Training Programs


The Distance Runner's Ultimate Challenge

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Completing a Full Marathon (26.2M) is a life-changing event. A marathon finisher’s medal is a symbol of dedication, hard work, and the accomplishment of a challenging goal. Participants in our 16-week program benefit from our professional head coaches, experienced mentors, well-managed group runs on the St. Louis area’s best paths, access to an extensive lineup of health care professionals, and informational clinics on nutrition, hydration, gear, injury prevention, stretching techniques, and more. Additional perks are available for those who choose to fundraise for St. Jude Children Research Hospital. 

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Fleet Feet Full Marathon ProgramOur Standard programis appropriate for anyone who wants to enjoy training to run 26.2 miles between 3 hours (8:00/mile long run training pace) and 5¼ hours (13:00/mile long run training pace).  We welcome first-time marathoners and veterans looking for a structured program that will prepare them to run a personal best.  This program will prepare participants for any goal marathon occurring between early October and early November.  Program begins with a formal meeting on Saturday, January 6th, 7:30am at Fleet Feet Des Peres.    

Our Advanced program is for experienced marathoners who have made the transition from completing to competing and want to run a qualifying time for or compete in the Boston Marathon.  Program applicants are first assessed by our professional coaches and - if they have the foundation needed to train to race a qualifying time - are accepted into this positive, driven training environment.  Advanced marathoners receive the perks of the standard program plus customized schedules based on one-on-one assessments, and additional group workouts.  This program will prepare participants for any goal marathon occurring between early October and early November.  Program begins with a formal meeting on Saturday, January 6th, 7:30am at Fleet Feet Des Peres.        

Our Plus program options add a weekly Functional Strength or Functional Flexibility class to the training program.   These classes help enhance performance and reduce injury risk and are important ingredients to a well-rounded training program, as explained here.

Program Perks:

  • Individualized training in a group setting. Our proven program has served more than 3000 marathoners. Over the past nine years, participants have given the program an average rating of 4.8 stars (out of five) and more than 90% have completed their goal race. Our program is appropriate for both first-time marathoners and experienced veterans.
  • Experienced, professional head coaching. Our degreed and credentialed head coaches assess each participant's current fitness level and goals and ensure that they train at an appropriate level.
  • St. Jude Give HopeMentors who have completed over 300 marathons. Experienced mentors offer support and motivation to athletes in long run pace groups ranging from 8:00/mile to 13:00/mile (walk/run) and following customized novice, intermediate, and advanced schedules.
  • Two (or more) weekly group workouts. Track workouts are held on Tuesday evenings and long runs on some of St. Louis’ best paths are hosted on Saturday mornings. (Runners in our Advanced program are also invited to a Sunday morning workout.)
  • A chance to be a hero. Our partnership with St. Jude Children's research hospital gives team members the opportunity to run for the kids.

Winter/Spring 2018 Program Details: 

  • Track workouts will be held on Tuesday evenings at 6:00pm at Parkway Northeast Middle School.
  • Long runs on some of St. Louis’ best paths will be hosted on Saturday mornings at 7:30am.  (Runners in our Advanced program are also invited to a Sunday morning workout starting at 7:00am.)


Take the first two steps of the Fleet Feet Training Arch and purchase the Standard Marathon Program for $224 and the Advanced Marathon Program for $336.  Add 16 performance-enhancing and injury-reducing Fleet Feet group classes to complete the Fleet Feet Training Arch, pay $336 (Standard) or $448 (Advanced), and receive one weekly Functional Strength or Functional Flexibility group class.  *Register before Saturday, December 30th and receive a $26.20 gift card to any of our five Fleet Feet St. Louis locations.

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A Sampling of Testimonials:

Fleet Feet Full Marathon Program
Just wanted to give a little shout out to the amazing Fleet Feet family and my awesome pace coach! I PR'd on my marathon today, and all the support meant so much!"L.K.

"To the excellent Fleet Feet coaches who all helped me achieve something that just four months ago I wasn't sure was possible. I want to say THANK YOU!"M.K.

"Thank you to all the Fleet Feet coaches for their dedication. I have just signed up for my fourth marathon training program. I just can’t get enough."K.S.

"I thought qualifying for Boston was an elusive dream until I started training with the Advanced Fleet Feet marathon group. Now it is a reality! Thanks Fleet Feet."J.L.

If you have any questions that aren't answered on this webpage, please click here to email us.

Full Marathon

During winter/spring 2009, a film crew from KETC Channel 9 in St. Louis followed members of Fleet Feet's marathon training program as they prepared for and then ran the GO! St. Louis Marathon.  Mother Nature regularly delivered forgettable weather to this particular group, but the participants' inspirational stories are ones you'll always remember.  This documentary first aired on KETC on October, 21, 2009.  Click here to learn more about Mike Burke and his motivational message.

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