Woodlands Marathon Training Plan

Based on Cypress Running Club: Mileage Builder - Marathon Training Plan
Weeks To GoDatesTuesdayThursdaySaturday
269/5-9/115 miles
259/12-9/183 miles brisk4 miles6 miles
249/19-9/253 miles brisk4 miles7 miles
239/26-10/24 miles brisk4-5 miles5 miles
2210/3-10/94 miles brisk4-5 miles6 miles
2110/10-10/165 miles brisk4-5 miles7 miles
2010/17-10/233 miles with Fartleks5-6 miles8 miles
1910/24-10/304 miles with Fartleks5-6 miles7 (6 Easy, 1 RP)
1810/31-11/6Track - 15 min w-up, 6*200 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down5-6 miles8 (6 Easy, 2 RP)
1711/7-11/13Track - 15 min w-up, 8*200 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down5-6 miles9 (6 Easy, 3 RP)
1611/14-11/20Track - 15 min w-up, 10*200 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down6 miles CP10 (6 Easy, 4 RP)
1511/21-11/27Track - 15 min w-up, 3*1200 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down6 miles CP6 RP
1411/28-12/4Track - 15 min w-up, 4*1200 with 200 RI, 10 min c-downTempo - 1 mile @ CP, 2 or 3 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP8 (4 Easy, 4 RP)
1312/5-12/11Track - 15 min w-up, 2*1600 with 200 RI, 10 min c-downTempo - 1 mile @ CP, 2 or 3 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP10 (5 Easy, 5 RP)
1212/12-12/18Track - 15 min w-up, 3*1600 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down6 miles RP12 (6 Easy, 6 RP)
1112/19-12/25Tempo - 1 mile @ CP, 2 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP6 miles CP14 miles
1012/26-1/1Track - 15 min w-up, 2*800 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down6 miles (3 if doing Cypress Half)16 miles or Cypress Half
91/2-1/8Track - 15 min w-up, 4*800 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down6 miles CP18 miles
81/9-1/15Track - 15 min w-up, 6*800 with 200 RI, 10 min c-down6 miles CP14 miles
71/16-1/22Tempo - 1 mile @ CP, 2 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP6 miles 19 miles
61/23-1/29Tempo - 1 mile @ CP, 2 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP6 miles 21 miles
51/30-2/5Tempo - 1 mile @ CP, 2 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP6 miles 22-23
42/6-2/12Tempo - 1 mile @ CP, 3 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP6 miles20 miles
32/13-2/19Tempo - 1 mile @ CP, 3 miles @ TP w/2 min recovery jog, 1 mile @ CP6 miles14 miles
22/20-2/265-6 miles6 miles8 miles
12/27-3/56 miles4 milesRace Day!


Pace Notes

Long Run and Easy Runs: Unless indicated differently, all long runs should be done at conversation pace. This is an easy pace that allows you talk as you run, on the other hand it should be fast enough to keep your heart rate at 110-140 bpm). You will be doing most of your mileage at this pace.

Strides are 6-10 short bursts of swift running, up to 150 meters on the track (3/8 of a lap, starting at the apex of the turn or the middle of the straightaway) or .10 miles on the road. In the first 40 meters, accelerate from conversational pace to near-sprint pace, spend 80 meters at near-sprint, then decelerate back to conversational pace. Allow full recovery: strides are for working on your coordination, not anaerobic fitness.

Fartlek workouts will be posted on Facebook each week in September; some examples are on the CRC website, at the “Milestone Training Programs” page.

Tempo Runs & Intervals workouts are prescribed in terms of the number of repetitions and the distance (in miles, kilometers, or meters). One mile is roughly 1,600 meters, and a typical track is 400 meters long. A workout that states “4 x 1200” means that you run three laps (or ¾ of a mile) at an appropriately fast pace, recover, and repeat three more times.

The “recovery intervals” allow your heart rate and breathing to return to a reasonable level. Typically, your recovery interval will be as long as you spent running, up to a maximum of five min..

The “right” pace for the Tempo Runs and Intervals is the fastest pace that allows you to complete all repetitions in nearly the same time. If you find that your times are increasing as the workout progresses, then this indicates that you started too fast.

The best way to determine appropriate training paces is to run a race or time-trial. A pace calculator, such as Greg McMillan’s (http://www.mcmillanrunning.com/), will give you a range of recommended paces based on a recent race. Or, the “pace wheel” is available as an iPhone or Android app. Consider the following examples, using a 2-Mile time trial to test your current fitness level:


2-Mile Time Trial Time: 15:00 17:30 20:00
Conversation Pace 10:43 per mile 12:30 per mile 14:17 per mile
Marathon Race Pace 8:56 per mile 10:25 per mile 11:54 per mile
Tempo Run 8:31 per mile 9:57 per mile 11:22 per mile
Intervals 1:54 per ¼-mile 2:13 per ¼-mile 2:32 per ¼-mile
Fartleks and Strides 1:38 per ¼-mile 1:55 per ¼-mile 2:10 per ¼-mile
Projected Marathon Finish 3 hrs., 54 min. 4 hrs., 33 min. 5 hrs., 11 min.


If you are used to using a heart rate monitor, then you can use as reference:

Workout Percent of Maximum Heart Rate (MHR)

  • Easy run and long run 65-75%
  • Tempo run 87-92%
  • Interval repeats 95-100%

Race Distance

  • 5-K 95-97%
  • 10-K 92-94%
  • Half-marathon 85-88%
  • Marathon 80-85%

MHR = 205 – (.5 x your age)

When the heat index rises, safety might dictate using a slower pace than indicated. In conditions of extreme heat and/or humidity, it may be advisable to walk recovery intervals rather than jog them. Whenever running, it is always advisable to drink plenty of fluids, particularly one that contains sodium to combat electrolyte losses from sweating.

Disclaimer: Consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any exercise program; information presented above is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. When you choose to follow this or any training plan, you do so entirely at your own risk.

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