Valencia marathon - body cant handle it

Hi there,

I have the Valencia marathon in 6 weeks, have completed 3 half marathons over the last 2 months and my long run is up to 15 miles.

My problem is 2 runs a week are really all I can handle. My body is in pain for days after my long run. My midweek run is up to 8 miles, should I try to fit in a shorter run between my mid-distance and long runs for the next 6 weeks, even though in discomfort?

So the midweek run is wed, long run Sunday. was thinking of doing long run sat then another shorter run Mondays.

Any thoughts would be great.




  • Hi Juan,

    From the marathon training advice I’ve read about and listened to, the long run should be no more than 25 - 30% of your weekly volume. If not, you overstress the body in one session resulting in longer recovery time and are often not able to complete other runs as a consequence. On this basis, focussing on weekly accumulation rather than just one disproportionately long run and a second shorter run a week might be worth thinking about? I definitely think trying to fit in another run would be a good start. Also, what pace are you running your long run at? Maybe you’re doing your long run too fast leading to the legs being trashed for the rest of the week?

    If you enter your half marathon time in something like the McMillan Pace Calculator, this may help you to establish training paces for your long and other runs which may permit you to get some more runs in. 

    Good luck.
  • Thanks, Theador for your response.

    Longs runs currently doing at 9 min miles. The shorter runs down to 7:45 min miles.

    So just add more miles during the week rather than doing one long run on the weekend? This will be the first marathon so fairly new to the training, forgive my knowledge is pretty low on this subject :-)

    Thanks again.

  • Well, that’s my opinion Juan although others might see it differently. Is that 9 min mile pace based on training paces deriving from a recent race time? I think the shorter run should be done at a much slower pace. More running at a slower pace to make it sustainable and don’t increase volume by more than 10% per week. The problem is that you don’t have much time to Valencia now and you’ll need some kind of taper before.

    like I say, this is just the way I see it. It’d be interesting to know if other people have another view.
  • GipfelGipfel ✭✭✭
    Hi Juan, I am no expert myself but Little Theodor's advice seems spot on to me. Definitely take a look at an online pace calculator based on your recent half times to see what it comes up with, and then find some online marathon training plans to see what guidance they give on training paces (e.g. long run at target marathon place plus xx seconds per mile). Your shorter run pace seems as if it could be too fast, and to me, the fact that you're in pain for days after the longer run could also indicate that you're running that one too quickly - you may be surprised at how slowly the training plans say you should run. For my first marathon, I didn't really worry about speed in my training, just concentrated on getting in the slow miles - the marathon is a whole different experience in itself and I think your first one is inevitably a bit of an experiment just to (we hope) enjoy the day and to see how you feel, as the distance is not 'tried and tested' like a shorter race. Valencia this year is my third marathon and although my training plan does include a weekly speed interval session this time (unlike my previous two, where that type of session was more sporadic), it's the shortest of my three weekly 'key runs' and the speed parts of it only add up to about 5k in total, with the rest of the run being made up of a slow warm-up, cool-down, and of course recoveries between intervals. I'd also say that I feel more trashed after that run than the others in the week, even though it's my shortest run, because my other runs are slower!

    I'd agree that sustainability is key - slower runs more often to build up your endurance and give you the confidence to get round the marathon. Mon, Wed, Sat sounds like a good schedule for trying to fit three runs in. If you're still finding on Monday that your legs are tired from the long run, don't worry - just take things very, very easy when you go out on Monday. (Of course, if you're actually injured or feeling significant pain, that's a different matter, but running on legs that aren't fresh will be good marathon preparation - as long as you don't hammer them too much!) 

    I am guessing you still have 2 or 3 weeks before you'll be thinking about starting to taper, so if all goes to plan, you can fit in a few more decent sessions. As LT says above, though, don't increase the volume too dramatically. Good luck!
  • Hi All
    I am trying to get a registration too for Valencia - does anyone know where I may be able to find one at this stage?

  • Hey fellow runners!

    Hope you all feel very good :) Juan, are you running a marathon this year?

    I am looking for a ticket for Valencia Maraton 2019 which is taking place on Dec 1. Does anyone have a spare bib for this race? Please message me if any.#ValenciaMarathon #ValenciaMarathon2019
  • Sol2Sol2 ✭✭✭
    Listen to Endurance Planet podcast #259 at around 26 minutes ( where they discuss some of the oft-quoted 'rules' such as the long run exceeding 1/3 of weekly volume and such, dismissing it as irrelevant to most situations.

    You don't have much time left, but you should look at increasing weekly mileage and the long run (yes, by more than 10% too!). I do agree with the others that, most likely, you're running too fast. That's the usual culprit. As they advised, put in your HM time (most current - not pb) into a pace calculator and find your Easy pace range and stick to the slower end of it - or even slower if you're not feeling up to it. Especially the first mile or two, which should be the slowest of every run. Even the Kenyans run some of their runs at slower than 9-minute miles!

    Good luck 
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