The section will help First time runners get through the long run. It will outline the goals we wish to accomplish.

This is a weekly run. If possible, we want to run the same day every week. For those people that do not have a running background we will forgo the Long run for the first month. As we progress through the weeks, the Long Run will gradually get longer while your short runs will stay close to the same distance.

Instead of distance we will be basing the workouts on time early in the training schedule. For instance, by the end of the ten weeks you will be running or run/walking 90 mins. It wont matter if you are running 9 minute mile pace or 13 minute mile pace.

For the majority of the Long Runs, you will be working out for under 2 hours. There will be two runs where we will focus on distance, not time. In these runs you will run for 16- 18 miles just to get you used to running the extended time. These will be near the end of the workout phase of training. You will still have several weeks to recover before the marathon takes place.

Some people have a running background and can run a sustainable Pace. Others will have to walk a portion or even most of the time. That is OK. The main goal is to be exercising for extended periods of time.

For first time marathoners we have several goals. At first it is just to get you used to spending a longer continuous amount of time exercising. We want to keep the effort as easy as possible. The main benefit is derived to spend the time, not how hard you work. In the workout phase we will work on sustainable pacing. It doesn’t matter what level you are at if you can run at a pace where you aren’t slowing down after 6  miles you will have a better chance of performing a solid race for your capabilities.

First we will address the issue on just how hard do you run for people that have virtually no running background. If you browse through the other levels, including the Elite runners you will see that there is an emphasis on running relaxed.

Our primary goal here is to get you used to the progressively longer runs. Now I say run in only a general sense. Most, if not all, will incorporate active walking interspersed with running.
Make sure the walking pace you choose will allow you to recover. At the same time, the walking should not be so easy where you now have to run hard to make up for lost time. The run should be as easy as you can, provided you are going faster than your walk. The goal, over time is to get you to run longer and longer distances. Most people with moderate walk/ running  can cover 4 miles in one hour without much effort. This means one will complete the marathon well under 7 hours. As soon as we can add some sustainable running to the mix the time will drop dramatically.

Now I use the term semi aggressive walking instead of walking hard. Walking hard can be just as tiring as running slow. If you walk too hard, then you will never recover. Do not turn the walking portion into race walking where you are still getting fatigued.

One way to walk aggressively without expending too much more energy is to make sure one is swinging one arms. This natural action will increase the forward motion and will help move you forward. It is also good to have a designated amount of time you will spend walking. You can pick a distance such as 4 light  poles or a set ime.  Try adjusting your walk run ratios to find out what is right for you.

I am solid fan on pacing. At first it may be hard to figure out for the beginning runner. The object find a pace that is sustainable over time. This is a extremely important concept. If one goes out too hard early in the run and then slows down, the time will always be slower than if the correct pace was practiced at the start and maintained it over the entire distance. This takes practice.

So the same concept applies to the runners/ walkers. Do not wait until you are too tired to start walking.

The first 2 miles of the long Run should be at an exceedingly easy pace. For people that wish to stretch I would suggest that this is a opportune time to stop and spend a few minutes on stretching. I am not a enormous fan of stretching on cold muscles before any run. One good stretch where one reaches to the sky and separates one muscle. I want to see people starch on warmed up muscles, not cold.


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