Sub 3h15

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  • Birch - charming comment from that by-stander there! Don't let my description put you off the coastal marathon. Although it was through some of the mudflats, it was a solid path for 99% of the way on that terrain, and through the sandy bits there was a lot of boardwalk and firm paths too; nowhere near as bad as last year's.
    Freemers  - yes, that sounds like the same guy. And it was Spoons I was talking about previously. I had picked up his name from the Endurance Life Real Relay - not been stalking him, honestly! I'll make a mental note about the Tarpley 20, thanks. Broadland Half is a bit nearer to home and I did run it back in 2010; nice race. You now have plenty of races to spur you on!
    PMJ - yes, you're quite right about the pacing and1st/2nd half split. But I think I was swayed by the knowledge that the weather was almost certainly going to deteriorate rapidly. Judging how much of an effect that would have on my pace versus the extra effort expended is very difficult and of course I'll never know. The first half felt pretty comfortable (as it should), so I don't think I overcooked it too much. You may remember that I went for a conservative target at the Spring Shakespeare and ended up with a worse positive split that after a slightly suicidal pace for the first half in Mablethorpe. I guess it just highlights my lack of racing experience which is probably a major factor. That in turn slightly puts me off going for too big an event, but I agree a slightly larger field would be beneficial.
    Poacher - another mara? You crazy boy. I reckon if the weather had miraculously remained calm and the course was nearer the correct distance then I might have been good for 3:3x, but given the terrain nearer 3:40 than 3:30. I can't believe you suggested Raceways!
    I've been thinking about my next target and it occurred to me that I really only want to prove to myself that I can achieve a decent marathon time. Therefore why does it have to be an official event? So I'm now toying with the idea of just doing a solo marathon at a time and place of my own choosing. Granted, it won't exactly be "well attended" (hopefully 0% DNS and 0% DNF though!), and afterwards I will doubtless want to go on and do an official event anyway, so not sure what the point is other than it is doable whereas finding a suitable organised event seems to be a near impossibility! (Birch, Boston would be ideal but clashes with my wedding anniversary).
    12 mile MLR this morning. 6 @ 8:23 and 6 @ 7:26). And just a hint of daylight when I finished. Brings up 235 for October.



  • Lorenzo - just reading back, I noticed your massive mileage over the weekend. Sorry, been a bit self-focussed. That will be a great confidence boost for your up-coming double-ultra. How long to go now?
  • Gul, as you say, for an individual race (and especially non-standard ones) it is hard to tell much at all. For what it is worth, your current pace and fitness should bring you a 3.0x marathon so a 1:40 first half is truly conservative.

    October done: 182 miles at 7:56 pace and 1,706 for the year so should top 2,000 easily. Looking at other years, I'll beat my worst year (2012 and 1,669 miles) and the next target is 2013 when I was on 1,655 at the end of October but ended up with over 2,100 as I did over 450 miles in the last 2 months.
  • MsEMsE ✭✭✭
    Sorry for the radio silence.  Having a cup of tea and a sit down to read back and it seems there has been a lot going on in more ways than running.

    GDawg - I said it before but will say it again: you ran a great race and it is a shame the weather didn't work in your favour.  But it doesn't detract from the fact you are a stronger and faster runner for the training and race and things can only get better (you can stronger and faster) from here! And nobody has mentioned so I will say it, as I think it counts for a lot: you really listened to your body and managed the signs of stress really well when they came to avoid injury this time around.  Personally, that is my major challenge in running and I think if you can learn to listen to your body, you can make sure you are consistent with your running and don't end up injured back at square one again.

    Freemers - training looks to be going well with some decent mileage going on. The Norwich HM looks like a nice flat fast one.  Shame it has to be slow as it is so close to VLM.

    Poacher - huge congrats on your achievements.  You are one of those runners who can simply perform at each race with minimal training in between. I am rather envious...  Which one are you thinking of this weekend?

    Lorenzo - your new role sounds really interesting with lots of really relevant snippets for us all with the health angle. It seems it is not holding you back from running your nutty ultra mileage anyway!  Which new shoes did you buy?  New kit?  You seem to be enjoying the ultra shopping.

    Badbark - awesome racing as ever.  Followed by awesome eating and drinking.

    Gerard - so sorry to hear of your sad news.  Sending condolences and a massive sweaty runners' hug.  

    OO - Did you enter Berlin?  I agree with BB you could do 2:55 on higher mileage (not necessarily quick miles either as you have natural speed).  Sorry to hear about your daughter's elbows - don't recall you mentioning it but it sounds really painful so is good to hear she is back at it three months later.

