2017 Spring Marathon Training Program

 Registration is closed for this event

The DC Road Runners Club Spring Marathon Training Program is your opportunity to successfully prepare for the Rock 'n' Roll DC Marathon or any spring marathon of your choice. The 17-week training program starts on Saturday, November 19 at North Meade Street Park, a small park northwest of the USMC War Memorial (Iwo Jima Memorial) in Rosslyn at 7:45am. On that Saturday, come prepared to run eight miles following a short introductory overview of the program.

The program is FREE for current DCRRC members, however you must register for the program and volunteer at two club events.

What's Included?

  • Coaching for your pace and fitness level
  • Weekly informational updates and training plans
  • Weekly training runs:
    • Saturday morning group training runs with post-run Gatorade and water
    • Mid-week speed workouts
    • Weeknight group runs throughout the area
  • Seminars by professionals in physical therapy, diet and more
  • Social opportunities throughout training
  • Motivation and camaraderie found only with a training group

Please note you will need to select and register for a race as your membership fee does NOT include the Rock 'n' Roll DC Marathon.

Criteria for Participation

The Marathon Training Program is open to any healthy adult at virtually any level of speed/ability. To ensure that participants are sufficiently prepared and to minimize the chances of injury, participants should be averaging at least 15-20 miles per week and should be able to run six miles at one time without stopping when the program begins in November.

If you have not run a marathon, it is strongly recommended that you consult your physician prior to entering this program.

Although there is no speed requirement and all paces are welcome, pace groups typically range from about 7:15 min./mile to 12:00 min./mile for their long distance training. We also strive to group runners of similar abilities together in pace groups based on race times and other criteria.

Program Structure

The Marathon Training Program gradually builds up participants’ average weekly mileage and long run distance during the course of the program. The Marathon Training Program has various training schedules given the range of participants running capacities and experiences. For our lesser experienced runners the Program builds from ~15 weekly miles in November to ~40 miles several weeks before the marathon. For the more experienced participants, the Program builds to ~55 weekly miles. All participants, no matter the experience level, participate in the same group long run on Saturday mornings, and a mid-week speed workout. And all participants are encouraged to work with your coaches to tailor the program to their individual running objectives. If you are proactive, work with your coach to set and periodically reevaluate your goals, attend group workouts on a regular basis, run the average weekly miles prescribed, and complete all the scheduled long runs, you are very likely to reach your marathon goal.

The Marathon Training Program is based on continuous running, as opposed to being a “walk-run” program. Our program workouts build upon three main ingredients to successful marathon training:

  • Base Miles. In order to build up the endurance necessary to complete a marathon, you will increase your average weekly mileage, or base, over the course of the program. Schedules are specifically designed to help you achieve your average weekly goals.
  • Long Runs. The cornerstone of the program is the weekly long distance run. Your long runs should be done at an easy, conversational pace. Generally, long runs should average anywhere between 60 to 90 seconds a mile slower than your target marathon race pace.
  • Quality Speed Workouts. Speed work teaches you to vary your pace, improve your running efficiency, and improve your level of fitness. Quality speed workouts during the Marathon Training Program consist of intervals on the track, tempo or threshold runs, hill running, and road races.


Generally, we hold workouts regardless of weather. However, we may cancel workouts in certain weather, such as blizzards, which would make either getting to a workout or running the route dangerous for coaches and participants alike. We may also change the location of a run based on the availability of an acceptable route given the weather conditions. These policies are similar to the policies of most marathon races and help to facilitate readiness for all possible racing conditions.

All runners are responsible for their own safety.

November 19th, 2016 7:45 AM   through   March 11th, 2017 7:30 AM
1300 Arlington Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

Upcoming Events

Friends of Montessori Education 5K
Sun, May 7th, 2017, @9:00am
Board of Directors Meeting
Thu, May 11th, 2017, @7:00pm
Teens Run DC Mentoring Matters 5K
Sat, May 13th, 2017, @9:00am
Happy Hour & Snowball Series Awards Ceremony
Thu, May 18th, 2017, @6:00pm
Holy Spirit 5K
Sat, May 20th, 2017, @8:00am
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The DC Road Runners Club is a member of the Road Runners Club of America and is also affiliated with USA Track & Field. We provide a year-round schedule of running events that offer everyone a chance to participate regardless of age, gender, or athletic ability.