How to Train for a Marathon - Valuable Tips from a Physical Therapist


As a marathoner and a Physical Therapist, I would like to share some tips for training and conditioning for a first marathon...

First, it’s a good idea build up to being able to run 15-25 miles a week…(that’s running 3 -5 days) before beginning your marathon training program. If you already run 2 -3 miles a day, you have the basis to start preparing for your first marathon!

This base is important both physically and psychologically, because you can anticipate about 18 weeks of training. Here’s a a good tip: follow the ten percent rule for mileage building. Increasing your weekly mileage more than 10% from the previous week can cause injury and lead to burnout. So if you begin your program running 3.0 miles, 3-5 times a week, week 2 you might increase that to 3.3 miles each day you run. Week 3 would be 3.63 per day and so on.

To find more marathon training tips and to connect with other expert runners interested in running marathons go to

4  Tips from a Physical Therapist & Avid Runner that focus the Mental Preparation:

  1. Setting an appropriate time goal is important. Training at goal pace is the best way to run that pace in the latter part of your training. Most first time marathoners are looking to finish the race and enjoy the journey. Setting an unattainable goal will render that journey disappointing.
  2. Visualization; another excellent tool. You can see the finish line, or what you will be feeling at mile 20… When you are out on the course, that déjà-vu helps! There is comfort in familiarity.
  3. Joining a marathon training group will give you specific guidance from seasoned marathoners, and having a social peer group will increase the likelihood that you won’t skip those long runs……
  4. Finally, and possibly most importantly…determination and discipline are part and parcel to successful training and performance. Be sure to bring them along as you lace up those running shoes.

If you have additional comments or suggestions, we would love to hear them! Running for fun and fitness is fantastic by itself and also a popular means to enjoy travel therapy jobs no matter where you are currently working!

Happy Running!