2011: Your Best Running Year Yet (Preview)

Run a race distance on every terrain over the next 12 months (Non-subscriber preview)

Posted: 14 December 2010
by Sam Murphy

 5 of 7 

April: Marathon

Why now? A spring marathon gives you something to focus on through the long winter months - and there are lots of races to choose from, both home and away.

Training: While most budding marathoners faithfully put in the long easy runs, many neglect to train at the pace they plan to race at. "Introducing running at marathon pace is very important, especially for those who have a specific target time in mind," says Bettag. "Getting the body accustomed to the target pace - and rehearsing it - is key."

Bettag recommends running the bulk of your long runs 20 per cent slower than target marathon pace, but with a fast finish (for example, the last 20 minutes of a two-hour run). "This teaches you to pick up the pace towards the very end of the run, when you might normally be fading," he says. Yelling recommends scheduling in some faster-than-marathon-pace work. "Tempo training and interval work will  help make your marathon pace feel easier on the day," she explains.

Race strategy: So you've made it to the start line, injury-free and raring to go. "Regardless of whether it's three and a half hours or six hours, you need to have an idea of how long the race is likely to take, so you can pace it accordingly," says Yelling.

Research shows that when marathon runners begin the race at a pace that is just two per cent faster than their practised race pace, they flounder later on. "Steady pacing is the best strategy," says Yelling. And what if you're feeling remarkably good mid race? "If you have the energy, you could try increasing your pace at 20-22 miles," says Yelling. "But don't risk doing it earlier."

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Discuss this article

2010 has been my worst year - I have been struggling with injuries.  There say time heal!  Roll on 2011.

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 15:42

Hopefully you have managed to get to the cause of the injuries and 2011 will be a better year........

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 15:44

 It's my groins my football career is over
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 15:47

My lungs are no good either!
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 15:49

My toes are messed up!  Chiropdist said I need to have operation
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 15:50

I have my fingers crossed that I will be running in 2012 Olympics

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 15:57

I need to have a sport test but damn thing is so expensive!  Does the NHS do it?  And where is the nearest sport test in Kent?

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:06

Whats a "sport test"?
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:21

Have you got a list of runs for next year?
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:25

A lengthy test that monitor your  fitness.

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:34

Ian M wrote (see)
Have you got a list of runs for next year?

Was going to but I changed my mind.
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:36

Ian, I always imagine your avatar as being a real life  where you're looking up at the previous poster, or maybe pretending to be a contestant on Celebrity Squares with Lennie Bennett.
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:45

Karen Samuel wrote (see)

A lengthy test that monitor your  fitness.

Would any gym or PT not do that?  Though I wouldn't have thought the NHS as its not really a health issue. 

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:47

Karen.......I think a lot of universitys do them in their sports science departments...might be worth looking at you rnearest one......

PP you are showing your age.......celebrity squares.............who did it originally

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:56

Phil, It's part of the forum feature that allows me to look up lady posters skirts. It's like an advent calendar but with bigger surprises.
If you could flip your photo though 180 you to could get the same thrills and frights.
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 16:58


Sport test  I think this one is Hampton.

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 17:08

Ah - see what you mean. Seren is right - Sports Science Institutes do them.  You could volunteer to be a subject for someone's dissertation......
Posted: 16/12/2010 at 17:16

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 17:18

Not students.

Posted: 16/12/2010 at 17:19

i live in hampton and that places has excellent reviews so maybe its worth coughing up for...............

or go a be a guinea pig at brunel or st mary's for sport science students- i sometimes get a cheap sports massae that way!!!

Posted: 17/12/2010 at 11:52

Forumites I found this list of races you may find useful


Posted: 28/12/2010 at 13:36


FormitesI find this it might be useful

Maybe listening to this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2cmgPHR2W0&feature=related 

Posted: 16/01/2011 at 00:09

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