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Training Plan for Long Beach

So I’ve received numerous questions about the training plan I used for Long Beach. As you all know, the main purpose of my running is to have fun and because I’m crazy and truly love to run. Sometimes people ask me why I run and most of the time I cannot even explain to them why I do it. I do it because, for me, it clears my mind and makes me feel free. It allows me my own time and time to reflect on so many different aspects of my life, from family, to friends, to work and to my past, present and future. I also have no one to report to but myself. Yes, I have been running for over ten years now, but I just recently started back into entering in races. I truly believe that anyone can run. It’s not about how fast you go, or what your time is. It’s about doing something that you love and you’d be surprised how addicting running can be.

It sounds strange that I do so much thinking when I run, but there are some runs when I can just zonk out and go into the ‘zone’ too and those runs are great as well. Music makes me run faster and I love just enjoying my time outside and doing something for myself.

Most of the runs I did during my training for Long Beach were strictly for fun, which worked out perfectly for me. You may realize that I put a lot of pressure on myself to succeed. I hold myself to a high standard throughout my life and I think it began with running when I started racing in high school. I’m highly competitive and even to this day when I do track workouts or try to run a faster workout I can still hear my coach in my head. The runs I did for Long Beach were NOT pressured at all, and were just to ‘get in the miles’, to get my legs ready for the race.


There were pace guidelines that we talked about doing for training, but I, as you can tell never did any tempo work or speed work or any type of faster workout. I only did general (relaxed/enjoyable) and long (SLOW ha, ha) and then easy/recovery for my paces. Most of the times I felt like being speedy I did a faster workout on either Tuesday or Thursday. If I felt like being fast, I would pound out the miles, however fast I wanted to go. Which I liked because I wasn’t pressured to hit a time goal. I also do not run with a heart rate monitor, which I think helps me not feel pressured. Then, if I felt like going slow, I went slow. The long runs were pretty slow, mostly around 9:30 pace. Most of my Tuesday and Thursday runs were around 8:00-9:00 pace and if I felt speedy they were ranging in 7:00-8:00 pace. I liked this plan because obviously, it was pretty crammed, but I wasn’t overworked and didn’t hate running come race day. I had a decent base going into it so that wasn’t my problem at all, I was running about 20-25 miles a week before I started on the ‘plan’. I really think that this plan helped me to not get burnt out and not put too much pressure on myself throughout the training and I still enjoyed running when the time came to race.

Running four days a week seemed perfect for me because I still had time to relax and rest, and getting in some miles after work or before work worked well for me. I wasn’t overwhelmed which made running way more fun. I would totally try to find a plan that works for you. You can tailor your own plan or use other plans, but for me, this worked out perfectly. I think running is all about you, and no one else, and that’s why this plan worked for me. It was MY plan that fit with MY schedule, instead of squeezing in crappy runs here and there, I had more than ample time to get them done and felt great about most of them.

I am taking a rest day today and will be up and hopefully running tomorrow morning. I have had a little bit of weird pain in my arch, so I just wanted to take a little rest to make sure it was nothing serious and the pain is slowly fading. Hopefully I can run tomorrow am!


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  • Reply KatieA.

    You nailed it sista’! It’s all about you and your plan and what you want. That’s why we all run, and until we find that happy zone with a balance of running and life, we won’t achieve what we want or need from running. It takes some hard work, but you put it in and it paid off! Congrats again, girly!
    Enjoy the day off, you deserve it.

    October 21, 2009 at 8:36 am
  • Reply Kelly

    I think not getting burnt out is the key. Arch pain is no fun. ice, drugs and rest is what my dr. told me.

    October 21, 2009 at 8:37 am
  • Reply Jen

    This is so helpful. I’m going to start training for my marathon in July after my half in Feb. I think the strangest part will be the longer “short” runs in the week. 10 miles is a lot to run on a week day for me. But this looks like a very good and manageable plan! Thanks for sharing, and again – congrats on your marathon! :)

    October 21, 2009 at 9:08 am
  • Reply J

    I like your training plan because of what you said about speed. if you wanted to go fast then you did. I think for me that might be the way to go too. Just waking up and deciding to run fast because your body wants to works better than going by a schedule that doesn’t take into account how you’re feeling or your schedule!

