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Special: Boston Plans and Group Training

With Boston 2.0 on the horizon, it’s time to start thinking about what life might look like in phase 2 and 3 of our exit from quarantine. I recognize that it’s still not certain that Boston will be a go, so I am offering substantial discounts on our Boston plans and our second 2020 attempt at group coaching to minimize your financial commitment.

As a bonus, you have lifetime access to your Boston plans, so you’ll get to use it at some point. To be honest, these are good plans for any net downhill marathon. You can also sync to your Strava and GPS accounts. These plans also include Final Surge’s structured workout feature so you no longer have to create workouts in your watch! Plus with drag and drop features it’s super easy to customize your training plan to your specific needs.

 

Training Plans ($35)

14 week/55-60 miles per week

14 week/75 miles per week

14 Week/100 Miles per week

18 weeks/55-60 miles per week

18 weeks/75 miles per week

18 Weeks/100 miles per week

18 Week Alternator

 

Group Training ($125/19 weeks)

Starts 5/11/20!

14 week/55-60 miles per week

14 week/75 miles per week

14 Week/100 Miles per week

18 weeks/55-60 miles per week

18 weeks/75 miles per week

18 Weeks/100 miles per week

18 Week Alternator ([email protected] peak)

Spring Race Cancellation: Preparing for the fall

With all the questions regarding maintenance plans to reduce the impact of having races cancelled and then filling the void until you need to start training for your fall races, although Boston technically will still be summer. How weird was that to write? Let’s lay out some timelines and the courses of action possible.

However, before that, I would say that scheduling any race before mid-May at this point will probably be in vein. I just have a gut feeling that this will be the earliest that races resume, but I even think that first part of June. I think the sooner it heats up, the faster this thing dies off and life returns to normal. Ok, so with that disclaimer out of the way, let’s hit it!

4 weeks: 3/16 to 4/12: Rest and Recovery

  1. 7-10 days OFF. Now if you made it through a training block and raced in whatever fashion, then this means no running. It doesn’t mean no exercise though. I think walking, leisure biking, light yoga is all great things and may actually help speed recovery.
  2. Then, I usually prescribe 30 minutes a day or every other day. The next 10 days.
  3. The 4th week is usually 5 days/week of 30-60 minutes of easy running.
  4. If people start strides, I usually do that in the late stages of the third week.

The point is regeneration and recovering from all the hard work that has been done.

In this case, it just might be a good time to hit the reset button.

Now, this doesn’t have to fit in perfectly, you can add, subtract, adjust how to fit your needs.

Now, let’s look at timelines:

For Boston:

18 weeks out is May 11th. So, if planning on following one of the classic plans, this would be a start date for you. But that means from right now. From 3/15/20 to then that is 9 weeks total, then subtract your rest period. From Mid April that’s 5 weeks. In either case that’s not a lot of time. It’s not really enough time to get ready to run any kind of races. I would suggest just following a base plan of 6 weeks and adjusting to fit the timeline. Personally, I’d probably just cut the last week off. Build your volume to 75-80% of peak volume. Start with lower intensity workouts, and then put some speed in towards the end. Goal is general fitness. 

London:

If training for London, then 18 weeks out is 6/1/20, which leaves you 11 weeks from now, or 7 weeks from a 4 week recovery period. Still not a ton of time and I think you’d be better off just doing a base building plan as described above. I would rather see it spaced out, rather than cramming a mini-segment in. I would hate to start a new segment that means more to you with some aches and pains that weren’t necessary.

Now, for most of you, an 18 week schedule after just doing a half or full marathon training block, and then a base building block is a long time. I would not be opposed to shortening that marathon segment up to 14 weeks and that will be plenty of time to recapture that fitness. So, in this case, the start date would be June 8 for Boston and June 29 for London. This would give you ample time to run a dedicated speed segment of 8-12 weeks (can adjust for in between weeks). This allows you to really work on some dedicated speed, some gears you don’t hit with marathon training, and an opportunity to get those racing flats out a few times.

Just make sure to leave yourself 5-7 days of light running and a couple days off before starting the marathon segment again!

What about other fall marathons or half marathons?

