Sub 3

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

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30/04/2013 at 19:42

Strangely Brown and Rockhopper Penguin  - Welcome! Lots of advice already including the best of the lot: stick around. Masses of tips on here, some of which will work for each of you Lots of coffin dodgers on here including fredders like me who did their sub 3 debut aged 47.

Gosh, nearly missed those two marathons at the weekend. Jonny and TB. Well done to both, especialy Jonny on the debut. Superb!

Am keeping an eye on some stalwart training going on my non-VLM'ers incl Padams and TippTopp

Pushed out my first tempo session of my Abingdon build up this pm. Felt good.

Meanwhile ...


Edited: 30/04/2013 at 19:44
30/04/2013 at 19:49

Nicely paced jonny. You ran the race I was after; about 30 secs in front of me at HM but I finished 3 minutes behind you. I'm sure any club will be happy to  have you.

30/04/2013 at 19:53

Mr Boat fantastic too. Superb. Those are great times.

30/04/2013 at 20:02

HR nice pic but wheres LD?

Jonny sounds like you had the race I tried and failed to accomplish, well done.

6ish commute this morning which was a real struggle at around 7:20 pace.

April stats:

  • 153 miles
  • 17h 33' run time
  • 6'54" av pace
  • 1 pb
Edited: 30/04/2013 at 20:03
30/04/2013 at 20:17

PostiePostie on the towpath behind perhaps? I chatted to a certain Mr Max Clifford in the 'Green Room,' as they call the waiting room. He had two scantily clad females with him.

Which reminds me about the Cameron photo on the beach from y'day. A while back I followed a tall gentleman in a shiny suit into the R4 Today studios. Normally when you're in the Green Room you get chatting to people there. If they've planned the running order right there will be a mix of people: famous ones like Beyonce and Max Clifford and non-entities like me. Anyway, I've done a fair few of these by now and this tall fellow was the only one who didn't bother talking to the others waiting. I thought he was aloof, arrogant and an awful long way up his own posterior.

So I went back and phoned William Hill to see what odds they'd give me that the then Shadow Education Secretary would be the next Conservative leader. They rummaged around and came back with 16-1. I must be one of the few people in Britain to have made money out of David Cameron.

30/04/2013 at 20:38

well done Jonny very nice, unlike Postie and MrB though you didnt have race I wanted

I think I did about 125M in April, the trick now is me to not let it fall below 100 a month from now until December.

30/04/2013 at 20:44

Thanks for the welcomes.

Lord D - I hope Coro and Attenborough weren't looking for penguins. If so, I want my licence fee refunded. Sounds more like a Channel 5 kind of programme. Maybe it was an new series of Animal UCF: 'Penguin vs Polar Bear' 

Read a while back that you are thinking of Istanbul Marathon. Is this still the case?
(Don't worry, I'm not thinking of robbing your house that weekend, I'm hoping to run it myself.)

Jools - Aren't they great? 

Home Run - What odds that Max Clifford is David Cameron's father?

Jonny - that's no way to talk about Scott! 

jonny wrote (see)

" One of the group (2nd girl overall) came with me and we ran the next 7 or so pretty much side by side steadly overtaking people. "


Edited: 30/04/2013 at 20:44
30/04/2013 at 21:03

Long, interesting article I found, albeit written 13 years ago :

Fuel On Fat For The Long Run



"Faster, sustained running at 80 to 85 percent and mile repeats are good methods to increase lactate tolerance. Oglesby recommends tempo runs of 10 to 12 miles at 15 to 30 seconds per mile faster than goal marathon race pace."

"Try to avoid eating for at least two hours before a run. It takes as little as 20 grams of ingested carbohydrate to raise insulin and reduce fat as fuel."

I'd be interested to know of any more recent analysis in this area.

Edited: 30/04/2013 at 21:07
30/04/2013 at 21:17

Welcome Rockhopper -- you're not the first penguin we had, though the previous one was Experimental... and your best time is very similar, so it will be interesting to compare with:

...StrangelyB -- nearly all of us have bad big blow-ups in marathons. My first in 2009 was fine until about 20M when my legs seemed to desert me completely, with an agonising last 5M. Two things: 1) overpacing -- it should just feel dreamily easy for the first few miles if you're pacing it right (maybe not at elite level); the problem being that it's enormously tempting to run faster as a result, but that only gets you into trouble later. Have a good idea of a realistic overall time, and don't allow yourself to exceed the average pace early on. And 2) training for the last 6M -- I'm odd like this, but the only two marathons I've had which were relatively comfortable, even paced and the most successful both followed spells of full- and over-distance training (i.e 26+M in training). Including VLM just gone.

Which brings me to Charlie Spedding -- apart from having a genius name, he clearly knew a thing or two about training. My run 3 weeks out was... 26.4M. Bingo! April stats overall:

186M@6:49/M, 11 rest days, and 1 highly satisfactory PB

Edit: cripes, I somehow missed a page. Jonny -- fantastic! See you among the oh-so-many Portaloos next year. And Mr Boat, you must have done much the same swift time in two marathons 1 week apart, when most of us were struggling with DOMS... amazing.

Edited: 30/04/2013 at 21:23
30/04/2013 at 21:56

PiMan - The article appears to talk a lot of sense but I can't help thinking this is undermined by the actual numbers.  10 miles @ 30secs quicker than MP?? That's about 10 mile race pace, if not quicker!  Then there's this: "If you go out for a 45-minute run at 10K race pace..."  

