Paris marathon 2013 here we go! A.W's Sub 3 attempt!

Asics Target 26.2 PB Hunter A.W

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12/01/2013 at 12:11

I'm 5'11 so, 67-68 is about right for me. I think weight has an influence on our running and times, but obviously the speed work and running needs to be there too.

The massage was good thanks KR, as always it involved a bit of wincing at points!!!!

Stan - I would definitely give sports massages a try, they can be quite painful in a way, but are well worth the pain in my opinion! Its a nice pain in a way!

12/01/2013 at 12:30

Today's run scheduled was 7 miles fartlek.

Actual run was 9 miles fartlek in 1.04.02. average pace of 7.07 minute miles.

Wow! What a run, didn't want it to finish and could easily have gone on and on today! Really really enjoyed it out there today. As you may have gathered I had a good run!

Decided to go with Steve's suggested session of 7, 5, 3, and 2 minutes with 1 minute recoveries x 2. It was on a bit of a hilly undulating course, so added a bit of harder/easier sections depending on uphill or downhill sections.

So after a 1 mile warm up.......

Splits were -

6.32 - 1M - pace MP - 6.32 a mile

5.00 - 0.81M - pace HM - 6.12 a mile

3.01 - 0.52M - pace 10k - 5.49 a mile

1.48 - 0.32M - pace 5k - 5.40 a mile

6.28 - 1M - pace MP - 6.28 a mile (really had to hold back on the pace here!)

5.01 - 0.82M - pace HM - 6.08 a mile

3.00 - 0.5M - pace 10k - 6.00 a mile

1.50 - 0.32 - pace 5k - 5.43 a mile

Then a couple of miles cool down!

The two reps at MP, especially the second one was a real effort to keep the pace down, and felt very easy which is encouraging.

I think tomorrows 19M will be a little harder! Going to start trialling some gels tomorrow, first ones to test are GU gels. Will try 2 on the run, 1 at about 7 miles and 1 at 12 miles which should give me a good idea how my body will react to them.

12/01/2013 at 12:45

Interesting discussion on weight. I am about 5'7" and was 12st 10lbs (80kgs) when I started running at 49 yrs old. When I did London this year, at the age of 56, I was 9st 7 lbs (60 kgs). There has been a straight line relationship between my weight and my marathon times - the lighter I have been the faster the time.

They say that for every lb lost you gain 2 secs/mile over a marathon. The bad news is they also say that over 50 you lose 4 secs for every year you age. So just to stay the same you have to lose 2lbs/yr!!!

I think 9st 7lbs is about my limit so I am not sure what I can now do to combat the ageing process!!!

12/01/2013 at 21:26

Great running AW. Glad you enjoyed it. I did a not so enjoyable (GPS battery died halfway, chased by a dog...) 16 LSR today to end my week (43m). 

Steve: I like your Fartlek structure idea. I have to admit I've not really done many of these sessions as I've been a bit confused over their main purpose. My natural inclination seems to always turn them into a very hard session. What do you consider their main purpose? Are they part pyschological ie variety, generally spontaneous etc

12/01/2013 at 22:09

Evening Alex!

I like the Fartlek structure! I was trying to make mine a bit more time-structured today but didn't do it quite as well as yours so think I might nab the MP, HM etc structure for my next fartlek ... if not the speed!!

Glad the training is going well! Can't quite believe how quickly the time's going though!

12/01/2013 at 23:48

Good session today AW and evenly paced on both sets. Regarding the massage if it doesn't make you chew the pillow when you are face down, then it ain't working! Are you gonig to be using any recovery drinks after the long runs? I used them for the first time last year and think that they were a good benefit as most times after a long run on a Sunday I wouldn;t necessairly have loads to eat straight away.

Looks like running has helped with a bit of decent wright loss for you One Gear. Was it just purely running or was it it diet as well?

10 slowish miles for me this morning in 7.50 pace as I am donig a XC race in the morning, so swapped tomorrow & today's run around.

