RW Forum Six – Sub 2.50 Kier with Parkrunfan

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03/02/2013 at 22:41

YD - I didnt actually say that

What I said was that over 10K the fittest runner out of two will almost certainly finish ahead. However, when it comes to a marathon there are so many other factors that the fittest runner out of two could easily lose by 15 minutes if they dont get the 'thinking' part of it right.


Or something like that

03/02/2013 at 23:01

That was it, you might have said something like 'many factors such as mental toughness', anyway it’s hard to concentrate on a convirsation when you are chasing a 2 year old round! What you said must have made an impression because I wanted to remember it I just couldn’t recall it exactly!

04/02/2013 at 10:53

Must be a speedy 2 yr old! YD.

I turns out that pogoing in the mosh pit full of beery, sweaty 40-50yr old blokes 12hrs after a 10k isn't the best thing for recovery. Legs very stiff this morning!

Anyway, review of last week - first week I've been ill (apart from 2 days over Xmas) since early Nov - which is something of a winter record. Completed all planned runs apart from 14m with some 10m progressive stuff on Weds. But all paces easy - steady. Completed the week with 38.10 in a 10k, and ran round the course again afterwards to make 16m for the day. Effectively, although week 1 of the magic8 and being a 50 mile week, it has been a bit of a cut back week.

04/02/2013 at 10:56

The plan for this week is ( / was - depends on what you think PRF):

Mon - 5m recovery (done at 9.05m/m)

Tue 12m @ 75% 

Wed 8m inc 5k @ 10k pace

Thur 5m recovery

Fri 12M inc Progressive 10M (1.5m w/u 7m @7.15-6.45 then 6:15, 6:05, 5:50)

Sat 5m hilly easy

Sun Long run 20M - unfueled

Total 67m

04/02/2013 at 11:16

I was thinking I could do with something to strengthen my quads up for the Marathon, I will have to get myself to a mosh pit for some of your patented pogoing x-training Keir
As for the 2 year old, he can sense when his old man is tired and makes a break for it. Shows he has good racing instincts I suppose.
Looks like a good week you have planned, I am planning an almost identical week; the only difference being I wont run the 3m @10k pace session, but I might do some hill repeats instead, depends on how the legs are feeling.

04/02/2013 at 12:04

Keir - Yes, that weeks seems just about right. I'll be doing pretty much the same, although in a different order.

1. Instead of the progressive 10 miler, I'll be doing a progressive 10,000m track race with 4 miles beforehand.

2. The 5K will obviously be a parkrun

I may get two 20 milers in this week, one planned for Sunday and maybe one today if the legs feel up to it after completing 10.

04/02/2013 at 12:43

Hi PRF - I've been reading the comments on this thread and also your blog about where you had to walk on one of your runs last week. You quoted "This is where experience comes in because I take this as a good sign, meaning that the total training load up to this point is right up at the top end of what I am able to tolerate and, as such, will lead to as much training benefit as possible without breaking down. That is as long as I keep an eye on potentially going into overtraining territory".

I had to walk on my LSR at the weekend - for a novice like me, how would I know if I was at the top end of what I can tolerate or if I was overtraining ? Cheers

04/02/2013 at 13:08

Not got time to read back but just wanted to say well done to Y D.   Brilliant time yesterday.  Oh to run that fast.....


04/02/2013 at 13:11

Carterusm - Good question but theres no great science involved.

The body constantly gives great feedback about what it wants/needs - most runners seem to assume there is 'something wrong' when the feedback from the body is along the lines of 'okay, you're doing great but can you just give me a bit of a breather to let me catch up'.

For marathon training, it is important to train on tired legs but that would normally mean paces being maybe 30-60 secs/mile down on what you might expect to run when fresh. Maybe a bit of a struggle at times but no problem with completing runs.

When getting into overtraining territory the body starts getting more assertive along the lines of 'look mister, when I said I needed to catch up I wasnt joking, so either back off or I'll ultimately have to make you do so'.

This can mean legs feeling very, very heavy and/or a strong demotivation to train. Dont fight it, just keep runs steady or have a rest day or two until normality returns.

But importantly, it doesnt mean that anything is wrong, it is the normal process of the training stress/training effect cycle.

The worst approach is being fixated on weekly mileage totals or having to religiously 'follow a schedule' above all else and ignoring the obvious signs given by the body.

Many runners will know instinctively where the line is and will build in cutback weeks in anticipation of needing to.

Another mistake would be to never get anywhere near the overtraining line by being ultra cautious, doing so means depriving the body of the training it needs to give its best performance.

Edited: 04/02/2013 at 13:14
04/02/2013 at 20:49

Well the legs did feel up to a 20 tonight but I ended up cutting it short at 18 because the pain of sharp hailstones on my face was just not worth enduring. Ouch.

So, 18.0 miles @ 8:19/mile

Very promising on the back of yesterday's 10K and last week's treacle treading. It flowed nicely, or at least it did until the hailstones started!

