I want to run a sub 3.30 marathon i have ran 4 to date best time of 3.34 . My best half is 1.31 and 41.20 for 10k , currently running bout 40 mile a week with speed session hillwork and long weekend run . how can i best achieve my goal ???


  • Gregory - with those times you should make it.

    How do I know? Going into VLM last year I had Pb's of 1:34:00 and 41:38 and I made it (Garmin 3:29:xx).

    The key is very steady LSR - my longest was 21m; progressive long runs up to 20m where the last 5/6 miles are at MP, proper taper and fueling strategy that begins on the Wednesday before the race and extends through to the end of it. Oh, and races, you have to race IMHO to harden up the physical and mental systems.

    You may also have run too fast in the 1st half of previous mara's.....it's all about the last 10k not the first 30k!

    Good luck

  • Mike cheers for your reply my concern is what pace to run my long runs ive done  up to 20 mile all about 7.50 pace where i feel really comfortable but dont want to be heavy legged on the day . The marathon is on 6th may and im not following a plan as such ...

  • stutyrstutyr ✭✭✭

    You're running your long run too fast.  your long run should be 10 to 20% slower than marathon pace, and a 3:30 marathon would be 8:00 min/mile pace - so you should be looking at roughly 9:00 min/mile for the run.  This will give you the training benefit of the long run, whilst reducing the risk of injury etc.  Also, if you consider time on your feet, your faster LSR means you spend around 3 hours running - whereas if you go slower you will spend 3:30 hours running (i.e. the same as your marathon time).  

    You are very close so look for the little things you are doing wrong, e.g. are you tapering properly?  Are you doing short-distance intervals for your speed work?  For marathons, the benefit of intervals are questionable, as tempo runs are probably more appropriate.  I'm also not sure about the weekly hill runs - if your marathon isn't hilly, then its probably not the most beneficial session.

    TBH the most obvious answer is to get a proper training plan for the marathon - this will make sure you get the quantity & quality of runs.  

  • thanks for the input i train regulary with my club tue and thu nite its just the long runs that i question as some of our guys be 3hr men hard knowing who pace to run at


  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    Stutyr has got it spot on about the long runs. In the run up to my first sub 3.30 I did 6 or 7 20- 21 milers at about 9 to 9.30 miles. This gave me a lot more endurance so I could finish strong when I got over 20 miles in the race.

    By the sounds of it you have the speed part sorted.
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