13/01/2013 at 00:15

Another good session AW - good that marathon pace felt so easy - hopefully it will be the same in April!

In some ways it's not a fartlek session in the true sense which should have more spontanaity and be governed by terrain more than time but the way above is more structured and shoudl allow more control. I think if you don't have a set plan, it can be either too easy or too hard. The way above makes you think about your speed more and gives you a set target.

Obviously the main idea about any speed session is to improve speed but sometimes you can possibly achieve better results and make it more interesting by changing paces or having target paces rather than the old traditional way of just running as hard as you can for as long as you can and stopping, recovering and going again!

For instance when I do mile reps, I used to run just as quick times for the mile rep where I run 50m steady/float (half of bend), 150m hard x 8 as I do just running four laps hard and the 150m rep way, you get a better range of speeds and have to accelerate eight times and it breaks it down more.


13/01/2013 at 00:23

Did cross-country league race today - it was a relatively flat course and mud wasn't too bad so average pace inside  6:20 miles and didn't feel the 50 mile biking day before had too much affect so must be getting stronger.

Good luck on the 19 AW - don't worry about the speed too much - finishing strong and relaxed and slower is better than straining faster and fatiguing badly in last few miles at this stage of the schedule.

13/01/2013 at 13:16

Good 16 miler done AndyV. Never good when dogs decide to give chase, was bowled over on New Years day by a stray dog while running!

Hi RRR - I know what you mean, I cant believe we're 4 weeks in already! I too really like the structure to the fartlek session, I know as Steve says its strictly speaking not a fartlek, but I feel I got more benefit from having that structure and got a better run done because of this.

Good luck with the XC KR. I'm not going to use a recovery drink as such after my long runs, what I'm going to do is have a glass of chocolate milk. Should have the same effect. I don't usually have a problem eating after long efforts so will re fuel fairly quickly.

Hi Steve - hoping too it will be like that in April!!! Sounds like a good XC race, were you pleased with it?

13/01/2013 at 13:27

Scheduled run today was 19 miles in about 2.30 - 7.30-8 min mile effort.

Actual run was 20 miles in 2.29.42 - 7.29 minute miles.

Set off around 9 am with a plan to run down to Embankment and then do Green park, Hyde park and Regents park before heading uphill back to North London. Decided to trial The GU Jet Blackberry gels which have 2 shots of caffeine in each gel, having 1 at 7 miles and another at 12-13 miles. Today's run flew by, and felt very easy the whole way, the gels went down well and had no adverse reaction to them, I even got a couple of miles at MP at the end going uphill which still felt good. So another good confidence boost from today's run. Finished feeling fairly fresh and could have continued quite happily.

Finished this week totaling 61 miles I think. A good week all in all.

13/01/2013 at 13:43

Steve and Ruth,

Having tried the GU Jet Blackberry gels with caffeine today which went down well and I had no issues with them. Should I now just stick with them or try some other makes/types?

I don't want to keep trying others unless you think it beneficial as what I thought I might do is run all my other LSR's with only water, so when I get to the marathon I get a bit more of a kick from the gel. What do you think of me doing this? Is it a good idea?

13/01/2013 at 20:25

That's a very good run again AW. Your 20 matched my marathon PB to the second.but on my training pace today, I wouldn't have even got to 18 miles. Did around 16.5 hilly off-road in 2:23 and felt awful in last two miles- got a bit dehydrated - , plus around 25 miles on bike.

re gels, if you have found one that works and are happy with the taste and the affect it gives you, I would stick with it, but Ruth can probably confirm it's a good one to have,

On training runs, I try not to use them all the time and do try and save the effect to races or the key training runs ie faster 20s or slower 23s where a poorer run might affect the race preparation slightly or  possibly affect recovery for upcoming key sessions.

I do use a recovery drink reasonably frequently rather than just chocolate milk though the latter obviously aids recovery to some extent - Rego is my preferrred one..


13/01/2013 at 20:35
Post for Ruth,

This is my food diary from today before and after my long run!

7am - large bowl branflakes (65g) with sultanas and skimmed milk. Coffee with skimmed milk.

