Improving marathon time



  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    Kestrel I have always used the RW schedules, a simple plan based on the ones I ve seen would consist of

    your long run, peaking at 22 miles 3 weeks before raceway. And then tapering down.

    A midweek run around 70% of the distance of your weekend run.

    A tempo run of 45 mins to 1 hour.

    An interval/speed/hill session

    a gym session.

    Go easy on the longer runs, hard on the tempo and balls out on the intervals and hills.

    Build in three week cycles and consolidate on the fourth week with a short race and a slight cutback.

    I couldnt do more than that without risking injury, others would add in a recovery run and perhaps another easy run building from 4 to 8 or 9miles.

    To get an idea of your capabilities look on the marathon Theeads on here and see what people do eg I look at the 3:15 thread occasionally and I know I cannot do those mileages and those paces, but I'm comfortable with 3:30 - 3:45.

    Th I've always got more motivation and inspiration to train from like minded people on here than from a plan, if you know people are going out to do roily the same session as you, it's good to do it and then come back and compare notes as it were.
  • Young Pup, I usually do it in early Feb with the London Marathon being in April. I don't have any recovery after it as it is just part of my training schedule. In fact in 2010 I did it on the Sunday and was at the track doing an efforts session on the Monday. This year it was just part of a 58 mile training week.

    They say your longest 5 runs should add up to 100 miles so you seem fine on that score. I always find the taper to be very hard but it is important to stick to it. It is a common feeling as the miles drop off to think that you have forgotten how to run. You may also feel lethargic /out of sorts. Don't worry about this - I always feel like that. The taper is all about getting you ready on the day of the race. Hope this helps and hope you have a good race

  • Thanks One Gear......
  • GazOC: I too took several weeks to recover after Manchester - I think it was the cold? Anyway, I did manage to get going again and upping my mileage, and I've been training for ultras since then, hitting 83 mpw at peak before my 50M. so I suppose I'm disagreeing with the "two 18 week training programmes a year are too much" (and I'm about to turn 45) - I'm now aiming to keep fitness where I can run a marathon any time (althpugh not necessarily at PB pace). Will shortly be picking up my speed and hill training prior to Beachy Head.

    Kestrel: Agreeing with everyone else about the long runs: do more of these, and longer. Don't wait until the start of your 16-week or 18-week programme - start doing some longer runs now. Another great way to build endurance, as I found by ultra-marathon training, is by "back to back" (B2B) long runs. So go for your long run, then go for another run the next day. So if you've reached 10-12 miles on your long run, start with say 10 + 6 , then 12 + 6, then 12 + 8, then 14 + 6, say every other week (go easier on the weeks in between). Top out the second run at say 10-12 miles (or do e.g. 15 + 15, once you've got to 20 for your long run). This is hard when you start, but (in my experience) it really helps. If you can start doing long runs and even B2Bs NOW, say every other week, then your endurance will be much better by the time you hit your 16-week training schedule. And parkruns are great for speed sessions!

  • Thanks Debra, very helpful advice.

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