Sub 3 hour London Marathon 2014 VLM

How can I acheive a sub 3hr marathon?

41 to 60 of 1,160 messages
25/09/2013 at 11:31

Train for London and use Barcelona as training race which you run it slower than mp and just enjoy it...

Also - remember to take it easy after Amsterdam. Don't run much in week after marathon, then slowly and surely bring it up to 40mi over the next 3 weeks.

If you do follow P&D there will be a P&D spring marathon thread under Training on here, there is an autumn one at moment.

25/09/2013 at 12:01

Cheers 15West - Good advice re taking it easy after a marathon. I learnt the hard way after my first marathon and was too enthusiastic for a race 4 weeks later... Injured for about 4 months. So so silly! I take it very easy now......

will look for the thead !


25/09/2013 at 12:25

I have pretty similar times 40min,1:29,3:13 and will also be having a shot at sub 3 in London. Been a bit slack over the summer after getting my GFA but started back now. Plan to build up miles/endurance - Cornish marathon in November then Thames Trot 50 in Feb. Last race before London will be The Grizzly.
I generally use P&D as a rough guide - think for a sub 3 you need the 55-70 plan. That's not to say you need to do the peak mileage. As someone else said use it to do the right phases of training and you can concentrate on the key sessions for that phase. I will quite often substitute xtraining for a recovery run in the plan as being on the verge of being an old git 4-5 runs per week is enough.


25/09/2013 at 13:13

Yeah, I used P&D 55-70 to get a sub3...and agree all with above, if getting knackered swap a recovery run for some non-running cardio or rest, but get the key sessions in. I actually find the recovery runs help me to recover though...I guess why they're called recovery runs! But I do run them very slow. Also I don't bother with double days..I ditch the pm 4mi runs.

If going with that plan Wenty you'll want to get up to 50mi/wk by mid Dec.

25/09/2013 at 16:05

I cant do 55 - 70 miles per week - the old body wont handle it, and high miles just really dont work for me, as its just overtraining for me. I guess one of my problems is that i  cant really do recover runs and i nearly always end up running quite quick. Also as i feel i have acheived my current times on low base of 30-35 mpw then should be able to achieve a bit more up to 50 mpw!

Jeremy - they are very similar times!! - an interetsing point i note is your 10k time seems high compared with your other times! My concern is my pace rather than my endurance, so I am looking to get my 10k time down to sub 38 minimum maybe sub 37, as i think i need to be more comfortable running at pace.

25/09/2013 at 17:16
If you are lucky you may be able to do it on 50 a week. The only way to find out is to give it a go.
Better to do 48 a week consistently than peak at 70 and miss a few weeks with injury. I rarely do two runs a day btw.
25/09/2013 at 17:23

An 18 week plan starts on December the 8th. I recommend using between now and then to gently build up weekly mileage so that the first week of the Pfitzinger "Up To 55 miles per week" plan is comfortable.

First week of that plan is 33miles with a 12mile long run.

2014 will be my first London and I hope to go sub-3 for the first time. I'll be forty and will follow the 55-70 plan. I don't think I could do it on the lower mileage plan.

Edited: 25/09/2013 at 17:31
25/09/2013 at 17:29

Wenty - 42 is no age and many marathon runners do their best times in their forties (or later!).

You should be able to throw anything at your body at that age without problems!.

For comparison, I did my first sub 3 marathon in 2010 at the age of 56 off of a max weekly mileage in the low 60s.

Half time 01:27, 10k time 39

I typically ran 6 times per week but at a much faster average pace than normally recommended.

I would say the chances of achieving your potential in London only four weeks after Barcelona are pretty slim. 4 weeks is normally not long enough to fully recover between marathons - well it certainly wouldn't be for me but then I am really old.

25/09/2013 at 17:38

I got sub 3 following the 55 to 70 at the ripe old age of 42.

The up to 70 miles does make more of a commitment though...and feeling pretty tired most of the time!

Currently I am following 70-85...but may go back to the 55-70 for VLM next spring.

I think if doing barcelona take it nice and slow.

25/09/2013 at 17:39

Looking for advice on trainers. Two current favourites are I like the look of the Nike Fly-Knit Lunar 1+ and Brooks T7. Want soemthing about  200gms in weight and 8-10mm heel drop. 

The nikes are expensive and the I feel the T7 might be a little light for me.

Any suggestions? 

25/09/2013 at 17:42

Yes my 10k time should be better but I don't like doing 10k! Don't really enjoy the higher intensity races so don't push myself - use them principly as tempo runs. Last marathon could have got under 3:10  but as the goal was GFA I didn't want to risk that. Next year London is probably only shot at sub 3 I will do (unless I don't get it ) as have more ultras and multi stage races on the list to do.

