The Best Training of My Life.

First, I apologize I’ve been very slow with updating my blog.  I’ve been extraordinarily busy the past few weeks with trips to Pittsburgh, Atlanta, and now Eugene, Oregon in addition to coaching the high school team at the conference championships (where the women took 2nd!) and at the state championships.  Even with the travel I have had by far the best three weeks of training I’ve ever had.  This blog post includes all of my training after running very well at the Indianapolis Mini-Marathon within 8 seconds of a Half-Marathon PR (1:05:10 for 8th).  I’m now in Eugene, Oregon putting the finishing touches on this marathon prep with Coach Hudson here to coach me through the workouts.  I was very lucky and fortunate to find a place to house/pet-sit at in the secluded hills just outside of town. With no cable or internet (hence why I’m writing this at a Starbucks), training is the focus of my life for the next three weeks until Grandma’s Marathon.  I’m fitter than ever and ready for a big race at Grandma’s.  This has been my past three weeks of training…

Traded the Rocky Mountains for lush green countryside roads, like the Lorane Highway outside of Eugene.

Week Ending May 15 – 118 Miles

Monday: 10miles + core

Tuesday: 10+ miles, massage by Peak Integrative Health


Wednesday: AM: 13 miles + core, PM: 4+ miles + hill sprints

Thursday: AM: 5 miles, PM: 17.5 miles total – 12x1k with 2min recovery, avg 3:07 on 3k loop in Boulder

Friday: AM: 15 miles + core (red-eye flight to Pittsburgh)

Saturday:  AM: 7 miles, PM: 7 miles

Sunday: AM: 30 miles total – pace Pittsburgh Marathon in 2:38:30 (6:02 pace)

Pittsburgh Skyline from the River Path

Week Ending May 22 ~124 miles


Monday: AM: 5 miles, Fly back to Boulder – Core in the airport! 🙂 PM: 5 miles

Tuesday: AM: 10 miles, Travel to Atlanta for Mizuno Annual Sale Meeting PM: 6 miles + hill sprints

Wednesday: AM: (At Sea Level track in Atlanta) 19 miles total – 10×1600 in 5:03 average, 2 min recovery, Fly back to Boulder, PM: 5+ miles, massage by Peak Integrative Health

Thursday: AM: 15 miles, PM: 5 miles + core

Friday: AM: 10 miles + core, PM: 6.5 miles

Saturday:  AM: 10 miles total, helped James Carney in a workout, ran 4x600m @ 70-68 per 400 pace. PM: 9+ miles

Sunday: AM: 11 miles, PM: 6+ miles

Week Ending May 29 ~ 130 Miles

Monday: AM: 20.5 miles total, 5x3k/1k  average paces 5:15/6:00 on 3k loop in Boulder, PM: 6.2 miles

Tuesday: AM: 8.5 miles + core, PM: 8.5 miles + massage by Peak Integrative Health

Wednesday: AM: Fly to Eugene, Oregon. PM: 11.5 miles + hill sprints (everything after here is Sea Level)

Thursday: AM: 12 miles total with 6miles of 1’on/1’off Fartlek averaging 5:07 pace including ‘off’ portions. PM: 7 miles + core

Friday: AM: 10 miles on hilly ridgeline trail, PM: 5 miles

Saturday:  AM: Marathon Paced Progression run: 18 miles total with 12 progression avg pace 5:11, PM: 6 miles (planned after this post!) + core

Sunday: (plan for tomorrow) AM: 10 miles, PM 7 miles


That is a total of about 372 in three weeks!  Next week begins a mileage taper after a 20 mile tempo run on Tuesday.  Time to go for run #2 of the day!  Hope you enjoyed reading about my training and hope everyone else’s training is going smoothly!

“Never Settle”



4 thoughts on “The Best Training of My Life.

  1. Awesome series of weeks. Very motivational. Do you know how many hours per week you ran? Was most of it lower intensity?

  2. Mark,
    I’d say that I averaged well over 2 hours per week of actual running. I wouldn’t say that most of it was lower intensity either. In the training philosophy we do not really just run a ton of easy miles. You build on each component of fitness progressively as the training block goes on. For example, this week my schedule looked like this…
    Monday: Easy run + hill sprints
    Tuesday: 10x1k off 90s rest
    Wednesday: ‘medium’ long run 16 miles progressing to light moderate last 10k
    Thursday: Easy run + 10x100m strides
    Friday: Hill run: 10k moderate followed by 10k hard uphill (over 1,000ft of elevation gain)
    Saturday: 2 very easy jogs
    Sunday: 20 miles with middle 16 at marathon effort (note that I’m at altitude so go by effort rather than pace to work the fuel system)

    In order to balance a lot of this quality running, I supplemented with a lot of easy running. I ran doubles Monday through Saturday. The easy second runs (usually 45 minutes to an hour) help flush out the legs, increase blood flood and circulation, and change the tension in the muscles…all of that in addition to continuing to build the aerobic system. The problem many people have with the linear periodization is that they first run all mileage, which they tend to feel good and run too hard too many days in a row. Then they shift to another training philosophy (like hill repeats) then another (like tempo runs) then another (like intervals) and finally ‘speed’ to peak. This doesn’t really help prepare you to your goal: run your goal race pace over your goal race distance. Make sense? Hope that helps!

  3. Makes total sense. Is the general idea to touch all systems year round and gradually build volume while doing that and focusing on different systems during different times of the year?

  4. The only reason we focus on different systems is depending on the race we are targetting. If I’m trying to run well for a 10k on the track the specific endurance is different than running a marathon.

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