Sub-3 Marathon Thread

Spring Marathon season is over, but you can still tell us about how you smashed your goal, or failed miserably…back to square one?

Training tips here…

Ok new tritalk new me. I’m doing a triathlon next month. But it’s just a local sprint. With a sea swim. Grueling. Im finally on top of my niggling injuries though so the end game is an October marathon. Plan is that training for the Tri gets me fit without stressing my back / Achilles too early. Running 3 times a week at the moment with some swim and bike. 6 weeks of that then some more marathon focused running. I’ve got a half marathon early June to see where I’m at (1.24???) then the sprint Tri … then eyes down for Chelmsford marathon October 20th.
Hopefully i’ll Finally break 3 hrs… I’ve got some Vaporfly now so it’s nailed on right?

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If you can lay your hands on some NEXT% then you probably won’t need to do any run training :upside_down_face:

Yeah i told Mrs Twhat she’d screwed my birthday present up and got the wrong ones…

it’s been a few years since i went Sub 3…but am still lurking here…

Nearly 40 marathons in and still trying!!

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I have no idea why I even bother looking at this thread, as I literally will never be going anywhere close to a sub 3, sub 4 is the dream for me!

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I’ve entered the Richmond Runfest marathon in the autumn. Will not get anywhere near sub3 but aim is to get to the start line then aim for GFA 3:09:59.

NIce… i turned 45 last week so just got those extra 5 minutes. Hopefully they’ll not be required! I’ll try and find you on strava if you’re in the tritalkgroup? Always good to see other marathon schedules as they progress…

More than welcome to Twhat, but not much running going on at the moment. Just about managing 2 runs per week. Really need to do a lot of stretching and strengthening but I really cba. It’s just so freaking dull.

Yup! Hi.
Aiming for a wildly optimist 75 HM, I I can’t get that I’ll have to run a full bloody marathon.

Aiming to increase mileage up to 60-70mpw (based on how I feel once I get there) then hold it there until Christmas, before seeing if I can ramp it up higher than that.

Following the old mantra of +5 miles per week.
Reducing volume by 30% in week 2, 50% in week 4. Using the extra time to swim (as recovery) and stretch/core/weights.

Mileage looks like;

30 21 30 15
35 24 30 18
40 28 40 20
45 32 45 23
50 35 50 25
55 39 55 28
60 42 60 30

That takes me nicely up to Manchester half marathon in October and works with the Cotswold 113, too.

One tempo session and one interval/speed session per week. 30% weeks have a parkrun thrown in, too.
All other miles at 8:00/mile + (I’ve found that hard solo, but easier when taking the dog)
I expect the super easy pace to come down a bit, but not much.

The idea behind it is to improve running efficiency and economy, in much the same way the 4%/Next% do, but through training.

Just back home from parkrun…

Recent parkrun times since starting up again;

Oct 2018 - 21:33
Nov 2018 - 20:02 (I got 19:56???)
Jan 2019 - 19:45
Feb 2019 - 19:14
Mar 2019 - 18:42
May 2019 - 18:04

Pretty pissed not to go under 18, but it appears some folks cannot listen to the briefing when they’re told to “KEEP RIGHT” for the quicker runners on the second lap.
Absolutely nothing to do with my breakfast reoccurring at 3km in, after that 3:17 opening kilometre

Breakfast…and the 3.17 first km… the scourge of the sub 18 parkrunner :smiley:

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The first 400m is round a nice bouncy athletics track, so it is conducive to a quick opening km.
also having to jostle for position after 1-2km isn’t fun…as about 450 people do it each week (it’s ranked 8th quickest parkrun course)

However, I shan’t be doing that again.
Got to think of another plan!!!

I finally feel entitled to contribute to this thread, with a sub 3h10m Marathon.

I have just completed my biggest training week ever, Monday to Saturday, I completed over 20 hours training, with some pretty hard tempo sessions on the bike and a couple of faster swim sessions, although my running was all easy zone 2.

To cap off the week I did the Wings For Life Run, this is held simultaniously in cities around the world, starting at 1200 UK time. The basic format is that runners all set off, 30 minutes later the catcher car sets off at 14kph and increases speed by 1kph every 30 minutes for the first 2 hours, then increases speed by 4kph every 30 minutes. The idea is to run as far as you can before the catcher car gets you

Last year I managed a very respectable 31.2km @ 4:53/km pace - but I was little disappointed as the lap is 33.5 km, so my target this year was to complete the lap before being caught

The weather was appauling, snow, driving rain, hail, sun and wind and about 4 degrees. There were 5002 people registered, luckily I was seeded in the first pen.