    PMJ - nice parkrunning and love the visual.

    Jools - how's it all going for you?  Update us when you can!

    Leslie - good you could watch the Dublin marathon and hope you are back on the road soon. What's the prognosis?

    Gul - sounds like an awful day to run a marathon I hope you don't take it to heart.  Agree you are capable of a fast road one.  Great report.

    Birch - good to hear you are (sic) jogging even if it is just 7 miles. How's the body holding up?  That woman's comment made me laugh.  How very dare she?????

    AndyLid - congrats on a well executed race and great time.

    So the reason I have been quiet is because I have been building a new business in canicross coaching and run coaching.  I have become a partner with Dogfit UK so I can instruct people to run around trails towed by their dogs, while also taking on some beginner runners to get them fit (without dogs).  I have had some great advice in getting started from our resident Guiness World Record holder, Purple Martin (aka the fastest fairy), and am fortunate to have Knight Rider creating a website for me.  At the same time I am trying to build a base so I can start training for a spring half (Surrey HM) where I hope to PB so I can toe the line as an elite at Chester.  I need a sub-1:25 for that privilege (free entry! nice loos!) so we shall have to see how it goes as I may need a bit more time to get back to where I was.   Oh and it is STILL half term.... (argggghhhhh!) 
  • JoolskaJoolska ✭✭✭
    Aww, thanks for the name check MsE. Just a bit busy with work so lurking but not posting. Good luck with the dogs!

    Sorry to hear of your loss, GM.

    I've enjoyed the race reports and taking each painful marathon step with you mentally, GD!
  • GerardMGerardM ✭✭✭
    Gul - Epic report! Would you ever consider Manchester as a Spring option? I think you could run a very good time on that course. 

    Just back tonight. I will take some time and catch up with you all soon. Thanks all for your thoughts.
  • Great summary MsE! I thought of you over the weekend as part of my route took me very close to your place - I was keeping an eye open for you and all the dogs. We'll have to get another run in some time if the canicross exploits aren't taking too much of your time.

    As for my new stuff, it was another pair of Saucony Peregrines for trail running, a reduced pair of Innov8 Talons for XC as I wanted to try studs (or whatever you'd call them) rather than spikes plus a proper pair of waterproof gloves and a waterproof hat for the upcoming Ultra. Apparently last year the second day involved running through about a foot of snow at the higher altitudes. :o

    How seriously are you thinking about doing the Surrey Half? I did it in its first year and thought it was OK, but a bit overpriced, but I think that G-Dawg is a bit of a fan of it. Am torn between the Surrey Half (very convenient) and doing Fleet (which meets the cliched brief of a race diagnosed by runners for runners) as part of the VLM build up. Have you ever done the 15 miler at Cranleigh which is normally about 3 or 4 weeks before London?

    Gul - thanks! Less than 3 weeks to go and while the distance (50K on Day 1, then 45K on Day 2) doesn't worry me, it's the unpredictability of the conditions that I'm more concerned about. Fingers crossed it's unseasonably warm on the day.

    Cracking report from you BTW - feels like you should be getting in touch with Peter Jackson and seeing if he wants to make a film out of it! :)

    Good thought about doing a solo marathon run in training (what would count as a decent marathon time?), but why not just a "proper" low key one in the Spring when the weather's favourable and then run without the watch and associated pressure. Having noted your training runs, I'm in no doubt that you're in good form but there's just something that goes wrong each time on the day.

    Just over 5 miles of chilly commuting yesterday and 6.6 with the new Sauconys (or should that be Sauconies!)  through the woods this morning to finish up with 242 for the month and a cumulative total of exactly 1,800 for the year so far. I doubt I'll beat last year's total of 2,342 but I'll be close.
  • G-DawgG-Dawg ✭✭✭
    edited October 2017
    Thanks MsE. As ever, you're bang on!
    Good luck with the dogs. I only first heard of Canicross at Farnham trail HM last month.

    Yep, the Surrey Half is my next main focus as part of my VLM18 campaign. I like it as I can cycle to the start and the pub after. Going for 1.25 in March. I have done 9 Fleet half marathons and got a PB in each one. Great event, I learnt my endurance running trade there.

    Funeral today. We laid Aunty Jean to rest. I have so much to thank her for. 

    Went to the track tonight, bit of a head clearer, first session since Abo. Did 24 x 100m and jogged the bends. Came out as 5k at 6.23 pace.

