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8/23/13 8:24 A

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Thank you everybody!! This thread was very helpful. I appreciate all the advice!

Enjoying every single moment I can with my husband and little boy!
8/22/13 10:43 P

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I run my maintenance running at 6, 9, and 13 miles on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I also walk everywhere I can.

Start by doing what is necessary, then do what is possible and suddenly you will be doing the impossible -- St Francis of Assisi

Rock 'n' Roll Dublin Half Marathon, Dublin, Ireland, 8/5/2013

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8/22/13 10:32 P

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That seems like a great schedule for you for now. I think you'll know when it's time to find something more structured. I second the advice to build for a few weeks and then dip mileage. Recovery is so important. And while it's exciting to keep running new distances, it can also be mentally exhausting and/or challenging. Make sure to give yourselves breaks.

When I am not training for a specific event, I keep my long runs to 8 miles. It's a good distance and length of time for me. You will find what works for you!

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8/22/13 2:02 P

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I agree with Laura and depends on your goals (which can/will change over time!). At my age (52) and tendency to gain weight, I don't want to ramp completely down (plus running is my main cardio). I enjoy running HMs, 10ks and 5ks year round so I keep about 20 miles/week even if no race is upcoming...but during those times the runs are pretty unstructured (easy runs or with a group). I get serious with track work, mileage and hills when I have a race in sight.

A ship in the harbor is safe. But that's not what ships are built for.

- Anonymous

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8/22/13 9:42 A

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Great question! And very helpful responses so far. My last race for the year (at least as I've currently scheduled) is in early November, and I wasn't sure how to best keep up my maintenance training in the off season. Thanks for the input!

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8/22/13 6:31 A

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In my 2 off season periods, I run a base of at least 40 kms/25 mpw. Mostly at easy pace, but I'll occasionally throw in a short tempo run. I'll focus on quality ST.

"Sometimes, the moments that challenge us the most, define us." - Deena Kastor

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8x ultramarathon finisher / 10x marathon finisher / 27x half marathon finisher
Mom (b. March 12, 2010)

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8/21/13 2:59 P

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I will be honest and say that I just plain can not get myself to run if I am not working toward a goal and have a training plan. As much as I LOVE running I just need that structure.

"Older, Lighter, Faster"
Masters PRs: I am 49
5K 23:13 (7:28)
10K 48:50 (7:53)
Half-Marathon 1:49 (8:19)
Marathon 3:57 (9:04)

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8/21/13 8:33 A

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Last year I ran my first 5k in about 31 or 32 min. This year I ran that same 5k in 27:01. I never really increased my distance. I was running 5 miles, but I was consistent and I could feel myself running a bit faster each time. I've now increased my distance for longer runs and I also take 2 rest days a week. It seems to work for me.


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READINGACE's Photo READINGACE SparkPoints: (35,495)
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8/20/13 5:31 P

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My 2 cents worth is to join a running club in your area. Within the group there are usually enough people training for just about any distance at any point in time and plenty just maintaining!

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LBTHOMASJR's Photo LBTHOMASJR SparkPoints: (137,686)
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8/20/13 12:50 P

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I second much of what Laura said. Most importantly, just run. You might not know what race you're training for, but you likely have an idea of the distance you'd like to tackle next. If so, base your long runs on building towards that distance. Don't forget to include one or two rest days per week and "cut-back" weeks every three or four weeks.

Hal Higdon has a Training Program for those planning to run multiple marathons in a year. It can be found at
It is specific to the Marathin, but I would assume the same general principle would apply to other distances. Also, a lot of programs will have a race or two built into them (at a shorter distance than the race you're training for) so by default you'll accomplish multiple races if you follow the plan.

The block of granite which was an obstacle in the path of the weak becomes a steppingstone in the path of the strong.
- Thomas Carlyle

5K - 23:45 (6 races)
10K - 50:12 (3 races)
10 Mile - 1:27:07 (2 races)
Half Marathon - 1:56:35 (1 Race)

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8/20/13 12:21 P

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from the for what it's worth corner....

I quit running events because they are just commercial, and rarely really do any fundraising anymore, at least around here. But I like to be ready for whatever.... So:

Just run regularly. Pick your days. If you want to improve some aspect of your running, pick one run a week to focus on that aspect. Lately I run with one or the other of my dogs. They don't go real far, so sometimes I circle back and get another, if I want a longer run. These are easy runs. When I want a more quality run, I leave the dogs at home and go do hills, or sprints.

General thinking is build for 3-4 weeks, and then cut back to about 70% weekly distance for a week and then start building again. But with no actual goal hanging out there, what are you building toward?

For me, personally, I like an easy run one day, a quality run, an easy run and a long run. Life and circumstance prevents that recently, so I am just happy to get out every other day or so... I am easily 5k ready, 10k ready as well. Half marathon, I might need to give myself a month or two to ramp up. But mostly, I am just staying fit... and sane - running is a moving meditation for me. ;)

On no account brood over your wrongdoing.
Rolling in the muck is not the best way of getting clean.
~ Aldous Huxley

~~I shed 56.8 lbs in 2008, and 20.6 in 2009!!! Happily maintaining!!!~~
My ticker represents my Maintenance range!!!
(Reset July10, 2009)

 current weight: -0.5  under
8/20/13 11:00 A

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The thing about running that I don't understand yet is this: Maintenance. If you're not training for a certain race goal, how are you supposed to train to maintain your speed, endurance, or other accomplishments already achieved?

All of the training plans I've seen online seem to lead up to a goal of one particular race length. What if you just want to increase your distance, but also have no particular "end goal" or end time for that goal? My ultimate goal is to someday run a full marathon. Someday. No hurry.

Here's what I'm considering and please tell me if this is off-base:

4 days a week, with a rest day in between each day:

1st day - Just run 5k. (or should I up this distance now that I'm running it regularly?)
2nd day - 400s or Fartleks, or some kind of sprinting/intervals for 20-30 minutes. Maybe.
3rd day - Just run 5k.
4th day - Long run -- each week adding 10 percent to current distance.

So the long day starts as a 3.1 mile, then the next week it's 3.41, the next 3.751 etc -- up to the eventual goal of 26 miles. It's the 4th day I'm not sure about -- I see most training programs ramp up, then back down in distance, then ramp back up in time for the event. But what if you don't have a specific event, or you plan on running several marathons a year? How do you train when there is a continual goal, and not an end goal? Does that make sense? I mean, if you run 4 or 5 marathons or half-marathons a year, it seems like you'd be constantly in training or one or more of them. What does that schedule look like?

Thanks for the help, and sorry for all the dumb questions. I love running and I just want to increase my distance conservatively and SAFELY!

Enjoying every single moment I can with my husband and little boy!
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