Eight Week Marathon Training Plan to Succeed

Are you seeking an eight week marathon training plan? If so, then welcome to RunDreamAchieve. Marathon training takes time and dedication; however, with the right strategy you may be able to complete it within eight weeks.

This plan enhances athletes’ fitness through traditional three-week builds with one week-long recovery periods (seven total). Weekly volume increases while emphasizing threshold and VO2 sets. Make sure to subscribe to the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. My goal there is to create new weekly content to help you set a new personal best.

Week 1 of Your Eight Week Marathon Training Plan

Taking on a marathon in eight weeks can be daunting for even experienced runners. Can you get fit enough to run a a fast marathon in a matter of 2 months? Yes, that being said, I would recommend a 16 to 24 week build up to do it right. Remember, it takes between 2 to 4 weeks for the body to adapt to any stress load being placed on it.

Yes, an accelerated eight week marathon training plan may increase injury risks and burn out but if done correctly, you can succeed. Our eight week marathon training plan has been tailored for individuals who already possess an established running base. Also, those of you looking to improve race time without pushing too hard.

A legitimate 8 week marathon training plan needs to mix both long runs and interval training. In addition, training at or below goal marathon pace. The reason for this is to gauge the athlete’s ability to sustain race pace for longer distances. Our goal is to improve the body’s lactate tolerance. Also, to sustain goal race pace longer than your competition.

No matter which marathon training plan you follow, it is vital to listen to your body. There is no shame in taking a day if you are feeling any issues with your body. Remember, you could take a week off and not lose any general fitness. So, always listen to your body.

Intervals and Threshold Runs

A sound eight week marathon training plan should include interval and threshold runs. In addition, recovery weeks and taper periods to avoid injury or overtraining. Your volume and intensity should decrease during the taper phase while keeping a good level of fitness so that race day goes as planned. I believe in doing a 10-day rather than a 3-week taper. A. common mistake many runners make is dropping their volume and intensity too far out. So, do not make that same mistake.

An eight week marathon training plan is a generally good time frame to train for most runners. I always recommend a longer build up. The reason is you will not be in a rush to get into great shape. The top recommended time frames are between 16 to 24 weeks. Of course, you can still get into solid shape in a matter of 2 months.

Focus on completing each workout in your plan each week, listening to how your body reacts. Don’t neglect recovery runs either. Also, make sure you get adequate rest and fuel yourself well for training and racing by eating well balanced meals. In addition, get enough hours of sleep each night.

Foam rolling, stretching and massage techniques may help your muscles remain loose and flexible so they won’t cause injuries on race day.

Week 3

Our eight week marathon training plan is intended to assist runners of all ability levels in training for and running their fastest marathon ever. No previous full marathon experience is necessary. We will focus on increasing mileage over four to five runs each week with the proper workouts. For example, speed work, tempo runs, and increasingly longer ‘long’ runs. We will also focus on faster, varied-paced long runs as well.

It is vital to remain consistent in your workouts. Also, to listen to what your body is telling you, and make necessary adjustments as required. Proper nutrition and hydration is also essential, along with restful recovery periods between marathon training sessions.

Foam rolling and ice baths can help keep you healthy by offering recovery modalities. These recovery modalities can reduce soreness and inflammation after hard runs while helping prevent injury. Make sure to take time off from running if you feel any chronic issues occurring. It is a much wiser move to take some time off than to continue to train through an injury.

Longer Tempo Runs

Marathons can be physically exhausting events. Training for one in only two months should only be undertaken by experienced runners. Also, those who have a sufficient foundation who believe they can complete a full 26.2 mile race comfortably in such a short amount of time.

Beginner runners or those seeking personal bests in marathon races should opt for longer build ups. I have created training plans that range from 8 to 24 weeks here at RunDreamAchieve.

Our eight week marathon training plan will develop your base fitness while increasing threshold pace. Athletes who diligently follow it usually see their base fitness value peak around 30 percent before the final taper week. The goal is to get your long run out to around 20 miles (32 kilometers) in length by the time we go into the 10-day taper.

Focus on Speed Development

A solid base of endurance and fitness is required to finish in reasonable time. You also need to work on your speed. A legitimate eight week marathon training plan must focus on this. Yes, it is a marathon but we have to improve the body’s lactate tolerance. You cannot do this by running too aerobically too often.

The goal is to recruit more fast twitch muscle fibers. Remember, the more of these we can recruit the easier goal marathon race pace is going to feel. A common mistake many runners make is running too easy too often throughout their training week.

Our eight week marathon training plan will gradually increase your weekly mileage while simultaneously including tempo and speed workouts. Long runs will gradually become longer as training continues; your peak week occurs around week 6.

Though consistency in workouts is important, remember to rest and recover properly as well. Fueling, sleep and massage all play an integral part in helping ensure marathon success. Long distance running should be a key component of any eight week marathon training plan.


An effective eight week marathon training plan should focus on gradually increase your mileage each week to build endurance. In addition, recovery weeks and tapering before race day to reduce injury risks. Our eight week marathon training plan features interval training, hill workouts and marathon specific work for optimal training results.

Make sure your nutrition stays on track by getting enough fuel and hydration. Also, take advantage of recovery techniques such as foam rolling or ice baths to keep yourself feeling energized throughout the week.

Progression Mindset

Your focus should be on building your distance to an acceptable level. Also, on progressively more intense workouts. yes, running faster during long runs is going to challenge you both mentally and physically. This tactic helped me improve my marathon time from 2:43:36 to 2:19:35. So, I know this form of training can certainly help you set a new personal best.

High intensity interval training (HIIT) and strength training should both be included in weekly workouts for optimal results. I don’t think you need to be in the gym more than once per week. Remember, your goal in there is not to be Arnold. It should be to work on strengthening your core running muscles.

Running a marathon is an immense physical achievement that takes dedication, hard work and preparation. My goal is to get you across the finish line in record time. Again, you have to get outside of your comfort zone. Is 8 weeks enough time? Yes, but it will not be easy as opposed to training for 16 to 24 weeks.

Closing Thoughts

Workouts will become increasingly longer and faster as you progress through this eight week marathon training plan. You want this to occur. Again, the end goal is to get goal marathon race pace to feel easier and more sustainable.

As time progresses, you will incorporate speed work and hill workouts to increase overall endurance and help increase marathon race pace.

Rest days and are included to avoid injury and burnout. You should also pay attention to your nutrition and hydration requirements. For example, taking in adequate calories and proteins.

Our eight week marathon training plan is tailored towards experienced runners with an established running foundation who seek to increase speed in the full marathon distance. Beginners may benefit more from starting with a 16 to 24 -week plan instead. I would recommend running in some shorter race beforehand.

For example, a 10k or half marathon just so you get comfortable with running full marathon distance. I hope this post has been helpful. Be sure to keep in touch with me over at the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel.

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