Sub 2:45 FLM 2006

Ok, a new thread for a new year. 2:45 will be a bit of a reach for me, but training has been going well and it's a definite possibility.

A few stats from last years results:
318 people broke 2:45
Only 25 of those were women
The slowest time at halfway I can find for someone who broke 2:45 was 1:22:08, the next 1:21:30, and most are around the 1:20 mark.

So who else is in?


  • Just as long as I send off that GFA letter I'll be going for it.

    With 318 people out of the roughly 35000 starters, any sub-2:45ers will be in the top 1%. Not that it means anything particularly but it's a nice sounding statistic! Shame there aren't more women though; perhaps Paula will have inspired a few more to go for it next year.
  • GFA letter - ah yes, I knew there was something I had to do...

    Top 1% does have a nice ring to it. Just have to hope this knee niggle is nothing serious or I won't be one of them though!
  • Just been having a look at a couple of the RW online race time predictors which give markedly different results for what a suitale half-marathon time ought to be. The calculator says 1:19 will lead to a 2:44:42 whereas the table linked to further down that same page estimates a 1:16:30 would predict a 2:44:30.

    With the Cardiff Half on the 9th October I'm wondering what a good target time would be. I had been thinking of gunning for a 1:18 bearing in mind that ) I am not really intending to try and peak for the event and b) FLM will be 6 months away.
  • No, it's only August! Can we wait until the championship entries open at least, don't want the marathon to dominate my life all year.

    Oh, ok. 2:30:31 to beat, bring it on!
  • Hi peeps. I thought I'd pop in and share my thoughts. 8o)

    I (unexpectedly) ran 2'58"49 for my first marathon in may, and I've been toying with the idea of London ever since. However, I don't really know what I'm capable of. I know that in may I ran a negative split of about 7 or 8 minutes having only done two or three runs of 20 miles plus in training, so I think that there's plenty more in the tank. I have two half marathons coming up, so I was wondering:
    What sort of time do I need to be running for a half in the autumn if I want to go sub-2'45 in april (assuming a decent winter's training of course!)?

    I think the chances are that I'll do London this year, but maybe I ought to go and join the sub-3' thread rather than butt in here!

  • hah, what are you thinking of Mike? You've had at least 3 months to forget since the last one ;-)

    Dave - am in the same predicament. I would have said at least a sub-1:20 for now and then revise your targets with another early next year. Another option is a ten miler like the Cabbage Patch 10 in October and aiming for just under the hour. That way you know your LT pace is looking good.

    What races are you doing?
  • 2.53 London 2004. back in next year and hoping for sub 2.45. count me in!
  • Dave - I'd say double your HM, then add 10 is a fair approximation.

    Chaos, what am I thinking of? Can I realistically get 1,000 miles in the last 10 weeks of 2005? If so 2:25 could be possible.......
  • God knows Mike. I've been trying, and pathetically failing dismally, to get over 50 miles per week for a while now. A mixture of sods law, work and windy weekends (see pic for why this affects me!) have conspired against it. Must try harder is probably the only answer...

    Somewhat perversely I think it might actually become easier to get the miles in during the winter months when there are less warm weather distractions around.

    Good luck on the quest though. With any luck this thread and some shared experiences will help keep us going.
  • Mike - I take it that your estimate should be applied in the run up to a marathon, rather than six months before?

    My target for the Bristol half is to do sub-78 (I'd like 77"30, but we'll see). It seems from the couple of comments here that even if I don't manage this I still have half a shot at the time in London, so I'll hang round and see what tips I can pick up 8o)

    Right now my weekly mileage has stabalised in the 70s and I'm starting to do some faster steady aerobic running and some longer intervals at half-marathon pace. I think I shall continue with this at least until the new year, when I'll assess if something shorter is needed.

    As for races planned between now and London? I think that these halfs are enough to keep me going for now, but I'm sure I'll find myself doing some cross country races because I enjoy them.

