Paris marathon 2013 here we go! A.W's Sub 3 attempt!



  • jenfjenf ✭✭✭

    SO pleased everything going well so far for you AW. image read RW mag today n saw all the bootcampers photos. You are doing us proud!

  • well done - looks like you had a good run today AW

    I did exactly same pace at Kent Championships for 7.5 miles xc (12.1km) though was lower position but felt I run better than I have done on the country for a few years and no one older than me ahead but then I've been doing Kent County events since 1971 so most older runners have probably retired by now! Was there more to watch others and runners from training group took women's individual and team silver, and an U13 took a team gold. 

  • Hi jenf, thank you!! How are you getting on? Did I hear on another thread that you were running Snowdonia Marathon?

    Thanks Steve. It sounds as though you had a good race too, and seems the guys from your training group ran well too. I'm relatively new to XC, yesterday only being my third race - all this season - and it was the first time I felt good and confident in how I was running. For me it was by far the best I've run in XC.

    Legs a little stiff today, but about to set off for my 16 miles. I'm not sure I will be able to manage the pace set for today after racing yesterday but we will see how close I can get to the 1.50 time!!! May try to run the first half easy to see if I loosen up and the push the pace on in the second half if I feel able.

    Will report back later!

  • Pretty good 16 miles done. Legs grumbled a little after my XC effort, mainly my calves, but felt really quite good by the end of the run and could happily have carried on for a mile or two.

    Kept to my plan of taking the first half easier and running a negative split, pushing on in the second half as I was feeling ok. Total run time of 1.57 for 16 miles exactly. First half averaged 7.30 a mile, second half averaged about 7.15 a mile giving an overall average for the run of about 7.22 a mile. My route was a little hilly/undulating too so pretty pleased with how I felt and the pace I kept.

    Will need a very easy run tomorrow, and may try and get a sports massage sometime this week.
  • Well done AW.  You're going very well and I'm envious!   Sub 3 looks very likely for you.  For me it seems to be more of a pipe dream!   I did manage 17 miles today but 30 secs/ mile slower than you.  On the positive side, it was easier than last week's long run and I've managed 56 overall this week.   I definitely need to be doing some more speedwork.   parkrun was slightly better yesterday but still 100 secs away from my pb image

  • That's a good effort golfer, 17 at 7.50 a mile is a good run and if its feeling easier than last week things are going well for you too. There's still a long way to go and plenty of time to get quicker.

    Total of 52 miles for me this week.
  • On to week four!!

    Mon Jan 7th: rest or 5M easy

    Jan 8th: 8 x 800 in 2:50 starting every 4 mins (8M in total)

    Jan 9th: 10M easy in 7:30-8 min miles

    Jan 10th: 8M with middle 4 miles at marathon pace

    Jan 11th: 5M easy or rest

    Jan 12th: Fartlek - 7M in total

    Jan 13th: 19M slow in 2:30

    week total: 57M
  • Excellent run AW after yesterday and no way could I run that quick this morning and I can't blame it all on the mud and hills but certainly the 7.5 miles XC race and 4 miles rushing around watching other races had an effect..

    Golfer - don't worry about the pace too much at this stage for your long runs. I did 15 miles today in well over 2 hours  so a long way over a minute a mile slower than AW and quite a bit slower than you but at this stage feel I'm more than on course for a sub-3. Also managed a hour bike both before and after so pleased with the weekend of exercise but I too need an easy day tomorrow.

  • Just catching up as I don't have much time to read the threads during the week. It seems to be going well so far for you A.W

    I too raced XC yesterday and ran long today. I managed a slightly faster pace for my XC, but it was only 8k. Not my best run, set off too fast for my current fitness level and had to hang on for grim death. Lost a sprint finish much to my shame, but ended up 8th, which bags me a spot on the Notts team for the Inter Counties. I was 3rd counter for the club team so we bagged gold medals and a shield for that. Then today was 18 at 8.07 pace. Earlier in the week I was struggling to run faster than 8.40 pace for short runs but today was fine until the very last mile when my legs remembered they haven't run that far for a while! 

