The Hansons Marathon Method has been a work in progress for several decades . In , after running my first marathon, I became a sponge. Beginner Marathon Advanced Marathon Beginner Half Mararthon Advanced Half Marathon Couch Potato 10k For Personal Coaching or more options: Visit. Week. Monday. Tuesday. Wednesday. Thursday. Friday. Saturday. Sunday. Miles . 1. OFF. OFF. OFF. Easy: 3. Recovery: OFF. Easy: 3. Easy: 4. 2. OFF. Easy.
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The Hansons rolled out their first marathon training programs in for the Detroit Marathon, so the Hansons. Marathon Method was time-tested by the time I . Editorial Reviews. Review. “Keith and Kevin Hanson have been training professional and amateur distance runners for over 20 years. Last year the brothers. DOWNLOAD Hansons Marathon Method: Run Your Fastest Marathon the Hansons Way By Luke Humphrey, Kevin Hanson, Keith Hanson [PDF EBOOK EPUB.
The idea that increased fatigue from shorter runs allows for a longer Long Run does not seem reasonable. Compare this with other forms of fatigue: This is perfectly valid, but I've not seen other plans use 20 miles as a specific distance. Of all the plans I've evaluated, only a tiny number have their longest Long Run as 20 miles. A 2 hour easy-to-moderate length run will deplete Glycogen so much it may take 72 hours to recover, which impairs other training.
I would agree that running longer than your endurance will support can impair further training that week, which is why I believe it's critical to build up the long run gradually. The Marathon does physical damage, and therefore so will a 20 mile run.
An all-out marathon race tends to cause significant damage, especially in those that have not trained sufficiently to build up their endurance. However, a slower paced long run can be achieved without minimal recovery effort. Research says hours is the optimal time for a Long Run.
I have been unable to locate any such research despite extensive searching. Most runners using this plan actually run longer than this. Three key workouts; interval, tempo and Long Run.
While called tempo runs, these are actually done at marathon pace. The beginners plan has 5 to 10 miles at marathon pace runs during the week and the advanced has 6 to 10 miles. For the first half of the plan the interval training is at around 5K pace, and for the second half is at 10 seconds faster than marathon pace. All training paces are defined based on goal pace. No speed work or marathon paced running during the Long Runs. Running 6 days per week. Psychologically people's experience with the Hansen plan varies.
Some people find that because the shorter Long Runs are easier, they are more confident going into the race, where other people worry about being underprepared.
Note that there are other plans available for download on their web site, but these are not included in this evaluation. I've seen some references to the downloadd plans having longer Long Runs , but I can't confirm this. Modifications Dropping one of the midweek short easy runs to improve rest and recovery might improve the fitness gains, but it also might undermine the accumulated fatigue that the authors believe are necessary to make sure that distance Long Runs sufficient.
Overtraining risk The plan explicitly builds up cumulative fatigue a key contributor to Overtraining Syndrome. This plan seems to have the good success with runners that have previously burned out on other plans. The reduced distance of the Long Run clearly reduces the training stress, but having a Long Run , two days of speed work and only one day completely off may cause problems. Pros The midweek marathon paced runs provide good specificity, and get the athlete used to running at marathon pace.
This is my favorite aspect of the Hanson plan and something I think is a huge benefit. For much of the training program the second speed work is performed at 10 sec faster than marathon pace.
Like the marathon paced tempo runs, this helps focus the runners' training on race pace. Note that this is a fixed 10 second offset, rather than scaling based on race pace. While they fixed offset is easier to calculate, this would be better as a percentage. The shorter length Long Runs may suit some runners, especially those with a history of burning out or struggling on other plans. All training paces are clearly defined, even down to the recovery pace for intervals.
Cons The plan suggests that there 16 mile Long Run simulates the last 16 miles of the marathon not the first. However the plan has two short easy runs on the preceding days allowing for relatively good recovery.
Of course, if the Hanson Long Runs did simulate the last part of the race, then this would result in excessive fatigue. The Hanson plan claims to have a scientific basis, but only quotes anecdotal advice from coaches.
I have been able to find remarkably little scientific evidence concerning the Long Run , and none of it supports the Hanson's ideas.
While the Hanson plan states that 16 miles is the longest Long Run , they use longer long runs for their elite runners. These elite runners are covering the distance faster, but everyone racing the marathon has to cover the same distance.
The training paces vary with the marathon goal, which is a significant difference from the Jack Daniel's or FIRST approaches, where your training pace is based on your previous result. An athlete's goal might be a 2: That's obviously an extreme example, but it is quite common for runners to set aggressive goals.
Personally, I don't believe that a 16 mile Long Run at 45 seconds per mile slower than race pace prepares an athlete adequately. That distance and pace represents only about half the effort required for the race itself using Glycogen depletion equations as a proxy for effort.
Good For: This plan probably has too much speed work for a beginner, and the Long Runs probably are not sufficient. In addition, the ramp up from the start to 16 miles starts off slowly, but then builds up rather rapidly.
