How to pause plan while maintaining fitness level | 80/20 Endurance

How to pause plan while maintaining fitness level

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    I am on the 18 week level 1 marathon plan and into week 12 and may need to take a break from the plan due to unforeseen life changes. What is the best way to maintain my current fitness? And where do I pick up when I am ready to continue? Pick up where I left of, or start all over with the plan?

    David Warden


    Thanks for posting here! It depends on how long you are taking off. If you are taking time completely off, you’d go back two weeks for every week you take off in the plan. So if you were on 12 and take a week off, go back to Week 10. If you take two week off, go back to Week 8.

    If you are doing some exercise, not completely off, then you can shorten that guideline. For example, if you are exercising 3 hours a week still, maybe 30 minutes a day for a week, you can pick up where you left off.

    It really depends on the duration and what exercise you were doing during the break. So, I think it’s best to come back and post here after your break where you can report the total time off the plan, and how much exercise you maintained during that time. I can then give you a better idea of where to pick up on the plan.

    To answer your question on how to maintain fitness while you are off the plan, just 30 minutes a day with some light intensity here and there is enough to maintain your fitness. Maybe run an hour to 1.5 hours when you can as well.



    Just to confirm, does the “go back 2 if you missed 1” for weeks of missing all training apply fo triathlon plans as well?

    David Warden

    Yes, applies to triathlon training too.



    Hi David, Thanks for your comprehensive answer. I appreciate it. Here’s a snapshot of my last two weeks where I had to take some time off. Where would you recommend I pick things up from here? I am READY TO RUNNNNNNN!

    TP Dashboard Last Two Weeks

    David Warden

    Christoph, start on Week 12 of the plan. In this case, Week 12 also happens to be a rest week which is a great point to pick up in the plan as well.



    Awesome, thanks David!

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