Sub 3h15

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  • G-DawgG-Dawg ✭✭✭
    Welcome, Will. I agree with OO, 3.30 is a more realistic target for now. You'll enjoy it more, get some great learnings from it and apply those to subsequent events.
    Forget about the negative split idea. Neg splits are extremely rare for runners like us, I've read a report on them (how sad!) and the stats are not in your favour.

    I've done the Thames Meander twice, never raced it, just as training runs. It's a good event. Unlike a big city marathon, water stations are not every mile so you'll need to manage your fuel strategy if you're going for a time. That may be a big factor in August heat.

    3.30 is a realistic time for there and once you've got it, keep chipping away.
    You and I do very similar training volumes, I usually peak in a campaign at around 53 miles in a week, the rest are all mid 40s.
    We're of similar height but you're lighter than me, I was 79kg going into London this year.
    I've just chipped away at PBs over the past few years and have gone from 3.24 to 3.01 by applying those learnings I mentioned.

    Good luck!

  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    Hi, Will. What is your age?

    You say you are limited more than anything by your speed of recovery. How does that manifest itself after a run? What do you do post run to aide recovery?

  • StevieWhStevieWh ✭✭✭
    Welcome Will! I would stick with 3.30 as well but would say a negative split is definitely possible, I have managed it in my last two marathons. If you set off at 3.30 pace and are feeling good at 23m you can always pick the pace up.

    My session last night went really well. 12.20, 11.51, 11.50 for the 3 two miles reps. Legs were like lead for the last rep so really had to dig in and push through. Thought I was going to blow up at one stage so chuffed to manage to push through and finish fast.
  • PhilipMJonesPhilipMJones ✭✭✭
    Will, a few pointers:
    1) The Thames Meander Marathon is one of those nice scenic ones and it is clearly flat as it goes up and down the Thames but I would not say it is fast. I know the route quite well as it has been my stomping ground for many years (Hammersmith). 
    2) Negative splits are not a thing I'd aim for. They are talked about a lot and if you are a really competitive athlete then they make for good racing but for us mere mortals the aim should be to minimise the slow down in the second half. If you are shooting at 3:30 (which is even pace 1:45 for each half) and do something like 1:43/1:47 or 1:44/1:46 then that would be a good outcome.
    3) Normally, for 3:15, we have a sort of rule of your longest 5 runs total over 100 miles. You have done one run over 20 miles (so, let's be honest, you can run a marathon, no doubt) so maybe a bit short on the long runs. 
  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭

    Stevie, great session. Sounds like you have made a recent fitness leap again.

    PMJ- I was persuaded to neg split for London this year. I had always taken it is the preserve of elites, however I went with it and have never felt so good in the final 6. It takes a lot of faith in your training etc. A few of us (Nicko and stevie jump to mind) had big performances in the spring with that tactic.

  • StevieWhStevieWh ✭✭✭
    DT - I'm having one of those weeks where things seem to have clicked and moved forwards. Must be all the races paying off! 
  • Gul DarrGul Darr ✭✭✭
    Will - welcome to the thread. I agree that it is better not to go for something too ambitious. It's very difficult to predict, but 3:30 seems reasonable. I wouldn't aim for a negative split either; it's so easy for it to go disastrously wrong. As some have said, it is possible, but I think it requires experience and having some knowledge of your ability at the marathon distance. Looks like your training is going well, so good luck. Look forward to hearing how you get on!
    Stevie - cracking 3x2M session.
    I think all those miles have finally caught up with me and I need to take a bit of a longer rest. Suspect I might have a slight hamstring strain. No races booked and a 2 week break coming up soon, so won't be doing much if any running for the next few weeks. 
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Tough track session tonight. I’m hoping for a fast parkrun Saturday, then masters on Monday (the mile & an 800m), then on Tuesday I’ve got a 5 mile road race. So a busy few days of racing ahead. Fortunately it’s much cooler up here, well below 20 degrees.
  • Evening folks - have been reading but not contributing while I've been benched but feels as though I'm now back in action so will be making up for lost time.

