26.2: GO THE DISTANCE
This marathon program is designed for runners looking to tackle their first 26.2—or somebody who is coming back from an injury, a pregnancy, or is more interested in finishing the marathon than racing the marathon.
We’ll ease you into the distance but we’re not gonna lie: Training for a marathon is a big deal. This plan makes the path seem manageable. (Sorta like bagged salads make veggies at dinner doable.) Training to cover 26.2 miles requires consistency and commitment, especially on the weekly long runs.
On this plan, you’ll do six runs that are 15 or more miles long, which will hone your mental toughness as surely as it does your calf muscles. Don’t let that freak you out though: we’ll support and guide you every step so you can, you know, go the distance. We also do our best to make sure you stay injury-free, providing short strength-training routines, a prehab routine, and a cross-training day at least once a week.
Over 18 weeks, you’ll have plenty of time to build, adapt, and be prepped to finish a marathon with heart-pumping pride.
THE PREREQS: Before stepping up to this plan, mother runners should have logged at least 12 months of week-in, week-out running, along with some experience toeing the starting line of a race or two. Finishing a half-marathon isn’t a firm prereq, but having done so is definitely helpful. At a minimum, you should be able to currently run eight miles comfortably and have no injuries.
BIGGEST WEEK OF TRAINING: 37-39 miles
LONGEST LONG RUN DISTANCES: One 16-18 miler, one 18, one 18-20 miler, one straight-up 20 miler.
CROSS TRAINING + STRENGTH TRAINING INCLUDED? One or two weekly workouts are your choice: cross training or a rest day. There are (non-optional) SSSC’s (super short strength circuits) three times weekly, as well as a prehab routine Coach Amanda designed. You don’t need anything but your body weight for all strength training.
NUMBER OF RUNS WEEKLY: Typically four, with a few at five. (The fifth is short, and often optional.)
FIRST AND WORST (HARDEST) WEEK: