How to create a free AI Marathon Training Plan from Chat GPT.

Image Source: SnapWire @Pexels, : https://www.pexels.com/photo/people-doing-marathon-618612
Image Source: SnapWire @Pexels, : https://www.pexels.com/photo/people-doing-marathon-618612

AI Marathon Training Plan

 

Using a paper-based training plan is somewhat outdated considering the available technology in 2023, but there are still many of us who prefer that method to blindly obey today’s workouts from our smartwatches and digital coaches.

Finding these paper-based plans has for a long time become easier with the growth of the internet, and we are no longer limited to generic templates shared among our running club buddies.

However, with the emergence of Chat GPT, the world of free paper-based training plans has reached a new level of convenience and sophistication.

 

How it can work when making your plan

With an internet search like “12-week marathon training plan free,” you would change and improve the words in the search and then check out numerous links to see which of them pointed to a real free plan or which, instead, were used by crafty marketers to get you to visit their site and then try to sell you a plan or sign you up to something. At least that was my experience.

Things have got a whole lot better and easier.

Here are some instructions that you might give Chat GPT to produce this year’s marathon plan. you might already know that within one ‘chat,’ the AI remembers previous answers to a degree and so you can get the AI to add to and improve what it has already given you.

  • write me a marathon training plan for my race on April 23, 2023, make it suitable for a good athlete looking to have a finish time of 3 hours
  • can you incorporate periodization into each 4-week block
  • can you include training pace or heart rate training zones for each day?

A Chat GPT Marathon Plan [Excerpt]

 

  • Week 5
    • Monday: Rest day
    • Tuesday: 8-mile run with hill repeats (zone 3: 70-80% max heart rate)
    • Wednesday: 11-mile run with 4-mile tempo at threshold pace (zone 4: 85-90% max heart rate)
    • Thursday: 9-mile run at an easy pace (zone 2: 60-70% max heart rate)
    • Friday: Rest day
    • Saturday: 14-mile run at an easy pace (zone 2: 60-70% max heart rate)
    • Sunday: 18-mile run at an easy pace (zone 2: 60-70% max heart rate)

    Total weekly mileage: 60 miles

  • Week 6
    • Monday: Rest day
    • Tuesday: 9-mile run with hill repeats (zone 3: 70-80% max heart rate)
    • Wednesday: 12-mile run with 5-mile tempo at threshold pace (zone 4: 85-90% max heart rate)
    • Thursday: 10-mile run at an easy pace (zone 2: 60-70% max heart rate)
    • Friday: Rest day
    • Saturday: 15-mile run at an easy pace (zone 2: 60-70% max heart rate)
    • Sunday: 20-mile run at an easy pace (zone 2: 60-70% max heart rate)

    Total weekly mileage: 66 miles

 

you could get cleverer and add this

  • change heart rate zones to pace zones based on my 5k time of 17:30:00.00 and my half marathon time of 1:20:00.00
  • instead change pace per mile to pace per kilometre

and those instructions work too!

Although I didn’t specifically ask Chat GPT to date each week and back-calculate from my race date, I’m confident that it could have done that if I had requested it. Unfortunately, when I did ask for the plan to be sent in PDF format, it was only able to provide instructions on how to do it myself, rather than doing it automatically.

Another feature that I didn’t explore was the creation of .FIT workouts. The latest version of Chat GPT includes coding logic, and I was able to use it recently to fix an issue with my site by reformatting and improving my code. It’s possible that Chat GPT could create a training workout file to guide your sessions, but it may require some manual steps. (Over to you guys for that one!)

Take Out

Overall, this level of plan is quite impressive, although Olympic-grade coaches probably don’t need to worry about their jobs just yet. However, it’s clear that this type of plan will have broad appeal among casual runners.

I suspect that several app developers may be feeling somewhat annoyed, having paid their developers to achieve similar results that Chat GPT appears to be capable of delivering for free. Effectively, Chat GPT training plans could easily be parameter-driven and incorporated into apps or just shared amongst friends as a series of simple instructions.

 

Well. I was impressed.

 

 

 

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2 thoughts on “How to create a free AI Marathon Training Plan from Chat GPT.

  1. I would love to see more runners come up with the best prompts to get the best AI training plan. It’s all about what information you give the AI. There are a few blogs/YT channels out there who give it “Make me a marathon training plan.” and then criticise the results. Garbage in = garbage out. So, for the average runner, we need experience runners (and coaches) to show us what info they would use in the prompts (like plan duration, time goal, days/week, etc) to get the most out of this new technology.

    1. hi
      the article above gives some insights in how you need to guide the AI towards giving you what you want.
      yes it will be possible to create a quite complex prompt that fully asks you for many different parameters and to give you a personalised program.
      I’m not sure many coaches will be using ai to create plans at the moment. i could be wrong. that would involve binning whatever system/process they already use.

      there are a few platforms like trainer road and ai endurance that already use ai/ml so why reinvent the wheel other than to save money?

      you would also need to consider how clever you want the plan to be. eg ai endurance’s plan is adaptive. i sense that you are looking for something like a fixed 12 month ahead plan that doesn’t adapt much to how you change in that period.

      if you use chatgpt quite a bit for a few weeks you’ll soon discover its limitations and inaccuracies. would you really want to trust tens and tens of hours of your training life to something that could be wrong?

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