Getting Started: Marathon
Although the Lehigh Valley Health Network Marathon for Via is months away, have a safe, fun racing experience by getting ready now!
Most marathon training programs are 16-20 weeks in length. To begin a training program, you should be running regularly and should have established a "training base," the foundation from which you will begin your marathon-specific training regimen.
The training base usually consists of a gradual buildup of "easy-pace" miles. "Easy pace" refers to a pace that allows you to carry on a conversation with a running partner for the entire run. Easy-pace running helps create important physiological changes in your circulatory and musculoskeletal systems that will pave the way for success in the upcoming months.
Preparation is key
The marathon is a long event. You are preparing your body to run anywhere from 3 to 6 hours, so it's important not to rush through a training program. The best way to stay injury-free is through a gradual buildup in training stresses. You risk injury if you begin a training program late and try to "catch up" by running too much, too soon.
You want to have a solid training base. With 16-18 weeks to go until race day, you gradually should have worked your way up to a weekly long run of 90 minutes, and you should be running 45-60 minutes a couple of days per week. This may sound like a lot of running, but if you begin preparing now, you will have plenty of time to build up to this level of training. This early work paves the way for success in the last few miles of the race, which can be tough. You will be glad you started now!