Coach Steve's team

Coach Steve Smythe gives us the lowdown on the runners he's coaching for the Paris Marathon: Sarah and Alex.



Coach Steve Smythe explains the challenges that lie ahead for his two ASICS Target 26.2 runners Sarah and Alex.

Sarah's race results suggest she just about has enough speed to reach her sub 3:30 target. However, she doesn't have a big endurance background, having only been running for a few years, so long runs are going to be very important in building more endurance. She already regularly runs up to 35 miles a week so early weeks at around 30 aren't going to be a problem for her and the 20 mile or so weeks that My Asics suggest need supplementation if she isn't to lose fitness she has already gained. She is used to regular speedwork, so that too is a necessary addition and while the training is relatively light, there is no need to take an easier week until after the first four weeks are completed.

Alex has a good chance of a sub-three based on his other race distances. His 5K to half-marathon time suggest he has sufficient speed, but his 3:06 PB dates back to 2008 and his last marathon, when not fully fit was 3:25. The key should be staying fit and healthy and building sufficient consistent miles, so he can hold a good pace throughout, which has generally been his weakness in the past. Alex is used to 50-60 miles a week, and is already in good shape so doesn't need to come in at too low a mileage, but with Christmas and a 10K race in those first two weeks, it's been a relatively light start for him. He is used to doing regular speedwork, so doesn't need to build into the pacework.

Meet coach Sam's team: Steve, Mel and Adrian and find out the latest on our spring marathon project ASICS Target 26.2.

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