04/02/2013 at 21:01
Thanks PRF and good run this evening. How would nutrition, or lack of, come in to play when you are tired ? Is there any way I can tell if I bonked at the weekend because I didn't fuel properly or if I was reaching my limit ?
04/02/2013 at 21:14

Carterusm - You shouldnt really have any problems with nutrition on long runs even if you run them in what we are calling an unfuelled state. You are trying to encourage fat burning and there is absolutely tons of the stuff. The only reason you would 'bonk' is if you're running the LSRs too quickly thereby burning glycogen too quickly.

MP+ 90 or more should be safe territory.

04/02/2013 at 21:30
Ok, silly question time. I ran @ 9:00 for my first 5 miles on Saturday, my marathon target pace is 8:45. So, come race day what is going to stop me from bonking again, is it going to be the additional training I do ?
04/02/2013 at 23:41

The idea of the training effect is to get a higher proportion of fat into the fuel mix (you are always burning both fat and glycogen in some proportion, it isnt some kind of switch that triggers at a certain speed) thereby ekeing out the glycogen supplies further into the race.

Steady starts are key to helping this conservation of glycogen.

While you are training you are increasing the number and the size of each individual mitochondria, the power cells of your muscles, so you glycogen storage capacity is increasing.

But, because you are training they are never properly full,  that changes when you taper towards the marathon. So you should be stood on the start line packed with energy....and that is why lots of marathon runners go off too quickly, because they are feeling so energetic.

Interesting that you're doing your long runs at a pace so close to your marathon target pace.

05/02/2013 at 08:20

PRF - it wasnt intentional that I was running at 9:00. I'm trying to run on 'feel' rather than looking at my watch every few seconds. I still struggle at judging my pace which was meant to be 10:00 ! I guess I will have to use my watch until I can judge this better

05/02/2013 at 08:52

Perhaps your target pace is too slow Carter. How did you decide upon it? Have you done a race recently to get a more accurate guide to your Marathon potential?

12m for me this morning, bang on 75% of HR Max (142bpm). Bit lucky really as I had mistakingly set the alarm for 6am and it was only one of the kids crying out at 5.25am which woke me and made me realise my error! 7.52m/m - 1hr 34min. Bitter cold wind and legs still tired from Sunday (impressed that you managed 18 PRF), butotherwise feel good.

05/02/2013 at 09:24
Keir - I'm a virgin so Manchester is my first marathon. I only half a half under my belt of 1:47. So using McMillan and also having Spoons as my mentor (see the carterusm and spoons thread) the initial target is 3:45 but that is to be reviewed nearer the time. I have liversedge HM this Sunday so that will give me an idea of how I have progressed in the last 3 months
05/02/2013 at 11:03

Keir - How do you find these early morning runs? When I did them regularly I enjoyed the routine but when you generally run evenings the odd early morning run doesnt half take some willpower.....

More miles in the VLM bank!

Carterusm - I would have thought that 10:00 was a more appropriate pace for long runs. My long runs can often be 8:30-9:00 for a 6:30 marathon pace so the intensity of being only 15 secs off the planned marathon pace is likely to be too high an intensity, which may feel comfortable but wont be creating the adaptations you are looking for on a long run.

What are you going to be wearing on Sunday? I'm going to be running around the Spen 20 course while your race is taking place and since it is a lot of the same course I may well bump into you.


05/02/2013 at 11:39

Purkrunfun- Just a thought. I know you're meant to be running your LSRs at around 30-60s slower than your marathon pace but do you think that the same measure should be applied regardless of your speed?

I just think that at the slower end of the spectrum it's natural to train at a speed closer to what you will be racing at. From experience when I trained for my first mara I probably averaged 8:50-9:00mm on my long runs and ended up running 3:50. I'm now closer to 3:20 mara but my long runs are not done that much quicker... probably around 8:30-9:00mm.

So it almost seems like my 'easy' pace remains very much unchanged even though I'm getting faster in races. I could never however, even right at the very start of my running career run @ 10mm, it just didn't feel natural or enjoyable... I think what I'm trying to say is- if it genuinly feels easy and you manage to complete all your other sessions at the correct pace- is it really necessary to force yourself to slow down to a pace that doesn't feel natural?

05/02/2013 at 12:02

Brolish - you're right in that the differential between MP and easy training pace tends to get squeezed closer together as marathon time increases. But there has to be a limit to this. It cant be right to be doing LSRs at, or perish the thought, quicker than MP surely.

So MP+60 should be close enough for anyone. I have always been puzzled by runners saying that they cant run at 10 min/mile because it feels too slow. I can happily run at 10 min/mile as can Jocelyn Payne, she mentions it in the interview I linked to a while back, so if sub 3 runners can run at 10 mins/mile why cant 3:30 or 4:00 runners?

Another element is that the faster the marathon time, the higher the number of long runs completed and the more they are run on tired legs. The flip side of that is that the slower the marathon time, the lower the number of long runs and the fresher the legs when longs runs are tackled possibly leading to faster relative paces.

But, in general, slowing it down and getting more long runs done at a slower pace, prreferably on reasonably tired legs, should lead to improved marathon times and a better race day experience.

Edited: 05/02/2013 at 12:18
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