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Running Twice Daily for Marathon Training due to Time Constraints

by Lynne
(York, PA)

Hello, I am a 51 year old woman and am running my first marathon in May. I break up my long runs on Sunday (7 in the morning, 5 in the afternoon or whatever my training schedule is) due to time constraints.

How will this affect me on race day? I do not sleep in between runs.


running tips, marathon

Answer by Dominique:


Hi there,
Thank you for your running training question. Apologies for not getting back to you earlier, I am running a bit behind.

The long run is a very vital part of marathon training. During the marathon you need to keep on going for 26.2 miles straight. It is advisable that in your training you do multiple hour runs regularly.

The long run serves different purposes. Getting used to spending that much time on your feet and training your body to manage its energy stores more efficiently are important ones.

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Many beginner running training programs advise that you build up to running 20 miles and get you there at least once. More advanced running programs try to make sure you cover that distance 4-6 times.

In other words, the long runs is essential and breaking up your long runs is not beneficial.

Given the limited time till race day, if this is really not doable any other way, then I would encourage you to do a few things:

  • Do more training during the week, i.e. add more mileage to other runs during the week


  • Be prepared to make your marathon a run/walk marathon. E.g. alternating 20-25 minutes of running with 5-10 minutes of walking.


  • If you don't do the run/walk you will get to a point at about mile 14-20 where you will be forced to walk and it will make your marathon experience very painful.

    More painful than it already is, as the marathon is per definition a 'character-building distance'... :)

    Wishing you best of luck with your marathon endeavors.
    Kind regards,
    Dominique

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