    Have fun
  • ATMF - the plan is to get 10 weeks of consistant 100+ mpw in mid oct - xmas, with very little fast work (but no run over 2 hours).
    Take an easy week off in the new year, and then start a more conventional plan involving structured reps, tempo runs, the long run and a few target races. I've got no idea if it will work, but hope that by building a really solid base AND putting reps on top it may help me with another breakthrough. Previously i've done one or the other.
  • MikeB - You've been listening to Pants too much ;o)
  • Good luck guys.I am not running flm 06 but shall be tracking this thread with interest. Despite being within 90secs of 2:45 previously and under 2:50 4 times I know that I need to really show improvement at shorter distances before I can consider a serious attempt at 2:45- and that is far from forthcoming at the moment- as I seem to be getting slower!
  • sounds like some of you guys are obsessed with high mileage..this doesnt work for everyone and 50 miles quality is far more effective than 100 miles of the age of 43 i have just added pbs in 5 miles.. 26.40 and 56 mins for 10 miles , and this on 50 miles max.
  • Evening all,

    Bad week for me. Monday's easy 5 miler before swimming was cut short by a pain developing on the side of my knee - classic ITB syndrome symptoms. Took Tuesday off, and tries again on Wednesday, managed 2.5 miles before the pain made it obvious I should stop and walk home. Rested another few days, then tried running this morning - managed 1.7 miles before stopping and walking back. Not good at all.

    Looks like I'm facing a couple of weeks off, will get it looked at tomorrow when I have my normal Monday massage, and might have to see a physio too. Not too happy!

    Hope everyone else has had a better week!
  • Venom - I'd definitely see a physio or massage-er as soon as possible. Something muscular like ITBS can be eased a lot by being rubbed in the right way. I hope it clears up quickly though 8o(
  • Picked up a horrible knot in my calf during my long run on Thursday last week for no apparent reason. I haven't done any speed work recently and can't remember getting cramp, either of which are usually the trigger for that sort of thing. The previous long run had been a very hilly one in Somerset so perhaps all the steep uphill and downhill running did something but if so it took a few days to become noticeable.

    Anyway having failed to ease it out with a bit of self-massage, I've booked a sports massage tonight. She's warned me that I could be in tears! Sounds a bit sadistic to me, but no pain no gain eh?

    Nigel - I'm not sure that it's the mileage per se that I or others are aiming at, but it's more that I've found running every day has brought along significant improvements in the past & the high mileage is a consequence. Therefore a typical week that includes a long 2 hour run (16+ miles), a few runs to and from work (3x9 miles), one 90 minuter (~12 miles) and then a couple of recovery runs around the 4-5 mile mark ends up being well over 60mpw. But as I inevitably miss a couple of them it hovers around 50. I still expect to see some improvement on this level though but perhaps just not quite as much.

    Certainly want to avoid junk miles though so any suggestions on re-jigging that weekly plan are welcome. What sort of runs do you include?
  • Being in tears at a massage sounds familiar - just had one on my ITB and I was very close to crying! Extraordinarily painful. Hopefully it will have helped, although right now I feel rather beaten up and can hardly walk.

    Have also booked a physio session for tomorrow, he should be able to offer some constructive advice. Tonight I think I'll have to try a gentle swim, sounds like pretty much the only thing I can do right now that won't aggravate the ITB.
  • Chaos,
    2 quality sessions , and a 90 minute run, and then 6 miles easy recovery for the rest of the week, with one day off.
    Quality sessions include 6x1k with 2 mins recovery, 6x800m on the track with 90 secs off. 10 mile run with 3x10 mins at threshold pace and of course hill reps, 20 x reps of a steep 45 second hill, all good stuff!
  • Nigel - Would you do long runs?
  • Hi all

    I'm in. Really want to give this one final go.
    Will be 50 so want to celebrate with a pb and break 2.45

    Last 4 FLM have been pb's getting closer to the 2.45.

    Did not run last year went and watched had a great time.

    2004 ran 2.47.14 and ran the second half quicker. The first time I had ever achieved it. This was due to uping the miles to 3 weeks of 80 miles where before the most i'd done was 65 in previous FLM.

    This year have started training already where before it was just befor Christmas.

    So hopefully will crack it this time, with all your help and advice...and of course i hope you all crack it as well.

