Sub 3

For anyone trying to crack the 3 in any marathon anywhere in the world

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26/04/2013 at 09:53

Thanks all, I think I will give it a whirl at Edinburgh. My legs were fine the next day except for a bit of soreness in my right quad as a result of the awkward hobble I was forced to adopt and some bruising on the outside of my foot caused by trying to protect the ball of the foot.

The current plan is to take this week fairly easy to allow the foot to recover a bit and then do a hard two week stretch. Then I had thought a two week taper.

CW - I think I remember a while back you mentioned that you taped your feet? Is that to protect the balls (of your feet)? I was thinking kinesio tape, possibly with some padding underneath, probably with some extra glue to keep it on there. What do you think?

 

 

26/04/2013 at 09:54
TippTop wrote (see)

Well done on the pb Andy D. I can understand taking a break from them after 9 in 5 years, but, fwiw, I don't see that working on your top end speed will improve your marathon time.

TT - To pick up on your point from earlier in the week. My thinking initially is that I want a change of focus, which is fairly natural coming off a marathon campaign. So like many I'll be spending the summer doing 5k's etc. I'd like to work over the next year or so at reducing my other PBs down to an equivalent level as my marathon time. I'd also like to treat the XC fixtures in the winter as proper races rather than hard sessions which precede a long run. Finally my understanding is that marathon pace is limited by your threshold, so if I can increase that through working on my 10m/HM time then hopefully I can return to marathons in the future in a stronger position. Whether this approach will be more beneficial than churning out marathon campaign after marathon campaign is highly debateable but it should at least keep me interested.

26/04/2013 at 10:08
TR wrote (see)

Have a read of Hywel Towels blog, he made a few changes for VLM, and to be fair to him he's more of a rower and biker than runner so did very well (esp given he was injured), he's very tough mentally. I bet he does loads of hurt box running as thats his training style.

 

TR - got a link for Hywel Towel's blog?  I can't seem to find it in google!

TR
26/04/2013 at 10:16

Hywel Towel is his nickname try Hywel davies

26/04/2013 at 10:21

Lessons learnt by a sophomore marathoner:

1. The long run is the most important run of the week, even a slow one. Due to niggles etc. I've done little quality training, virtually no MP in long runs, indeed many of my long runs have ended up over 9 minute miling. But I made the long run, no matter what pace, the first objective of every week.

A friend of mine I sometimes run with is 15 years younger, a stone lighter, a minute faster over 5k, two over 10k (hm unknown), his marathon pb was 11 minutes faster than mine. He has done very similar weekly mileages to me and loads of fast training - more in a week than I do in a month, thinks nothing of, for example Fartlek, LT tempo, reps in successive days.

However more often than not on a weekend he'd do something like 12M & 13M runs, whereas I'd be more likely to do 5M and 19-21M .

I beat him by two and a half-minutes. Which is his "bad" as opposed to my "good".

2. If doing ski-ing, hill-walking or other non-regular good quality "cross-training" then this is a good substitute for running, do not try to keep the running at full tilt as well, avoid being a slave to running miles at this time - this is exactly how I got my injuries. Ski-ing for example I should have said this is great, don't worry about the running for a week. In particular I should not have done a long run on my return - my worst ever run! Despite #1 above, I think you can definitely afford (even benefit from) cutting back to an MLR or even skipping one or two LRs over three months.

3. The 10% rule is very good applied to weekly mileage, stick to it when building up, I "accidentally" did 15% one week and had to cut back due to tight quads felt around knees.

4. Try not to make your last long run the longest, niggles pushed me in this direction, but I don't think it is wise. At a guess, 19-20M for the last one is about right. At another guess, a fortnight before is probably good for the longest, and be cautious for a few days after it.

5. If you want to do a half-marathon to assess where you are, then do not choose a really hilly one as I did (Hastings). I did 1:26 (two off pb), the Kenyan winner was three minutes slower than a half several weeks before, reckon I could have been three minutes quicker on a flatter course - if so, that would have given me the belief I could go sub-3. Instead I went in thinking I was borderline, likely to just miss out, which is exactly what happened.

6. Don't have my name on my vest next time, it was brilliant this time and last and I loved the support I got, but I've had my fun, focus solely on the race next time.

