The 2016 Boston Marathon will take place on Monday,  April 18th. This is my personal training log leading up to the legendary 26.2-mile foot race. Maybe you are considering running one day and want to know what it’s like to train for a marathon, or perhaps you just want to see what it takes to train for a sub 3:10 finish. I earned my BQ in the 45-50 year-old age group by running 3:20:01 on a blustery day in New York City. I intend to take full advantage of my opportunity in Boston.

My Boston Marathon training plan is based on the Jack Daniels’ 2Q program which can be found in his book, Daniel’s Running Formula, 3rd Edition. I highly recommend this book for any runner’s library. It’s full of useful training information to help you run faster at any distance from 800m to the marathon. Each post in this series details one training week. To see the marathon training plan in full, and calculate your own customized training paces, click here.

2016 Boston Marathon Training: Week Three of Eighteen

Boston Marathon Training Week 3

I began this busy holiday week with an easy 15-mile run. These long slow runs are anything but easy for me. For a detailed account of my run, and a few laughs at my expense, check out this entry.

Q1 Training Plan: 15 miles @ 7:45 to 8:30

Q1 Reality: 15.7 miles @ 7:45

the long run marathon training

Tuesday and Wednesday were cold and snowy with temperatures in the high 20’s and low 30’s. I ran with slip-on shoe spikes both days. My biggest concerns were staying upright and avoiding any oncoming traffic. For the most part, the passing vehicles respected my efforts and gave me a few inches on the side of the road. However, there were a couple of trucks that gave me no room, forcing me to jump in ankle-deep slush that left my feet cold, wet, and sandy. In response, I help up my mittened hands and uttered profanities that would have staggered them had they heard any of it. Slush or not, I recommend jumping in snowbanks to avoid cars. Stay safe and be vigilant.

Q1 Training Plan: 6@8:00 + 2@6:44 + 2min rest +2@6:44 + 2min rest +1@6:44 +2@8:15

Q1 Reality: 6@7:30 + 2@6:30 + 2min rest +2@7:01 + 2min rest +1@? +1.5@8:00

My second quality workout landed on New Year’s Eve day. Not sure if it was the holiday food, the addition of free weights to my training plan, or just half-assed pacing during the first two workout segments that did me in. It was probably all three. And to make matters worse, my ShitBit… whoops! I mean FitBit, miscalculated my pacing due to some type of GPS anomaly that seems to happen once every two weeks. So, I’ll never know what I ran exactly for that last mile at threshold pace. But, it felt a lot like 6:44 pace to me.

After a raucous New Year’s Eve party that consisted of making dinner, drinking wine, and dancing in the kitchen with the wife and kids, I woke up a little fuzzy Friday morning. I decided a dose of fresh air might do the trick and convinced my wife to run 4 miles with me on the snowy rail trail behind our house. We took our two favorite four-legged running friends and hit the trail. By the time I got back, I was feeling like myself again.

Boston Marathon: In the News 

Amanda Turner Russell was training for the Boston Marathon near her home in Hanover, Massachusetts a few days before Christmas. As she ran down Winter Street in Hanson, a car swerved across the center line and hit her before slamming into a utility pole. Amanda was rushed to the hospital, but died a few days later leaving behind an 8-year-old son. Now, her friend Nancy Eaton will accomplish her dream for her. Read more

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Thoughts?