    Welcome to Will - like everyone else, I'd suggest going for 3:30 and being chuffed that you've got there in your first marathon rather than setting your sights too high, setting off too quickly, blowing up and not enjoying it. I suspect that many of the folks on here started with a 3:3x marathon (or slower) and thanks to the great advice on here and some consistently consistent (trademark TR) training have made it to 3:0x or sub-3. Plenty of time to get to that stage. Also worth seeing what the conditions are like running along the Thames in the middle of August - there's a world of difference running in 12 or 13 degrees to running in 26 to 27 degrees or even warmer. Perhaps use the Thames Meander as a trial run in preparation for an autumn marathon when the conditions will be far more suited to a marathon.

    Stevie - great 3 x 2 mile splits there. As you say, things seem to be clicking nicely into shape.

    Poacher - great bit of Swedish biking there. Sounds like it was fun, in a masochistic sort of way.

    I'm back running again in earnest after a few weeks of taking it easier. I decided to give the Midsummer Munro a miss on Sunday to be on the safe side and then went to see the osteo on Monday just to have a final check that things seemed to be OK to get back to tube line running.

    Got the thumbs up, so tackled the Circle Line yesterday, doing the loop anticlockwise starting and finishing at Edgware Road with a friend before doing the spur down to Hammersmith on my own. Very pleasant evening, apart from the temptation to stop from people having a cold beer or sitting outside restaurants enjoying the evening sunshine. At least I could feel very virtuous and justified in having a can of cold pop and a Boost bar when I got to Hammersmith! 

    20 miles in total according to Strava and no ill effects so that means that 5 lines (Victoria, Hammersmith & City, Jubilee, Bakerloo and Circle) are now completed; the next challenge will be all the stations on the Northern Line albeit spread over 2 evenings as I reckon it'll be about 40 miles in total. Also hoping to do a run to all the squares on the Monopoly board next month.  :)  

    After a rest day today, I'll probably be doing a parkrun tomorrow before it gets too warm then heading out on the bike with my brother on Sunday to recce the Etape UK route - think we'll be in your neck of the woods PMJ.


  • MennaniaMennania ✭✭✭
    Ive been struggling to get out through lack of mojo and work, but back to a concerted effort from now on in. 
    Go well today @nicko1981
    Go easy GD
    Lorenzo - you make running fun.

    Wil - Have you got any race time to post? For me Negative splits are a byproduct not a target and unquestionaby you can run a controlled and succesful race off a positive split. 

  • Sounds like you're having a ball Lorenzo!

    I too have been reading but not had much to contribute of late. Just been ticking over, with the odd track race thrown in for the club. Until last night. I did a bonkers 10 x 2.62 mile event, each lap starting on the half hour. Off-road, not massively technical but difficult after 9.30pm (especially as my head torch turns out to be utter shite, good job I had the chest torch for back up, but even then I couldn't see much). I won the ladies solo marathon and also bagged 4 fastest laps, beating all of the relay runners. Just a low key local event, so the prize was a trophy for 1st lady, a pack of Nakd bars for 1st over 40 and 4 more packs of Nakd bars for the fastest lap wins. Bonkers event, but it got me 5 hours on my feet for 'only' 26.2 miles and lots of practice for stopping at aid stations then having to get going again!
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    That’s a wacky event CC and prizes not too shabby- Congrats!
    Lorenzo you are indeed keeping us all entertained- keep up the good work and well done on your circle line exploits.
    Pecker up Menn glad you are feeling determined.
    I ran 18:17 at parkrun today, fastest this year but it felt a bit disappointing as the pace was falling away. I was really hoping for my 1st sub 18 this year, but maybe next time. A step in the right direction anyway.
  • SBD.SBD. ✭✭✭


    Good work on the parkrun OO - I'm sure the Sub 18 will come!

    That almost sounds like fun CC!  Well done on the prizes.

