Friday, November 4, 2011

Disney Marathon 2012 Training Plan

I am currently training for marathon #16. I am running the Disney Marathon on January 8, 2012 and this will be 4th year in a row running Disney.
To say that I am in love with the Disney Marathon is an understatement. My first marathon was there in 2008, where I finished in 5:12.
The following year, I ran a 4:16, 4 weeks after I ran the Honolulu Marathon.
I did the Goofy Challenge in 2010 while coming off an achilles injury.
Last year was obviously my favorite year when I ran my BQ in a time of 3:37. I don't have a race recap for that race yet, but one day I will sit and write it as it was a day I will never forget.
My goal for Disney 2012 is to re-qualify for Boston 2013. This means I need to go faster than 3:35. This training cycle I decided to focus on mileage instead of speed work in order to have strong legs going into the race. In the past, I have gone with Pete Pfitzinger's Advanced Marathoning programs and figured I would do it again as it matches with my training goals.

I am currently using the Advanced Marathoning 2nd edition book and chose the plan that has a base of 55 miles and peaks at 70 miles. I don't think my legs can handle the 70 mile peak week, so I plan on resting on recovery run days if I am not feeling good. I ended up doing that this week as my calf felt tight and I didn't want to risk injuring it. The plans in this book seem to focus on multiple medium long runs (12+ miles) during the week as well as marathon pace running during long runs. There are some tempo runs and interval training but not near as much as I did during half marathon training. I am hoping this break from speed work allows my legs to recover quicker and put in the longer mid-week runs. I keep having to remind myself that I need to slow down for longer runs in order to get all my runs in during the week.

If you go on the Runners World forums, you will see quite a few threads on the Pfitz plans. He has lower mileage plans that peak at 55 miles that many people have used successfully as well as myself.

So we will see how training goes. I am not looking forward to the temperature dropping, but it is isn't anything I am not used to. Here is what this week looked like:

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: 9 miles w/ strides
Wednesday: 14 miles medium long
Thursday: 5 miles recovery (skipped due to calf)
Friday: 12 miles medium long
Saturday: 5 miles recovery
Sunday: 17 miles w/ 10 @ marathon pace

Again, it is a lot of miles, but at a slower pace. I think doing the longer runs during the week gives me more confidence when I am out there doing long on the weekends. Let's hope everything goes as planned and I hope to jump into a similar plan for Boston. If not I guess it will be time to re-evaluate.

What are you currently training for and what plans have you found to be successful in training?


eatdrinkbreathesweat said...

Wow. Your training plan sounds totally amazing, but also scares ME just a little bit. I'm a wannabe first time marathoner (not till next fall) and seeing such high mileage is equal parts awesome, equal parts scary! Tell me I'll get used to it and come to love it pretty please??

robinbb said...

eatdrinkbreathesweat-Higher mileage is definitely something you work up to. My first training program never went above 40 miles in a week....Now I average 50 in an off season. Now I look forward to longer runs, when I used to be scared of that mileage in the past.

Jana said...

Wow! That is a lot of miles. I came accross your blog recently and am totally inspired by you. I also have 2 daughters (ages 6 and 4) and have recently lost 55 pounds and started running again (I was an athlete/runner pre-kids). I'm running a half marathon in January and am considering running a full next summer or fall. The jump between a half a full is pretty intimidating though.

robinbb said...

Thanks for posting Jana. Congrats on your weight loss. I find losing weight much harder than running. Good luck in January. You will be surprised that it isn't too much harder to jump to the full marathon. As long as you put your training in, it is baby steps the whole way.

Suz and Allan said...

What a great history you have with Disney! I know you're going to run faster than 3:35!