This posting is the first in a series of 23 that will include workouts and information to help runners and walkers prepare for the Austin Marathon or Half, on February 15, 2009. The program consists of four different levels for both the Half Marathon and Marathon Distances. For participants living north or willing to travel north we have a couple of different training group options that will be offering workout options to include these workouts, which are free to attend. If you have any questions or comments about the program please email Donnie O’Neal. For individuals that find it more convenient to run workouts in Austin we will be having meetings at the RunTex Riverside on Wednesdays and Saturdays. For more information about our Austin workouts contact David Moody.
Marathon or Half
For those who are not aware, the marathon distance is 26.2 miles, and the half is 13.1. It is important to realize that it is not realistic to show up unprepared for either distance and expect to safely and easily complete an event. Other the other hand if you are properly prepared you should be able to run and or walk a marathon/half marathon.
Deciding which event to participate in depends on your time availablity, current fitness level and willingness to commit the next 26 weeks to this goal. Training for a marathon is big commitment. I recommend that people be able to confidently run/walk four miles before taking on the marathon training. Other the other hand, if you can comfortably complete a 1/2 mile I think 26 weeks is enough time to prepare for a half marathon. Either way, if there is any doubt that you are healthy enough to begin training, consult your physician.
Choosing a Level
This half and marathon training is segmented into 4 different level options. The lower levels are more introductory/completion oriented while the higher levels are more advanced/competition oriented. Level 1 of the half marathon assumes that participants are healthy enough to exercise but have not been running or walking much or at all. Level 4 assumes that participants want to compete in their age groups and have been running quite a bit and for years. The rest of the levels fall in between. I recommend choosing the level that has you starting with a long run distance option that you have easily run in the last 20 days.
This first week is a very good indication of what to expect with the following weeks of the program. The long run increases in distance every 2 weeks. Every other long run has a quality component to it but is shorter in distance. During this first week we will have and Easy Long Run, Rest Days, Steady States, Fartleks, Comfort Runs, and Optional Cross Training.
- Easy Long Runs: These workouts focus on becoming accustomed to spending time on your feet and legs. These are aerobic, starting out at a very slow and relaxed pace, build into a comfortable rythme and finish comfortable.
- Rest Days: These are complete recovery days, if you are out of shape be sure not to skips these days. Sometimes they are optional, lingering soreness is an indication that it is time to take the optional rest day.
- Steady States: These workouts are longer efforts at a higher intensity. If the steady state is a 5K, you run it at almost 5K race pace effort without a finishing kick. Be sure to warm up at least a few minutes before this workout and cool down a few minutes after. We do drills in my groups after the warm up and Strech after the warm down. For more information about drills, http://www.runtex.com/web/1-1230.asp.
- Fartleks: This Swedish term means "Speed Play" and is a common workout in most training programs. It involves alternating between quicker and easier efforts. If you are joining our groups, I choose the distances of the quick and easy, but it can be free form if you prefer or are on your own.
- Comfort Runs: These are relaxed runs, at a comfortable pace. Try not to make the mistake of running too hard on these days, if you do your quality days will suffer. These runs do not have to be slow, but they should be comfortable.
- Cross Training: There are and will be several optional cross training days in the program. Cross Training is a great way to develop and maintain a good balance between your muscles. If you are currently participating in cross training activities feel free to take those options. Participants that have not been cross training should wait a few weeks, to first get used to the program.
- Always finish workouts feeling like you could do more.
- Only run the minimum of what it will take to improve. If you have never run before, you only need to start with a few steps.
These are the days and times and places that we’ll be giving these group workout options. If other groups decide to use this program as their template and want to be listed here, email Donnie O’Neal. If you join us for workouts, I recommend initially only coming to 1 of the weekday (M/W or T/TH) workouts and the Saturday long run workout.
|Mondays||5:45pm to 7:00pm||McNeil High School, Round Rock|
|Mondays||5:45pm to 7:00pm||Forbes Middle School, Georgetown|
|Tuesdays||6:00am to 7:15am||RunTex Georgetown|
|Wednesday||6:00pm to 7:15pm||RunTex Georgetown|
|Wednesday||5:45pm to 7:00pm||RunTex Riverside|
|Thursdays||6:00am to 7:15am||RunTex Georgetown|
|Saturdays (long run)||6:30am||RunTex Georgetown|
|Saturdays (long run)||6:30am||RunTex Riverside|
Below are the workouts for the different levels of the Half and Marathon.
|Half Marathon Level 1||Marathon Level 1|
|Marathon Level 2|