Body Building & Training for 1st Marathon

I've been training 5 to 6 days a week for about 6 months.  I used to be a fitness instructor but I now work in an office.  I'm so lucky to have a gym in my basement which I use every single day without fail. It's a Fitness First, so it's full of City Workers craming in a 45 minute lunch time work out!   My routine consists of 2 weight training sessions and the rest are short runs in the week, followed by a longer run at the weekend.  I'm now training for the London Marathon and am extremely excited about it.  I'm a mum of two kids and I work full time.  I'm after some advice about my weight training.  The guys in the gym say I body build, rather than weight train because I can lift heavy weights and I often train with a high intensity.    I always train to 110%, I don't know what it's like to have an easy work out!  Anyway, I am following the Novice 2 Hal Higdon programme and I am still working out 6 days a week.  I'm beginning to feel quite tired now, because I'm on my 3rd week and I can feel my legs fatiguing.  I'm terrible for rest but I am truly buzzing about this immense goal!  I am running 4 days a week, as the programme says, but then I am weight training on the other two.  Next week, I plan to run home after work and weight train in my lunch hour.  This will then free up two days a week for rest.  I will have to use my willpower to rest!  So my question is this, is it ok to continue to weight train my entire body on these two days?  I don't want to neglect my upper body as I've worked so hard for the definition I have.  I can't squat because my hips are now too sore.  I'm seeing a physio about this soon.  The Personal Trainers have told me I need to change the way I weight train because they think I lift too heavy for a runner.   I really don't want to pay them £60 an hour to train me, as I can't afford it, plus I don't really need that extra piece of encouragement.  Has anyone else out there weight trained twice a week and trained for a marathon at the same time?   Admittedly, I've always hated working my lower body, but I do 4 sets of weighted lunges, weighted step ups and the leg extension machine.  I love working my upper body.  Will having strong shoulders and chest help me run?  I doubt it, but I may just look more toned on the day?!  Anyway, advice for weight training whilst training for the marathon, is much sought after...thanks guys


  • So everyone says you are lifting to much weight and you are saying how tired you are?

    so..... Err lift a bit less? 

  • Your running program doesn't know you're weight training. You need to back ine of them down.
  • it sounds like you are really excited by the marathon. So can't the weight training just take a secondary place for 5 months? Then ramp it back up 

  • Obviously high weight, low reps tends to build muscle, low weights and high reps will make the muscle you have become stronger. If you want to be as fast as possible over a long distance you don't want to carry excess muscle bulk which is just weight. So you can still gym, just focus more on core work and lighter weights for the legs and arms. What do you think?
  • Thanks for your replies.  It's very difficult to add bulk, as I would need to probably eat a lot more and I am merely just maintaining definition.  I am going to take the advice though and not go too heavy.  In fact today I feel wiped out, so am taking a rest day.  I'm slightly forced into it though, as I have to leave work early, so can't work out lunch time too.  I know it's going to do me good.   I think you all right though (especially Cougie) as my training programme has no idea I am also weight training.   I am going to put weight training as a second priority to running, but continue at a lighter pace.


  • You won't bulk up lifting heavy weights if most of the time you are doing a larger amount of aerobic exercise than you're used to.  So I'd agree with backing off the weights generally, in terms of the amount of time or sessions you do, but stick with the weight that you're used to lifting.  If you start taking weight off and adding reps you're just getting rid of the resistance and defeating the point of the weight training altogether.

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