Marathon Training Plan: Run by Effort

The FIRST program worked great with my half marathon so when came the time to think about how to train for a potential Marathon, there was no question in my mind. I downloaded their Marathon training plan. Like the Half, it only has 3 run workout a week unless one wants to add easy runs as cross-training. For now my cross-training plans include yoga, at home workout (a mix of push ups, pull ups, lunges and squats), and cycling for a few easy miles.

Now the plan is pretty precise on the pace, that’s what makes it work: speedwork, tempo and easy long run. The pace goals should be based on the last best 10k. Well I have not run a 10k race ever, my last 12k race goes back to March of last year and I’m not sure I can trust the changing paces on my 6 miles runs. So I’ve decided not to go by pace (gasp!). Let’s be honest, I took so much time calculating pace goals last time I training to find out that I was either faster or slower depending on the days. I’m also training for a hilly course and no 10k race pace around our area would give me an accurate feel for that.

So instead of building my training around numbers, I’m going to do it on feel. I know how it feels to make my body go faster or easier. So I’m not going to worry about a specific pace but run how it feels. Oh I will still record my pace afterward but I think that running by effort will benefit me ultimately since I don’t own a Garmin and will only run with my watch for the time being.

Do you run based on your pace goal or by effort?





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