Training to Run a Marathon in 22 Weeks

The majority of beginner marathon training schedules are 20 weeks long, so the 22-week schedule that we’ll be looking at today offers you two more full weeks to get ready for the challenge ahead. 

When you’re a beginner into the world of marathons, it can be daunting to have the next 22 weeks ahead of you already planned and scheduled. The majority of marathon runners don’t know how harrowing the training program for marathons can be. 

Before we get into the training schedule, we have some disclaimers. It is suggested that you should have at least six months of running experience behind you before training for a marathon. You should also be able to run at least three miles without having to stop. 

You should also have had a physical workup before thinking about training for a marathon. Get a doctor’s appointment and make sure that they clear you before you sign up for the race. 

Training to Run a Marathon in 22 Weeks

Get To Know The Terms

Before you take a look at the training schedule, we have some terms to explain before you get started.

These are just here to help you read the schedule easier, much like a glossary. 

Easy Pace Runs (EP): Easy pace runs means that you can run the number of miles at a pace that you find comfortable and easy. You should still be able to hold a conversation at this pace if you have a running buddy, so you shouldn’t be pushing yourself too hard. 

As long as you can breathe easily, your pace is slow enough. When you need to take breaks you should slow your pace to a walk rather than stopping altogether. 

Long Runs (LR): Long runs should also be carried out at an easy pace. Long runs are simply longer distances and therefore will take longer to complete. Make sure that you’re always focusing on your breathing to make sure that you’re not running too fast. 

Marathon Pace Runs (MP): Marathon pace is the act of running the desired number of miles at a pace that you would normally run a marathon at. This can be found by using a race pace calculator. Once you have run the allotted miles at your marathon pace, use the easy pace to finish the rest of your miles. 

Cross Training (CT): Cross-training is a way to take days off of running without taking full rest days. Marathon runners benefit the most from strength training, so try to get in a good session of strength training every time that you see a cross-training day. These sessions should be around 30 to 45 minutes. 

Rest Days (RD): Rest days might seem counterproductive to your marathon training. However, they are actually incredibly important and beneficial. Rest days can prevent injuries and ensure that you’re on top form in the coming weeks before your race. 

It’s important to follow the rest day schedule to ensure that you don’t overwork your muscles. You can either take the full day off or do some light stretching or cross-training. 

22-Week Beginner Marathon Training Schedule

The training schedule runs in weeks to make it easy to read and understand for you. Follow the training schedule as closely as possible.

However, if you need to switch two days around you can, but don’t make a habit out of this. The training schedule has been designed to be as beneficial as possible for you. 

Week One

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 3 miles
  • Day 3: RD
  • Day 4: EP 3 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 3 miles 
  • Day 7: EP 2 miles

Week Two

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 3 miles
  • Day 3: CT or RD
  • Day 4: EP 3 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 4 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Three

  • Day 1: RD 
  • Day 2: EP 3 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LD 5 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Four

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 3 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: Ep 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 6 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Five

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 4 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 7 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Six

  • Day 1: RD 
  • Day 2: EP 4 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 7 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Seven

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 9 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Eight

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT 
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 10 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Nine

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 6 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Ten

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT 
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 12 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Eleven

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT 
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 13 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Twelve

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles + MP 1 mile
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 14 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Thirteen

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles 
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 3 miles + MP 2 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 10 miles
  • Day 7: EP 5 miles

Week Fourteen

  • Day 1: RD 
  • Day 2: EP 6 miles
  • Day 3: CT 
  • Day 4: EP 2 miles + MP 3 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 16 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Fifteen

  • Day 1: RD 
  • Day 2: Ep 6 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 2 miles + MP 3 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 10 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Sixteen

  • Day 1: RD 
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 1 mile + MP 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 18 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Seventeen

  • Day 1: RD 
  • Day 2: EP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 1 mile + MP 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 10 miles
  • Day 7: EP 5 miles

Week Eighteen

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 6 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 1 mile + MP 5 miles
  • Day 5: RD
  • Day 6: LR 19 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Nineteen

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: LP 5 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 1 mile + MP 5 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 14 miles
  • Day 7: EP 4 miles

Week Twenty

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 4 miles 
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 20 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Twenty-One

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 4 miles
  • Day 3: CT
  • Day 4: EP 4 miles
  • Day 5: CT or RD
  • Day 6: LR 8 miles
  • Day 7: EP 3 miles

Week Twenty-Two

  • Day 1: RD
  • Day 2: EP 2 miles
  • Day 3: EP 30 minutes
  • Day 4: RD 
  • Day 5: EP 20 minutes
  • Day 6: Marathon Day! 
  • Day 7: Final RD! 

Summary

And that concludes our 22-week marathon training schedule.

You might find the first few weeks a little slow and easy, but the difficult weeks will soon creep up on you!

Good luck and enjoy those bragging rights once you complete your marathon. 

Suzie
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