I've been looking a number of different marathon plans, and I've come across a lot of "Less is More", which I guess is also the idea behind the FIRST method. From what I can tell, there is an emphasis is "quality over quantity" and three runs a week- a speed/ track run, a tempo run and a long run, with cross training twice a week. All the workouts are supposed to be full intensity.
A plan like this seems to fit with my schedule, and I really like the idea of cross training for injury prevention and to prevent burn out. But does it work? I've run three half marathons (with 2 more next month) and I'm looking at a marathon in October. Do you really need 5+ days of running a week to get ready for a marathon? I will, if needed, and will have at least short easy jogs daily because of my dogs, but is it necessary? How many miles a week do you really need? Of course there is anecdotal evidence that you need to run close to 100 miles a week, but that is unrealistic for me.
I'm not trying to break crazy records or qualify for Boston or anything. I just to make it through and not feel like I'm going to die. However, with this race, I have to finish in less than 5 1/2 hours.