MCM 13: Week 5 Training with the Hansons Marathon Method

Co-owner, Metro Run & Walk, Certified Pedorthist

Co-owner, Metro Run & Walk, Certified Pedorthist

MCM 13:  Week 5 Training with the Hansons Marathon Method

This was the last week with two days off, so I definitely took advantage of it and did not run on Monday or Wednesday.

In my Week 4 post, I said that I was starting to focus on my nutrition.  I realized that there was no way I would be successful eating the way that I typically do.  So, I started eating breakfast and raw veggies during the day.  In the past I haven’t done a good job of eating the right calories at the right time, so have spent this week trying to break old habits and introducing new ones.

When it comes to marathon nutrition, carbohydrates dominate the discussion, accounting for 60-70% of it… There are two different types of carbohydrates, simple and complex.  Simple carbs come from refined grains, soda, candy and other processed foods while complex carbs are contained in vegetables and whole grains such as oatmeal and brown rice… main emphasis should be on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

I vow to reduce the simple carbs in my diet.  That shouldn’t be too hard, right?  As it turns out, its both simple and hard.  Its easy to eliminate the obvious simple carbs such as treats, candy, soda, etc.  But, there are so many simple carbs buried in foods that you can buy at the grocery store.  You really have to avoid any processed or packaged foods in favor of fresh ingredients that you assemble yourself.

Then we come to fats.

For best results, your diet should include about 20% fats coming from sources such as nuts, fish, seeds, and avocados and limiting fatty meats and other sources of saturated fat.

Here is where I get into trouble.  My current diet includes greater than 20% fats NOT coming from nuts, fish, etc.  I don’t care for avocados, not a huge fish fan although cod now and again is good, and most nuts and seeds bother my esophagus.  (I have an auto-immune condition in my esophagus that plays a huge role in what I eat.)  Definitely have to learn more about acceptable fats.

Protein should make up the smallest amount of your diet, about 10-15%… Proteins reparative abilities are the most important to you as a marathon runner.  And timing is everything.  By consuming protein at the same time as carbs following exercise, you minimize the damage done to the muscles and speed recovery.  Most importantly, protein preserves lean muscle mass, which translates into better recovery and therefore, higher-quality training.

I wasn’t feeling like I was getting enough details and practical advice from the Hansons book, so I started to read Sports Nutrition for Endurance Athletes, by Monique Ryan.  So far, I’ve only read the first 100 pages but WOW, I’ve learned a lot!  Part I Your Daily Performance Diet has some pretty technical stuff, but Part II Your Training Diet gets into some very practical, understandable material.  Based on what I’ve read so far, I created a table that will guide my nutrition choices for the next 12 weeks.

In creating my formulas for calculating grams of carbs, protein, and fat; I used the median values in the ranges in Table 4.4 Daily Nutrient Requirements for Training.  For runners, the table has three categories which I have classified as follows:

  • Easy Days = Under 1 hour moderate intensity
  • Tempo Days = 90 minutes to 3 hours moderate intensity,
  • Speed / Strength / Long – 90 minutes to 3 hours high intensity

As a result, the guidelines that I’ve adopted are:

Nutritional breakdown

Next week, I’ll start tracking my intake and adjusting accordingly.  I’ll share my experiences in next weeks post.

My running this week has gone really well.  I’ve incorporated hills into most of my runs; some more than others and I ran a fast 5 this week — certainly, faster than I have before.

week 5 plan
Monday 7/22:  Knowing that this would be my last Monday that I can take off, I definitely did.

Tuesday 7/23:  Ran an easy 5 with the dog.  Our dog, Tanner, is a beautiful Viszla.  He is a terrific runner (sometimes).  This particular run, I’ve dubbed  “runnus interuptus” because Tanner required so many stops and interruptions.  2 poop breaks, 7 pee breaks, 4-5 sniff breaks.  It was so aggravating!

Wednesday 7/24:  Didn’t run today, but did go to the YMCA with my daughter.  Did the full weight circuit and a core routine.

Thursday 7/25:  Wow!  Ran my fastest 5 mile run yet!  It was definitely a cooler, less humid morning.

Friday 7/26:  Another cooler, less humid morning.  Ran a hilly 5 mile course.

Saturday 7/27:  Ran with Tanner again for an easy 4 miles.  He didn’t require as many stops today, so it wasn’t as maddening having him along.  Afterwards, went to the YMCA with my daughter for an upper body and core workout.

Sunday 7/28:  Ran 6 easy miles to the YMCA and then did another upper body and core workout.

I’m feeling a bit nervous about starting Week 6 tomorrow.  It was inevitable though that the speed and strength workouts would start sooner or later.  Until next week, stay healthy and good luck in your training.

Best,

Helen

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8 Responses to MCM 13: Week 5 Training with the Hansons Marathon Method

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