Sub 3

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

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28/09/2013 at 13:43

tough break Dids.  sounds a good back up plan and a nice little earner  what else u got tucked away in those cupboards?

Joolska, nice PB the other day, can't have done you too muhc harm the minor injury setback then, good stuff.

great training as per from many others, and hope Lev you manage to cane the marathon tomorrow and the accident is just some bumps and bruises.

i've had a bit of a setback the last couple of weeks too.  have had something wrong ith my back for 4 weeks now, but had been continuing on trying to ignore it.  saw physio a couple of times 2 weeks ago, but she got worried due to some of m symptoms/referred pain and sent me away to get a referral from my GP to see a specialist.  saw an orthopaedic physician on Friday who has diagnosed some sort of costovertebral injury, and so now i am off to see another specialist on monday, with a view to some sort of pain relieving and steroid injection i think guided by x-ray into the joint.  if that stops the pain (it's got so bad that i havent really been able to sleep for 2 weeks, just a few hours then wake in pain and cant get back to sleep - the painkillers i've been given dont really do much).  if the injection relieves the pain - its partly diagnostic/ocnfirms whats wrong, and hopefully it will mean that i can move on witht he right rehab and strengthening and just get back to normal again.  have been recommended to bin the running though for now and i'll try anything so haven't run since Monday.  typical i had entered a 10km race next weekend to see where i am at!

c'est la vie, just as i was starting to feel a little stronger!  cant wait for the injection now though to be honest.  really feel for people who suffer chronic pain all the time, i'm going nuts after just a few weeks.

anyway, good luck any weekend racers, and long runners hope its all good.

happy bday JH1 and wonder how CD is getting on.

Edited: 28/09/2013 at 13:45
28/09/2013 at 14:01

That's a bit sh!t, Selbs.  Hope the injection does work and then you can start to get fixed.

28/09/2013 at 14:51

Ok - I need some advice. I am doing my first marathon next weekend and am not sure how to pace it. I have done one 20 miler and three 18 milers in the build up, all at 7.30 miling. I did a half marathon last year in 83.09, but haven't raced recently. I have been averaging around 40 miles a week. 

Should I go out at 7.30 miling in the race and try to enjoy my first marathon experience or should I go with the 3 hour pacemaker?

28/09/2013 at 16:56

Welcome middle distance. They say that a marathon is a race of two equal halves: the first 20... and the last 6. Nearly everyone slows down in the second "half". Some blow up truly spectacularly, and end up painfully shuffling the last couple of miles with cramping legs. It's usually worse in the first one, before you have an idea of how to pace it. By going a little faster early on to save a couple of minutes, you risk blowing up and losing tens of minutes later. On the other hand... an 83 min half is about the right ball-park for a 3 hr marathon.

So it's a bit of a conundrum, easier next time when you can revise your target in the light of experience. So... if you found the 20M @ 7:30/M easy, then you can probably afford to go out somewhat quicker. If it felt tough, that's probably fast enough. You might want to bear in mind the London good for age (automatic entry) targets are all over 3 hours, considerably more depending on your age and sex -- so that could make (say) 3hr15 a satisfying yet more manageable target than 3hr00.

TR -- I disagree! The 2 mile jog will put a dent in your glycogen reserves on the day, maybe equivalent to (say) a mile at race pace -- so if the wheels are going to come off, they'll start coming off sooner. The 26M training runs several weeks previously might or might not have had benefit (I think they did), but they won't diminish glycogen on the day. In fact they'll spare it by making the legs better at burning fat.

selbs -- good luck with the back. I'm wondering if my touch of sciatica is related to back-ache from unaccustomed driving and sitting in dodgy chairs on a recent business trip. (Different to yours.)

LD -- insert "organ" double-entendres here.

Jools -- it's going to be a big mileage weekend for you.

HR -- I'm with you on really cutting back in taper week, though I do believe in still doing some sharp stuff (so race pace feels easy on the day, initially).

6M pootle for me this morning, back of my thigh still iffy. I fancy doing another 20M quality endurance session on grass tomorrow including 10x(1km fast, 1km easy), leg allowing. Will see.

28/09/2013 at 17:33

Thanks CharlieW - I think I am veering towards erring on the side of caution for my first one and hope to get a sub-3.15. I am 41 so that would get me a good for age for London. A bit of me really wants to bag that sub-3 now though!!! I have never been very good at being patient!