    Are you planning an Autumn marathon Menn?

    Good to see you're back running Lorenzo and continuing your tube exploits.  If you're cycling the middle distance Etape, you'll be riding through our village!

    Go easy with that hamstring Gul.

    Another good track session Stevie.  Any more races coming up?

    Welcome Will - best just to concentrate on the training and think about a target closer to the day.

    Struggling with the running mojo at the moment, so June was just a case of grinding out the miles.  Seem to have managed to get through 291 of them, so at least that's a positive!

    Thame 10K today, a local race, so I thought I should turn up and see what shape the legs were in.  The course is pretty flat overall but there was a tailwind on the way out and a headwind on the way back.   After an opening kilometre of 3:41, mainly due to the initial downhill rather than my overenthusiasm, the splits settled at 3:53-3:58, with 5K reached in 19:21 on the watch.  Just after the 5K marker, there's a short steep ramp for 50m leading on to the cycle trail which had more of an effect on the speed than I would liked, so kilometre six in 4:01.  Managed to pick the pace up for the next three kilometres, so 3:56-3:58 pace.  The last kilometre has a relatively steep 300m climb before the final 200m sprint to the line.  The gradient won the day and the pace slipped to 4:07.  Add on the Garmin seconds and the chip time came out at 39:45.  Would like to have dipped under 39 minutes but sub 40 will do!

    Must be time to start training for the Autumn marathon ...

  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Excellent SBD, pleased for you.
  • PoacherPoacher ✭✭✭
    Nice runs SBD, CC (bonkers event!).
    Welcome Will. The Thames is lovely (have run the path between Oxford and Teddington) but not generally massively fast. 3.30 on the path may be equivalent to 3.20 on the road. Enjoy.
    Lorenzo - equally bonkers, but it sounds like fun.
    OO - not bad for an old bloke.  I am definitely not going to to be fit for the Coastal, but will be supporting along the way and at the end. See you there.

    Injury saga take 27: I was beaten up this week by the scary Bulgarian massage therapist. She and the scary physio concur that it's cartilage as well as fascia. Still can't walk straight but gradually improving and did 60m on the bike today which is a lifeline. Running seems far off.

  • MennaniaMennania ✭✭✭
    Nice running SBD - I am going to run a mara but just picking at the mo. I did fancy the Celtic masters at York but given the selection protocol - (ie pay for a shirt and you can run) by the Welsh Athletics I might swerve it. Im waiting for them to come back to me.

    Poacher - keep plugging away - nice riding!

    13 for me with a couple of local runners which was hilly fun and a fast finish. Base is being refurbished nicely.
  • PoacherPoacher ✭✭✭
    How very thrifty by WA. Having run Chester last year I'm not convinced by some of these 'international" vests.  You can do better.
  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭
    Menn, that's  entirely normal. For the masters half in september, England require you to buy the kit, as im sure Speedy could confirm was the case for 10k as well. 

    Good to hear from you, SBD. Reasonable time at this stage in cycle. 

    Still ticking over here.  15 today gave me 45 for week along with 3 hrs x training. Dont really feel like I'm teaining much but that's about 9 hours this week. Todays 15 was the best/strongest ive felt on a long run in a while. 170 for June, which is my highest June mileage. 
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    edited June 30
    I’ll be at the coastal of course Poacher and will be great to see you there and maybe a pint after- hang in there soldier.
    I ran 175 miles for June but swimming now equals 25% of my run time, with other classes on top of that. This is a big change for me.
    Masters tomorrow with 800 meters and the mile.
  • VTrunnerVTrunner ✭✭✭
    So can't seem to get back in the habit of posting consistently, but have been popping in every so often to keep up with all your exploits. Lots of good happening on the thread!

