I’m running the California International Marathon (CIM) on December 2 this year. This will be my 8th marathon, and I’ve decided to push my weekly mileage a bit higher than usual. In marathon cycles past I’ve run 4 days a week and peaked at around 60 miles. This year, after a lengthy layoff from marathoning (it’ll be a year between races–and I needed the mental and physical break –> see this post) and a lot of time triathlon training, I am ramping up my weekly miles. Recovery week is 60 miles and a normal training week is around 70-75.
Remember in December when I ran all those days in a row in order to tally 2,500 miles for 2011? From December 21 thru the 31st, I ran 122 miles. Averaging 11 miles a day for 11 days straight proved to me that I was fit enough to handle a high mileage training cycle. Of course, those miles were all mellow zone 2 runs, but my body thrived on them and I missed it when the year was over and I transitioned to triathlon training (which will be vastly different in 2013–trust me). Of course, running more miles per week means a couple of things for me. First, I need to run 5 days a week and cross train on two others. I also need to get up earlier. Triathlon training was nice. Runs were typically 60-70 minutes. I could sleep until 5:30. LATE for me. But if I want high miles, I need to embrace the 4 AM wake up, and rise even earlier for my mid-week long runs.
So far, I’m out of the bed fairly easy at 4 am. I don’t miss runs unless I hear thunder or see lightning. I will run in a torrential down pour if I have to. So getting up has never been a problem. I don’t love it, let’s not be crazy, but I do it because I love running. We will get out of bed at obscene hours for the things that mean a lot to us; for those things to which we are committed and dedicated.
Here’s the schedule that seems to be working great for me:
Monday: AM: sleep in, PM: bike or swim
Tuesday: AM Tempo run of 11 miles; PM swim or bike
Wednesday: AM early rise for 13-14 miles; PM double run day, 3-4 easy miles (daily total 16 or so)
Thursday: AM hill run of 9-11 miles; PM Double run day 3-4 easy miles (daily total of 13-15)
Friday: AM easy run/zone 2 of 11 miles; PM swim or bike
Saturday: Long bike
Sunday: Long run, with occasional double run later that day of 2-3 miles
Mileage totals (starting the week of 9/9/12)
Week 1: 55
Week 2: 61
Week 3: 70
Week 4 (recovery): 61
Week 5: 75