Philadelphia Marathon Training Plan

I can’t believe it’s already time to start marathon training. I was getting pretty antsy a few weeks ago, but somehow managed to forget until last weekend rolled around.

I had a pretty difficult time finding a plan for me. I wanted more weekly mileage than last year, but not too much weekly mileage. So I was pretty excited when I saw the following plan in Runner’s World.

The workouts and mileage seemed on target, so this is what I am going to try to stick with! Except this week…hah. I have a duathlon on Sunday so I am skipping the long run. It’s only week 1 and I am already skipping workouts.

I like the format of the plan and the idea that I can skip one of the low mileage runs in favor of cross-training. This will probably be very beneficial since I am planning on doing some cyclocross races this fall. Yes, I have no idea how I am going to manage to train for that and a marathon, but I figure I will take it week by week and see what happens (with running coming first of course). One weekend is already looking pretty daunting with a cx race and an 18 mile run. Gulp.

I’m no marathon training expert, but I did learn a few things last year that hopefully I will implement this year. The biggest one…RUN MORE.
Looking back, my weekly mileage last year was embarrassing. I hit all of my long runs, but it was the other runs I skipped that came back to bite my butt (and quads and feet). I was so worried about running on tired legs that I never did anything to tire my legs. So this time around I plan on running till my legs get tired. Then running more the next day. And just pushing through it.

Other random thought…this plan starts with 8 weeks of hills workouts, which then turn into speed workouts. I know all the benefits of doing hill workouts, but I am wondering if they will really be that beneficial for the Philadelphia Marathon, which is pretty flat, minus 2-3 hills that aren’t that big of a deal. Would it be better if I switched some of those hills workouts to speed workouts?

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9 Responses to Philadelphia Marathon Training Plan

  1. The hill workouts would help build your quad muscles (good injury prevention), but it does kinda seem like overkill if the race is mostly flat.

    That said, I personally find hill workouts to be more taxing than speed workouts, so maybe it wouldn’t be a bad idea to swap some of them out, especially if you’re focusing on your time.

    Good luck! Keep us posted.

    • Lauren says:

      That’s a good point about hills workouts being more taxing. My legs are usually DEAD after hills. Maybe I will do them every other week, and see how that goes!

  2. Natalie says:

    This looks like a good plan!

  3. Natalie says:

    oh and I totally agree – running more is key.

  4. Colleen says:

    I’d say since Philly is kind of flat you don’t need to do as many hill workouts but then again I’m no expert. I really felt that Philly was super flat last year when I ran it. My training was pitiful. I did my long runs and skipped mid week runs as you said you did.

    PS my husband is from Philly. He went to Upper Darby. Is that near where you are?

    • Lauren says:

      Upper Darby isn’t close, but not too far away! Although with traffic it feels like forever.

      Yeah, 8 weeks of hills seems like overkill for an almost flat race. I might do hill workouts a few times just to switch things up. Thanks for the input!

      • Colleen says:

        The town he lived in was Drexel Hill. Now his mom lives right near Nifty Fifties but I forget what town (and I think there is more than 1 Nifty Fifties).

        Traffic was awful near Philly. I said no wonder his dad never wanted to go “all the way” to King of Prussia even though it was only 20 minutes away.

  5. That plan looks great, but intense! I don’t think I’ve ever broken 30 in my weekly mileage. I am planning to run a marathon in March 2013 (the same one I didn’t get to do last year) and I’m going to bookmark this plan for later. Right now, a training plan like this seems impossible, but maybe after I’ve this current training cycle, once I’ve gained back my speed and endurance, it won’t seem so daunting.

    Good luck! I’m excited to follow along with your training!

    • Lauren says:

      This will be the first time I have broken 35 miles, I am trying to not get overwhelmed looking at the weeks ahead.
      You can click on the image to make it bigger, but if that doesn’t work and you need a better resolution I can always email you the plan!

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