The Brady Bunch marathon training program

The small amount of running I have done since late fall is pretty embarrassing, so this weekend I decided to kick off my pre-marathon training with a distance of four miles or so. I plan to kick off my official training in March at a base of six or eight miles.
I wasn’t in the mood for any particular music so I decided to turn on a This American Life podcast since I am several episodes behind and also have the TAL app with another few hundred archived episodes.
The first mile was a little rough, but it usually is since it takes me a bit to warm up. By mile two I had made it to the nearby wildlife refuge where I love to run since it has a nice mix of paved path and dirt trails. I was feeling pretty good, and it was an interesting TAL episode, so I ran the entire paved portion of the running trails, totally distracted by the podcast, so time and miles started flying by.
Once I started back toward home, I realized I had already surpassed my four-mile goal. I was too invested in the podcast to stop mid-way through the show, so I kept running. With a few minutes left in the podcast by the time I was at the end of my block, I turned and went around the block again so I would run up the driveway at about the same time the credits started (audibly) rolling at the end of the show. I ended up doing almost 5.5 miles.
I remembered how it was TAL that got me through much of my last marathon training program. I would start each run with enough podcasts queued up to carry me until the end, or push me to improve my time. I know I’m running a good pace if I can get in six miles in the time it takes to listen to one episode.
If my parents are reading this, they’re probably thinking, “it’s the old Brady Bunch trick.” You see, I learned the concept of time by being obsessed with watching The Brady Bunch as a little girl. Before I was able to grasp how long 30 minutes was, I knew how long a Brady Bunch episode lasted. On road trips, when I would start doing the usual kid thing of, “How long till we get there?” I would ask my parents for the Brady Bunch equivalent (i.e. an hour and a half would be three Brady Bunches) After a few times of doing this, I just cut to the chase and started asking, “How many Brady Bunches till we get there?” It’s still the source of jokes occasionally in my family. Like when I am driving somewhere, I’ll tell my parents it’s four hours away. “Oh, eight Brady Bunches,” they’ll say with a laugh.
I think if I use a similar strategy to marathon training, it’ll seem more approachable. No one can argue that running “one This American Life episode” sounds more challenging than “running six miles,” right?! Eighteen miles? Oh, you mean three This American Lifes! No problem!
So, that said, I need to train up to four This American Lifes (24 miles) or eight Brady Bunches. And if I can run the actual marathon in four This American Lifes and one Brady Bunch, I will have set a new PR.


About travelerontherun

I am a chronic adventurer who loves to see and experience new places. What I really love most is experiencing those places after parking my RV and lacing up my running shoes.
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One Response to The Brady Bunch marathon training program

  1. Pingback: Getting Down(ton) on the exercise bike | Traveler on the Run

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