Marathon Training Plan
Decided it is time to take the next step to go chase that big running goal by following a marathon plan? We want to bring a smile to your face (just like the one in the photo of me above) as you cross the finish line knowing you just ran faster than you ever thought you could.
My husband (and coach) Steve took me from a 21 minute 5k to 16 minutes within a few years, to a 2:36 marathon, and has made countless collegiate and post collegiate athletes achieve personal bests they never dreamed possible. Steve has always kept his training secret, but the king of peaking runners for when it matters is ready to share his secrets to success with you.
With this 16 week plan, we will build you up slowly to the 40-50 and 60-70 mile per week plan, don’t worry, you don’t need to be at the mileage numbers to start with! The 40-50 and 60-70 options are the HIGHER end of the plan, meaning you could max out at 40 and still do everything we recommend. We will give you everything you need to prepare for your marathon and go into race day feeling confident. This program is completely effort based, and during the 16 weeks, we will train you how to run by feel, so you can learn to trust your body to tell you what it is ready for, leaving you confident, prepared, and in the best shape of your life.
Choose from miles per week or km per week below.
Tina (verified owner) –
Using Tina’s marathon training plan turned my whole view of and approach to running upside down – in the best way possible! Since it’s based on the effort scale and running by feel rather than on pre-determined paces, every single run was much more enjoyable than in my previous training cycles. It is still a marathon training plan, so of course you will feel fatigued at one point sooner or later, but the difference is that you still feel strong despite the accumulated miles in your legs. I can say in all honesty that I have never made it to the starting line of a marathon feeling stronger both physically and mentally. And maybe the best thing, I can’t wait to start the plan all over again soon!
Tim Mackness –
The effort-scale approach to training is brand new to me. In the past I have been locked to pace and time while working as hard as possible. My experience with Tina’s plan had me considering questions like, “How does my body feel?” and “Am I working too hard and risking becoming injured?” – questions I have largely ignored in the past. The plan capitalizes on accumulated fatigue, with workouts, at times seemingly light, with this factor in mind. I will be utilizing Steve and Tina’s 60-70 mile plan for a marathon in 2018. It has enabled me to become a more confident runner.
Karen Scobie (verified owner) –
Like Tina and Tim have said above, the effort based running has been a game changer. It took some adjustment to learn the different levels and not stare at my watch, but within a couple of weeks I was way more relaxed about running workouts and was often surprised when I got back and saw my paces. A bonus is that races are more enjoyable without worrying about what pace I’m running – I’m looking around and enjoying the crowd, while checking in and asking my body what effort this feels like and adjusting when necessary. As an ‘Adult-onset Athlete’ (an over 42 female with 4 years running history, and middle/back of the pack times in races) I did struggle with the mileage, even with the shorter plan, but the next time I will focus on having a better base before starting. (yup, I said next time! I will follow this plan again someday)
As a metric system user, I often wonder if these plans have conversions – this one does indeed.
As David mentioned in his HM plan review, there is a wonderful private group to go with the plan, and we all celebrated our successes and commiserated our struggles together. The support from Tina, Steve, and each other is absolutely amazing.
I used the Marathon Training Plan to train for my last marathon.I found the plan easy to follow, track and fulfill. Each day of training is explained in detail so I did not need to guess what I was asked to do. I found the key to success was paying attention to feedback from my body. Tina calls it running on effort and it focuses on how my body is reacting that particular day. Instead of a preset recipe with no flexibility, I was encouraged to run on feel. this meant on 100 degree days, I ran a slower pace but the same effort as on a cooler day with a faster pace, but again same effort. The result of my training was a successful marathon, where I finished with a smile. I strongly recommend the marathon training program for any level of runner, first or 50th marathon! I addition to the plan, the runner community that Tina has built is amazing. A place to go and share highs and lows, while always receiving support, input and humor. Join the team!
liz (verified owner) –
running by effort has completely changed my approach to running! i absolutely love how it takes the pressure off of even the most intimidating workouts. i can think “ok, so this should feel like i’m towards the end of a half marathon race,” and i can achieve that no matter the day. it may not be my fastest, but it means i’m not hurting myself to still reach my goals while getting the benefit of putting the work in. i started this training plan right after taking 8 weeks off of running from over use injuries (nothing broken or torn, just literally thick headed running through so much pain in my hip that i couldnt sleep!). i have hit course PRs (no overall PRs) and enjoyed more races than ever before. The real test is in 2 weeks, but i feel confident that i have the physical and mental tools to help me ahieve my goal.
i’m using the 40-50 mpw plan and had previously capped out at about 35 miles a week!
