This 16-week marathon intermediate training plan averages 40 miles (64 km)/week with 4 runs/week. The long run starts at 9 miles (14 km) and peaks at 17 miles (27 km) in week 12.
Every 4th week is an active recovery week with reduced mileage and intensity.
This training plan develops your ability to run a faster marathon by improving aerobic endurance, lactate threshold, aerobic capacity (VO2max), general speed, and running economy.
Should this plan turn out being too hard or too easy, I will change it to another level free of charge.
The training method
It preconditions your speed and endurance early in the training cycle so that you can reach a higher VO2max and lactate threshold in the subsequent focus block and eventually run a faster marathon race pace.
1. Foundation - This is the base + speed phase which is characterized by extreme polarization.
2. Conditioning - This is the fitness phase with a focus on VO2max and lactate threshold.
3. Race-Specific - This is the sharpening phase where your marathon race-fitness is brought to a peak.