my progress, my goals

Hi guys this is my first message. I am 17, I have been running for about 4 weeks. I can run about 6 miles. My goals are to be able to run about 26 miles.

In a years or so's time I will be attempting Royal Marines selection so I wont to be able to do their long killer runs with ease.

I try and do 3-5 runs a week, running about 5.5 miles each time. I also try and change terain.

Cosidering the fact that I am pritty healthy, I lift weights regularly, how long do u think that it will take me to meet my goals.

thanx for taking your time to read this



  • also when I run I stay on my toes, anyone else run this way.
  • Hi Matthew,

    You're young, fit and motivated, so I'm sure that you can build up to running 26 miles within a year if you stick with it. Having said that, the chances of picking up an injury increase significantly if you increase your mileage relatively quickly, and the very last thing I'd think you'd want before embarking on Marines selection is some sort of chronic injury hanging over your head.

    Since the distance you're looking at is 26 miles there are many training schedules around on the net. If I were you I'd look them up (see, for instance, and and you'll get an idea of how beginners are helped to go from a very low mileage base to 26. Because you're young you could probably do it faster, but since you don't actually need to I'd think very carefully about risking injury unnecessarily, if you see what I mean.

    Very best of luck :)
  • Matt
    Brilliant target.

    With your level of fitness I guess you could move through fairly smoothly - the golden rule is not to increase time or distance more than 10% a week, any faster increases the risk of injury. Piglet's advice is very sound.

    That said, if completing it - rather than any particular time is your goal - there are lots of people who are currently a lot less fit than you who will be doing the London Marathon next April. If you fancy it there are lots of very worthy charities who can provide you with a guaranteed place for a commitment to raise sponsorship so it's not too late (& Marines selection board might be impressed to see the social awareness on your CV)

    Good Luck
  • I will still be 17 in April :(
  • As far as the Royal Marines are concerned, their long runs/training are not supposed to be easy, they are designed to test you. Having said that, the fitter you are (and if you enjoy running even better) then coping with the other aspects of training will be easier. It is how you perform as an individual and as a team member whilst under pressure, that they are interested in. Someone who cruises though all aspects of physical training, without undue stress, is less use than someone willing to pull out the stops and go 110%. Effort, determination and motivation are key, because with these elements, you can achieve anything.
  • Matthew,
    my brother went through the marines training a few years back (unfortunatly had to be medically discharged after 13 weeks). good luck - i know how hard it is. you are definitely doing the right thing starting to train now. the important thing is to increase your milage and speed SLOWLY!!! or you will get shin splints and all other horrible things. i know you'll feel like you can run further/faster quicker than the schedules say but follow them! they are there for a reason!! as nick said go with the 10% rule and you can't go far wrong.
    also, you'll want to practice running with a rucksack on and in boots once you've got your milage up a bit more. also make sure you do lots of sprinting up hills (this is one of the favourite beasting methods - generally carrying each other!) the more you can get used to before you go for the training the less difficult it will be (i couldn't use the word easy in reference to marines training!)
    good luck - and do let us know how you get on (oh, by the way, another useful skill is being able to eat a three course meal in two minutes - that sounds like a fun one to practice!)
  • thanx guys u have been realy helpful to me. Anyone like to write me out a progressive split, giving me goals on how far I should run, how many times a week. as I said I can run 6 miles. I would like to be able to run 10 milesin a few months time.

    I find that if somone gives me a goal I will be willing to push myselth much harder.

    also when I run I stay on my toes, anyone else run this way.

  • Never done it but from friends and what you see on the TV I don't think the physical aspect of the training should tax anyone that really enjoys pushing themselves - most people don't. It is after all training - so as long as you stick in there and don't get injured I bet you get through - its going to be as much mental as physical.

    Sounds like you are doing plenty of endurance work which is good. Strength will be important but make sure you do plenty of stuff to simulate the exercises you will be given. To that end I would have thought plenty of stuff like push ups, rope climbing, chins, dips etc etc would be more useful than lifting weights - not saying lifting weights can't contribute to doing all those things but the best way to get good at something is to do it.

    Now where's the TV controller?
  • "Never done it but from friends and what you see on the TV I don't think the physical aspect of the training should tax anyone that really enjoys pushing themselves"

    ho ho ho! sure they were on about The Commando Course at Lympstone? That course will tax ANYONE in the world, regardless of fitness! ;)

    Matthew, my own service is the Army so my advice is: don't join the Royals ;) Seriously, you need to be increasing the miles gradually - and you need to be doing speedwork as well; military runs are NOT usually at an easy pace!

    Apart from straight road running, try to do cross-country running as well, ideally with some weight on your back. This will pay dividends when the time comes to take on the hard marches that RM training has to offer.

    You also need endurance, of all sorts - after doing the assault course on selection you will be ran back to camp as a squad; this is about 5 miles as far as I recall, but you will be knackered already from the assault course so need to have your cardio-vascular fitness up to scratch.

    In fitness other than running, I suggest you concentrate on lower weights but more reps, to build endurance; obvioudly don't have the weights too low, and keep them increasing as you get fitter, to push yourself. The goal is to be physically capable and strong, but not to end up as one of those massive blokes that can't hold their rifle in the shoulder more than 3 seconds cos their strength is all in the big, quick lifts.