  • Good work A.W. looking good. Put my longest run in today in my bid for sub 3 at Paris and ran 10 miles at an average pace of 6:46. Felt good on an undulating course, now need to focus on increasing the mileage and endurance.

    Please send through your training plan for this coming week when you get a chance as I find it really useful to compare.

  • Hi Barney, this weeks schedule is already posted above. Good work on you run today, 10 miles at MP is good going on an undulating course.
  • good run in  Notts Champs Speedy

  • Thanks for the encouragement AW and Steve.  This week's schedule looks good.  Think I'll try and follow that, although Saturday's fartlek will need to include my parkrun!

  • Good to have felt strong at the end of your 16 miler AW. I like the look of this weeks training.

    14 mile XC run for me today. My marathon training starts tomorrow!

  • Yep looks good for the week ahead KR and golfer.

    KR - are you going to be folowing Steves schedule just a few weeks behind?

    Good job in the XC CC2, sounds like your in good shape. Nice long run today too.

    So my splits from today for any one interested! - 8.17, 7.24, 7.18, 7.12, 7.13, 7.04, 7.45, 7.42, 7.31, 7.10, 7.18, 7.00, 7.05, 7,56, 6.59, 6.33

    A little eratic in parts but it wasn't flat! 

  • Looks like you are going really well, Alex. How do you feel, at this stage, in comparison to previous marathon attempts? It already looks like you have endurance and speed and with three months to go it appears from here that you are in a good place?

    golfer - You look well placed, as others have said. Alex looks in a great place!

    Steve/Speedy/KR - nice XC'ing.

    Still been under the weather but managed a steady 4.5 miles on Saturday and a 50 minute spin on the turbo last night. Constant headache is the worst of it but hoping to resume proper training this week.

  • BadbarkBadbark ✭✭✭

    There’s plenty of great running going on.

    AW – Great running but had you planned to run at MP + 30 secs average for your 16 miler? This seems a little fast to me at this stage. Will you be running this fast when your LSR’s go over 20 miles?

    I ran 19 miles on Saturday with the first 16 about MP + 1 min and the last 3 at MP. It’s funny how I found miles 14 to 16 tougher than the last three when I upped the pace!image


    Thanks for posts.

    Some basic questions first!

    Do you train consistently well or is it up and down? Is there any time in the week that you usually have a slight slump? Do struggle on long runs more than short runs?  

    I  agree with what has been already pointed out for your food diaries.  Poor fluid!  I think the easiest way to address this is to put a litre of water on your work desk each morning and make sure you get though this each work day (as well as fluid with snacks and meals during the day). Don’t put it out of site but in a place you can see it and reach for it without moving; research indicates you will drink more this way. If you are not going to the toilet every 3 hours or so try and drink more and look for pale yellow urine does not need to be clear, if very dark concentrated urine drink more. Post runs always have 500ml of fluid over the first 30 minutes or so this can be from most fluid from water then sip regularly. I am setting this as a target/focus but you may need more.  I do not think sports drink are needed during the day when away from training or even for many runs. If struggle with water add a favoured squash to your drinks, no added sugar would be fine unless during a very long session or after a long hard run an added sugar drink may be useful if want to help replace the carbs.

     The next target I would suggest it to try and eat every 3 hours but never longer than 4 between meals and snacks. Your post from the 3rd Jan suggests for 7 hours you only had some fruit and post from 4th ....5 hours without any food. You food choices are good and some people think that you need to eat meat but your body actually can adapt to reduce protein but my concern is due to long gaps and overall diet you may not be recovering anywhere near optimally for the sort of times you are aiming for and  I think you would benefit from including a small amount of protein in all your snacks  so for example when you have fruit you add a yoghurt or  5 nuts or small glass of milk; dairy or soya etc  I could guide you do this but i believe eating  at regular intervals will really help you.

    Also do you have a pre race food/fluid rountine you could share? Believe it out not need to start thinking about race day eating now!

    Sorry for coming to party lateimage


  • Hi Ruth,

    Thanks for the post. I will try and get some more water down me, I've always probably not been drinking enough and its something I have been aware of but not really addressed! Will also try and make sure the gaps with out food are kept to no more than the 3-4 hour mark.