9.15am - 20 mile run - 2 GU gels and 400ml of water during.

12.30pm - 300ml skimmed milk with Benko (chocolate milk powder).

1pm - Cup of tea with skimmed milk.

1.30pm - Beans on toast with ketchup. (1 tin beans and 3 slices of sour dough bread)

3pm - Glass of water.

4.30pm - large chocolate cookie, handful nuts and dried fruit and an orange. Cup of tea with skimmed milk.

7pm - 2 slices parma pizza, chicken breast sandwich (griddled chicken and griddled sour dough bread), curly kale and baked beans. Ketchup in sandwich. Glass of water.

8pm - Cup of tea with skimmed milk.

8.30pm - Homemade vanilla gelato (skimmed milk, vanilla extract, agave)
13/01/2013 at 21:57

Week five

Jan 14th: rest or 5M easy

Jan 15th: 6 x 1000 in 3:35 starting every 6 mins (7M in total)

Jan 16th: 6M steady in 7:30-8 min miles

Jan 17th: 4M with middle 2 miles at HM pace

Jan 18th: 5M easy or rest

Jan 19th: 3M plus strides

Jan 20th: 10km race - 10M in total

week total: 35M

13/01/2013 at 23:11

Just had chance to catch up with the thread.  More excellent running this week AW!  

I was interested in the weight debate.  I'm 6' and 75Kg at present, so no wonder I can't get anywhere near your pace.  I hope to be nearer 70Kg come 21st April as I know it makes a difference.  You look good on 67/68Kg - I was surprised you're 5'11"! 

I'll also be 52 by 21/04 so it looks as if I may need to factor in One Gears comments as well!

It's been a reasonable week for me.  66 miles at overall average of 7.38 which is 14secs/ mile quicker than last week.  Did some more speedwork this week but it was a bit of a struggle.  Tried to do the 800 reps on my own which wasn't a good idea.  Will be going to the club track session this coming Tuesday!  

I'm a mile away from your level of fitness at present but reasonably happy with progress over the past 3-4 weeks. Endurance is definitely returning - just need to lose some weight and get some speed back!

I see you're due an recovery week.   Youll be flying in a week's time!   

14/01/2013 at 06:29

Looks like a good week for you golfer. I wouldn't worry too much about the weight, i think that will probably sort itself out with the training level increase over the next few weeks, just need to eat heathily I would think?

Cut back week this week, kind of a mini taper I guess for my 10k at the weekend.


14/01/2013 at 10:13

is 2.59.59 the target or is the target time still tbc?

If you can easily do 20miles at the end of a training week and already have a 1.22 half under your belt things are looking very good.

Good timing for your easier week with all the snow and bad weather around




14/01/2013 at 10:38

Golfer - your height and weight are the same as mine at present. On reflection I would settle for 72kg by April and don't expect to get back to 70 again.

I wouldn't get too focussed on average pace each week as that tends to put pressure on you to run fast on recovery days and long slow runs and also could make the more important faster sessions harder as you are tired.

I think 2:59 has to be the official target for AW but he clearly is well on target and it doesn't harm the chances of a sub-3 if you are in 2:55 shape or better come race day!

14/01/2013 at 12:24

I think 2:59 always has to be the main target time as I've never run a sub 3 marathon, if come race day I'm in better shape and am able to run a bit quicker that would just be a bonus.

I have a half marathon in Feb, so will have a clearer idea of how things are going then I guess.

Easy 5 miles done this morning at 8.10 pace. Legs feeling good today, not overly tired after yesterdays 20.

14/01/2013 at 12:53

That’s a great week of running completed AW. Good luck in your 10k race at the weekend. Are you targeting a PB, running flat out or trying something different? What do you recommend Steve?

I had a good week of running too totalling 67 miles over 9 runs with the longest being 14 miles. I’m off on holidays on Friday for a week so have my first 20 miler scheduled for Thursday. I hope I don't gain too much weight or loss too much fitness due to the all inclusive hotel!

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