Re: Training for a marathon can I keep muscle gains?
I've never trained for a marathon but one of the guys I once ran with has done so many times. We would run 5 miles a couple days a week, 6-8 miles one day a week, 10 miles one day and and on Saturday or Sunday he'd run 15 miles for his long training day. He'd take 1 day off after the long run and another whenever he felt he needed a break for a second day a week off.
I only ran 4 days a week and totaled 27-30 or so miles a week. I was lean to begin with and never gained any weight when running, but I never lost any either. When we first began running, he had been doing so for about 6 months and had lost about 30 lbs. and was still heavier than me. That was the main reason he began running------to lose weight. I helped him pick up his pace over the next few months and our distances increased from 3 mile runs to the following.
We would run together at a 6 minute a mile pace up to the 10 mile distance. When he ran the 15 mile distance, he'd cut the pace back to roughly 7 minutes a mile. As far as I can remember, his personal best for the marathon distance was 3 hr.s 40 something minutes and just under, or right at 8 minutes a mile.
I believe it comes down to how hard you train and what time you are trying to achieve. Fact is, the body type for long distance runners is quite lean, almost looking like anorexia. I watched the Kenyan's and Ethiopian's cross the finish line at the Crescent City Classic 10K and those guys are built like match stick figures.