How To Train For a Marathon

by Sarah on February 28, 2014 · 10 comments

I have a confession. I’m not running the Boston Marathon this year… I know I promised I would after the bombings last year, but after taking a variety of factors into consideration, I have decided to wait to conquer the 26.2 mile race.


Between my travel schedule, chronic knee pain when running longer than 8 miles and inability to find a bib, I made the decision or rather, it was made for me not to partake. When I still thought I would be running (which I did until the beginning of February), I asked my buddy Monica ( for help on how to train and what the least amount of time I could dedicate to training.

Looking at this video a few months later, I definitely look intimidated at attempting to run 26.2 miles. For marathon newbies, you must either qualify to run the Boston Marathon which is very challenging or get a bib through a charity with the promise that you will raise a minimum of $4000 dollars. If you do get injured during training, you cannot transfer your bib and are still responsible for raising the funds. Combined with the events from last year, everyone in this city (Boston) wanted to run for charities like Limbs for Life and the One Fund making bibs the hottest ticket in town since the JayZ/Justin concert.

Like I mentioned above, I was hopeful that a bib would come through until I gave up in February. Boston has been miserably cold this winter. It was difficult to stay motivated during long runs in 10 degree weather at 7 am on a Saturday for a race I may or may not be running.

I enjoy running but that pleasure started to wane. I enjoy working out, and I don’t want to hate it or get injured from it. I will run a full marathon someday, but it’s not going to be this April.

If you are thinking that maybe you want to run a marathon, Monica has some awesome tips above. She almost made me think I could actually train for one – if it wasn’t during the coldest winter in New England’s recent history!

Monica’s Tips:

  • Find a training plan online at a site like
  • Or, hire a run coach online at or at your local running store
  • Plan to run 4-5 days a week
  • 3-4 of those days should be 1 hour to 90 minutes
  • 1 day a week should be a long run starting at 8 miles and going up to about 22 miles
  • Nutrition is just as important as the miles!

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 amanda February 28, 2014 at 3:18 pm

Love your honesty in this, love reading your blog.

Completely agree with this: I enjoy running but that pleasure started to wane. I enjoy working out, and I don’t want to hate it or get injured from it.

Do what you love :)


2 Maria February 28, 2014 at 4:55 pm

Hey Sarah, I think it’s very responsible on your behalf to be open about this. Fitness isn’t always about achieving achieving achieving, it’s also about learning when to take a step back.


3 Tina February 28, 2014 at 6:34 pm

It’s okay.


4 Tara | Treble in the Kitchen February 28, 2014 at 9:27 pm

Thanks for being honest!! Maybe next year :)


5 Lauren @ The Bikini Experiment February 28, 2014 at 9:36 pm

I love your honesty! It’s most important to take care of your health.


6 Ashley @ Sweet carolina belle March 1, 2014 at 11:30 am

I appreciate your honesty with not being able to commit the time for training. I will say that with training for a marathon it is hard to stay motivated some days. Especially in the cold and snow it is sometimes not fun. That is part of the challenge of a marathon.


7 Tara@PNWRunner March 2, 2014 at 10:30 pm

I have to begin training for my first marathon soon. I am planning for the Portland Marathon in October. I know I have alot of time, but I want to make sure that I am ready!! I need to look into a training and nutrition plan.


8 Z March 4, 2014 at 8:40 am

I was under the impression that you had to qualify for the Boston Marathon. You can’t just sign up and run it… It’s a big deal.


9 Sarah March 4, 2014 at 3:46 pm

You can qualify OR run for a charity to raise money. It’s a lot of money to raise so it is a big deal too!


10 Gabby - Personal Trainer Toronto March 6, 2014 at 5:16 pm

There is always next time and pretty sure you’ll be prepared when the time comes. ;)


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