    Over the last month since starting the training program I think my training has been fairly consistant and good. I do struggle to train if I have to leave it until the afternoon however, but think this is more in the head as when I actually get in to the run I usually perform well. So as much as possible I always train before lunch. The worst training time of the week for me is probably Monday!!! My recovery/easy run on this day is usually hard work, not in terms of effort/breathing, but just my body feeling tired and a little drained after racing and or long run at the weekend.

    I wouldn't say I struggle on long runs or short runs other than the usual peaks and troughs where you feel good or tired at stages during a long run, I have always struggled a bit with the 20-22 milers having said that, and during a marathon its around the 22 mile mark I've had some big issues in most of my marathons, but I guess that's the same for most!

    I stay pretty fixed with my pre marathon eating. I usually eat about 4 hours before, normally having a bowl of cereal (something sugary usually) or porridge with honey and banana with a cup of coffee. I stay away from bread on a race morning as it gives me really bad indigestion for some reason when I run. Then a sports drink for the next hour or two up until 2 hours to go. I then wont have anything until during the race.


  • Still not well DS2? That's not good, at least its now and not in a few more weeks when the training gets heavier. Things are going well at the moment and I'm feeling good with the training, lets hope it carries on in that way!!!

    Badbark - The scheduled run was actually 16 miles in 1.50, so I was a bit slower than scheduled. I raced XC on the Saturday so knew it would be a bit of an ask to run that sort of time so decided to run the first half at around 7.30 pace and then push on if I felt good closer to MP.

    I'm not sure about the 20's pace yet as I only have the schedule up until the end of this week, but this weeks 19 miles on Sunday is in 2.30, so a bit slower at around 7.45-8 minute miles. I like to run close to MP for at least a couple of miles towards the end of a long run to get the feeling of the pace on tired legs.

    I often find the same with speeding up, its weird how it can improve how you feel!?

  • Just an easy run today, it did'nt feel particularly easy though!! Was a little tired during the run, but overall I feel fine.

    I combined todays easy run with my strength and conditioning work, so went out for 4.5 miles, then straight into the gym completed my 15 minute continuous strength workout (3 exercises in rotation continuously) and the ran the 1.5 miles home.

    6 miles in total ran today at an average pace of about 8.30 a mile.

  • Today's run was just about turning the legs over so what you did was fine and good to keep that strength and conditioning work going. Mine were barely moving in first half mile and averaged a pedestrian 9:30 for my four miles.

    re Sunday's run, I think you may have picked up a little bit too much having done the cross-country. While some runs need to be at marathon pace, on some days, the focus should be on longer and slower and after the cross-country, important not to overdo it and risk injury or getting run down or getting that tired that it affects the Tuesday/Wednesday runs too much. 

  • A.W  - looks like you are in great shape. I am quite envious as I have been taken out by a bug my wife brought home from her school. And if that wasn't enough it looks like it might have morphed into a mild case of shingles - not happy!

    Steve Marathon Coach - I am intrigued by the pace of peoples long runs. You mentioned taking well over 2 hours for a 15 ( 8+/mi) and then doing 4 @ 9:30/mi but still being confident that you are in sub 3 form!

    I came (very) late to running and have just assumed that the way to run faster marathons is to do more miles and faster miles, which has served me well.

    If any of my 20 mile runs were anything close to being as slow as 8 minute mileing I would genuinely be devastated and assume that it just wasn't going to happen for me that year.

    It seems so counterintuitive to run the long runs as slow as generally recommended - however it does have a certain appeal. The thought that I could just cruise round my long runs at 8 to 9 min miling does sound tempting but I just don't think that I could convince myself that it would deliver the goods.

    It is amazing how we all end up in about the same place but from so many different directions.

    Just to make sure I am not kidding myself I checked my data for this week last year and true enough it was as follows

    W/C 08/01/12               50:39 miles @ 7:18/mi

    Long run:                   20:01 miles @ 7;18/mi

    Of course this might explain why my legs ache continuously for the whole 4 months of training!