Cheerful Dave    pirate
28/09/2013 at 18:02

Selbs - I'm doing fine, thanks for asking.  Still 2 weeks to go until I repeat the ECGs etc in my untrained state.  Not going quite as stir crazy as I thought I would - I obviously needed a break! 

28/09/2013 at 18:03

Selbs, that sounds awful - I really hope it clears up soon.  Good luck to all with races/big runs tomorrow. 

A gentle few miles earlier.  The hip flexor is still not quite right but I'm going to trust that the marathon gods look favourably upon me and that it doesn't seize up half way round.  There's really no point dwelling on it and I'm really looking forward to the race.  Thanks again to you all in advance for the support and advice over the last couple of months - and in fact since I first showed my face on here before Berlin a couple of years ago.  Business time...    

28/09/2013 at 18:23

Selbs - oh what a pisser, just when you were getting going again, thats a bit shitty ! Hope the injection helps.

CW - agreed on long unfuelled runs teaching the body to burn fat, and agreed that your 26Milers weren't burning race day glycogen, didnt mean that they were, I was meaning more that they are destructive on the body during the training period (but thats another debate anyway). You wont be burning glycogen in a 2M jog (especailly if you are right and I'm wrong about youir 26milers), but regardless of that, the point of it is to then get the body to suck up the porridge that you then give it when you finish the jog. So topping up energy levels even further.

CD - hope the 2 weeks passes quickly.

Lev - give it some ! once you get past 1/2 way everything else will start hurting enough for you to forget about any hip pain !

Had a little trip up to see JH1 today, he's bought himself a swish new TT bike, so we struck a deal last week for me to make sure that his old one keeps on racing. Just need to save up for some wheels for it now.

Edited: 28/09/2013 at 18:25
28/09/2013 at 21:42

good luck again Lev!

nice little exchange plan that TR good one.

nice to hear u are coping OK then CD.

welcome MD - if u ran an 83 half and think you are in just as good or better shape now, then i'd reckon you can set off at 7 min miles and surely not blow up too much.  risk is have u done enough long runs/got the endurance, but come on, you might never be this fit again (look at some of us on the bench now!), might as well give it a proper bash i reckon.  Start at 7's and see how it feels, be willing to adjust as you go though. good luck.

Edited: 28/09/2013 at 21:43
28/09/2013 at 22:39

MD: An 83 HM should be enough to get you a sub 3 but have you done enough long runs? Setting off at 7s won't get you sub 3 unless you can run a negative split which is unlikely. I think to go sub 3 you need to go off at 6.45m/m to allow for the inevitable fade; especially for your first marathon. If  you're not sure and you want to 'enjoy' the day, bag a good for age and make a plan for your next one.

selbs: you don't get much luck do you...fingers crossed.

TR: so are you definitely binning Abo?

Dids: Bad luck but it'll be all forgotten and all will be Boss-for-us when you bag your 2:35 in Istanbul.


29/09/2013 at 09:24

Anyone else following Scott Overall at Berlin? Looks like he's gone off too fast to me.... 15k done.

29/09/2013 at 09:42

Looks like he's attempting the slowest ever 5k in history now. The leaders are at 38k (on for a world record) and he's not made it to the 20k mark. 

Here we go again!


29/09/2013 at 09:48

Ah but will his finish LD?

Having rested the ankle for a few days I went for my LSR with the options of cutting off if necessary. With rested legsthings went very smoothly so I opted to repeat last weeks LSR with mp miles. I was able to hold on to the pace for the full 11 miles. So job done and now for taper time.

Splits 6:26, 6:33, 6:24, 6:23, 6:21, 6:23, 6:23, 6:21, 6:23, 6:30, 6:25

29/09/2013 at 09:51

Thanks Selbs and Mr Boat - I have decided that I am going to go with the 3 hour pacemaker. If I feel it is going to be too fast I will moderate my speed after 10k or so. I hope I don't regret it!

29/09/2013 at 09:52

Wow - A 2:03:23 world record. Knocked 15 secs off the previous best. 

meanwhile..... Where exactly is Overall?




29/09/2013 at 10:13

Good to see LD back and I like the sound of the Istanbul plan. Hope you recover quickly from the abductor issue. Will try and track Mr O from Kuala Lumpur central station where I'm awaiting a sleeper train to Penang.

Mr B: fair comment haha! Perhaps something between that and the P&D then?!

Lev_ fingers are massively crossed on the hip flexor. That really is the pits so here's hoping all is now ok.