The same ideas discussed above will work for other races. The biggest thing to do is take your race date and back up the desired number of weeks. Just remember that the longer you want to make your marathon buildup, the less time you’ll have between recovery now and the start of that segment.

The shortest amount of time I suggest for a speed segment is 8 weeks.

The longest would be 12-14, but 14 is really pushing it.

What if I am planning on running both Boston or London, along with the fall marathon I am already signed up for?

Here is where things get tricky. First, I think you have to consider when your latest marathon will take place and how many weeks between that and either Boston or London. The length of time between those two will really dictate what your options are. If you are running anything in October, along with London (yuck) or Boston, then that’s a really tough turnaround. I personally think that you choose one or the other to really race. Both have pros and cons. I think we know that September to early/mid October can still be really hot.

Heat and Boston’s course has never really fared well. London is flat and fast, so you might get away with it.

It might be a race week decision, too! I usually tell people that the best chance for success is the first one, but this may be a unique situation. Now, if later, say a Boston and New York combo, you’d have like 7-8 weeks, which might not be a bad option. I actually ran Indianapolis in mid November and Houston in mid January with Houston being slightly faster (even though I was about 10 pounds heavier and really not that motivated). I just think the shorter the window, the less likely it is to run both really well.

My best advice would be to pick one race, base my training around that and either use the first race as a long run or the second race as a victory lap (depending on what you choose).

If you pick the first race, go all in on that and back your training start date from that race. Just use the time between the first and second to get your legs back under you. If you pick the second race as the A race, then use that as your guide for a training start date and then the first race will have to be considered a hard workout, or big long run. Just make sure that if this is the case, then there is a few extra days recovery time after the first marathon. You also really have to be on point with all recovery options- sleep, fueling, hydration, cryo, boots, whatever you have access too- pull out all the stops that following week.

I know this is not a perfect situation but it can still be a successful situation.

With the right mindset, the right planning, and a positive attitude, it can all be conquered! Best of luck on your training.

What I laid out here can be adjusted to fit whatever your present situation is and whatever your fall racing plans are.

If you are interested in plans I have created, please check out the plans I have updated, including recovery, base, Boston marathon, half and full marathon plans. 

These plans are instant access via Final Surge. They can be customized to fit your needs by easy drag and drop to fit your specific schedules. They are built on Final Surge’s custom workout builder which allows you to be able to sync to many GPS (take all the guesswork out of what your workout should be). You can apply these plans by your specific start or end date and will be able to have all workouts at your specific paces. From now until the end of March, these plans will be 50% off so you can map out much of your 2020. You also have lifetime access to these plans to reapply in the future.

Luke Humphrey Running Training Plans

If your race has been canceled, but still want to take advantage of your fitness, I have set up a virtual race to help you add some finality to the segment. You can check out all the details in the link below. 

Virtual Race

Thoughts on warming up for Boston

While I write this specific for the Boston Marathon, what I write here is really applicable to any marathon where you have a starting line that is not anywhere near your finish line. In October of 2016, I wrote the post Marathon Race Strategy: A few thoughts which gave race strategies for all pace ranges. The post also included a few thoughts on what I felt were important for warming up before a marathon. I recommend all of you reading that for what you should consider in a general marathon warm up.

However, Boston is different, because the starting line is 26 miles away from the finish line. Here’s a few unique challenges thrown into an already tough day

 

  • Getting bussed out
  •  Leaving our gear at the finish line
  • Waiting in an athlete village
  • Waiting in our corrals
  • Running from inland to coast

 

Getting to Start:

I think we are all mostly familiar with the idea of getting bussed out, so I won’t spend too much time on this. The main idea I’d like to express here is to leave as late as you can. You want to spend the least amount of time in Hopkinton as possible. If you know you are one of the last corrals in your wave, get on the bus that makes the most sense. Again, limit the time you spend in Hopkinton.

http://www.baa.org/races/boston-marathon/participant-information/transportation-to-start-line.aspx

 

Leaving your gear at finish line:

This one was a surprise to me, as I am used to taking a bag with me and digging for it at the finish line. So, as you leave your nicer stuff at the finish line, make sure what you wear to Hopkinton are things you are willing to part with. The only problem with this, is that what we will discuss below. Waiting, more waiting, and waiting in the weather…

http://www.baa.org/races/boston-marathon/participant-information/gear-check-and-baggage-policy.aspx