Rhonda Marple (verified owner) –
Frustrated, I quit running marathons in 2015 because I kept getting slower and more injured; then this year I thought I would give it another go. After looking at various training plans, I chose Tina’s because I loved the strategy of not looking at my watch when I run – and though I comprehended “effort-based running”, when I started training in August I didn’t have a clue as to how it would actually work. Fast forward: I ran my marathon earlier this month with a 14-minute PR! I ran more miles than I ever have during a training season, and I did it 100% injury-free. It took me a few weeks to figure out the effort scale, but one day it clicked and I “got” it. I learned how to listen to my body and how to be disciplined and honest about my effort – and from that, how to set realistic goals, design a plan for running the marathon, and how to stick to it throughout the race. Suffice to say, I am no longer a frustrated marathoner – I found my joy in running again! And I’m already planning for my next marathon…using Tina’s training plan, of course!
Ian Statham (verified owner) –
I used the 40-50 miles per week plan for the 2018 Manchester marathon. In 2017 i didn`t use a plan and really suffered during the race and DNF. I had only run 25-30 miles per week before using this plan, i was a little concerned about upping mileage but need not have worried as the increase is gradual and fairly easy. The hard workouts were hard and the easy days easy, you will learn to run by feel rather than pace which helps not only during the training but also racing, I am please with my time of 3 hours 45 and could not have achieved that without Tina`s plan. Would definitley recommend it.
tanner.long80 (verified owner) –
If you’ve ever struggled with injuries or peaking at the wrong time, but this plan. Before this plan I went over 40 miles in a week only once because of various injuries. I started Tina and Steve’s 60/70 mpw plan and completed every run, was always at the high end of the weekly mileage, didn’t have any injuries, and set a marathon PR by 35 minutes. I even should have been faster, but had a shoe problem just past halfway.
I really cannot say enough about this plan. It will improve your running, your ability to fight through the tough moments, and just your overall racing ability. Steve and Tina really know what they are doing and have completely transformed my running. Seriously, get this plan.
David S. –
I have previously trained with Tina’s Half Marathon Plan and I absolutely loved it. So I had no doubts about trusting her again with the plan for the full distance. Again, you’ll learn (or improve on) how to run by effort, which means trusting your body over your GPS. And while that might sound like a challenge at first, there are plenty of workouts to practice those skills. It has really opened up a whole new way of running for me. The balance of hard workouts vs. easy days is also spot on. There’s obviously some accumulated fatigue as you get towards the end of the program, but the workouts never seem impossible. Quite the opposite. Your strength and confidence grow throughout the plan and it will have you ready and peaking on raceday. I can’t imagine going back to another plan after this. And that’s the great thing: you don’t have to as the plan adapts to you and your effort, rather than you having to adapt the plan to you with complicated pace calculators and estimates from previous races. So you can use the plan over and over again. It starts where you’re at now and sets you up for your best race day experience.
lrudd (verified owner) –
I used the 60-70 mpw plan for two marathons Fall 2017 and Boston Marathon 2018. I ran a 9 min best in the fall and a 1 min best (3:12) in Boston. More importantly, I enjoyed the training and stayed healthy throughout both marathon cycles.
The effort scale has been very freeing, helping me not settle during workouts and just doing my best on a given day.
Tina even gave me some guidance when I ask how I could slightly increase mileage for Boston. I felt myself peaking especially during that second cycle, I felt so good! Nothing is worse than showing up to the start line exhausted and wanting to “get it over with”. This plan will get you to the race ready to run strong and within your abilities.