How to Prepare for a Marathon in 10 Weeks
Ever since Michelle Khare went viral for running a marathon in ten weeks, runners have been trying relentlessly to do the same.
Some were amused that a first-time marathoner managed to do it, others were in shock, and the rest were in complete disbelief.
It’s hard to believe someone succeeding in something that some pro runners can’t do.
But once you know how Michelle managed to train in only ten weeks, you’ll realize that it’s no walk in the park. It’s a hardcore plan that requires resilience, patience, and a lot of energy!
How to Prepare for a Marathon in 10 Weeks
Before starting your preparation, you need to know what you’re in for. Preparing for a marathon in ten weeks is no joke. It’s a lot of work, and it’s overwhelming for your body.
You’ll get blisters, you may get overuse injuries, and you’ll need to dedicate a lot of your time to training.
Up for the challenge? Check out how you can do it!
Make Sure Your Starting Fitness Level is Appropriate
If you’re a beginner, you may want to rethink your decision. For someone to prepare for a marathon in 10 weeks, they need to be on an appropriate fitness level.
For one, they need to be able to run for at least 30 miles a week because the plan starts at a high rate.
Not only that, but they also need to be able to complete a 10k race easily at their target pace. Keyword: easily.
Plus, they need enough muscles to carry them through the finish line.
So if your calf muscles start burning 15 minutes after running, you may be in over your head.
Generally, preparing for a marathon on such short notice is only possible for pro runners who have a good level of cardiovascular fitness.
Fuel Up on Healthy Foods
In these ten weeks of preparing for a marathon, you’ll be pushing your body over its limits. For that, you’ll need enough food to give you energy and keep you up and running.
Remember to fuel up on carbohydrates because they’re responsible for providing your body with enough energy for the race, and make sure to include all food groups in your diet to fulfill your body’s needs.
Follow a Solid Training Plan
After Michelle Khare finished the marathon, she shared her training plan with the world to see.
Apparently, she started the plan by running for 45 miles a week. Then, she worked her way up to 70 miles by the time of the marathon.
In each week of the ten, Khare included a long run of 12–20 miles in one day. The other days were left for short and easy runs.
According to her, she ran six days a week, only taking Monday off.
If you can manage to follow a similar plan, by all means!
Don’t Forget About Recovery.
Because of the short preparation time, you may forget to give your muscles enough time to recover. If that’s the case, you’ll be prone to overuse injuries before you can even run the marathon.
Your resting heart rate can be a good indication of your recovery. If it’s higher than average, you need to focus more on resting, drinking enough water, and giving your muscles time to recover.
Remember that training plans are flexible, and you should adjust yours according to your current condition. If you need a rest day, take it.
Run Smarter, Not Harder
Our brains are wired to think that working harder is the only way to achieve what we want, but that’s not always true.
While you’ll definitely need to run hard to achieve your marathon goal, you need to be smart with your easy runs.
Make sure to run at a leisurely pace frequently in your training plan. That way, you’ll train your body to use the stored fats and carbs efficiently, not all at once.
You’ll also want to incorporate short recovery runs into your training to bring your heart rate down and keep your energy at a reasonable level.
A marathon is more about endurance than a fast pace, so you ought to keep that in mind.
Don’t Ditch Your Fast Runs.
The previous tip doesn’t mean that you should ditch your fast runs. Along with your easy-pace runs, you need to have a fast running session once every two weeks to develop your pace.
Dedicate a training session for a short interval run whenever you can. For example, you can run a 5k race at a high-intensity pace. Don’t overdo it; just once every couple of weeks will be enough to keep you up to speed.
Get Enough Sleep
In the ten weeks, you need to be focused on the marathon only. Forget any indulgences and make sure to get enough sleep even if it means you have to go to bed early.
Your body needs quality sleep to be able to complete the training plan. If you don’t give it that, it won’t carry you to the finish line.
Keep in mind that sleep deprivation lowers your immunity, making you prone to catching colds and different kinds of illness. Needless to say, that’s the last thing you need before running a marathon.
How to Prepare for a Marathon in 10 Weeks, Is it Recommended?
Preparing for a marathon in 10 weeks may be doable, but it’s not healthy. Even if you have a solid fitness level before starting, you’ll need to push your body beyond its limits to achieve your goal.
The amount of effort you’ll make will have its toll on your body.
Generally, it’s recommended to train for months before attempting to prepare for a marathon. Your plan needs to extend over at least 16 weeks to keep your energy levels reasonable.
Ten weeks aren’t enough for most runners except if they’re already used to running marathons regularly.
Final Thoughts On How to Prepare for a Marathon in 10 Weeks
Preparing for a marathon in 10 weeks is no easy feat. It’ll take a lot out of you to do it. You may be able to cross the finish line, but you’ll face a lot of hardships before it.
If you already run marathons and are well aware of your capabilities, there’s nothing wrong with trying to do it.