    Could still feel Abo and last night's gym sesh in my legs but a good start to maintain my fitness plateau before the VLM18 campaign. 
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Not convinced I’ll ever break 3 hours again. 2:55 absolutely not. My hips could not survive all the long runs at faster pace. I’m feeling my age a bit more lately- so no I’ve not entered Berlin, at least not yet. Looking to try more cross training when I retire- that may help.
    How are you all finding the dark nights? Not too cold yet but feels like winter arrived with a bang!

  • PMJ - respectable miles. I think I'm on 1899 at the moment.
    MsE - you have been busy; that's exciting news. Hope it's a great success.
    GM - everything's a bit up in the air at the moment with family matters but I'd say April is most likely out of the question next year. I'd quite enjoy going back up to Manchester. Maybe 2019, who knows? Hope you have lots of support now you're back home.
    Lorenzo - hope you have some better weather than I did. At least there was no sign of Gollum on Saturday. I did think about the Cambridge Boundary Run in March but checked the date and had to cross it off the list... 3:30am from my door step sounds much easier.
    GD - take the recovery slowly.
    OO - it's getting chilly in the mornings certainly. Hat and gloves out now.
    6 easy miles today.

  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭

    Impressed you are talking about PB's MsE :) must be a good sign

    Yes been digging out gloves and snoods for winter Gul. They seem to have hidden all over the house. 

  • BirchBirch ✭✭✭
    MsE -tks, my body is holding up ok - as it should at my pathetically low mileage - 82 for October, just the nice round 100 less than Philip !  hamstring still not 100%, though.  

    Good luck with your enterprise  . . . . 
  • MSE sounds like you have your hands full ,must be well on your way back if sub 1:25 is on the cards ! I hope to start back sometime this month after a month's rest , hammy still a bit dodgy so not sure  how things will go.
    GUl Just book a race at short notice when you feel you are in good shape , I know you would like to prove it to yourself you can run a good time to get past this bad run of mara results when clearly you can run much faster ,maybe you just need to race more for it to click ? I know the last 3 out of the 4 mara's I've run have arrived at the start injured and those are just the ones I even got to the start at all but sooner or later I hope to crack it !!!
    Lorenzo nice total there ,taper time now and I hope you don't get the snow .
    0054 when you retire you will be like a new man with far more time and less work travel to tire you  out ,I think sub 3 is still within reach for you but it will be tough and you need to change your training up a bit to build endurance as you have enough speed.
    Birch Not too bad when you consider I carded 10 miles in October and jog/walked a fair bit of those !

    Need to get going again soon before I turn in mr blobby , 10kg over race weight now , seems everyone is after a 1:25 next year seems like a nice round number , I think more focus on getting my half time down could be what's needed if that sub 3 is to be achieved as will very soon be a an m45 and have a new age category to chase. 
  • MsEMsE ✭✭✭
    OO54 said:

    Impressed you are talking about PB's MsE :) must be a good sign

    Leslie H said:
    MSE sounds like you have your hands full ,must be well on your way back if sub 1:25 is on the cards ! 
    Ummm, actually I am just trying to be optimistic but not sure how realistic it is until I start recording some times.  Had a little set back with a tetchy achilles today so will rein it all in again.  My body doesn't seem to cope with anything faster than plodding yet, so that goal may be a bit too soon but we shall see.
  • MsEMsE ✭✭✭
    Great summary MsE! I thought of you over the weekend as part of my route took me very close to your place - I was keeping an eye open for you and all the dogs. We'll have to get another run in some time if the canicross exploits aren't taking too much of your time.

    As for my new stuff, it was another pair of Saucony Peregrines for trail running, a reduced pair of Innov8 Talons for XC as I wanted to try studs (or whatever you'd call them) rather than spikes plus a proper pair of waterproof gloves and a waterproof hat for the upcoming Ultra. Apparently last year the second day involved running through about a foot of snow at the higher altitudes. :o

    How seriously are you thinking about doing the Surrey Half? I did it in its first year and thought it was OK, but a bit overpriced, but I think that G-Dawg is a bit of a fan of it. Am torn between the Surrey Half (very convenient) and doing Fleet (which meets the cliched brief of a race diagnosed by runners for runners) as part of the VLM build up. Have you ever done the 15 miler at Cranleigh which is normally about 3 or 4 weeks before London?


