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Marathon Training Plan & Schedule
As more and more runners turn to the marathon to prove their running mettle, a sensible marathon training schedule is more important than ever for building safely to peak performance

By Josh Clark

Befitting its Greek roots, the marathon unfolds as a classic drama, carrying equal doses of comedy and tragedy, euphoria and agony. For much of the time since this piece of road-running theater was revived in the 1896 Athens Olympics, the starring roles of the marathon were reserved largely for a relatively small band of running fanatics. But in the last two decades, something amazing has happened: the rise of the average-Joe marathoner. As the second running boom captures more and more new runners, they are turning in increasing numbers to the marathon to prove their mettle. The masses have embraced the marathon and vice versa. Cool Running celebrates this trend, with a caveat that should be obvious: you do not have to run the marathon to be a "real" runner (some of the world's top runners have never run one). It is true that crossing the finish line after 26.2 miles delivers a feeling of gratification and accomplishment like no other, but a similar sense accompanies the finish of a well run 10K, or a fast mile. Build to the Marathon New runners in particular should not feel pressed to rush to the marathon; to begin the racing experience with the marathon is to start at the wrong end. Give yourself time and experience racing the shorter distances. Running a marathon is not something to be done lightly or without adequate preparation and training.It requires seriousness and dedication.



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