For The Long Run – advanced training plan’

Want to nail a personal best in a half marathon or full marathon? If you’re doing a half marathon then choose the shorter distance shown, and pick the longer distance if doing the full 26.2 miles.

  • Long runs are scheduled for Sundays but if Saturday or a different day works better for you simply shift the entire schedule along by the appropriate number of days
  • Cross training can be anything from a strength-based gym session, a swim, a yoga or Pilates class or a bike ride. Anything but running.
  • Remember, where there are two distances on the plan, the first is for half marathon, the second for marathon training.
  • For hill or sprint training, ‘run’ denotes the effort phase – either uphill or sprint – while ‘recovery’ denotes downhill or slow run (not walk). Your local terrain might mean a combination of hills and sprint depending on how big the hills are and you might need to be creative with your route planning so don’t get too caught up with the precise timings on the plan as long as you follow the general structure of differentiating longer and shorter effort / recovery phases.

Training guides have been devised by Christina Macdonald, Editor-at-Large of Women’s Running magazine and author of the book, Run Yourself Fit (Summersdale). She has completed two marathons and ten half marathons.

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