Thursday, September 4, 2008


According to David Styles:

"The idea behind training for a marathon is to condition your muscles and body to be ready for the race. This includes decreasing your resting heart rate and conditioning your muscles and respiratory system to function in the most efficient manner possible.

To do this you should schedule your training sessions to allow your body to push to it's limits whilst at the same time allowing it enough recovery time between sessions.

The typical training system should include two rest days, two shorter runs, one semi-long run, a cross-training day and one long run per week and should look something similar to this basic program:

Monday: Rest day
Tuesday: Short run
Wednesday: Semi-long run
Thursday: Short run
Friday: Rest day
Saturday: Cross-training
Sunday: Long run

This is the most efficient way to get your body into peak condition without running yourself into the ground."

As I have written in my post "Proud to be an Addict", I run 4X a week, sometimes 2X a day, in an attempt to adhere to this basic training program. It didn't take too long for my age to interfere. This program may be applicable for most runners but I learned that it's simply not advisable for runners who are just beginning to train at age 50. I had to revise the program if my goal is to run until age 100. My body just gave in at the rate I was going.

And so, my revised program is as follows:

Sunday: Long Run
Monday: Rest Day (walk/jump rope/bike/stairs,etc.)
Tuesday: Tennis
Wednesday: Short run, Strength Train
Thursday: Tennis
Friday: Semi-Long Run
Saturday: Strength Train

I don't particularly know what caused the pain and discomfort in my body (as if it's not obvious that it is my age!) but starting this week, I will limit my runs to only 3X/wk. If needed, I will also limit my tennis to only once a week and replace it with some lesser strenuous exercises (after all, the basic program calls for 2 rest days).

How about you? Do you follow a strict training program? Are you comfortable with it?