RunningRed Sub-4 with Brian.

We now have a base to work from. I know you are up to 4-5 runs, for 25-30mpw with a long run of 10miles. If we start from 6th Jan, that gives us 14 weeks to work with. The concept will be working on the component parts on a week-to-week basis. ie. No schedule set for longer than one week at a time, and not moving on till the required sessions are complete. Using your 10k pb of 53:09, this translates to a marathon of around 4:10.

So first things first, work on getting the 10k down to 50mins....



  • RunningRed, How did the week go? Did you get a long run in at the weekend?

    The stormy weather looks likely to continue. The times will be hit hard and slower than normal. But try and maintain the effort levels. 

  • Just back in from "long" run, shorter than planned but I think this is the week of low or lower expectations! Miserable out there esp for last 3 miles running in a wind tunnel. The positive is, I went out and managed 10 miles through the wind rain and puddles.

  • RR, If you can get out in those conditions, you can get out in any. Presumably you don't normally run long on Mondays? Are you doing the club run tomorrow night? What are your plans for the rest of this week?

    I need to get a feel for when you run, and what intensities.

  • I'm in Ireland until next week which is why I ran long today. Tired from travelling which is why miles were lower than planned. This week will not be a normal week. Planning 5/6 miles tomorrow. Another run on Thursday and hopefully something on Saturday. Club run next Monday, Will is leading so it should be interesting!!
  • Red, Keep posting your runs please. I hope to be there on Monday, so we can catch up properly.

    Have a good one!

  • 5.2 miles, 9 minute pace. Much better run than yesterday, not as much wind.

    Happy Christmas!


  • Run abandoned after 1.75 miles - Bambi conditions didn't want to risk it ????

  • 7.6 miles, 9 minute miles.

    this weeks running total 24 miles. No proper "long" run until next weekend, 8 hours on a boat tomorrow. Positive note I did manage to get out 4 times, inspite of the mince pies, Christmas cakes puddings etc.


  • 5 miles, Monday club run. "Undulating" 8.5 min miles. Couple of long step drags . It felt slower as effort was required. Think I'm getting a cold, or it's marathon training hypochondria setting in early!

  • 5 new year miles, average pace 9 min miles but it was a messy run. First mile 8.4 and last mile and a half 9.4 but it was up hill in the wind and rain and I won't be feeling "delicate" on my next run!

  • RR, Hope you had a good holiday over the water, and Happy New Year!

    Clean the slate and here's to meeting your goals....

    Xmas was a wash out for me, but got back to it on Sunday with a club run of 1h50. Just glad to get the festivities over with.... now to tackle the 6kilo baggage.

  • Red, post your plans for next week as far as when you can run, club run etc. and I can try and give it some structure.

  • Hi Brian - plans for next week are club run on Monday as I'm leading. Pilates on Tuesday. Solo run on Wednesday, club run or track on Thursday. Rest Friday, Parkrun on Saturday and long run on Sunday. So other than Tuesday and Friday I hope to be doing something running related!

    5.8 miles last night 8.4 min pace with 1.2 metre slow climb up to Baildon and then a lovely free for all down hill. Give me down hill any day. RR
  • RR,  Thursday if club run try and get 20mins at target marathon pace. Track would be ok too, but try and stick to longer reps at no faster than 5k pace for now. Parkrun is ideal for getting a tempo run in. I think you are up to 2hrs for the long run? Make the long run very easy paced (TMP+1min - TMP+2mins), say between 10 and 11 min miles.

  • Hi Brian, Weeks total 36 miles - 12 miles this morning average pace 9.5 min miles. Don't feel too bad either as it's my longest run since last years marathon.

    Parkrun yesterday was a bit slow but there's always next week to try and get sub 26 again. I ran down and back from the park but I think I will drive down next week and do a couple of laps as a warm up. Running down adds 3+ miles and I think it would be better to save the legs for Sundays long run. 

    I was out for just under 2 hours today. Pace felt comfortable, no sense of effort. Slowest lap was when I bumped into Simon Pass!

    Last time I went to the track I did 300x8 at a 7.3 min mile pace - if I go what should I aim for, best 5k is 8.2 min pace. 300 or 400 x ??


  • That's excellent! I think 5k pace is right for longer reps eg 1k upwards. If you do the shorter reps, I would aim for 15x200, 10x300 or 8x400. These will naturally be quicker than 5k pace. The idea is don't overreach at this stage. The reps sbould be fast but controlled,  and you should always feel as though you can do another one at a similar pace. As regards the long run, I would aim (I am aiming) to add 10mins on each week. Your idea for parkrun is a fair one. No pressure to get more miles in, the main thing is you get some faster than MP running in.