Still, I think the 10 miles at MP or a little bit quicker (I believe this is the classic Coro 10 miler!) is a good fat burning promoter, and I intend using it every few weeks or so as my longest tempo effort, even through the summer whilst getting fit for shorter distances.

Still a little creaky today. Tendons and joints appear to be taking longer to recover than muscles.  Must be getting old!  So another gentle effort, 7 mile plod. I might do some hills or summink on Thursday if the ankles have loosened up by then.

30/04/2013 at 22:10

Welcome SB and RP.

SB - as pisc has said, it's primarily miles in the legs, not speed work that you need for a good marathon.

Good luck for Sunday Lev_. Interested to see what marker you put down.

Best time to be injured CW. Let everything recover before you get back to it.

CRAB - that wins it for me. You can't beat Doctor Who. Unless of course you're a large blast of radiation.

Sporta - ease into them carefully. What I done was find a decent length hill (~600m) and just run up and down it at tempo effort for 40mins. Major DOMS from the downs the next day, but after a few goes it was ok.

Very promising debut Jonny. If you're doing that time off of an average of 46mpw then you've got potential for massive improvements I'd have thought.

Pi Man - I presume 'tempo runs of 10 to 12 miles at 15 to 30 seconds faster than goal marathon pace' is a typo? Either that or the author is off his trolley. I do my long tempos at 20-30s slower than current marathon effort (though in marathon specific phase they are usually 15-18m not including warm-up or cool-down).

PP - 30s quicker than MP is about 5km pace for me!!!

Miles: 402.8.
Avg Pace: 7:30.
Rest Days: 4.

There were a couple of other days where I ran around 2m, but, generally, I seem to be generally ok with decent volumes of easy paced running at the moment, so that will do for now.

30/04/2013 at 22:18

End of the month already!

Miles: 138
Rest days: 13
Races: 1
PBs: 1
National titles (team): 1

Edited: 30/04/2013 at 22:19
30/04/2013 at 22:21

Congratulations again to Jonny i think i'm more impressed having read your report, that really is a strong debut especially given your not particularly high mileage.

Track session for me tonight 20x400m with 1 minute recovery, I hate 400m it's just too short. Have a 5 mile race on bank holiday Monday & am frustrated that i got lazy after Wokingham half & return from honeymooon, I haven't given myself long enough to get back into shape, will be more like June by the time I hit form (hopefully).

Having told myself I would wait for VLM 14 to return to the marathon (a 2 year break), I am becoming increasing tempted by an Autumn effort. Your tales of glory are inspiring & a good 10K just doesn't give me the same buzz.

165 miles @ a rather average 7:53


Edited: 30/04/2013 at 22:23
30/04/2013 at 23:00

Welcome Strangely and Rockhopper (I have to admit a preference for Emperors, but Rockhoppers do have good hair). 

Terrible intervals for me tonight. I did the same session at the end of February - 3 x 1.75 miles. Then I did 10.54, 10.38, 10.38. Tonight, off slightly longer recoveries, I did 10.53, 11.01, 11.16. This is officially Not Good. Damn that ruddy lurgy. It has robbed me of my speed. 

30/04/2013 at 23:16

April has passed rather quickly!

270 miles @ 7:07 with 4 rest days.  Pleasingly, a pretty much dead on 10% increase from March (though the textbook prudence certainly stops there - March was a 200% increase on February and I ran about 35 miles in Jan...) 

30/04/2013 at 23:16

CW: I did realise shortly after I posted that it was a different race; hoped no one would notice.

April: 174.21 miles @ 7.09m/m ave.

1 race = 1pb.

11 rest days.

Edited: 30/04/2013 at 23:20
30/04/2013 at 23:45

April: 210 miles averaging 7:34 min/mi.

2 races, 1 pb (5 mi).

5 rest days.

30/04/2013 at 23:46

Just ran 3.05 at Manchester though my official result is showing 3.06 currently. Looking to crack 3 hours in Budapest October 13th.

From my club in Budapest I'm up against 'The Flying Pie' Garry Edwards who ran 3.11 last year in Berlin and has one sub 3 under his belt. This man can run 37 min 10ks on almost no training. If he trains I'm in trouble. And Tadworth club captain Dave Williamson. Dave has a PB of 2.44 though he has one major issue he can't drink and run so given warm weather I could be on his tail. Both Garry and I would like to give Dave a fright and go sub 3.

01/05/2013 at 06:36

That all sounds very competitive Mark. We don't often see too many posts about being out to beat others, although if you stick around LD has a very good line in putting the heebie jeebies on someone. He said it would happen, and it did. Good luck going for the sub 3h.

01/05/2013 at 07:44

I think HR has put in a good claim for the "hanging out with celebrities" award.

Agree on the 10-12M at 15-30s faster than MP, that made me laugh - not as much as the 45 minutes at 10k pace though!

As I suspected I wasn't able to help myself on the mile reps and ended up running them a bit quicker than planned. First one was 5:30 which was probably what I should have continued with, but then each one was quicker than the previous down to about 5:12 for the 5th (starting every 7 mins). Took it easy on the last one though (6:10), and with a warm-up and cooldown that made 10.5M in total.

A decent month of training for me - 58 hours split:
- 5 hours swimming (about 10M)
- 33 hours cycling (just over 600M)
- 20 hours running (165M)

May needs to be a really big month as June will be mainly tapering before the race, so aiming for 70 hours or so. 5 days in Majorca next week should get me off to a good start.

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