Marathon Training Week One: Clean Slate
My first week of training for a marathon is in the books. I thought I did fairly well for my first week. I am just starting to get my wind and believe that working out the entire body, not just my legs will give me a boost come October.
My endurance is completely shot and is nowhere near where it needs to be. My son Jakob was born eight and half months ago running has taken a back seat to being a dad I’m very rusty and starting out with a clean slate. While I wasn’t running or lifting the last few months, I have been eating well. I make it a point to eat several servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
Before going any further, I should say before attempting any exercise or training regimen to consult your doctor. What is right for me won’t necessarily be right for you. We are starting out at different levels of endurance, athletic ability, and so on. This is merely a guide of what I am doing to get ready for a marathon.
Since the temperature is in the single digits, and there’s a lot of snow and ice on the ground, I am running on a treadmill. It’s certainly not ideal. When I trained for my first half marathon, I did most of my running on a treadmill because of the weather. I’m not a fan of it because of the constant pounding on my knees and of course, you don’t go anywhere – you get bored fast. At least when running outside, you can run on the grass and enjoy the scenery.
I’m starting very slow trying not to overdo it. Like I said, my goal right now is to get my wind and endurance back.
Monday: I started my training regimen by walking three miles and running one. The one-mile run was a very slow mile. The main purpose was to get started and maintain proper form. I walked two miles as a warm up and then ran a mile. The final mile walked served as a cool down. To finish the day, I did a few leg exercises: Leg Curls, Leg Press.
Tuesday: No running today, just walked two miles and did a few upper body exercises: Curls/Pushups/Plank Challenge.
Wednesday: Although I felt tired I decided not to make it a rest day. I walked a mile and ran two. I started off by walking a half mile as a warmup and then ran two medium paced miles. I finished by walking a half mile as a cool down.
Thursday: Rest Day!
Friday: Today was my big run day. I ran three miles on the treadmill, walked a mile and did another mile on the elliptical. I also did 40 minutes of core exercises to build up strength. A strong core is something I am severely lacking. I performed several exercises on the exercise ball and did the plank challenge along with pushup and a few curls.
Saturday: I woke up early to go to the gym. It wasn’t something I had looked forward to mainly because Jakob only had a few hours of sleep. He was up crying most of the night. Which means I didn’t get much sleep either. I know if I want to perform and train well, a proper night’s sleep is paramount. Even though tired, a little cranky and sore, I had the best workout yet. I walked two miles, ran three and performed a few wind sprints. Yes, dreaded wind sprints. I’ll be running a long distance, but throwing in sprints periodically will be good. It should help with endurance.
Sunday: Rest Day!
I’m not going to go meal by meal of what I had to eat throughout the week unless you specifically want those details. If you do, I’ll be more than happy to put it here in the future. For now I’ll give you a few of the main meals I had throughout the week.
Breakfast: Cereal with Bananas, Fruit Smoothies, Green Juice, Eggs and Toast
Lunch: Salad with Carrots and Quinoa, Turkey Sandwich, Peanut Butter and Jelly.
Dinner: Burrito Bowl with Black Beans, Chicken, Cheese, Lettuce, and Avocado; Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs; Chicken Cutlets; Quinoa and soup.
Staying hydrated is important. It is especially important when you start doing a lot of physical activity. There are three things I usually drink throughout the week – water, smoothies and almond milk. I should say four things. I do have the occasional beer. For training purposes though beer will be at minimum.
I drink several glasses of water a day, that is my go-to beverage. Almond milk is mainly for dinners and smoothies. When I have smoothies I will usually have them with hemp protein as an extra meal or a meal replacement. It really depends on how I’m feeling that day. As a personal choice, I don’t eat red meat or pork. Protein is important so that is why I try finding other sources such as the hemp protein, quinoa, black beans, peanut butter, etc.
Another thing I should point out is my weight. When starting, I weighed 186 and after just a week I’m down to 184. For many this would be great but I’ve only begun and I don’t want to shed too much weight. At my current pace, I’m going to lose a lot more weight. When I ran my first half marathon, I was down to the 160s. It is something I want to avoid. That means I have to eat more meals and protein shakes.
For week two, I will continue to work on form and build endurance. This means running three to four miles each time out at a slow, steady and controlled pace. There will also be more sprints in my future along with core training. I also hope to come up with more food options that will continue to fuel me during the week. Hopefully this week one overview gave you an idea of my process. If you have any specific questions feel free to leave a comment here or on social media.