Have a plan! A big YES to training plans.
Updated: Oct 7, 2018
Training plan? YES! I often get asked what I’d recommend someone who wants to run their first marathon. Number one: get a training plan! Yes, you can manage to run a marathon if you train without one BUT training plans exist for a reason (ok, actually for many reasons 😉). 1. They prepare your body for the marathon. With a good plan you not only get faster, you also run with less pain (pain free marathons don’t exist, sorry 😜) and shorten your recovery time.
2. They make you faster. If you just run regularly and increase your milage, you will progress but don’t necessarily get faster. That’s what tempo runs, sprints and intervals are there for.
3. They decrease the risk of injury. Most runner injuries (and I had loads of them) come from increasing your mileage too quickly. A training plan helps you to literally pace yourself.
4. There‘s not only one but many! The ‘best plan‘ doesn’t exist. Find a plan that matches your goal, the time you can take to train and most important, one you feel comfortable with!
5. They teach you the important lesson of ‘failing’. Training for 16 weeks following a plan means that you’ll have bad sessions. You might even skip a session or shorten a run. And you will feel awful about it. That’s an extremely important lesson. It strengthens your will to succeed and to finish!
6. They make you accountable. We all have stressful times and very quickly runs get postponed. A training plan reminds you where you should be at what point and makes planning ahead much easier than just scheduling runs or gym sessions spontaneously.
7. They give you confidence. If you follow a plan, you can measure your progress and will know if your goal is achievable.
8. They motivate you. Nothing is better than ticking off those sessions one after the other.
9. They challenge and push you. To become faster, to run further, you need to push your limits. Running within your comfort zone is nice - but it won’t get you further.
10. They are a great conversation topic. Discussing training plans is fun! I could go on and on and on... but to sum it up, my tip: #haveaplan - not only for your marathon training