    Heres to injury free training and success.
  • Are those my feet?
    yes a long 90 min run offroad covering 14 miles.
  • Probably worth defining those to-work-and-back 9 milers a little more to see how they fit into the quality/mileage picture [1]

    2 will be at a conversational but not slacking pace (low 70%s of Max HR to the HRM wearers) and one will be mostly a "stilted conversational" pace for want of a better description (up to 80% of Max HR).

    My other hobby (see pic) actually has some training effect itself particularly in light winds where you have to pump the sail - think of Nick Dempsey and his Olympic Bronze, or in waves where the adrenaline is pumping. I'd see it as a sort of very randomised interval session! Easy to go into calf and hamstring cramp. Unfortunately lots of treading water as well with my lack of skill.

    nigel - I quite often mix in some short bursts of 100-200 metres during a run particularly if hills are around so that probably equates to your 45sec hills to some extent. Going by the Renato Canova marathon book they are great for VO2 max type training.

    [1] I don't mean to polarise quality/mileage thing - Even with a bias to lots of the steady stuff, I do think they can be the same thing!
  • Some familiar faces here...

    Previous FLM attempts...

    2003- 2:49
    2004- 2:42
    2005- 2:52 (not nice!)

    Feel capable of 2:37 and that is the target for 2006.

    Aaah, quality / quantity...

    MikeB - I'm interested in the `no run more than 2 hours' part of your base period. Can you explain a little bit more about why?

    Also will that be all slow stuff or include some faster sections?

    Will it be 10 weeks of `pure' base or will you do the odd XC or low key 10k as well?

    Nigel - you write...

    "sounds like some of you guys are obsessed with high mileage..this doesnt work for everyone and 50 miles quality is far more effective than 100 miles of plodding."

    Correct, but 50 miles of quality doesn't work for everyone either. Your 5 mile and 10 mile times are a bit quicker than mine but I find my HM and marathon times improve more on higher mileage.

    The idea is to build up the miles THEN add the quality off a higher fitness base.

    Do you intend to go higher than 50 in the build up for London?
  • BR - I'm not 100% sure why. Just don't really see the need if there's no immediate marathon on the horizon. But then I remember Dave or Andy Norman talking about 3+ hour slow runs on the fells, and if it worked for their dad it could be worth a try!

    I was thinking of weeks something like this:

    M - 6 + 9
    T - 9 + 9
    W - 6 + 15 (middle a bit faster)
    Th- 9 + 9
    Fr- 9 + massage
    Sa- Fartlek / Low Key XC league (10 total)
    Su - 18

    That would give 109 with most of the miles at around 6:30 - 7:00 pace.

    I think if I can consistantly put something like that together in the run up to Christmas when I get onto my marathon specific build up the mileage might actually come down slightly, but the three key sessions (k+ reps, tempo (often embedded in the middle run) and long run) will become more specific.

    I need to read Hadd again tonight I think.
  • barnsley runner,
    yes i intend to reach around 65 miles per week doubling up on some days. Cant see me being able to run more miles than that. As i said previously my FLM time of 2.53 in 2004 was achieved on around 50 miles a week.Any advice om marathon training will be gratefully received!
  • BR - I'm just at work now reading Lydiard (and Gilmour 1983). I didn't realise the 100 miles a week all had to be at "near-best aerobic effort" with additional slower miles to pad it out!
  • Wish I could read Lydiard and Gilmour at work:-)

    The Lydiard book I have has a sample marathon programme in the back and the base phase is

    1 x 2hr + run
    3 x 90 min runs
    2 x 60 min runs with hills
    1 x 60 mins easy

    At 6m/m that would be 100 miles per week without the easy run...
  • I've not read it but he and others seem pretty keen on that weekly 2 hr run.

    What's their reasoning? I started to include it quite a bit last year prior to the marathon specific longer runs and certainly didn't suffer for it though whether it was that that made a difference or the daily runs or a combination I'll never know of course.
  • Just had a browse through my old favourites as I knew I had some theory on this. Here we go, it's from the forum. I see Snell & co are mentioned which presumably indicates a Lydiard-esque influence?

    The Training Wisdom of John Kellog
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