Marathon Plan After Rest Period

by Marco Chiappone
(Leiden, The Netherland (EU))

What happens if you're forced to have a rest period during the 100 day marathon plan ?

"Hi Marius,

I got a level 1 distortion to the left medial collateral ligament.I have to stop my plan for at least 3-4 weeks... A part the pain I can manage, I got the fear to have thrown away the last tree months of running!

How can I go back after the "rest"?

Cheers, Marco"

Answer: Hi Marco, this is how you can deal with that (and to others in the same situation) What I recommend is to use half the number of weeks away from running to build yourself up again. Meaning if you're out of training for 4 weeks, use 2 weeks only for a gradual buildup again.

I will tell you something that is crucial to understand in your situation : one of the reasons why it seems difficult to get back again to the same shape after a break from training is NOT the loss of fitness during the rest period but rather a too rapid muscular stress when returning back again. What this too rapid return (and too much too early) does is to give your body a muscular stress that is too much relative to what you have done the previous rest weeks. The results are heavy legs that many think is loss of fitness. It normally isn't.

Instead, when you get back to training again, alternate jogging and walking for all your easy runs during this build up period. Then, gradually add in short intervalwork, I recommend you use either the 45 sec run, 15 sec rec session that you find in the 100 day plan or alternatively the 1 min run, 30 sec rec session. Go very gradual on these, start slowly and build up. Maybe first session 5 repeats, next 7 repeats, then 10-15 etc.

If you do this during those weeks and manage to build yourself back again progressively you should be ok and I would not worry too much about the loss of fitness.

Wish you all the best !


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