    I'm still cautiously working toward a fall (autumn!) marathon. I'm about to turn 46 in July and have been pleasantly surprised by how much I can still handle, especially after a couple years now of injuries getting me before I could really get into a marathon training plan. But past two weeks have been 66 and 70 miles. I've had decent results on my Monday and Thurs tempo runs (13 w/10 at MP). Plus, I've managed to get a proper LR going (been about 2 years since I went longer than 15). My progression was to add a 16, then a pair of 17s. The first two were not super, but the last was good. Then the past two weeks added a 20 and 21 mile LR (and felt very strong on these). So I'm still hanging in there. Hopefully I can string this along until October. I've been cautiously doing 2 wks on and then a cutback week. 

    Too much to comment on but will say healing vibes headed to you Gul. And Poacher, good luck on your comeback as well. Badbark, what is your status these days. Really pulling for you and Poacher. 

    Hi Will, welcome. Regarding a first marathon, I was given good advice on mine. I was told to just go out very conservatively and enjoy the day. Don't even get close to redline so that the first one is enjoyable. You'll learn a lot in that first race. And if you pace conservatively for first 17 or 18 miles, you can manage to speed up (or maintain) over final miles. You'll pass people and feel very smart. It's a satisfying way to run a race! Once you've got the first one done, you'll have the perspective you need to decide what is really possible. My 0.02 is to target autumn marathons if you want to go fast and push to your limits (although I guess some of the spring races you guys do don't get too hot). Over here in the US, most May marathons end up being hot and humid (after literally running in cold weather right up until the week of the race). It's like a curse!!

    My stats half way through the year: 1,294 miles (Jan 136; Feb 202; March 227; Apr 244; May 246; June 238). Looking back over my previous campaigns, I have had very good marathons off of ~50-55 miles per week as well as 65-70 miles per week. It's the durability I worry about on the higher end. Gdawg, I am in awe at your times on 40 some miles per week. You have good genes!



  • Gul DarrGul Darr ✭✭✭
    OO - great parkrun; not far off sub 18. Good luck with the racing tomorrow.
    Lorenzo - pleased to hear you're back on the tube runs and lots more besides by the sound of it.
    Mennania - nice base building.
    Speedy - well I guess that's one way of getting the miles in!
    SBD - good effort in the 10k.
    Poacher - hope you got some gain from that pain. Hang on in there!
    DT - good miles for June.
    VTr - good to hear your training is going well; looking promising.
    So June went out with a bit of whimper - just 5 miles last week :( Still 223 for the month, so not all bad. A bit cross with myself for making a schoolboy error with the overtraining (especially as it was for a race I didn't even enter in the end!) A break from the training will probably do me some good anyway, although I'm not exactly sure what's wrong! Lots of lunges and dips coming up over the next couple of weeks I suspect.
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Welcome back VT and good luck with the Mara plans. I’m also curious how BB is getting on.
    Impressive June numbers Gul keep up the good work.
    Very blowey out there, not great for track 😥
  • Speedy - that does sound like a rather crazy event but well done on scooping a few prizes.

    Good June mileage there from Gul and VT - I managed a rather paltry 100 running miles in June (total for the first half of the year = 993) plus 168 miles on 2 wheels, with 75 of them coming yesterday going round the Buckingham countryside.

    SBD - I'll be doing the full 100 mile course on the Etape but our recce yesterday was pretty much the middle distance loop and mainly on quite country roads with some cheeky hills thrown in. Which village is yours? Good sub-40 there. 

    5 miles worth of commuting today - a bit too warm to run and really enjoy it.
  • VTrunnerVTrunner ✭✭✭
    Gul, sometimes the goal is to venture into unchartered territories. I've had times where I simply reveled in training itself. Stacking hard days together and pushing beyond your previous boundaries. That can be just as rewarding to me as a good race time/performance. Don't beat yourself up. You learned some valuable lessons and I imagine had a good time doing so. Rest (and yes probably some strength work;-)) will see you come back strong to capitalize on that huge base. This just serves as your normal reset period.

