Time Based Marathon Training Programmes Instead of Distance Running [11]

time based marathon training programmes

Time Based Marathon Training Programmes

Learn how to get the best results from time based marathon training programmes.

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Mark: I know one of the things you get asked quite a lot, is how do runners track how well their workouts are working?

Dave: Absolutely.

Mark: So you’ve got three methods.

Let’s just go through them one by one.

What’s the first one?

Dave: The first method is time-based training.

Marathon Training Time Commitment

Now, this has got tremendous logistic benefits because it’s so easy for scheduling.

I know a lot of the viewers are going to be very time-pressed and have super-busy lives.

A lot of commitments.

And to have that ability to easily schedule what you’re doing…

Because you know exactly how long the session’s going to take.

You can factor in the warm-up, the warm-down, everything is super easy.

And then you know when you’re going to move on from that to the next thing in your busy day.

This is particularly useful when you’re away on business or away from familiar surroundings…

Because you can do something called “out and back“.

Say you’re going to be doing a 15-minute steady run.

You can make sure that you go 25 minutes out and then turn back.

Knowing that you’ve covered the full time slot, rather than worrying about any complicated distance equations.

And, while we’re talking about distance…

It’s really good in the sense that you don’t have to worry about having accurate gauges of distance.

Like being on a track, or having a really accurately measured route.

Which is again great when you’re away from home, but even pretty good when you are at home.

So it takes that hassle away.

Running for Distance Not Time

It also challenges something we spoke about in an earlier episode, which is what I call “Runner’s OCD“…

Which is “Obsessive Concern with Distance“.

Because having it clearly articulated in times takes away that pressure of always hitting the distance target.

An more subtle advantage of this method, is it dissuades you from doing too much intense training on measurable tracks and things.

It gives you that permission if you like, to get off-road a little bit more.

Which again, as you’ll recall, is really useful in the early stages particularly of your marathon campaign.

Because it encourages you to get onto trails and run in more conducive, pleasant environments.

Mark: That’s all well and good, but I suspect you, like me, are wondering how that’s done.

Pace Setting Running Watch

Dave: What you need to do is:

Set your schedule up so that you can record your sessions in the hours, minutes and second time [hh:mm:ss] format.

Mark: To that degree of accuracy?

Dave: Yeah. All we’re talking about is the way you present it.

So, for a Long Run, or some of the more endurance-based workouts…

You’d be setting it up in hours and minutes [hh:mm].

For the shorter sessions and some of the interval-type work…

It would be minutes and seconds [hh:mm].

So you’d make sure you have those settings on your schedule to refer to.

So that you weren’t running without knowing your intensity…

You would calibrate that with readings on your watch, in terms of pace (minutes per mile or kilometre).

Or you would make sure you were clear on which effort level you were working at

Which we’ll come onto in a minute.

Scheduling Training Sessions

Now the final thing before we move on to effort-based running, is you want to make sure…

Because you’ve got these things set out in terms of times…

That it doesn’t fool you when you see a short run, like a 25-minute recovery run…

That you don’t think, “Ah just 25 minutes”…

And then go out too fast.

Because you want to ‘make the most of’ the 25 minutes!

Again, it’s a subtle point but it’s very deceptive when you see things on the schedule that seem short…

To be tempted to run them too fast.

Mark: Okay.

Dave: So make sure you calibrate time with the effort, which leads us nicely onto the next measure.

Please leave any comments you have on time based marathon training programmes below. [/spp-transcript]

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