A bit longer than the average plan
Tenjiso - great job at Brighton... it sounds like we finished very close to each other. Your plan is on track... I am guessing a few of us late 40/early 50's are all aspiring to similar goals, this could be a useful reference thread as the years roll slowly on!
Thanks Peter - though perhaps I got a bit carried away with the race report
Choisty - I'm happy with progress since starting this thread. Shooting high is doing me good! Hope you achieve a great PB on Sunday.
FRC - Your progress is fantastic and is great motivation for me to know that my ridiculous goal is not quite so mad after all . Good luck with your GFA attempt on Sunday and have a great day. Pop back in and let me know how you get on.
PSC - you crossed the line three minutes ahead of me, so I guess you avoided the embarassment of being beaten by Peppa Pig! I told my 5yo daughter and she explained to me that it wasn't the real Peppa Pig - which was a relief.
I'm back running again. Yesterday I ran four miles, keeping my heart rate below my recovery ceiling. This is the best I've felt post-marathon, which I'm sure is down to the higher mileage incolved in the P&D plan. I'll post a few quick stats below for the record.
Here's a quick comparison of my three marathons (apologies for crappy formatting).
2009 - Training miles: 497m Five longest runs total: 93m 10k PB: 56:25 HM: 2:02:47 Marathon Result: 4:38:23
2012 - Training miles: 462m Five longest runs total: 88m 10k PB: 54:51 HM: 2:01:34 Marathon Result: 4:38:54 (course slightly long due to flooding diverts)
2013 - Training miles: 751m Five longest runs total: 100m 10k PB: 49:50 HM: 1:50:04 Marathon Result: 4:09:29
For my latest campaign I was running five runs per week, averaging 9.3 miles per run January to March inclusive. I peaked at 22m for the longest run. Intervals were run slower than I have done previously, which probably helped with injury avoidance. Also, I ran far more miles outside than I have ever done in the past. Roughly 30% of my runs were on the treadmill. I've run in the snow, rain, wind, floods and on trails in the dark with a headtorch - all of which have boosted my experience and confidence. Getting off the treadmill was a big step, but now I wonder why I didn't do it sooner!
Working out next targets
I've now completed two weeks of my post-marathon recovery and have only fifty weeks to go until the VLM . Now is the time to review my stats and flesh-out my targets for the forthcoming campaign. As I've already said, I'm hoping to reach 3:45 for the marathon next year – but what does this mean for my more immediate training and targets? Like most people I turn to the online race predictors to work out what I must achieve at other race distances. But before I place my faith in the results, it makes sense to review how well they have predicted my previous results.
Starting with the Runner's World Race Time Predictor. This calculator uses the Riegel formula:
T2 = T1 x (D2/D1)1.06
where T1 is the given time, D1 is the given distance, D2 is the distance to predict a time for, and T2 is the calculated time for D2.
According to Runner's World 4:00 Garmin Schedule, I needed to achieve a half-marathon time of 1:50:00 to be able to run a sub-4 hour marathon. This also tied-in with other calculators and tables that I researched. Using this calculator, I had predicted targets of 49:54 for the 10K, 23:56 for the 5K and most importantly 3:49:20 for the marathon.
My results were 23:32 for 5K, 49:55 for 10K and 1:50:04 for the half-marathon. So that was an impressive thumbs-up for the calculator. On that basis, it should have been a shoe-in to get a sub-4 marathon. However, the actual result of 4:09:29 was apparently sub-par. Indeed, my marathon result has always fallen short of expectations based on results at shorter distances. Last year my half marathon time of 2:01:34 predicted a marathon in 4:13:27, but I dragged my arse home in 4:38:54. So on the face of it, the calculator is great for races up to half-marathon, but way too optimistic for the marathon. All of which has left me in a bit of a quandry about how to set targets for my next marathon, since my results are clearly out of kilter.
