Marathoner Eliud Kipchoge’s Training: Weekly Plan & Schedule
Watching Eliud Kipchoge race a marathon will leave you feeling like he looks effortless as he glides across the 26.2 miles. While not every marathoning great looks so happy when running, Kipchoge is known for his trademark smile.
The first thing to know about training for a marathon and clocking a stellar performance is that there are no shortcuts. Although Kipchoge is a cardiovascular beast and makes it look easy, you can be rest assured that he puts in the work to yield those results.
Eliud Kipchoge’s Training Setting
The first thing that helps set the stage for success is where Kipchoge trains. Kipchoge does his training in the Kenyan Highlands of Kaptagat. This has him training at an altitude of 2500 meters above sea level.
It is true for everyone that doing your workouts at altitude will increase how intense your runs are. Your heart rate and breathing speed up due to the high altitude. You will acquire more red blood cells. The increase in red blood cells allows your body to carry more oxygen.
The increase gives your muscles a natural boost when you race at a lower altitude.
Kipchoge’s Training Schedule
Kipchoge’s training schedule is extremely consistent. His coach, training partners and Kipchoge himself all recognize the value in that, as should we all.
Although it does pay to listen to your body if you are truly struggling with injury, general aches are a normal part of training.
Kipchoge’s training camp is a very simple, low-key spot with few frills. Says Kipchoge, “In life, the idea is to be happy. So I believe in a calm, simple, low-profile life. You live simple, you train hard and live an honest life. Then you are free.”
The team’s day starts about 6:00 a.m. with a morning longer run. Covering anywhere from ten to thirteen miles, this run is down at a comfortable pace for Kipchoge and his crew.
Post-run, they head back for a meal and to do their daily chores. Are you surprised to learn that everyone carries their own weight in regards to the daily chores at the camp? Yes, even Olympic champion marathoning great Eliud Kipchoge. He would not dream of receiving any special treatment.
Kipchoge and his crew follow a plant-based diet. The items are typically foods in their most natural form, and the food items are not fancy. We covered an article on Kipchoge’s diet if you want to learn more on that topic.
After some chores, it is rest time. It is not uncommon to find Kipchoge, and other elite runners, to take a nap in the afternoon as they prepare for the next workout. That brings us to the second run each day.
The second run is at a much easier pace than the first one. This run is at a super slow and easy pace. One might call this an easy jog, as opposed to actually running. In addition to the easy run is a good deal of stretching.
Eliud Kipchoge’s 6 Training Routine Rules
There are some major aspects to Kipchoge’s routine that you could emulate.
- Consistency: This is true of all aspects of Kipchoge’s training.
- Follow the Plan: Although you probably won’t log the miles Kipchoge does, you can still pick a plan and follow it to fidelity.
- Diet: Whether you follow a primarily plant-based diet like the marathoning great or some other diet, fueling your body with high-quality, nutritious food is a great way to see success.
- Easy Runs: One thing many people do wrong is they complete all of their running at much too fast of a pace. Your easy runs should be super easy.
- Rest: Sure, you can’t necessarily nap each afternoon like Kipchoge because you aren’t a paid athlete, but you can be sure you get a solid 8 hours of rest each night as the champion does.
Eliud Kipchoge’s Training Plan in 6 Steps
As you have learned, Kipchoge typically runs twice each day. When looking at a week worth of training, he and his teammates will typically complete:
- Multiple easy runs
- One long run (18 miles or more)
- Core sessions
- Fartlek and/or track sessions
- Strength and conditioning with low weights (roughly 45 minutes)
- Stretching & plyometrics
Over the course of one year, Kipchoge runs between 5,900-6,200 miles, or between 9,500 – 10,000 kilometers. The only time he completely rests is for 2-3 weeks after each major race. That is when he returns home from camp to recuperate and spend time with loved ones.
That mileage breaks down to about 120 miles each week for Kipchoge. Another unique thing in his training plan is he does not taper as most athletes do. That’s right. Kipchoge trains right through to race day.
Eliud Kipchoge’s Training Week
According to Running Science, this is what a week of running looks like for Eliud Kipchoge:
|Day of the week||Type of training||Length|
|Day 1||21km moderate (71min)||10km easy (40min)|
|Day 2||Track: 14x800m in 2:10-12 (90” rest) 15min WU & CD|
|Day 3||18km moderate (75min)||10km easy (40min)|
|Day 4||Long Tempo Run: 40km in 2hr15 on XC course|
|Day 5||18km easy-moderate (74min)||10km easy (41min)|
|Day 6||Fartlek: 20x(2min on, 1min off) on = 2:50-2:55/km, off = easy jog 10min WU 15min CD|
|Day 7||20km easy-moderate (77min)|
Words to Live By
When working on this piece on Eliud Kipchoge, I found myself finding one wonderful quote after another by the master of the marathon. What I want to leave you with are my top 5 favorite Kipchoge quotes.
Perhaps one will become your words to live by.
- If you want to break through, your mind should be able to control your body. Your mind should be a part of your fitness.
- To win is not important. To be successful is not even important. How to plan and prepare is crucial. When you plan very well and prepare very well, then success can come on the way. Then winning can come on your way.
- Athletics is not so much about the legs. It’s about the heart and mind.
- I always tell people that this is a really simple deal: Work hard. If you work hard, follow what’s required, and set your priorities right, then you can really perform without taking shortcuts. If you’re taking shortcuts, you can’t be free.
- I want to show the world that you can go beyond your thoughts, you can break more than you think you can break.
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