Selbs that sounds awful. Wishing you all best. Back pain is grim, and that sounds horrendous if you can't sleep at night. How about swimming? Still reckon the golf can't be good for it, no? Don't take offence, just I used to play a bit and it's such a twisting motion?

Postie postie excellent run from you by sounds of it: well done, and great you're right back after the incident.

Middle distance, your HM time is pretty decent. The danger will be having enough in the tank later because of insufficient long runs so my advice is do NOT go off too fast. Better to do a negative split (second half faster than first). Actually just read what CW posted, and Mr Boat. Precisely. And if you're 41 I would set out for 3h15 and see how you feel at half way and then, as Charlie says, at 20m to see if you can push on then. If you have it in the tank you can kick from there and you'll be belting past people who went off too fast. Edit: just seen your plan. Well, end of the day this event is about going for it so love your style and massive good luck. Go storm it, and report back ok?

CW - do you think a 5 to 10 mins super slow jog can make that much difference to glycogen if you do it before breakfast? The idea is that it just kicks the metabolism into gear and then you eat something. So I'm with TR on that. I did this in 2011 and pb'd by 20 mins. Mind you I did feel shit On the other hand I totally agree with you about taper week: that's my plan i.e. a real cut back but some sharp stuff.

21m bagged for me. Last of the 21m's. That's 8 in the last 9 weeks and 14 since May.

Nothing flash today as it was sweltering later on under a burning sun. No blood thank goodness. In retrospect I think I burnt quite a few matches last week. Had an amusing first mile though as I found myself running alongside the elites of the Standard Chartered Kuala Lumpur marathon. Had no idea it was on today. No-one told me to get off the course but I peeled away after a mile. I did give the drinks a miss but used the portaloo.

Edited: 29/09/2013 at 10:38
29/09/2013 at 10:52

Well done on bagging the last long runs HR and Postie

MrB - yes Abo binned last Sunday, LT 30M in the 2 weeks before last Sunday and only 5 in the week following. Solent 1/2, Lordshill 10 and Gosport 1/2 instead. The main thing to focus on is not letting my running tail off too much by the New Year.

back in the trainers for 15M today, last few were on tired legs.

29/09/2013 at 10:58

TR -- I know what you mean about exercising the muscles to encourage more take-up (the Aussie carb load takes that to the extreme), but I think it's too late to do that on race day. And jogging will use up some carbs! (HR -- 5 or 10 min super-slow is more like half or one mile, and very slow does use a lower proportion of carbohydrate. So that would be less worrying than 2 miles, but I'd still just rest on the morning myself.)

middle distance -- I'd hate to have talked you out of a first-time sub-3 triumph if you're on for one. It really is very hard to know. It's the open loop nature of marathon pacing that makes it such a good game -- you only know if you've got it right when it's too late! Problem is, it always feels dangerously easy early on... so you won't know anything at all after 10k. At that point you'll be lulled into thinking it's a doddle anyway, even if the storm clouds are brewing. Hope it works out well, whatever you do. You never said how comfy your 20M run was -- unless the answer is "very", I think 3 hours will be risky. But hey, this is a game where we're allowed to take some chances.

Nice run postie, good confidence boost to be able to hold a chunk of MP in a longer run.

I've just nailed a pleasing session; the back of my thigh was still noticeable, but if anything got better with time. Almost a carbon copy of a session 2 weeks back, but this time the laps were slightly longer, the reps very slightly faster, and the steady bit at the end much faster, albeit on drier grass:
   1.5M w/u
   10x {0.65M avg 5:33/M, then form drills/0.65M easy}
   6M @ 6:43/M
Total 20M in 2hr20 exactly, i.e. 7 min/M. (Doing the form drills really puts up the average mins/M, honest :- ). Yes they're long recoveries, but then I was starting the 10th rep when I'd already covered 13M, which feels good for HM training.

Hope Lev_ is getting on well, and any other racers.

29/09/2013 at 10:59

Good stuff TR. FWIW, and I wasn't going to say this until you decided, I think you're right. You've been storming some races and focusing on those, including tri's. Maybe if you'd had another 4 weeks for Abo it would have worked but I think you're spot on with the plan after all the recent great performances. Nice 15m by the way.

Edit: CW nice session there.

Scott's blown, hasn't he?

Edited: 29/09/2013 at 11:17
29/09/2013 at 11:21

well done on the 20 CW

HR - I was only thinking today that I could have probably picked it up again next weekend for another 4 to 6 weeks and then been ok for Abo, but its only two weeks until race day from next weekend. 

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