Training for Luton marathon in November

I keep meaning to enter a marathon and then wimping out so Saturday night after a bit of wine induced courage I decided to enter Luton mara the end of Nov. How possible is it to train for a mara in just over 2 months? The furthest I have run Is Half marathons which I do in around 1:53 and the last long run/scramble i did was the last 13 miles or so of Norseman as I was support for my partner in August. I'm also doing Henley half next month. Any ideas on what training would be good for this? Ive been doing shorter 4-6 mile runs recently but I know I'm going to need to increase this fairly drastically and i'll be out for 10 miles this eve. Thanks, Cassie


  • I think you should really concentrate on training your tolerance to alcohol. image

    You use one word in there very well - "drastically".  Your issue is that unless you ran a marathon a couple of months ago, which from your post I assume you didn't, you simply aren't trained to run a marathon.  If 4-6 mile runs are what you're about at the moment you aren't really trained aerobically to run a Half-Marathon, though you are capable of completing one.

    If it's your first marathon, you should expect to be out on training runs lasting about 4 hours, looking at your HM time.  These should cover around 20 miles, and you should do a few of them, say five, separated by about a week for recovery, or maybe  two weeks with slightly shorter long runs in between.  Add to that a couple of weeks taper and you're looking at a minimum of two months, with you being up to 20 miles today.  Drastically is definitely the word for the increase required.  BUT, if you even attempt to get up to those levels now you will fatigue and very probably injure yourself.

    A rule of thumb is to increase your training miles by 10% per week.  As you can see, from where you are now, even from a 10 mile run, this won't give you safe time to build up to anywhere near what you need to know you will complete the marathon.

    So, there is a dependence upon your general level of fitness and strength, and maybe you can consider just trotting/walking round on the day to complete the distance without any goal in mind except reaching the finish.  I wouldn't do this personally, but if you have to do something (and you don't have years of alternative training - cycling, rowing, something - to back up your running) then I'd do this rather than push myself to become properly fit for the distance.  The latter will lead to injury and no marathon.

  • God! Doom sayer!

    cassie, ignore ratzer, what he's saying is correct if you want to be optimally trained, but if you want to "get around" it's perfectly possible from where you are now. Have a look a Hal Higdon, whether you follow his plans or not doesn't matter but take a look at the long runs he gives for a novice over the time you have left. I did my first marathon using a hal Higdon schedule. From an aerobic base of 2 months followed by 4 months of nothing then following his plan for 4 months to the letter I did my first marathon, ran the whole way, in 4:17 which I was chuffed with. So with your base, go for it!

  • Yeah, I did lay it on a bit didn't I?  But Nov' 2013 isn't that far away!

  • Thanks very much lardarse i'll have a look at those training plans. Ratzer, I am not only capable of 4-6 miles runs ATM it's just all I've been doing this month as I've not had much time, I've also been cycling and Horseriding, I am trained to HM at the moment and don't think I just 'get around' my time may not be amazing but I'm always sub 2hrs and never stop or walk.

    I know I will have to throw in some 18-20 mile runs, I dont want an amazing time as this will be my first mara, however I do want to run the distance and any ideas on shorter training plans that have worked well for people to move from a HM to FM would be really helpful. Also anything that will help me run a better time at Henley HM next month.

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