16 Week Marathon Training Schedule Tips to PR NOW

Seeking a new 16 week marathon training schedule? If so, welcome to RunDreamAchieve. I am so happy you have made it here. You can definitely get into great aerobic and anaerobic shape in the span of 4 months. This plan gradually increases weekly mileage until reaching a long run on Sundays. Also, we focus on a 10-day taper period so as to recover both mentally and physically on race day.

Staying motivated to your weekly run routine of various length and intensity runs as well as cross-training exercises is key for long-term success. Be sure to subscribe to the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. My goal is to create at least 2 new videos there each week to help runners like you run faster and gain confidence.

Base Runs for a 16 Week Marathon Training Schedule

No matter the level of experience or your goal marathon distance, a good 16 week marathon training schedule will get you from solid running base to the finish line. A solid plan should gradually build endurance over time while including recovery weeks and test events before your big race day.

Start off any 16 week marathon training schedule right by conducting “base runs,” which are long distance runs. The goal of these workouts is to focus on an easy pace and designed to help build aerobic endurance. You will want to conduct these runs either on flat terrain or, for added variety, try doing them over hills as well.

Once you have established a good aerobic endurance base, it’s time to work on speed and lengthening your distance with tempo runs and hill repeats. In a tempo run, push yourself slightly faster than marathon goal pace. That being said, not so fast that it becomes uncomfortable – on a scale from one to 10, this should feel like 7 or 8 out of 10.

Hill repeats are designed to train your legs and feet for longer distances by challenging you on some steep hills, helping your muscles adapt. By doing hill repeats regularly, they can help prevent injury and fatigue during long runs days.

An effective 16 week marathon training schedule should include cross-training and strength training to maximize overall performance and minimize injuries.

Long Runs

Long runs are an integral component of any marathon training plan, designed to develop endurance. Gradually increase both length and intensity as you train.

On long runs, it’s crucial to experiment with various running fuel options – gels, gus and chews – until finding what suits both your digestive system and energy levels best. Hill repeats are an invaluable training strategy as these will prepare you for race day terrain.

Most marathon training programs include at least two ‘training’ long runs and one ‘race-pace’ long run each week, whereby your goal should be to run at your marathon race pace during both sessions.

Running should be at a comfortable and sustainable pace that still enables conversation. However, your pace should match up more closely to that of your intended race time goal pace. Remember, the goal is to improve the body’s lactate tolerance. You will not be able to do this by running easy too often.

This 16 week marathon training schedule has been developed in partnership with Multisport Mastery coaches. They specialize in developing individual performance plans to accommodate athletes of all abilities – whether that’s learning how to run for the first time or looking to improve your current time! Multisport Mastery can assist!

This training plan is tailored for beginner to intermediate runners who regularly workout four to five times weekly. I strongly suggest consulting a physician prior to beginning any training program. Remember, running too soon can cause injury and decrease marathon performance. For optimal results, cross-training should also be incorporated into weekly workouts in order to balance out intensity of running. Also, while strengthening muscles for improved speed and stamina.

Speed Workouts

A legitimate 16 week marathon training schedule should build up both speed and stamina with high intensity workouts such as tempo runs. Tempo runs allow runners to run longer intervals at an enjoyable yet challenging pace that increases oxygen efficiency and Vo2 max; its optimal pace should feel hard but not so challenging that talking is impossible while running it.

Hill repeats are an intense marathon training exercise designed to strengthen legs while simulating the various terrain conditions found during actual marathon races. These exercises involve repeated ascents and descents on hills following a warm-up mile.

16 Week Marathon Training Schedule Perks

As part of your training for a marathon, it is wise to include some fast turnover sessions into your regimen to familiarise your body with the faster pace required by marathon running. These workouts should be performed over shorter distances at or very near to your marathon goal race pace. Also, should help improve running efficiency so that you finish it faster.

A weekly long run is the final element in your 16 week marathon training schedule. These workouts are designed to build both muscular and cardiovascular endurance. In addition, teaching your body how to fuel itself while running for an extended period.

Gradually increase the length of each long run until reaching peak long run length on week three of training, before tapering down for marathon day. A good marathon training plan should also include cross-training days such as walking, cycling or swimming alongside stretching and strength training exercises to keep your body fresh and ready.


Cross-training exercises can enhance running endurance and performance on race day. Furthermore, these workouts may reduce injuries associated with high-volume training programs for beginner- to intermediate runners.

The 16 week marathon training schedule offers three easy base runs per week, followed by one long run on Sundays . We gradually increase mileage while taking strategic rest days. The goal is to help novice and intermediate runners develop a solid running foundation while decreasing injury risks.

Runners should gradually increase both distance and pace as they work their way through the 16 week marathon training schedule. These runs aim to build muscular and cardiovascular endurance while teaching runners how to fuel themselves through extended workouts. Aim to keep pace comfortable; water breaks should also be included regularly.

Track workouts will include interval-based exercises designed to boost runners’ speed and endurance. Workouts should be completed at an easy conversational pace with emphasis placed on proper technique rather than distance or time spent per set.

Hill repeats are also included to develop leg strength and endurance through simulating varied terrain conditions found on actual marathon courses. Our 16 week marathon training schedule also features recovery days designed to promote muscle recovery and reduce injury risks. I am fine with you adjusting the mileage as needed. That being said, focus on the harder workouts the most. Remember, the real benefits of your hard training come from within the rest period.

Rest Days

Marathon training can be a long journey and even the fittest runners may tire themselves out. Listen to your body and don’t overexert yourself. Remember, take a rest day or cross-training workout such as swimming, cycling or yoga. You want to recover while increasing strength and endurance.

Beginning your training plan will begin by gradually building up mileage through regular, relaxed pace base runs. These sessions will prepare your body for more intense training workouts and help set you on a strong foundation to reach your target race time. Speed work workouts will become challenging but are essential parts of a well-rounded 16 week marathon training schedule,

Closing Thoughts

As your race approaches, your weekly long runs should gradually lengthen as part of marathon preparation. Long runs should be undertaken at a comfortable, conversational pace. The reason is to maximize cardiovascular and muscular endurance training and allow for sustained marathon performance over 26.2 miles.

Your weekly training regimen should also incorporate rest or cross-training days as part of marathon preparation, helping prevent overtraining which could potentially lead to injury. For your rest/cross-training days, try scheduling some easy jogging miles. Also, short fartlek sessions, tempo runs or light speed work sessions. I hope this post on the benefits of a legitimate 16 week marathon training schedule has been helpful to you.

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