Last week I received an email containing an article by Ian Williams at fetcheveryone.com about marathon time prediction. Here are some condensed extracts:
“Take a look back at the (Riegel) formula. The 1.06 is important - it represents the rate at which we slow down as the races we run get longer. I fed all of my 1071 runners through that formula, and found that only 49 of them managed to hold on to the tails of 1.06 - it was far more common to see a score of 1.15. We know that faster runners tend to be capable of holding on to their pace for longer. So instead of using a constant 1.15, let's connect that number to the speed of the runner, using their half marathon time. I also looked at the differences between male and female performances. Taking these factors on board, I've built a new calculator that will predict your marathon time based on your half marathon. It should predict your time to within 5% in 77 out of a hundred cases.”
The full article can be viewed here.
Plugging in my most recent half-marathon vs marathon results into this new calculator gave:
2012 Half Marathon 2:01:34 predicted 4:39:04, against my actual 4:38:54
2013 Half Marathon 1:50:04 predicted 4:09:16, against my actual 4:09:29
Pretty outstanding predictions! The bad news for me is that to achieve a 3:45 marathon time, this calculation means that I need to achieve a half marathon in 1:40:29, rather than 1:45:00 that Runner's World suggests in it's Garmin training plan. Nonetheless, I have more faith in the quicker half time.
Working out next targets (continued)
Now, by using the original Riegel formula for 5K and 10K I arrive at two sets of targets which I will be aiming for this year:
5K 22:50; 10K 47:38; to achieve Half Marathon 1:45:00
5K 21:51; 10K 45:35; to achieve Half Marathon 1:40:29
*Since working out these figures, the improved Riegel calculator has been amended to split male/female predictions. While this makes sense if you read the full article, it yields 4:48:35 and 4:15:19 for my last two marathon predictions and is therefore not as close to my actual results (though still better than other calculators). It then calculates a 1:39:09 Half Marathon being the target to achieve a 3:45 marathon. I'm going to stick with the original calculations, since they were uncanny!
In any case, it looks like I have a lot of work to do! At the moment the targets look daunting, but not unobtainable. I wasn't expecting an easy ride on my “five year” journey. The next twelve months look set to be interesting.
The improved Reigel calculator can be found here.
Interesting article Tenjiso. I'd seen the new calculator though.
I had a half of few seconds under 1:40 for my first marathon and finished in 3:48 so that's pretty close formula.
5k and 10k times are good for confidence boost but mean nothing prediction wise. It's much more about the endurance and number of 18-20 plus milers I think.
Ps did VLM last Sunday and ran 3:15:04, almost perfect race.
Just zoned out for a few minutes or miles and mistimed sprint.
FRC - fabulous time! Congratulations That's another brilliant improvement and keeps me motivated too! It's all good. Also, interesting to note your half-marathon to marathon time too, which gives me added confidence in the numbers.
My plan is to work on speed during the summer and to race 5k and 10k through to September, then half marathons in October/November before starting marathon training again in December. I've learned my lesson and will increase mileage, or speed - but not both at the same time (pretty sure that's how I got injured last year).
That's pretty much what I did last year. No autumn marathon, sort of.
Speed June/July including Thunder Run, carried on through Aug/Sept, 5-6 tune up short races Sept and also helped a pal train for his first marathon so 2-3 x 18- 20 milers but slow, no recovery, no pressure. October did do an ultra, limited recovery needed.
November half PB, December 10k PB (cough) with a marathon for fun the day after, to do a none tapered marathon on tired legs, and also to get ready for Feb ultra.
Since running the Brighton Marathon I have been following the final stretch of the P&D marathon training program. This was the five week recovery cycle they call "Mesocycle 5". My mileage is now back to 35m for a week, and I'm now ready to begin speedwork and work towards a couple of 10k races.
Today's run was an 11m medium-long run (MLR). The stats for each mile were:
HR avg: 128/133/136/140/142/145/146/151/150/152/152bpm (target 135-152bpm)
My MLR training pace range for a 3:45 marathon is 10:18 to 9:27, but I have been running all my runs to heart rate since the marathon (now that I am confident in my heart rate figures). My average pace for the entire run was 9:28, which is the fast end of my training pace range for the target marathon (next spring!). I find this very encouraging.
I'll continue to use heart rate to judge training paces for Threshold and VO2Max sessions. I'm going to follow the P&D 10K training plan from their book "Road Racing for Serious Runners", though I have a few weeks before I starting the plan (for a September "A" race). I think I'll have a go at another parkrun in the meantime to see what kind of racing shape I'm in.
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