Marathon Training Guide

The marathon (26.2 miles or roughly 42.2km) is a very different race to all of the others, it has a rich history, mystery and challenge about it.

This is partly why it is so appealing to the everyday runner or even non-runner to one day attempt.

It requires the runner to use energy in a way that other races don't, using fats as a major energy source in addition to carbohydrates. Furthermore, it obviously entails a lot longer time on your feet running compared to any other event. In other words it places a unique physiological demand on your body that you must prepare for.

Photo Marathon start

This means that the athlete needs to be doing training that helps the body adapt to using fats as well as carbohydrates. The training that most distance runners do, generally only burns carbohydrates. As a guideline rule, sessions in excess of two hours are needed to burn fats. Athletes also need to prepare their body for spending a prolonged time on their feet by performing far longer training runs than is required for other events.

We have put together a lot of suggestions for athletes of all levels (split into different categories) to help you run a good marathon.

However, to make sure you get the training right, we recommend you don't just use a fixed set schedule, which is very inflexible, but have one that is specifically designed for your marathon training needs. That is where our Online Coaching can help you run your best marathon possible.

Photo Woman running in park

Choose the level of marathon running that you are currently at to find out all about preparations for your marathon.

Learn more - Marathon Index »