  • Hi Brian - the week so far.

    Monday 5 miles club run 8.5 min miles. Would have been a bit quicker but I ran the last bit with a club runner who slowed for the last mile. I usually push it on club runs as I know I get to recover when we re group.

    Wednesday 6.3 miles, non stop. 9 min miles. Splits range between 8.4 and 9.2 don't know if this is good or bad?

    Thursday track session, 1st since July. 300 x 9 (gave up on 10th!) although I felt fine when we'd finished so I could probably have managed it. Spilts - 7.05, 7.06, 7.12, 7.02, 7.06, 7.16, 6.58, 7.09, 7.16, 7.25 - I don't know if this is what I should have done plus how do you make yourself run at a specific pace? All I did was push it and that's the result. Wednesday nights run I set off running and ran 6+ miles .


  • Hi RED, Great week so far. 3 runs with quality. Breaking it down into the training components - Monday is tempo (HM pace), Wednesday is MP, Track session is working the VO2max (speedwork). Hope the long run goes ok.

    I think maybe lengthen the Wed run gradually, and make it 2 paced. ie. start off slowly, the middle bit can be MP, and then end slowly. The only risk is that this may impact your speed session on Thurs. If it does, we may need to rethink.

    As far as the track session is concerned, the pace of the shorter reps should not concern you too much. These are good for leg speed and form efficiency. And are good for sharpening yourself maybe in preparation for a race.

    Hopefully you can progress to slightly longer intervals, maybe 400s or 600s and then these will start to resemble mile or 3k pace.

  • Miles for the week 30.9.

    Managed to equal Parkrun PB from end November 25.56, so pleased with that but it was hard. Did 13.5 today average pace 9.49 min miles - last bit hard but think it was more in the mind as legs feel okay now and it wasn't a flat route - Leeds Rd to Rodley roundabout and back with a loop round the village at the end to add distance.

    Plans for this week - club run tomorrow, 7/8 on Wednesday,solo run like last week non stop unlike club sessions, club on Thursday and Brass Monkey on Sunday so miles should be comparable to this week but no formal speed session other than pushing it at club sessions


  • Makes sense to try and keep it easy this week with BM in mind. Think you did 6 last wed, so maybe 7 this wed. Don't up it too quickly. You should be thinking 15 on sunday, 1M warmup and cooldown. Dont worry bout the pace, start easy, look to be comfy at 6 then go thru the gears.

  • Miles run this week 32.5

    5.7 Monday 8.4 min miles 6.9 on Wednesday, best run this week. Really enjoyed it 9 min pace. Then it all went wrong 'runners knee' Thursdays club run was longer and quicker than I wanted 6.8 miles 9 min pace. Knee not happy and this is where I struggle, making myself run slower. I seem to have a pace, I can go quicker but not slower

    Today's BM went to plan, plan was scrape 2 hours and I did a comfortable 1.57. First 3 miles were quick, unintentionally started too fast, mid 7 miles bang on 9 min pace give or take a second and something left in the tank for last 3. Need to get the "comfortable" 9 mins to a "comfortable" sub 9 mins

    i wouldn't have managed sub 2 last January so something is going in the right direction

    think the "knee" issues are shoe orthotic related so getting that sorted this week. 

    plan for this week depends on knee - if it feels okay I will do club Monday, Wednesday (8?) and track on Thursday. If it's not I will do Tuesday, Thursday  and Park run on Saturday. 

    Sundays long will be the 15 that I should have done today!

  • You should be happy with your hm time, comfortably sub-4 pace and some, in conditions that were not ideal. With the knee niggle, I would aim to consolidate. Especially since the half will need a little recovery time. Be prepared to miss a run or 2 with priority being the knee. If all seems ok stick to 6ish wed.

    Post mid-week and we can reassess.

  • 5.5 miles niggle okay so see what the Physio says tomorrow. Average pace tonight the usual 9 min miles, I'd love to get the average pace under 9.

    not sure what to plan for the next week, could run Friday or Parkrun on Saturday as I've not done any kind of speed/effort for 2 weeks. Long run on Sunday, miles?? Next week again not sure what to plan with 10k on Sunday so when to get a long run in .

    I think the only thing I've got to avoid is speedy down hills

  • Hi RED, good luck with the physio. Pending what they say here is my plan for next week.

    Try and stick to easy Monday, as easy as you can, but maybe try and up to 6M (add alittle on at the start or the end?).

    Are you running Thursday at the track? If not, make Wednesday intervals, with 2M warm-up, 6x3mins (90s jog), 2M cool-down. The 3mins hard should be done around 5k pace. If your on the track, make a suggestion that you do 6x800m@5k pace.

