Updated: July 24th, 2013

In the final two weeks prior to your marathon, you will need to reduce your volume and intensity a bit to bring about an optimum peak. This is the time to get extra sleep, plenty of good nutrition, and run as relaxed in your workouts as possible.

Reduce your volume with two weeks to go by about 20% (of maximum mileage for this training period), but still include your normal workout frequency and intensity. This week, the chief goals are to maintain your thresholds, sharpen-up with a few quicker sessions, and allow any micro-damage to your muscles to heal.

Try to complete your last focused long run 12-14 days prior to your competition. Do this run in your planned race outfit and shoes to see how they perform in a race simulation. Also, practice your pre-run and mid-run nutrition at this time.

Research what is available on the race course, and try to purchase that product to use in your last longer workouts.

The below plan would be prime for the two runners listed with two weeks to go before a big marathon. One is a beginning runner who has never completed a marathon before, one is for a marathon veteran seeking a PR.

Runner 1:

First or Second Year Runner, Limited Background in Formal Training

Time Goal– 4hrs

  • Sun-
  • Long Run (15mls in Race Gear w/ Fueling; two-weeks to race)

  • Mon-
  • Rest

  • Tues-
  • 40min XT

  • Wed-
  • Easy 45min Run, 8x 12sec Max Hill Sprints

  • Thurs-
  • WU, Tempo Run (6mls @ Goal Marathon Pace), WD

  • Fri-
  • Rest

  • Sat-
  • Easy 50min Run

Runner 2:

Highly Competitive Runner, Extensive Background in Formal Training

Time Goal– 2:40

  • Sun-
  • WU, 12mls @ Goal Marathon Pace, WD (two weeks to race; run in race gear w/ fueling)

  • Mon-
  • Rest

  • Tues-
  • Easy 60min

  • Wed-
  • Mod 50min, Short Hill Sprints

  • Thurs-
  • WU, 5x 1600m @ Half-Marathon-10K Pace w/ 400m Recovery Jogs, WD

  • Fri-
  • Very Easy 30min

  • Sat-
  • Easy 60min, Light Strides

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