7. The long run is the most important run of the week. Worth repeating. Also, learning from this fred, I did them unfuelled, which I was happy with - indeed pre-niggles I felt they went really well.

Interested to hear any other "lessons learnt".

26/04/2013 at 10:26

Sorry to hear about the dog Padams.

LJ - your advice to Sweedo is spot on. I learned the hard way about that before! I'm impressed with your approach to both training and recovery.

Like the name change Pi Man.

CRAB and LD - you two are a proper comedy double act! I just can't decide whether you're more Morecambe and Wise or Dumb and Dumber though

Wardi - I'd never consider myself anywhere near your Hugh Hefner-esque level though Tbh, I wouldn't be adverse to him using a medieval rack if it got the job done sooner. It couldn't hurt anymore as I was in a world of pain yesterday as body parts readjusted towards their rightful place (bad enough that I was close to chucking up tbh), which I guess just shows how much of a mess I'd made by not getting it looked at when I originally knocked it out.

Fingers crossed you can get that ankle fully sorted RS.

RS/PP - my tentative 'plan' is to go back to Berlin next autumn as I'd like to think I can run a better race on that course (plus it's great fun afterwards!).

Andy D - with you now. LT is quite different from top-end speed. My basic plan, once I'm sorted out, is to simply do a few LT type sessions a week before I start a marathon specific phase. If you like racing regularly (which, tbh, I'm not pushed on), then I would have thought that would be compatible with running 2 marathons a year anyway if you wanted (e.g. finish a marathon; 16-18 weeks of LT work; 8-10 weeks of marathon specific work; repeat).

I ran an easy 2m yesterday evening as my first run since the osteopath treatment, and it was a delight. I guess it's only when things are closer to being right that you can realise how wrong they were. For the first time in probably close to a year most of my body parts were moving in roughly the same direction and it felt good

26/04/2013 at 10:34

Oh, and the counter on the VLM website confirms the date as the 13th of April, which you all knew anyway.

Pi Man - I'd add that a decent distance medium-long run (either with or without quality) is the second most important run of the week.

26/04/2013 at 10:48

Agree with that TT, typically I did three runs of 10-12 miles in addition to the LR . Some of those would be a padded out Fartlek or Tempo session, mainly in the first six weeks.

What I didn't do was MLRs of 13-15 miles (mainly because of injury concerns that that might put the LR at risk). Something I hope to do next time.

26/04/2013 at 13:02

All this talk of lessons learnt and what to do next. Having considered my options, this is my masterplan:

  1. Lose a stone
  2. Become the best marathon runner in the country in the Autumn

 (Item 2 may need to be age related sadly – but I’m approaching this as an assault on a 2:35 time).

 I’m sort of relying on item 2 being completely and directly as a result of item 1.

 Maybe I haven’t made the best start. For example, yesterday afternoon as 5:45 pm I bought a 500g box of Pecan and Maple Crunch from Aldi. An hour later all of it had been scoffed. Yup, 2,000 cals consumed in an hour. That was on top of a burger for breakfast and one for lunch. Then home for beer and chocolate. I confess I felt a bit ill as a result. I sweated a lot in the night and was massively dehydrated this morning.

Anyway, tomorrow a bit of exercise will commence and the grand plan starts.

26/04/2013 at 14:03

A couple of days behind but have now just seen Charlie W's video - mightily impressive  and great memories.

As for lessons learnt:

1. It is possible to get a decent time (relatively speaking) off only 4 days per week training as long as you make each session count.  Do as much as possible at a decent pace.

2. Not getting caught up in the event and actually sticking to a goal pace is hugely important.  And very hard!  Must try harder in this regard.

3. The motivational factor from this forum is great - I only wish I had found it sooner.  Just hearing other people's efforts (and racing / training triumphs and disasters) really does galvanise my resolve to race and train well.

26/04/2013 at 14:07

Pi Man: Have a look at the P&D schedules; most weeks involve a couple of midweek 'medium long' runs. Some say it's a bit light on long runs but you can always increase these. I've got my one on a Word doc file if you want to have a look I'll email it to you. Some may disagree but I can't agree with your second point of a ski or hill walking holiday being a helpful substitute for a week's missed training. Personally I think my fitness would go backwards.