    Then Thurs or Fri rest,

    Friday or Saturday will be some MP. The target is 90min run a la - 15mins warm-up, 60mins@8:55 pace, 15mins cool-down. Try and do this on the flat, tow-path or such like.

    Long run Sunday is 2h30 easy (@ no faster than 10:30m/m). This can be hilly/off-road as you like.

    Obviously this is if the physio says it's ok to continue normally. If not we can revisit.

    Fingers crossed.


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    I've got to have an easy week - no run longer than 6 miles. I then thought I could do speed work/track  but there is a biomechanical reason for not doing speed work until things settle down.

    So I will probably run tomorrow and do Park run on Saturday

    6 miles on Sunday

    rest Monday

    4 miles Tuesday, 6 Thursday or vice versa

    10K Sunday 2nd and then re-start Marathon plan

    Question how do I make myself run for 2.30 hours at 10.30 pace?

  • Hi RED,

    It's not drastic to miss out on a week at this stage. You are in very good shape fitness-wise, and you have time to prepare (11 weeks?).

    Forgive me for what I'm about to say, but you need to get thru this if you want to progress. I think you have been injury plagued for last 2 years or so? My take on this is that you may've been training too fast. The way I see it, there are 3 (very different) ways to progress without getting injured (or a combination of):

    1. Slow down. Differentiate between hard sessions and recovery runs clearly, by pace.

    2. Cut down number of runs to 3. And make the 3 quality sessions, having clear, rest days in between.

    3. Do some S&C work. Get in the gym and strengthen all areas, especially the areas of weakness - hamstrings/quads/calves?

    You think you can't run slowly because you've been programmed into the pace you are running. Everybody can slow down a bit, even though it may feel strange at first. My daughter has just started to run, and I have been going out with her. The first run was 17m/miles, and 4 runs later we managed 15m/miles. So if I can do it, you can.


  • I've always been a 'special needs' runner - probably shouldn't be a runner!

    I've had two injury free years and this niggle is down to not wearing my orthotics. I have now got new orthotics (don't tell PM)

    I think my problem is I just run- as you say at a programmed pace - rather than think this needs to be 'x' pace.

    The podiatrist has suggested cross training to build up muscle imbalances - quads are doing all the work...............

    I'll get there, eventually

  • Mmmmm, I'm the same as PM. I don't believe in orthotics I'm afraid. I think there an expensive way of papering over the cracks. But what do I know... nothing about orthotics. Hopefully they will work for you.

    At the end of the day we run for enjoyment. Times paces races they're all just numbers.

    Fingers crossed, you will be able to continue soon.

  • I'm back!

    miles run last week 16 - all fairly steady just to keep the legs ticking over (3 runs)

    miles run this week 18.4 including today's 10k. Got a PB although not the time I should have aimed for. (52.23) but then I've had a two week "taper"! Knee niggle (fingers crossed/touch wood) seems to be okay. Was fine today and Physio said last week I could get back into proper training.

    last year I ran every other day and didn't notice any improvement until mid March. All I did was up mileage at the weekends and also in the mid week runs, nothing structured, no set pace etc. I just ran.

    I would like to do 4 runs a week as I think I can cope with it but it's what sort of runs they should be.  This is what I don't have a clue about.

    This week I'm not doing club runs as I still need to avoid steep downhills. I was thinking about running tomorrow (only if legs feel okay as I want to do Pilates on Tuesday) and Wednesday or Thursday. Parkrun on Saturday and long on Sunday. I know the long needs to be slow, it's generally conversation pace. Parkrun will be speed/effort. It's what to do for the two other days. I wondered about 8 miles tomorrow (at the back of my mind is Barcelona half and thinking I should be doing a longer mid week run?) with a shorter run later in the week??? I've been trying to run the first mile slower to get out of the fast first mile habit. Last Thursday I tried to run "faster" up hill and gently on the down hill

    today was pain free and post run everything felt fine..........

  • RED, that's good news and a huge relief to both of us. Nice one on the 10k and congrats on the pb, hopefully just the first of a few this year.
    On 4 runs per week, I would make one slow/easy (generally following your long or hardest run/race), one long obviously (2hrs+), a medium long (~90mins) and a faster session (this could be intervals as you have been doing on the track, some sort of tempo a la parkrun or longer tempo run ~ MP, or hills.

    So this week might look like this:
    Monday - slow recovery as you feel
    Wed or Thurs - 90mins
    Saturday - Parkrun (3M tempo)
    Sunday - Long

    A friend of mine summed up marathon training in the simplest way possible:-
    "Run lots of miles, some fast and some slow".

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