    October 21, 2009 at 9:17 am
  • Reply Maggie @ It Is Everlasting

    You WOULD have a color coded schedule. Hahaha. Love it. You are doing great and I can’t wait to hear how things go in the ‘Bu. Hahaha.

    October 21, 2009 at 9:51 am
  • Reply Shannon

    Cute schedule :o) Love the colors! ha!

    Totally random, but what happened to Mr. R? If ya’ll broke up – I’m sorry for being nosey! I’ve just wondered! :o)

    October 21, 2009 at 9:54 am
  • Reply Marlene

    Thanks for sharing your plan! I might like to switch to 4 days next time around (instead of 5) to give myself more time for cross-training… and rest. ;)

    I also like that you didn’t put pressure on yourself to hit certain paces during certain runs. Running based on how you feel is awesome. Are you going to stick to the same regimen for your next one?

    October 21, 2009 at 10:58 am
  • Reply Ally

    Thanks for sharing this! I’ve been having a hard time loving running again as my work schedule has just not allowed me to get in the miles and then I beat myself up and have to run at weird times. I agree with you that running is about YOU and finding what works. I’ve got my first marathon in jsut about 5 weeks and I’m so excited and scared and am really holding onto these last few weeks and hoping to get my running mojo back–I just need to remember that I love to run. Me. I do. And that’s what matters, right?

    October 21, 2009 at 11:13 am
  • Reply Alisa

    I think 3-4 days of running is all I can handle. I see plans where you run 5-6 days a week–ugh, I can’t do it.

    I would love to be able to do mid-week long runs of 12 miles but I just can’t, I’d have to get up at 3:00 am.

    I love that your approach was running for fun. That’s totally where I’m at these days and I think I’m actually getting faster just by being consistent.

    October 21, 2009 at 11:55 am
  • Reply B.o.B.

    Good plan. I like the 4 day plan myself, but I think I was too aggressive in the 6 day plan I chose, thus the injury. Glad you shared your plan!

    October 21, 2009 at 12:02 pm
  • Reply Kerrie @ mom vs marathon

    I like the 4-day plans, as well. The body has to rest. Why was your arch hurting? My left arch was cramped the other day all day long.

    October 21, 2009 at 12:19 pm
  • Reply Bootchez

    Thanks for taking the time to post this — I’m just getting used to the idea of running a marathon and am looking for all the input I can get. It seemed to work so well for you!

    October 21, 2009 at 12:41 pm
  • Reply Pure2Raw Twins

    Your training schedule looks great. I just talked about mine a few days ago. I agree with you in that every one’s training is different… for instance my long run days on Tuesdays because Saturday is one of my busiest days… so right there my training is different. But as long as you enjoy it and make it work in your schedule than all is good! :)

    October 21, 2009 at 4:25 pm
  • Reply ilovesteaks

    wow, so colorful! Makes me want to go eat some Lucky Charms! Anyways, you certainly have the right attitude. I’ll see you out in Malibu.

    October 21, 2009 at 5:51 pm
  • Reply Melanie

    Thanks for sharing this! I love only running a few days a week, too. I feel like it’s easier to race better when you’re more relaxed in training, you know?

    October 21, 2009 at 8:23 pm
  • Reply Madeline

    I was definitely confused as to where the tempo runs were on the plan until you said you didn’t do them unless you felt like it, haha. Also, can I just say that I love your color coding? A pretty training log. What every girl needs!

    October 21, 2009 at 9:15 pm
  • Reply Tara

    This is definitely a good plan and one that works for YOU, which is what I think a lot of people get overwhelmed with when deciding on a plan. If you can’t make it fit into your life then it’s not worth it…everyone needs to find their perfect fit :)

    October 22, 2009 at 8:28 am
  • Reply The Laminator

    Wow…what a fab plan! Love it, love it, love it.

    Haha =)

    October 22, 2009 at 9:32 am
  • Reply Training Plans | Chic Runner

    […] I posted about the training I went through for Long Beach here. Remember, right now I’m NOT running for time so I don’t do speed workouts. You can see […]

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  • Reply Surf City Training plan + Day UNO! | Chic Runner

    […] when I “trained” for the Long Beach full marathon I followed a plan that was strictly just running and just easy miles. I never did any speed work, or any real type of […]

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