5/10K vs Run Faster for the off-season

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  • #18542
    br_uno
    Participant

    I ran a PB marathon last weekend after following a Level 3 marathon plan. My next A-race is a marathon at the end of September (in 41 weeks).

    I will follow the same 18-week plan, but that leaves a gap of 23 weeks until the start of the marathon plan.

    Given endurance is my strength and speed a weakness I’m planning to use the off-season to work on speed and add some variety to the training. I’m considering 3 options:
    A) 12 week maintenance + 9 week 5K Level 3 + 2 week maintenance
    B) 6 week maintenance + 12 week 10k Level 3 + 5 week maintenance
    C) 12 week maintenance + 7 week Run Faster Level 3 + 4 week maintenance

    Two questions:
    1. Which of the plans should I pick to improve speed? 5K, 10k or Run Faster? Or should I pick RF + 5k (4 week maintenance, 7 week run faster, 9 week 5K, 3 week maintenance)
    2. Does it make sense to add maintenance before/after the way I’m doing?

    #18547
    David Warden
    Keymaster

    B,

    Congrats on your marathon PB! There are multiple great combinations to fill that gap, including the ones you’ve listed. The Maintenance plan was written for people who didn’t know what they wanted to do between plans. There’s actually nothing wrong with not knowing what you want to do between plans, you don’t need to train formally for 52 weeks a year. Some unplanned time is what the Maintenance plan is for.

    Having said that, if you now you have a goal specific to speed, I’d instead consider the Run Faster plan (7 weeks, I think,…) then the 10K plan and then the Maintenance plan for a few weeks. Also, feel free to add in some one-week breaks between each plan. Run Faster, Break, 10K, Break, Maintenance, Marathon…

    David

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