  • Evening Alex! Thought I'd nip on and see how the faster chaps are doing! image Looks like training's going well! Hope week 4 is good too!

  • One Gear

    some slow runs are fine as long as there is a good balance of training covering all the bases and some of your runs are faster.

    You shouldn't do all your long runs at a very slow pace (and nor will I) but I personally know from my speedwork and races what sort of shape I'm in and the key is to do enough training to build endurance but not train that hard that you are permanently tired and on the edge of injury and illness and being badly run down.

    Ie I would rather do say 15 weeks at 60 miles a week with slow runs at an average of 8 minute miling but a fair percentage of speedwork, races, tempo runs and some longer runs with sections of marathon pace than say 40 miles a week at 7 minute miling or 6 weeks at 80 miles a week and then a month off.

    Some runners are different and I know some can't run their long runs as slow as me but I will certainly do a 20 at close to seven minute miling prior to the marathon and a half-marathon or two at maybe 6:15 miles but it won't bother me if  3 or 4 of my 5 or 6 20s are slower than 8 minute miles if it means running at that pace allows me to do some good speedwork and tempo work midweek.  

  • Hey One Gear, there seems to be a lot of bugs flying about lately! I had a 24 hour thing start Saturday through to Sunday, luckily didn't affect my training except a quick pit stop home half way through my long run!!

    It seems as though we. May have got a team 1st place medal for Saturdays XC in the 12 to score. I was 7th scorer so that's a nice bonus for what was a good run for me.

    Just back from my 8 x 800M reps. Wasn't a great run for me today, not in terms of time as my reps were pretty good, but I just didn't feel great. My legs were screaming at me to stop in the first couple of reps, I had a couple of disruptions for traffic during another couple of the reps and had to extend two of the rest periods between reps while I switched sides of the canal!!!

    But at least I got it done and kept my pace pretty well! Will report back later with some split times when I've downloaded from my watch.
  • One gear - I don't like running slow! In fact I feel more comfortable running faster but I'm beginning to see the benefit of doing some longer runs slower. I do, actually, think that some people limit their potential by getting one-paced at too slow a tempo and I constantly worry about that and, also, not having the speed in my legs when I need it on race day. I think Steve puts it very well though. I have definitely benefitted from some easier runs and have managed to build my mileage back up without feeling tired or that I'm on the edge of injury so i will try to carry on the same way. Finally seem to be over my virus and did 9 miles first thing including 4 at HMP and felt pretty good.

    A.W. - good effort on getting through them. Those will be the sessions you will look back on when you finish Sub 3 on 7 April and know they made the difference.

    Great news on the team prize as well. Nice bonus!

  • Run now uploaded to the MyAsics tool (its quite nice to use for keeping track of my runs other than on here) and time to give you my data and splits from today's run!

    Total run was 8 miles in 59.50 at an average pace of 7.28 a mile.

    Splits were - 2.58, 2.53, 2.56, 2.53, 2.50, 2.45, 2.50 and 2.55

    On the whole I think they are a touch quicker than the last time I ran 800's about a month ago, and with feeling a lot more tired than I did a month ago - looking in my diary I noted I felt good - so quite please.

  • I have a bug too, but just a case of Manflu so I'm hoping to be back out on the roads tomorrow night. I could have run tonight but thought a rest day would be more beneficial in the long run. Tomorrow's race is off the agenda though. 

  • Steve Marathon Coach

    Thanks for the reply.

    The only thing I do at a different pace is a once a week track session. I see a lot of people do "marathon pace" within their long runs. Does this mean marathon race pace (06:45 for me) or something else? If it does mean race pace, if I tried to do 10 miles of that in a long run I think it would finish me off! Not helped by the fact that I live on the edge of the Cotswolds so finding one mile flat is tricky - let alone 10. 

    Hi A.W. - I found the Yassoo 800s were a great indicator of form. I am fortunate to have a track not too far away to do them on. Around this time back in 2010, I was struggling to bring them under 3 minutes every time at the back of a group of faster guys who were hitting them comfortably. By the end of March it was comfortable even though the sessions were the day after my long runs.

    DS2 good to see you appear to be back on track.

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