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Please forgive the long post...
Last October, I did my first marathon (Leicester). Having averaged 25k/week for 8 months, I followed a 12-week plan that took me up to 45k/week on average for 3 months. A month before the race I asked here about pacing, and was warned that I didn't have much of an endurance base. On the day, I set out at 3:15 pace, but faded badly from 30k and ended up scraping in just under 3:30. Not a total disaster, but not quite what I was hoping for either.
I've now signed up for the Yorkshire Marathon next October, and this time I'm asking for advice early enough to use it. With a current HM PB of 88:14, I think I should be capable of sub 3:10 if I train properly, so for now that's my target. But right now that's a long way off, and I do struggle with injuries if I increase training volume/intensity, so need to be a bit cautious.
At the moment I'm trying to get used to running 50k/week. By the end of March I hope to be settled into this pattern:
Monday 10k E (4:45-5:15mins/k)
Tuesday 5k E
Wednesday 15k E (club run, 5:15mins/k)
Thursday 5k E
Friday 7.5k E
Saturday 2.5k E + 5k T Parkrun (4:00-4:15mins/k)
After that, I plan to gradually build up the distance on Monday to 20k, and either run with a faster group at the club run on Wednesday (M pace = 4:30mins/k) or swap the Thursday run for the club's track session.
I'm also cutting down on the cake and wine, and hope to weigh ~5kg less than last time, which I reckon is worth 5-10 minutes.
All going well, that will set me up for a sub-85 HM in May/June to show that it's all working. Then I'll go into marathon training in July already adapted to 60k+/week, so in much better shape than last time.
For the marathon training I don't know whether what I've got planned will be enough, which is basically to leave everything the same except the long run. If I run two blocks of four weeks with gradually increasing runs on Mondays, each block finishing with a 20-miler, a rest week, and a race, and then do a week finishing with another 20-miler before tapering for 3 weeks, would that be enough? By then I'd be doing something like 70k/week, split something like this:
Monday 24k-32k L (5:15mins/k)
Tuesday 5k E (4:45-5:15mins/k)
Wednesday 15k E (5:15mins/k) or 15k M (4:30mins/k)
Thursday 5k E or track session
Friday 7.5k E
Saturday 2.5k E + 5k T Parkrun (4:00mins/k)
And if I have to choose between swapping Wednesday's 15k E @ 5:15mins/km for a 15k M @ 4:30mins/km, or swapping Thursday's 5k E for a track session, which should I choose?
As I say, apologies for the long post looking so far ahead. You were all right last time when you told me I should have done more, sooner, so any pointers gratefully received.