Marathon Training Schedule - Intermediate

Week  #  1



Getting Ready for the Marathon Season!  

Welcome to the start of our Intermediate Level weekly marathon training schedule.

Marathon Training Tip Of The Week:

People will find it very difficult to be ready to run a marathon with success if they haven't taken weeks or even months to adequately prepare for it. You see, running a marathon is no simple undertaking. Very few (if any) people could do absolutely no preparation and still be successful in the just over twenty-six mile race.



Click to download our Free Marathon Race Strategies guide to running a successful marathon


Marathon Training Schedule: Week 1

This is the first step in a long (18 week) road. Remember that the mental side of marathon training is just as important if you want to train well and run a good race! 





Intermediate Level: Week 1 Mileage Chart

Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7 Total Miles
5 E Rest 5 T 5 E Rest 8 L 4 E 27

E - Easy Pace; HD - Hard Pace; HL - Hills; L - Long Slow Run; M - Marathon Pace; T - Tempo


To train at the intermediate level you will have been running on a regular basis for a minimum of two years averaging 25 to 30 miles per week.  You will have run more than 3 marathons and are ready to work on getting your time down.  So if you are ready for some more serious training then this program is for you.  Trust us, if you complete this program, the marathon itself will be a “walk in the park”.

Below are the suggested day-by-day training goals for this week's training. Don't worry if you have to miss a day, or make adjustments. This is an 18 week program and you have plenty of time to get back on track.





Week 1 Daily Training Schedule



Day 1

-This is 5 miles at an easy pace.  Please find a gently rolling or flat area and ease into the run (15%) before getting into a comfortable aerobic zone (70%) and finish by cooling down for the final (15%).  Stretching is mandatory after each run.  

Day 2

- Surprisingly, this is a rest day.  Use it for light stretching and perhaps some Cross-Training like an easy bike ride (Road or Mountain Bike) or walk or a swim or any other non weight bearing exercise.

Day 3

-  This day will be devoted to your first Tempo Run. Tempo consists of a warm-up period at easy pace (1 mile) then pick a pace, say 8 min/mile for the middle 3 miles and finish easy for the last mile of the workout. Generally pick a pace under your marathon pace (30 seconds).  The objective is to increase the length of the workout at pace over the duration of the training program.  This will help you maintain your marathon pace over a longer period of time during the actual event.

Day 4

-  This is an easy run day; 5 miles on easy terrain.  Remember that stretching after all runs is mandatory and before a run, optional. 

Day 5

-  Rest day.  Stretching and/or Cross Training 

Day 6

-  Long Slow Distance Run  of 8 miles. This run is very important and should not be missed. Furthermore, please go slow on this run as it is meant to get your body acclimatized to the time and distance that you will be on your feet running. Leave any speed, tempo or hard pace for other times during the week. 

Day 7

-  Today is a recovery day of 4 easy miles (6.5 km) to get the lactic acid, etc out of your muscles from yesterdays LSD run.


Marathon Program Training Tips

  • You need to find a time to do your running that fits in with all of your other daily commitments and activities. This isn’t easy in the ‘hustle and bustle’ lives we lead today. Obviously, your running has to move up on the priority list and you will need to talk this over with your family!

  • The time of day you run is also affected by the weather. If you live in a warm climate, with summer temperatures frequently in the humid ninety degree range, running early in the morning may be the only option on some days.



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