Look at Galloway or Higdon instead. This plans Long Runs probably don't give sufficient adaptation for new marathon runner, but is worth considering, especially if finding the time for longer Long Runs is problematic. This plan has plenty of speed work which you should be used to as a ringer, but the short of Long Runs make this a risky plan. Thank goodness for the short long runs because the tempos really are no joke. Simply put, the rationale has to do with time spent on your feet, the percentage of miles your long run constitutes in your weekly mileage total, and the muscle breakdown that occurs if too much time is spent on the long run.
Additionally, the book says to look at your long runs differently. Remember cumulative fatigue? Even the godfather of modern American distance running, Jack Daniels, has long espoused this principle. How did it go? Related Pumpkin I'm a college mental health counselor, runner, cyclist, wife, and mom to two strong-willed children. I started running in after the birth of my last child after years of love-hate relationships with fitness.
My favorite distance is the half marathon, but I love the challenge of tackling the marathon. My biggest challenge is the mental aspect of racing, but my greatest strength is I'm stubborn and never give up! I'm a free spirit, an open book, and try to be authentic both in real life as well as in my internet life. The speed workouts shouldn't wipe you out completely.
The tempo workouts shouldn't leave you huffing and puffing. The long runs shouldn't have you popping ibuprofen.
I had a good set of paces to begin with. If you're having trouble completing any of those workouts, I would recommend adjusting your paces appropriately rather than skipping days; in my opinion, it is the weekly progression of the workouts that are key: speed work on tired legs, marathon-pace work on one day of rest following the speed workout on tired legs, and then the longest run of the week I'll let you see some of the preliminary results in the next section, but let me first mention that one result of the training was that even the faster end of my original training paces started to feel less and less challenging.
I was going faster and farther on less effort. Thus, when it came time to begin the fourth challenging workout, the "strength" workouts that begin about halfway through the cycle, I decided to reevaluate my paces based on my newly developing abilities.
The strength workouts check out the post on this thread from Mrunner about half way down the page are supposed to be run at 10 seconds faster per mile than your goal pace.
My goal was to break four hours. However, my level of fitness based on one of the races to be discussed below seemed to be even better than a Thus, I had "two" marathon paces, a conservative one and an "optimistic" one.
I ran the strength workouts at 10 seconds faster per mile than optimistic marathon pace. Again, these workouts were challenging, but not torturous. Preliminary Results Regardless of whether or not I ultimately achieve my goal of breaking four hours on December 20, , I am certain that I have made great improvement using the Hansons' plan.
I have several data points to back that up, some of which are anecdotal and some of which are "warm-up" race results. Let's begin anecdotally. On my training runs, I am running faster for longer distances at a lower effort than ever before.
I wear a heart rate monitor, but the data in my training log will seem overly optimistic since the training cycle began during the summertime when all of my runs occurred at temperatures 80 degrees and above. Later in the year, the temps are mostly in the 70s, so naturally my heart rate will be lower as I don't have to sweat as much. I'm referring to my perceived level of effort. Next, I ran my first warm-up race after training for about 7 weeks. It was a half marathon.
My previous best half-marathon time was 5 years old: something. My most recent half marathon--approximately 2 years ago--was ish.
You can see my splits at my training log in the entry for October 4, All of them were under my goal marathon pace and the fastest occurred at the end of the race.
It was a personal record for me and I still had gas in the tank at the end. This race was a great confidence builder. My second "warm-up" race was a mountainous full marathon called the Taroko Gorge marathon.
This was an even more important data point. Last year, I ran this same race at the same point in my training cycle and it turned out to be my worst marathon performance ever.
I used everything up going uphill an elevation gain of about ft and hit the wall on the way back down. I suffered through the last 10k and finished the race in This year, the experience was quite different.
I ran the race approximately 11 weeks into my Hansons' training, on November 7, I slaughtered it.
For the first time in my life I ran a marathon without hitting the wall. In fact, although I don't have accurate splits, I estimate that I ran the last 3 kilometers of the race at my half-marathon pace or faster. It felt great. I was passing dozens of people. I honestly wanted the race to continue. I felt like I had another 10k in me! Had the course been marked more clearly, I might have tried to set a personal record, but I didn't realize how close I would ultimately come to that benchmark.
I finished in , a forty minute improvement on the same course at the same point in my training, and only about 4 minutes off my best marathon time ever. I say that this was an even more important data point because I was definitely concerned about the "16 mile long run" issue, especially as I had never finished strongly in previous marathon attempts.
Many runners whom I respect had waved that red flag, and though I had remained agnostic, I was not dismissive. This race showed me not only that I was improving but that I could finish a marathon powerfully. Even if I do not reach my ultimate goal this time around, the success I had in this race on only 11 weeks of training has convinced me that the Hansons' plan can be an excellent tool.
I do not expect to have the same degree of improvement in my goal race, but only half of that improvement will put me sub Why Did it Work?
A lot in this section is going to be anecdotal and speculative because one training cycle by one runner without any "control" group cannot offer anything better than that. So, for what it is worth I feel that the primary reason that the program worked for me is because I was able to complete it.
While I had been unable to complete other programs in previous years, I was able to handle this one.