Sunday, March 21, 2010
Advanced Marathoning, Second Edition
by Pete Pfitzinger and Scott Douglas
Every year, for the last three years, I have cracked open this Advanced Marathoning book to read it from cover to cover. You'd think reading it once would be enough. But no. Some of us are dense. And need many reminders.
This book is a great book for anyone who wishes to train for and run a marathon. It's also a great book for those who want to crank their marathon training up a notch. The authors, Pfitzinger and Douglas present a good balance. Pfitzinger is a former U.S. Olympic Marathoner who ran for a living. This means he did nothing but run, eat and sleep. Douglas, on the other hand, was a competitive athlete who maintained a 40-hour a week job. Since most of us have obligations that keep us from running 20 miles and napping three hours each day, this book presents training plans that are flexible and accommodating to many lifestyles.
I have the first edition of this book. It's great but there are a few changes in the training plans offered in the second edition that made me think it was time to up my edition. I just finished reading this newly improved Advanced Marathoning. New for the second edition, the authors have added Marathon Pace Miles during long runs that weren't included in originally. They say practice makes perfect. Practicing your predicted marathon pace will produce a potential marathon at that pace.
At the end of the book, there's a section that houses nothing but training plans. They offer plans with speed work and weekly mileage of 55, 70, 85 and more than 85. Each of those mileage classifications has a 12, 18 or 24 week training plan.
The best chapter in the book, however, is Chapter 3: Balancing Training and Recovery. This is where I learned that training won't do you diddly unless you learn how to recover and recover well.
Advanced Marathoning is the marathoner's cookbook.