This is going to the the first in a 3 part series on marathon training following Forever Runner principals.
Today, let's talk about marathon base training.
We all know that having a proper base is essential to successful marathon training. But how do you know if you've done enough?
An easy way to calculate it for yourself is how close your MAF training pace is to your projected marathon pace. Dr. Maffetone analyzed 1,000's of his runner's marathon results and found that most successful finishers ran at a pace about 20 seconds per mile faster than their MAF training pace.
So if you your MAF training pace is significantly lower than your projected marathon pace, it doesn't mean you won't be able to successfully train for and finish your marathon, it just means that you haven't fully developed your aerobic capacity and you will be working harder to achieve the same result.
To develop your base the Forever Runner way, all your run's need to be at or below your MAF training pace. The great benefit of training this slow is that it will not only build your aerobic capacity, but also allow you to add mileage without worrying about over training or injuries.
The most common mistake I see with this method is not sprinting every couple of weeks. In order to run faster, you need to create those neurological and metabolic pathways. Plus it's fun!
If you are still concerned with running so slow, take advantage of the downhills. You can run at a much faster pace downhill and still stay below your MAF training heart rate.
During your base building phase, there is no training benefit to run for more than 2 hrs. So if you reach that point in your base training, Your ultimate goal is to run for 2 hours really well. That means you can comfortably run in a fasted state for 2 hours at 5 to 10 beats lower than your MAF training heart rate. This is the ultimate fitness state, so it may take one to two years to reach it.
So to summarize, during you base building phase, do all your runs at or below your MAF training pace and incorporate sprints every two weeks. Build your mileage up to being able to complete a 2 hour run below your MAF training rate. If you haven't gotten there by the time you need to start your marathon training, don't worry, you have increased your aerobic capacity and you'll reach this level in a year or two.
Next week, we'll talk about how to fit in your marathon training using Forever Runner principals.
If you are interested in learning more about the Forever Method, click this link to watch the video:
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