25/09/2013 at 17:48
Tim, one of my mates uses the Saucony Fastwich. Maybe worth a look.
25/09/2013 at 20:12

Millsy they look good, but have a 4mm drop. Current shoes are 8mm. 

Not 100% sure I am pure midfoot striker.

27/09/2013 at 08:44

Thanks guys - I may only be 42  but also only been running for just over 2 years. Also have young children so time is a bit of an issue (but you can normally overcome that with enough commitment)

Regarding the Barcelona marathon I will not be racing it! Just treating it as a longer training run. quite a few plans have 22 mile training runs and it is only 4 miles more!!! Brighton last year when i did 3:13 I did Rome 4 weeks before, and felt there was a little more left in the tank but the only objective was GFA same as Jeremy.

Plus I could loose 10llb and that might save me 8 minutes!!!


Edited: 27/09/2013 at 08:45
27/09/2013 at 09:04

You still have 2-3 years of good improvements possible. I'm 46 and only my 3rd year running. Part of the reason my 10k and HM are a bit slower is I have targeted times so they have been paced runs rather than full on efforts. Yes cocked up 10k (40:06!) - schoolboy error - should have set watch to min/km!
I have trained and paced for gradual improvements as I want to be running for a while longer. Everyones plan is different eg 5 days before I ran my GFA I ran a 35mile training run (slowly!)

27/09/2013 at 09:13

Got my welcome pack yesterday for my GFA entry. My number is 32106

27/09/2013 at 09:30

I got my GFA pack as well !

Jeremy - very much the same here - I set my garmin for the time i target and set to it. Fely comfortable for my half and full marathons, but never really feel comfortable for 10k's which is why i feel i need to improve my 10k time to acheive a sub 3! (as well as the obvious endurance stuff)

27/09/2013 at 10:14

I too will be attempting to crack sub 3hrs (didnt get in to London so entered Paris instead).

Blew up at this years VLM and ended up finishing in 3hrs 11mins.  Since then, have focused on getting my speed down and got PBs for 5 miles (30:33), 10k (38:33) & 1/2 marathon (1:24:43 at Great North Run).  Looking at the race calculators these show that I am on course for a sub 3hr marathon subject to the right training plan.  For the Great North Run I averaged 33 miles per week over a 10 week training plan.

However, I am in the same boat that I think I will struggle to increase my weekly mileage to 60-70 miles per week for risk of injury and having other commitments (work & kids!!!) - my father thinks this is crazy (dad knows best....).  He was a sub 3hr marathon runner and never did these types of weekly totals but instead focused on running marathon pace for longer runs (up to 18 miles) and then did other speedwork/interval sessions (running 40-45 miles per week).  I think I may give this a go instead....

27/09/2013 at 12:05

Roundman, with those times you certainly should be looking for sub 3hr with the right training! - Good half time and thats what i am aiming for, but you are already there...

Golden Boots    pirate
27/09/2013 at 12:15

Following this with great interest.... as I start to think about my first sub 3 attempt next year  (Rome, a few weeks before London). I won't be getting anything like the mileage in that you guys are doing... will probably just be 3 runs per week or possibly 4 if I'm lucky...

Ran 3:20 in Spring 2012 (for comparison I was roughly at 39:0x 10k pace and followed up with a 1:26 half a few weeks afterwards). Then over winter I got to 37:0x for 10k, before racing a 35:09 10k at the beginning of March, whilst preparing for London 6 weeks later. I also ran a 17:25 5k. I hadn't done a half, but was feeling good....

Then sprained my ankle badly and had to pull out 3 weeks before  

Have done a few slow races but not ran that quick at all this year (living in a warmer climate means I've barely been running) but am wanting to get back to that kind of level hopefully for next spring.

I got down to a 35 10km on just 2/3 runs per week, normally one fast club interval session and then a long run. The rest was from Ironman training, in particular cycling interval sessions I think. That will be the plan this time as well, with a little bit more running over the winter... but certainly no more than 4 sessions per week.

Still recovering from injury though unfortunately... I have absolutely no ankle flexibility, so keep spraining every few months or so  Did my first intervals session last Friday, including 5 x 1km but could only average 3:42 for these. Then tried a 'fast' 10km training run and could only manage about 41 minutes. The heat (about 30 degrees at that time) didn't help, but what was more worrying than the time was the ankle pain which had returned as I tried to run faster.

Think I would probably be at about 39:30 10km pace now, with some pain probably though.... This is going to be a long winter I think

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