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The Run Streak Might Be the Key to a Fast Spring Marathon

Runner’s World+ Coach Jess Movold shares three reasons how the #RWRunStreak can benefit you in the long run.

When people ask me about my racing schedule for the upcoming year, my answer always starts with the 2022 Runner’s World Holiday Run Streak. If you ask me, the streak is the perfect runway to a training cycle and creates the most beautiful bridge between Fun-Run Season and Full-Send Season (yes, I just made that one up—but I think it will stick around). 

f you’re an avid marathoner, you probably jump between spring marathons and fall marathons, and if you’re like the marathoners I know, you do this every year. This back-to-back marathon schedule doesn’t give you a lot of time for an “off-season” (air quotes because runners don’t have off-seasons, am I right?). But the reality is, everyone needs a break from a serious training schedule—even if it’s a short one. 

It’s important to take time off and allow for some carefree, unstructured miles. That means no forced training plans, no grueling long runs, and not being tied to a training plan or weekly mileage goal. Just running to run. How refreshing! 

Eventually, this becomes less enjoyable. That’s when you know it’s time to set new goals and start working towards something that challenges you again. You might start to plan out your next big race, hire a coach, or commit to a training plan. However, going from unstructured running straight into a rigid training plan can be tough! That’s why I always ease into my training with the #RWRunStreak. 

I could go on all day talking about why I love the run streak (cheers to 1 mile!), but I’m going to give you my three favorite reasons why my training starts with the streak. 


You don’t have to constantly follow a training plan. That can put you on the fast track to overall burnout, mental exhaustion, and physical injuries. However, it’s challenging to go from time off to a training plan. Even though structured running has a lot of advantages, it can feel too serious, too soon sometimes. 

That’s why I love the Run Streak! It gets me out the door and into a run—no matter how far—consistently. It keeps running fun while laying the groundwork for a routine. Then, when my training cycle officially begins, it won’t be a shock to run every day.

Rust bust

A ‘rust buster’ is that first hard race back from the off season. Whether you like the term or not, it’s definitely a thing! We all know the feeling when our training stays in the back seat for too long—things start to feel a little rusty. So, test your fitness by doing a race or hard workout after you get back into the groove of training. It hurts so good! 

At some point in my streak, I’ll do a one-mile time trial. Despite the usual lack of fitness, it feels fun because there’s nothing major on the line. Don’t let chasing personal bests steal all the joy from running. Test your body to see what you can do but have fun while doing it. 

Usually, you throw a rust buster race in the beginning to middle part of your training block as a chance to shake off the cobwebs and get back in the swing of things. The streak is a perfect time for this! 

Slow build 

As a coach, I often see runners aggressively jump into their training after the off-season. They increase their mileage or intensity too abruptly, which usually leads to an injury or setback in the middle of their training cycle. There is nothing worse than getting into the groove with training and then having an unexpected interruption.

That’s why I unofficially kick off my spring marathon training with the Run Streak. It allows me to safely and gradually increase my mileage when I feel up for it. If you have a spring marathon on the books, I’m looking at you! The Boston Marathon isn’t that far away. 

That’s why my training starts on Thursday. A slow build throughout the holidays and then, BOOM! I’ll be ready to pick up the pace and buckle down come 2023. 

See you in the streak! 

(11/26/2022) Views: 555 ⚡AMP
by Runner’s World

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