    1. Yes, saw you were in my 'hood on Strava and thought the same.  The dogs can always join us. 2. I love my Saucony Peregrines too! 3. Signed up but not overly committed.  Just chose it as I came 5th there when I last raced it and it is local so less of a logistical challenge for me to get to.  4. No, not done Cranleigh but probably ought to, especially given I don't have a spring marathon to worry about jeopardising.  Let's do it shall we?  We haven't run together in yonks!
  • MsEMsE ✭✭✭
    PS  Lorenzo - look after your ankle which I saw  you rolled today.  Not long till your long race so maybe start tapering now and letting the ankle heal and get strong for the race?
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Take care MsE sounds like your path back will be long and slow.

    9 mile plod here, nice and steady
  • Figured its time I get on this thread!

    I'm in a rest period now following an epic year - going in to 2017 my Marathon PB was a 3:38 I'd set in Chicago 2016 and  having taken off 19 minutes off the PB in 2016 my plan was to chip away and see if I could get under 3:30.

    In London in April I ran a fast half (got too excited) - and then detonated, but still came in with a 3:36 (2 minute PB). In July in the Gold Coast Marathon I got it right and ran a 90 second positive split 3:28 which had me deliriously happy....

    In August I put down new PB's in 5km, 10km and half marathon and figured training was going pretty well! With all my goals achieved for the year my target in Melbourne on 15th October was simple - see how BQ pace feels. How long can I hold it?.. I ran with the 3:20 pacer group fully expecting to blow up and have a really ugly finish..

    The ugly never came and in the last 10km I pulled away from the pacer group smiling and enjoying the race like none I'd ever had before.

    I crossed in 3:18:05 a comfortable BQ for April 2019 (qualifying standard is 3:25 for me).

    So... goals for 2018? Gotta be 3:15 and a London GFA time! (Going to target Canberra[April] and Sydney[Sept] marathons for efforts and see if I can get in New York[Nov] for the experience)

    But for now - I'm foot off the gas and taking it easy to ensure full recovery from the tough year and I'm going to have to forget all concept of pace to get me through the tough months ahead where weather makes running really really grueling.
  • Welcome DadAgain! 3:36 in London down to 3:18 in Melbourne is a big chunk off. What changes did you make to achieve that? You say you are in a rest period, what exactly does that mean? Most of us have marathon cycles but the base level is a fair bit above rest, so when I am not targeting a marathon I am still doing over 40 miles a week and then when the campaign for real begins, it is not so much of a step up.

    By the way, I'm guessing you are based in Australia but you are also talking about London and GFA which is for UK residents so are you ex-pat and using a UK address for GFA? London seems to be very different in terms of foreign entries so I have a lot of fast friends in the US who would love to run London and never get in but if I wanted to run Boston it would be easy to do so.
  • OO54OO54 ✭✭✭
    Yes I was thinking the same DadAgain. No issue to have a rest or easy period but it’s not  a steep drop- for me that means 10-15 km per week max, mostly coming off my long run.
  • Philip - no major changes to be honest, mainly just carrying on with consistent mileage. There may have been slight improvements in nutrition and definitively better use of “in race nutrition” - but there’s been no silver bullet. I’ve only been running 4 years and haven’t reached a plateau yet - improvements just keep coming!. I’m sure it’ll kick in soon and the PBs will stop but I’m happy to ride the wave!

    ”Rest” for me is about 40km a week which allows me to focus on some underlying strength exercises without me breaking under the strain. Once I’ve decided I’m rested, my “non buildup” base is probably around 50-55km a week building to a peak of 92km in the big weeks.

    and yes, I’m in Brisbane - but with my parents address in Hampshire, a UK passport and drivers licence i’d find a way to use GFA! This year I got to London using a charity place for Cancer Research which had some personal resonance with me after losing a friend last December. I got a call from the charity offering me a place the day after his funeral - it was a no brainer decision! AU$4000 raised..... and the race was on my birthday! 
  • Leslie - "just book a race at short notice when you feel you are in good shape" Ha! Ha! Ha! Good one. Hope you get back into decent training soon.
    MsE - take care now.
    DadAgain - welcome to the thread! Sounds like you've had a cracking few months.
    12 miles this morning with 8 x 500m efforts (with very long recoveries!) averaging around 5:45m/m.
  • DadAgain - welcome to the thread.  That's really good progression, sounds like 3.15 isn't far off!

    Lorenzo / MsE - Cranleigh would be tempting for me as well, as I love it - although I always do the full 21 :) Trouble is I think it probably clashes with the Wymondham 20 which is pretty local to me and so less of a hassle for traveling.  I'll wait until they announce the date and see.


  • MsEMsE ✭✭✭
    Freemers said:

    Lorenzo / MsE - Cranleigh would be tempting for me as well, as I love it - although I always do the full 21 :) Trouble is I think it probably clashes with the Wymondham 20 which is pretty local to me and so less of a hassle for traveling.  I'll wait until they announce the date and see.