    Lorenzo, nice day on the bike! My ar$e hurts just thinking about that amount of time on wheels:o 


    Cutback week here. Started well (a day off). My PT would approve.
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Masters track GP last night, warm conditions with a bit of breeze. The mile was first up and I ran 5:17. Then the 800m an hour later was in 2:25. I was first V55 in both races but a couple of secs slower in both than my best times last year. Pleased with that though.
    Tonight I’ve got a 5 mile race which runs under all 7 bridges that cross the Tyne in Newcastle. It’s fast and flats and a sub 30 should be possible if the legs hold out.
  • G-DawgG-Dawg ✭✭✭
    Swift work again, OO. Nice.

    Only 125 miles for June but that is my 3rd best, always a low month.

    Just been ticking over here. Did 8 miles on Saturday when the temperature was 32 degrees. For the first time in week, probably since London, I felt like a proper runner again. Leg pains and tightness wasn't so bad and I was quite bouncy for the first 6 miles. I went off-road on the way back to recce a piece of trails that I was due to run on the Sunday. Running in the Saturday heat was to see what I could possible use as pace for the race.

    So, Sunday was a local 21k event on the common right outside the front door, pretty much.
    Cycled to the start which took under 10 mins and got ready. There were around 550 there doing 5k, 10k, or 21k.
    125 did the 21k.

    The course was two laps of the 10k route with a couple of bits bolted on to get to 21k. My watch measured it short but I wasn't bothered, it was a trail run so I raced for position and didn't look at the watch at all. Terrain was varies with compacted trails, sand, tree roots, logs to jump over, boardwalks and long grass at the start and finish.
    Quite enjoyed it, stopped at the early water stations to ensure I was properly fuelled as it was still warm.

    Kept swapping positions with a couple of local lads but overtook them both with 4 miles to go and ended up on my own for the rest of the race. It was nice to hear a few "well done" comments from other runners as we met in opposite directions on one trail as they recognised I was one of the first group of runners.

    Finished in 12th place with a time of 1.32. That time would have got 4th last year but an increase in prize money attracted a few from further afield.
    A pub lunch after made it a most enjoyable Sunday indeed.
  • Gul DarrGul Darr ✭✭✭
    VTr - yes, I have certainly enjoyed all the MLRs. I am probably overdue a 'reset' period! Enjoy the cutback week.
    OO - excellent racing at the track. All the best for tonight; you are packing in the races!
    GD - sounds like you had a really good day on Sunday. Nice work.
    I've got to the stage now where I'm tempted to do an easy run, but playing it safe and waiting until the dull ache doesn't start up when I try running.
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Good outing GD 
    Hope you can run soon Gul 👍
  • PhilipMJonesPhilipMJones ✭✭✭
    Been busy with life so off the thread for a few days. My brother came down on Thursday night to watch Al Murray which is a real giggle if you like that sort of stuff, then out over the Chilterns on Friday for a hike and pub lunch. Some days, England just beats everything else hands down and Friday was one of those days. Clear skies, wonderful paths and scenery, good food and beer and all 10 minutes away from my front door.

    Saturday was chaos central: #4 was down in Portsmouth looking at digs for a year out in industry and #3 was packing up and leaving Loughborough after 4 years there so I was already heading in 2 different directions at the same time to get #4 and Mrs PMJ on a train going south and not via London and moving #3 out. #3 turned out to have way too much stuff (so like 2 Volvo XC90s full and I only have 1) so had to drop a car full off temporarily at #1's house before finished #3.

    Sunday long run and England beating India, then yesterday up at 4, Wimbledon queue at 6, on court at 11 and tennis till 7:30, home at 9:30.

    Did my 3 National Trust Houses run today (West Wycombe, Bradenham and Hughenden) but did it in reverse to normal. Seemed to be a lot quicker that way: guess the hills and surfaces play out better so faster to run downhill on a shallow slope on a road than steep on a muddy bank.
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Impressive logistics PMJ 👍
    29:33 at my 5 mile race. Average pace 5:53 and 1st V55 prize. Think I might take it easy for the next few days.
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