:30)

3 min in Blue Zone (8:45)

90 sec hill surges times 3 (as hard as possible – AHAP!) (6:38 average)

10 min in Blue Zone (8:30-8:45)

19 Thursday

7-8 miles in Blue Zone

20 Friday

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone (do in the morning, long day Saturday) 

21 Saturday

Cross Timbers trail marathon (technical trail – goal is 5.5-6 hours)

22 Sunday

rest or 6 mile easy

23 Monday

75 minutes easy

45 minutes easy

24 Tuesday

10 min in Blue Zone (8:30)

25 min in Green Zone (7:30)

5 min in Blue Zone (8:30)

25 min in Green Zone (slightly faster than first segment) (7:15)

10 min in Blue Zone (8:30)

25 Wednesday

10 miles

26 Thursday

AM: 15 min in Blue Zone

6 x 1500 repeats on track in Red Zone

15 min in Blue Zone

PM: 60 min easy

27 Friday

50 min

28 Saturday

2 hrs 45 min (18+ miles)

Sunday (March 1)

60 min easy

2 Monday

35 min in Blue Zone

Hill repeats x 6 on steeper hill than previous sessions – 60 seconds each with a 1 min recovery

10 minutes in Blue Zone

3 Tuesday

90  min

4 Wednesday

10 min in Blue Zone

25 min in Green Zone

5 min in Blue Zone

25 min in Green Zone

10 min in Blue Zone

5 Thursday

15 min in Blue Zone

12 x 400 meter repeats

 

6 Friday

40-60 min easy

7 Saturday

levee 30 min +10k +60 min

 

8 Sunday

40-60 min easy

9 Monday

40 recovery

 

10 Tuesday

70 min Blue Zone

11 Wednesday

15 min in Blue Zone (easy, ranging from about 8:00-9:00)

20 min in top of Green Zone (hard, ranging from 6:45-7:45)

3 min in Blue Zone

90 sec x 3 in Red Zone (very hard, at close to 100 percent) up hill

After each hill, jog easily back to base (10-15 min total)

10 min in Blue Zone

Totaling a little less than an hour for entire workout

 

12 Thursday

50 min

13 Friday

20 min in lower Blue Zone

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone

 

14 Saturday

3 hrs (20+ miles)

15 Sunday

40-60 easy

16 Monday

70 min

17 Tuesday

recovery/cross train

18 Wednesday

10 min in Blue Zone

25 min in Green Zone

5 min in Blue Zone

25 min in Green Zone (slightly faster than first segment)

10 min in Blue Zone

 

19 Thursday

50 min

20 Friday

40 min

21 Saturday

50 mile Grasslands

 

22 Sunday

20 warm up, 40 min top of Blue Zone

23 Monday

Rest

24 Tuesday

20 warm up, 40 min top of Blue Zone

25 Wednesday

15 min in Blue Zone (easy, ranging from about 8:00-9:00)

20 min in top of Green Zone (hard, ranging from 6:45-7:45)

3 min in Blue Zone

90 sec x 3 in Red Zone (very hard, at close to 100 percent) up hill

After each hill, jog easily back to base (10-15 min total)

10 min in Blue Zone

Totaling a little less than an hour for entire workout

26 Thursday

20 warm up, 40 min top of Blue Zone

27 Friday

45-60 min recovery

*28 Saturday*

3 hrs

75 min in Blue Zone

90 min in Green Zone – at goal marathon pace (7:15??)

15 min in Blue Zone

“This is your Boston Marathon simulation run. Find a course with rolling hills on a 2-3% grade both up and down.”

29 Sunday

rest

30 Monday

40 min

31 Tuesday

15 min in Blue Zone

12 min in Yellow Zone

3 min in Blue Zone

90 seconds in red zone x3 with 2:30 recoveries

1 Wednesday

65 minutes Blue Zone

2 Thursday

60 min in the Blue Zone

Yellow Zone (around 6:55 min mile) 2 min + Green Zone (about 7:10) 3 min times 8 “Increase your stride rate and maintain good form as you run at this higher intensity.”

3 Friday

35 minutes

4 Saturday (DRC race??)

Get in 2 hrs 40 total, including race

5 Sunday

45-60 min

6 Monday

Cross train/ easy whatevers

7 Tuesday

20 min in lower Blue Zone

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone

8 Wednesday

15 min in Blue Zone

5 min in upper Green Zone (6:45-6:50) x 6 with 2 min recoveries

15 min in Blue Zone

9 Thursday

60-75 min recovery run in Blue Zone

10 Friday

20 min in lower Blue Zone

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone

11 Saturday

80 min in Blue Zone This is your last longer run before the marathon. Keep it relaxed. All the hard work is in the bank and now it is time to get your mind and body ready for next week.

12 Sunday

20 min in lower Blue Zone

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone

13 Monday

Rest

14 Tuesday

20 min in lower Blue Zone

30-40 min in upper Blue Zone

15 Wednesday

15 min in Blue Zone

5 min in Yellow x3 with 2 min recoveries

5 min Blue Zone

2 min Red Zone

15 min Blue Zone

Run this last interval session starting at marathon pace and finishing just slightly faster. No need to go too hard as you’re less than a week from the race. Finish it off with one hard interval that goes from the Yellow Zone to the Red Zone. This will help your body store carbohydrates for the race.

16 Thursday

35 min

17 Friday

Walk

Saturday

30 min Blue Zone

 

Sunday

20 min – This last run is all about shaking out the pre-race nerves. Try to run around the same time as the race start so have an idea of how the temperature might be on race day.

BOSTON MARATHON MONDAY

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