    Last thing of all, good luck! Are you going for selection as a Marine, or are you doing POC? (Several of my mates have done POC)
  • Oh, and the stuff Popsider said about using your own body weight to train for high reps, and clmbing ropes etc, is spot on.
  • You see you can pick it up from watching the Krypton Factor!

    Seriously though I wasn't trying to say it wasn't tough, just that from what I am told (and I do know one guy that was a marine) it is as much about mental toughness as pure physical fitness - obviously though I have no intention of finding out :)
  • Mat , good luck, its a change to see a young person who has a goal that doesnt include drinking/drugs/loafing around etc.
    I've never done the RM course myself but I have been in and around the forces for far to long. I would take the advice given earlier about bergan training, dont forget theres a world of difference between running in your asics and tabbing/yomping in your hi leg boots carring a rifle, bergan and helmet when your knackered. Running and weight training will stand you in good stead and give you an advantage over the dreamers but dont forget the hardest battle will be with yourself.
    BTW How much do you weigh ?
  • My body weight is light. I am only 9 stone but have the strength of some 1 twice my size.... Im 5ft9. that is why i like to lift heavy.

    whats u r oppinion on weight training legs?

    I dont need any practise with climing ropes I have always been able to fly up a rope. I dont even need to use my legs.

    i mainly run a mile at a 6 minute pace.

    I can do about 50 push upps

    My chin upp reccord is 23 reps


    ps my build is inbetween ectomorph and mesomorph so it isnt easy for me to gain weight.
  • Popsider, spot on: it's 99% mental. (Of course it helps if you are fit beforehand, otherwise we wouldn't all be having this discussion ;) )

    matthew: you DO need practice with ropes, believe you me ;) If you can climb them well, then try climbing with weight on your back, or doing horizontal rope stuff including regains (go across horizontal rope, drop so you're only hanging on by your hands, then use legs etc. to pull yourself back into the normal position, and carry on til the end).

    Depending on whether you are doing POC officer selection, or just wanting to go in as a Marine, you will have to do different things on selection. For POC, for example, you will have to do 60 press-ups in two minutes; 85 sit-ups in two minutes; and 45 burpees in two minutes. Chin-up wise, it's as many as you can do without dropping off; I think the minimum is about 18.

    For both POC and Marine selection though, you will have to do a log race; running with weight is the best way to train for this.

    Good luck!
  • I aim to be a royal marine commando. The thing is I have nowhere where I can use a rope.

    Do u know how far the main runs are?

    How far are the tabs 30 miles?

    When I find out exactly when my medical is (3-4 months before)I will train all day every day untill i m in my peak.
    2-3runs a day, weights, push ups, chins, pull upps, hill sprints, swimming (2-3 times a week swimming).

    I ll take a week or 2 then for my blisters and strength to regain.

    Would you reccomend liquid creatine?


  • Even assuming that liquid is the best way to take it (I can never remember) then personally no. It is expensive, it has proven health risks (albeit ones that can be minimised by proper use), research suggests that many people do not benefit from it, are you going to keep taking it when you join up and what is the attitude of the marines to it?
  • Mat, I could be wrong but I dont think there would be any great benefit from running 2 - 3times a day, surely it would do more harm than good. Not sure about creatine but am sure that reading the article on "5 portions of fruit and veg" on this website would be a good idea. Have you thought about joining a gym and telling them what you are training for ?
  • Just a thought on ropes, my kids' primary school has them hanging from the school hall roof. I guess other schools might do too.

    I know at 17, sc!!!l isn't necessarily somewhere you want to go voluntarily but there might be mileage in approaching a local school and asking if they have facilities you could borrow out of hours. They might want a donation to the PTA or something but it's no different to paying to go to the local leisure centre.
  • i think i ll pass on the rope training. how many push ups do u think i should be able to do straight off?

    how long should it be able to run 3 miles in 15 minutes?

    if they wont me to be able to do sumthing like a run i wont to smash the time they set.

    my goal is to be the best.
  • Just a caution about that last one. Don't get too ambitious. They've seen it all before at Lympstone and no matter how fit you are, you will not be as fit at this stage as a Royal Marines Commando. Remember, they're after all-round potential, not superhuman performance. Maintain a high level of fitness, sure (occasional tabs are a good idea; i go about once every few weeks with between 10 and 30KG for a day's tabbing in the peaks) but if you don't pass the non-physical tests they set, you can be as fit as you like - but you're not getting to go to Lympstone.

    Having said that, obviously you should still make sure your physical preparations are adequate. I don't think you need to be able to run 3M in sub 15 minutes however; that is the type of goal that would mean you'd have to devote too much time to specific training for it, and not enough to other fitness, or character development.

    Remember to read newspapers and have an idea about what's going on in the world. They're looking for switched-on potential future Marines and maybe leaders; not robots. Have an idea of RM history, as well. All this knowledge helps.

    Do not, though, be fooled into the belief that preparing for RM selection involves nothing but loads of superhuman phys; firstly they're looking for a lot more than just the physical side, and secondly they're not necessarily after the finished product; just the solid potential.

  • Yes but not too "solid" eh !!
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