 

Waiting, more waiting, and waiting in the weather:

Since you’ll have time on your hands, what you wear to the start line can be significant. As I said, you want it too be clothing that you are willing to part with, but you also don’t want to be skimpy on the clothes. So dress in layers and adjust to what the weather is in hopkinton. In 2016, it was a perfect example of how different weather can be 26 miles from where you started. In Hopkinton, the temps were in the high 60’s to low 70’s, while the announcers at the finish line wore light winter jackets. Check what that weather is in Hopkinton and dress for the starting line before heading out.

As I mentioned, you want to be at the village for the least amount of time. Being there longer just gives you more time to be antsy, pace around, and let your nerves get the best of you. Get there only when you need to, try to find a place to stay dry and comfortable, and get off your feet. Stay on whatever nutrition and hydration schedule you’ve set up for yourself.
My Boston Warm Up Protocol

  1. Use the bathroom right before leaving athlete village
  2. Take whatever you need to the starting line
    1. Water bottle
    2. A gel/calories
    3. Clothes you are going to leave/toss
  3. It seems like the faster you are in your wave, the longer you have to be in the corral. Make use of this time accordingly
    1. Sub 3:30 runners use the 0.7 miles from the Athlete Village as your warm up jog.
    2. Over 3:30 runners, walk the distance. This will be fine to loosen your legs up.
  4. Once in your corral
    1. Focus on yourself, visualize your first four miles and how that will set the tone for the race
    2. You will be limited on space, but want to stay loose. Consider doing simple movements that don’t take up a lot of room. Maybe 5-10 minutes before the gun goes off, do something like 10-15 squats, march in place, and shake your arms up. This won’t be perfect, but it will start priming the pump and tell the body that it’s about time to go to work.
    3. Have your first gel in that 5-15 minutes before the start.
  5. Once you cross that line, just stay calm. You’ll have a lot of people thinking that they are going to catch the race leaders. Keep to your plan and enjoy the moment, but don’t get caught up in the nonsense. Even with the first few miles downhill, you might not feel super great. We weren’t able to do a perfect warm up and you might feel sluggish. Stay calm and let the race come to you.

Boston has many unique challenges, but that’s part of what makes it Boston! Keep things simple and you can conquer the pre race warm up. It might not be perfect, but it will get the job done! Good luck to everyone running Boston!

 

Boston Course #5: 100% off code

Hey Everybody, Josh (the webMASTER) sent out 15% off codes yesterday. I'm trying to catch up from being at US champs (as are coaches Mike Morgan and Melissa Johnson-White).

Remember, this code ONLY works for the Boston Course #5!

So, here  is the 100% off code: ( you must login and be a member to view code )

You must be an active subscriber to view this premium content. Subscribe or Login.

Course 4 of our Boston Marathon Series is ready!

Our 4th course of the installment focuses on nutrition, starting from general nutrition, then narrowing down to performance considerations and your taper strategy. This is a course that all marathoners could benefit from, not just those running Boston. If you've taken the previous courses, then you probably received an email with a 15% off code for this course. I am writing this one to provide you a better code! How about one for 100% off?

 

To see the course: Course 4 Nutrition

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Upcoming Boston Marathon Training Webinar Series

Update: 12/23/14: The first course is up and it is FREE!!!! Check out the “video courses” tab on the home page!

 

Check out this quick overview of our upcoming webinar series! Stay tuned for instructions to sign up for lecture #1.

 

 

Running your best Boston Marathon

PlayPlay

In this episode we discuss the challenges that the Boston Marathon course gives runners, along with how to best train for those challenges. We also discuss race strategy for the course and how you can run your best Boston Marathon!
Luke Humphrey was 11th overall in the 2006 Boston Marathon and 16th in the 2008 Boston Marathon.

The Boston clinic that never was…

Hey Everyone,

Here’s the video of the presentation I was going to make for the Boston Marathon and training.

Attached is the .pdf file of the Powerpoint and notes: Running your best Boston Marathon