26/04/2013 at 14:07

TT - good point. I thought I'd go for Morecambe but there's no way LD's Wise. So I thought I'd be Dumb as...well even you can work that one out without subtitles for the hard of thinking can't you ;o)

PM - the 10% rule is about as scientific as your MaxHR being 220-AGE. It's fine to say (on one week) it worked for you but it's highly subjective.
Holds as many people back as injuries it saves in my experience. Highly dependent on your propensity to get injured and the intensity of both your normal trianing and the 10% you're going to add.

I learnt that you can buy some 2nd hand trainers half a size too big off ebay a week before cos they're red, wear them for 10k on the treadmill, Google them and
see they are for the opposite running gait to yours put them together with some brand new socks and shorts and only end up with a bit of inner thigh chafing and a
couple of tiny blisters to show for your efforts.  Al_P and CW might see it differently but that's my extensive research from a sample size of one but I didn't use a spreadsheet, a camera, a 100% carb banana or a Citroen so I guess it doesn't count.

I also learnt that if you look at the winners of the AG's from 45 up to 65 you'll see some great pacing (esp 50-54) but others (who didn't win their AG) have learnt that running the first half appreciably quicker than the second half is what they'd rather do. I'm still sticking with anything over a 2min postive split is definitely sp@nking some fitness up the Embankment.  Anyone got horses for courses on their thread bingo card?

I've also just learnt that LD is definitely living up to his billing above (both in name and entertainment genre) given his latest Tergat.  All the George with that, son. Although I will grudgingly concede I was impressed with your top 10 showing at the weekend.

Seeing as everyone is talking about thread bingo - it got me thinking of my favourite inflight entertainment game at VLM.  Obvious choice of track by the landlord's en route bingo.  Catchy title eh?  Crikey they have a whole bleeding year to give it some thought and they still reach for the same ball achingly sh!t K-Tel CD. Keep on Running anyone?  By mile 16 it really starts to do my pip in.  This year the track that had me reaching for my dobber for the last time and excitedly exclaiming BIN-fckn-GO was Run to the Hills. Inspired stuff.  Now back off the mike a bit, stop shouting and we might just about be able to hear that inane waffle...oh hang on... thinking about it carry on just as you are.  

As you were.

26/04/2013 at 14:35

Boat - I agreed with you re: ski-ing and got into a mess .. what I found out, for me at least, is that it would be very risky (as I proved to myself) to do much running on top of all this extra exercise involving the legs. Ski-ing's not as good as running but it's not bad at all, it does work the legs hard, especially the quads, they probably got more of a work-out than from a 60-mile running week.

I suspect that a few days' switch to hill-walking is arguably as good as running - massive hill work, massive time on feet, low impact.

Edited: 26/04/2013 at 14:36
26/04/2013 at 15:15

I've felt tired and i'll all week.  Really run down.  Legs feel better but an almost constant headache is quite off putting.  I've never felt this bad.  I'll give it till Monday...

TR
26/04/2013 at 15:31

Pi man - left after right often, if you want to run faster marathons then run more. LJ and CW both made big gains by running more miles and running more often. Other big gainers like PP and AL_p are nearer the novice end of their marathon campaigns. You have to look at how well Dids did too (given the hammy issues) off the back off his January miles.

26/04/2013 at 15:32
Pi Man wrote (see)

.... Ski-ing's not as good as running but it's not bad at all, it does work the legs hard, especially the quads, they probably got more of a work-out than from a 60-mile running week. ....

by "they" I mean quads not legs in general.

 

26/04/2013 at 16:10

PM: The quads would get a good work out I agree but can't see it being anywhere near as beneficial as a weeks impact; you'd also lose out aerobically. There's also the 'aprez ski' to consider ;0)

26/04/2013 at 16:32

I'm not sure just adding extra mileage is the answer for everyone. Quality sessions are important. Early in the week someone posted some great sub3 pb off around 35mpw. I reckon peaking around 55mpw should be plenty for most people if there's a decent training plan.

LD what time did you actually achieve at VLM?

26/04/2013 at 16:43

HR - 2:48 .... so a 14lb reduction in weight would see me safely home in 2:34.

I may have to saw off my head to achieve it, since it would stop me eating and my brain weighs at least a stone.

Do they have a "headless runner" section in the Paralympics?..... Guinness Book of Records?

26/04/2013 at 16:50

Hehe nice one: what a great time. Top ten at London for age was my A target a couple of years back and you've done that with style.

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