Training Starts NOW… well, tomorrow.

Today is the day I have been waiting for since November when I signed up for the 2014 Calgary Marathon. Marathon training begins TODAY! I basically searched for an “intermediate runner” training plan online and found one by Runners World that fit my fitness level and my schedule. 

As I was reviewing the schedule (multiple times over the past few months, just waiting to start this glorious plan), I realized that it was much less running than I was currently doing and I wasn’t too sure about starting the first few weeks with hill runs when I was pretty 100% sure I would be doing the majority of those runs on the treadmill. I looked at the “Run Less, Run Faster” plans that are based on three key quality runs a week and liked some of the training runs it offered.

This book also has some great cross-training workouts in the pool and on the rower. The main philosophy of this plan is based on running fewer days a week, but making each mile count. It advertises a no-junk-miles plan that will help you run your fastest marathon yet. 

While running three days a week is awesome for some people, I crave a little more and would probably go crazy with four days of NO running, so I blended the two plans I had found into one of my own. I will be running five days a week, with three “key” runs a week that include a long run, tempo run, and interval run. The other two days are not junk miles… they are sanity miles 😉

In this plan, Mondays are typically rest days, so Day 1 of training begins with zero exercise. I haven’t had a rest day in a while so as much as my body is thanking me… I am going crazy. This is the hardest thing ever, especially when I have the entire day off and my family is going to the gym without me. The horror.

Mondays and Thursdays are non-run days and I plan on doing things like yoga (my “Yoga for Athletes” class just happens to be on Monday nights :), swimming, core training, wearing compression socks, and thinking about running. I started my rest day with a mug of chai tea and a protein pancake with strawberries and peanut butter. 

It was delicious and incredibly messy. I should have opted for a bigger plate but that thought transpired only as I was pouring my strawberries onto the pancake and they went right over the edges of the plate. I think I need exercise to think properly 😉

I am terrified that my workouts for the next 16 weeks are scheduled for me, but also really excited because I don’t have to think about what I am doing on a given day, I can just look at my schedule, and get down to business. As you would expect, this training schedule is printed and hanging on my fridge, and each workout has been entered into my iCal. Running-nerd alert.

As much as taking a rest day is ridiculously hard for me, I know that getting injured and having to take REST MONTHS would be even harder. Day 1 of marathon training for me is going to be about relaxing, letting my legs rest, eating delicious food, and mentally preparing myself for 16 weeks of awesomeness in the form of training. I am so excited to have you guys along for the ride 🙂 Here we go!


  1. Woo hoo for your training plan starting! I am a 3x per week type of runner. I find that I get too burnt out and sick of running if I do anymore than that. But good for you for making a plan that works for you!

  2. Omg my parents used to have that book and when I was a kid I always read it as “Run, Legs! Run Faster!” and I thought it was about a guy convincing his legs to run faster.

    Anyway, good luck on your training!

  3. Yay for starting your new plan! I just found your blog through the Canuck Running Bloggers FB group. I am also running five days a week for my marathon training, using a Running Room plan. This is my first marathon and I am not a gifted runner so I definitely need those five days of practice. Good luck!

  4. hey kris – good on you for recognizing how important rest days are for actually making you a fitter and faster runner. i have to keep telling myself that i can only become better by acknowledging that my body has to spend time rebuilding after making it work hard. looking forward to tracking your progress!

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