The marathon recruits 100% of your slow-twitch fibers, 23% of your intermediate fast-twitch fibers, and 0% of your super fast-twitch fibers. That means…

  • 80% of your maximal aerobic capacity
  • 40% of your maximal speed
  • 2.5% anaerobic contribution
  • 2.6mmol blood lactate/liter

The 3 physiological determinants responsible for faster marathon times are…

Aerobic fitness = your maximal oxygen uptake expressed in VO2max.

Neuromuscular power = your ability to generate force quickly.

Marathon-specific endurance = a high lactate threshold, extraordinary muscular fatigue resistance, large glycogen stores, a well-developed fat-metabolism, and running economy at marathon pace.

If you are not trained for the unique demands of marathon-specific endurance, you will not surpass your current marathon race ability despite a solid foundation of aerobic fitness and muscular power. Rather, they are a pre-condition for marathon-specific endurance.

Now, how do you optimize all three variables – aerobic fitness, muscular power, and marathon-specific endurance – for faster marathon times?

That is the art and science of effective training. It is based on purposeful and precise workouts, a structured training week, dedicated focus blocks, and peak performance cycles.

Hi! I'm Sandro Sket, a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist from Germany. As an athlete I have won multiple awards in middle-distance and long-distance running events. My training plans combine science-based principles with the practical methods of professional athletes.
Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists (CSCSs) are professionals who apply scientific knowledge to train athletes for the primary goal of improving athletic performance. They design and implement safe and effective strength training and conditioning programs.

Marathon Training Plans

Faster times at the marathon are not just the result of training more or harder. Real progress begins by maximizing aerobic fitness, muscular power, and race-specific endurance—in the right order.

Train with the same system used by professional athletes to set a new personal record at your next marathon race.

Elevate your aerobic capacity (VO2max)
Boost your lactate threshold/tolerance
Increase your neuromuscular power
Upgrade your fatigue resistance
Improve your running economy

MRA Intermediate

16-week plan
4 running days/week
40 miles/week (64 km/week)

MRA Advanced

16-week plan
4 - 6 running days/week
55 miles/week (88 km/week)

MRA Pre-Elite

16-week plan
5 - 7 running days/week
70 miles/week (112 km/week)