We describe what base training is and how it is good early preparation for the marathon. Base training the Chatty Sparkly way is also perfect for any runner wanting to improve their fitness.
With Autumn marathons being scheduled, you may be planning what training you need to be doing. A quick search on the internet will throw up free marathon training plans and many of them are just sixteen weeks long. This is a short timespan to prepare for a marathon but is perfect as long as you have completed ten to twelve weeks base training first.
Follow our recommendations for base training and you will be well prepared for the demands of a sixteen week marathon plan. It will prepare you to run tirelessly for hour after hour and will improve your Chatty pace naturally. That is why even if you are not planning to run a marathon base training is also the best way to improve your running fitness.
Build up the length of the long run
The most important run of your training week is the long run. Over the course of the ten to twelve weeks of base training you need to build this long run up to a duration of two hours. At the end of the twelve weeks, you must be able to run that two hours tirelessly.
As you build up, if you feel tired at the end of your long run, then that time out running is enough for you. Don’t add any more minutes for a while. Keep the long run time the same until it feels easy. When you finish feeling like you can do more, then that’s the time to increase it. Add only five minutes a week or ten minutes and take two weeks to get accustomed to it. You will need to listen to your body and see how it copes.
Build up the time of your other runs during the week.
When you stop building up your long run for a few weeks to get used to the distance, try adding some time to another run. You can add another Chatty run if you only run a few times a week. Alternatively, add some time to another of your runs in the week. You should aim to build up the total mileage you do to around 26 miles by the end of the base training period. It is important to make sure your running week is balanced. That means that you are not doing all your running at the weekend and little during the week.
Only build up one run at a time and if you feel tired one week, take a recovery week. This might involve dropping back the time of your runs for one week or just not increasing any of them.
What base training the Chatty Sparkly way should feel like
If your base training is going well you should feel fresh and be looking forward to the next run. You should be recovering between each run and have no aches and pains. It should all feel easy.
When it’s not going well, you may dread going out. Your legs may be aching and you find you have to put more effort in to go the same speed. If you are having to push yourself to go out and to push yourself to run then these signs tell you that you haven’t recovered. Take a break until the spark returns.
Knowing when you are recovered is a key part of your build up and finding out what a recovery day is for you. A very gentle run may be what you need or a walk. Walking is good marathon training if you have done too much and need to recover.
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