Another week down and 6 weeks to go until the Shamrock Marathon! This winter has made training for a marathon difficult! I have found myself adjusting workouts on a weekly basis. Monday was supposed to be a 4 x 5k specific workout. There were 30 mph winds and I adjusted it to a 15k aerobic threshold run. The time does not seem fast, but the wind made it more difficult than it looks.

Thursday was a big “Canova Marathon Block”….Normally I do the first of these workouts early in the morning before work, but this time the first part was done at 3:00. This meant that the second half had to be done at 9:00 after the kids were asleep. Overall I would say the workout went well. I ended up getting in 30 miles total with 22.5 miles of it at 90% of marathon pace or faster. Another main part of this workout is not eating any carbohydrates in between the workouts. The first workout does a good job of lowering glycogen stores while the second depletes them. I had planned on running 3 x 2 miles to end the second workout, but found myself hardly able to lift my legs over the last 1/2 mile of the second 2 mile interval. Mission accomplished…I was depleted!!! It was a long slow 2 miles back home! In theory my body should now have stored more glycogen in my muscles/liver to get me to last even longer/farther next time out. It should also help in training my body to use a better ratio of fats to carbohydrates over the course of the marathon.

This week:

Once again the weather has forced me to change a workout! On Monday I had a very long specific endurance long run scheduled, but once again it was snowy and icy. The next day that I have the time to do a long workout is Wednesday. On Wednesday (assuming the afternoon weather is okay) I am planning on doing the 4 x 5k workout I had scheduled last week. If Wednesday goes as planned I will do Dos Santos type long run on Saturday morning that will include 2:00 hilly at 6:00-6:15/mile then 5k at marathon pace and 4 x 400 at 67-68 with :30 recovery…..and move the long marathon specific endurance long run to next Wednesday. I can definitely say that this winter has been the hardest in training for a marathon. It has caused me to be both creative (changing workouts or manipulating them on a treadmill that only goes 10 mph) and accepting of the fact that I am not in control of whether or not I am going to be able to get a workout accomplished.


Valley Centre Loop

-2 mile warm-up

– 15k (49:15→16:40/16:33/16:02)

-2 mile cool-down

(Crazy wind…planned 4 x 5k/1 mile, but had to change)


70 minutes easy on treadmill



45 minutes on sidewalks/road

43 minutes easy on turf fields (with Amanda…the boys played in the snow!)


30 mile day…

Run #1: 2 mile warm up…10k in 35:10 (17:45/17:25)…10k in 32:20 (16:19 /16:01)…2 mile cool-down

Run #2: 2 mile warm-up…10k in 34:51 (17:40/17:11)…2 miles 9:58 (4:56/5:02)  3:00 jog…2 miles in 10:33 (5:08/5:25…last 1/2 mile at 5:35 pace…spent!!! (That is one of the main point of this workout. I did not have any carbs in between the two and I wanted to “bonk”)…2 mile cool-down

6.5 weeks until the Yuengling Shamrock Marathon!



50 minutes easy on turf fields


50 minutes easy on turf fields

55 minutes total

20 x diagonals on turf field


60 minutes easy on turf with Amanda

50 minutes easy on hilly roads

Running on the snow covered turf with Amanda while the boys play!


5 thoughts on “Training from Week of 1/27 (6 weeks until Shamrock!)

  1. Tom

    Hi Dave,
    What paces were you targeting for the special block? I’m 6:50 marathon pace and trying to setup something similar this week.

      1. Tom

        Sorry, the 30 mile Thursday block. You also mentioned starting at 3pm and 9pm, is there a minimum amount of time that Canova recommends between the end of the first block and start of the second?

      2. daveberdan Post author

        Tom, I’ve heard of anywhere between 4 and 6 hours between the workouts. The challenge is that you are not eating carbs in between….so the longer you go the harder that second workout will be. I like 6 hours.
        The paces for a special block like that would be the following (%of marathon race pace):
        #1- 10k at 90%/10k at 100%-102%
        #2- 10k at 90%/10k of longer intervals (mile-2 mile) at 105%

        You could also just repeat the exact same workout both times to make it more specific to marathon race pace.

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