    I think I had better stop all talk of any future races as it seems to jinx me.

    Welcome DadAgain.  
  • DadAgain said:
    Philip - no major changes to be honest, mainly just carrying on with consistent mileage. There may have been slight improvements in nutrition and definitively better use of “in race nutrition” - but there’s been no silver bullet. I’ve only been running 4 years and haven’t reached a plateau yet - improvements just keep coming!. I’m sure it’ll kick in soon and the PBs will stop but I’m happy to ride the wave!
    In some ways I am jealous of those who come into running and do a 4-hour marathon and then improve until eventually, a sub-3 becomes a target and a reality. I started running at about the age of 16 and spent maybe about 8 years doing track and cross-country before someone suggested I did a road race and my first road race was a sub-60 10-mile race. I then spent about 5 years trying to improve by a minute here and a minute there and then the subsequent 20+ years telling stories of "when I was young everyone used to do sub-2 for a 20-mile race else they were called a lass and laughed at".
  •  I started running at about the age of 16 .....
    But you have the enviable position of *knowing* what you were capable of in your peak. I on the other hand can only dream about what my running may have been like if I'd got off the couch and stopped being a complete lard-ass in my teens instead of waiting until I passed 40 before considering if exercise might be something i should do?....

    In my mind the UK education system of the mid 1980's has a lot to answer for - the attitude to physical education was a simple one: "If you cant kick a ball straight, then you are worthless and sport isnt for you". Years of humiliation and unpleasantness left many of us scarred and put off ANY kind of healthy activity for decades.

    There may be criticism of the "participation is what matters - everyone is a winner" attitude that seems more prevalent nowadays, but surely that has to be healthier approach?
  • edited November 2017
    Welcome DadAgain - good to have you on here. I bet you're glad you're entering the sunny season while the rest of us come up with tales of wind and rain! Congrats on the PB at Melbourne - sounds like 3:15 is well within reach.

    Gul - you're back running with a vengeance. Are you sure you can't be tempted by another marathon in the next few weeks while you're in such good shape?

    MsE - you're right, it's worth taking it easy for the next few weeks. I had a rest day this today and resisted the temptation to go running at the club, so used the time wisely and bought some of the necessaries for the event such as an emergency bivvy bag. :#  I plan to test the ankle out with a commuting run tomorrow.

    Are you going to be taking part in the Reigate XC relays on Saturday? I've not done the event before, but it's supposed to be good fun. If not, are you planning a run for Sunday morning?

    MsE / G-Dawg - if you two are both doing the Surrey Half I'm very tempted to join you although if you're both aiming for 1:25, I might have to wave you goodbye at the start and hope to catch up with you at the finish! I think that Cranleigh is two weeks after (i.e. 25 March) so could be good to do both with the 15 miles at Cranleigh 4 weeks before VLM.
  • ..I bet you're glad you're entering the sunny season while the rest of us come up with tales of wind and rain! 


    No no no - whilst I'm not a huge fan of wind I love running in the rain. Summer running around here is grueling, psychologically soul destroying and often downright dangerous. A 2 hours saturday morning long slow run can easily see me lose 3kg in sweat and the pace, even when trying will be easily 1 min/km slower than winter. 

    Summer rain is one of the few times I can get out of the house without melting! I often wait for a storm to come through before heading out for a run in order to catch as much rain as possible! (I'm going to be soaked anyway - may as well be rain rather than sweat!).... Lightening and hail however - are a bit of a hazard with our usual summer afternoon storm and best avoided.
  • G-DawgG-Dawg ✭✭✭
    Hiya DadAgain!  Welcome to the madhouse! Impressive 2016, congrats.
    I too love the rain. My two worst running conditions are heat and wind. Had both in my maras this year, 26DegC in Boston and 19mph gusting to 37mph in Abingdon. I'm over it...honest... :s
    Bring on a bleak day in London!!

    MsE/Lorenzo/Freemers - As well as the Surrey Half, I too am looking at doing Cranleigh for the first time. I'm think of testing out my MP for a large part of the distance there to see what could be feasible in London.
  • DadAgain - yes, I'd rather have rain than hot sun for running, although we don't get too many hours of rainfall in West Norfolk. Having said that I've just checked the forescast for the weekend and it could be rather wet tonight and most of Saturday!
    GD - sounds like I had it easy in comparison.
    Lorenzo - yes, I would jump at the chance, but unfortunately there's no chance of doing one for the time being.
    6 recovery miles d&d.
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