My run started well, I felt that I was running at an easy pace (probably 5m/km) so I was surprised when I saw my first split was 4:11m, and from there I got into a good rhythm, running with an Australian, between 3:58m/km and 4:15m/km. 21 km came up in 1h28m and I started to think that 1. I could complete 42.2km before being caught, 2. maybe a 3h marathon was possible. Pace remained good to 28km, but then I started to feel tiredness creeping in, and pace fell dropped to 4:35/km. My strategy was to complete the first lap and then ease off my pace to see how far I could go. When I got to the end of the first lap, I backed off to 5m/km which felt really easy, I knew at this pace I would manage a Marathon in just under 3h10m. At 41.5km a motorbike came past and told me that the catcher car was 200m behind me, so I put in a final spurt and was caught at 42.3km, with a marathon time of 3h8m23s

This was not an easy course, I climbed a total of 326m, and had to deal with the crap weather. I was also in far from ideal shape for a Marathon, with no taper, and I have not focused on Marathon running at all. On a flat fast course, with appropriate training, nice weather and a proper taper I am 100% sure I could easily run a sub 3 hour marathon.

Now I will have to wait and see if this was an inspired run or a foolhardy one. 70.3 St Pölten is in 3 weeks time, so I will start my taper a week early, more time in the pool and short zone 2 workouts

And a final shout out for the Vapor Fly’s - undoubtedly fast, but most impressive is my legs, yes they are tired, but don’t feel that they have been beaten up. An expensive shoe, but seriously impressive

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Matt - that is very impressive, nicely done. As you said, take things easy now for a few eeks as that marathon will be living deep inside you, even if the legs are much better than ‘normal’ thanks to the shoes. You probably won’t realise how much it has fatigued you until you try to go hard in my experience.

Poet - come on man. You could have had a ‘wind’ assisted last 200m and found those 4 secs?! :smirk_cat:

Out of interest, what’s the theory behind your 1 up, 1 down mileage schedule (must admit it took me a while to decipher it until i realised you really were planning 28 weeks! haha). I haven’t seen anyone plan mileage like that before, but looks intriguing!

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I was panicking a bit yesterday, as I was utterly wrecked, not helped by pretty much zero sleep the night before (too much Red Bull at feed stations). However, went to bed at 8:30, woke up at 5:30 today feeling really good. Car had to go in for a service, so had to ride into work - kept the ride nice and gentle, HR in zone 1 - 2, felt that its was one of the most pleasant rides to work.

Left calf and right quad are a bit tight, but should be good for a really slow (6m/km or slower) 5k run tomorrow. I think for the next few weeks it is all going to be easy work, and extra time in the pool

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Matt - Great running at the WFL. I remember doing this race a couple of years ago when it was in Cambridge and enjoyed doing something slightly different.

Time to jump back in to this thread. After my 2:56 pb in January, I’ve now got high expectations for this Autumn. I’ve moved to a new city, am enjoying the running despite basically running the same route every run, and have joined a new running club. Also, for the first time in my life I am trying to run actual runner’s mileage and not the usual 25mpw I always ran in the past. I started working about 8 miles away and no longer need to wear a suit at work, so most of my miles are commuting miles (including 1 double commute per week).

For January’s marathon I averaged about 39mpw in the preceding 10 weeks. Prior to this I had never run even anything close to this but often did a lot of swimming and biking (My only other sub 3 marathon was three years ago when I was running about 20mpw but was triathlon training). I’m now 5 weeks into running 50mpw, which has included 1 track or interval session each week but few tempo sessions or proper (14 mile+) long runs, and will try to keep this ticking over for all of the summer before ramping up ahead of a November marathon. The hardest part for me though is sustainability - every few days I feel another little niggle and have to adjust before it becomes anything more severe, which I’m constantly worried it will. I guess I need to start getting in the gym a bit and get on the foam roller most evenings even if just for 5 minutes before bed.

I have a half marathon next weekend which will be good to see where I’m at. Unlikely to (ever) get near my 2015 pb of 1:17:xx which was done mainly from turbo trainer intervals, but would like to maybe get close to sub 1:20 by the end of the year, and this will be a good test I guess to see how far I am from that . Looking forward to trying a marathon later in the year on big (for me) mileage, as long as the body can hold it together.

Oh, and when should I get the 4%!?


Get the 4% NOW!!!

I ran a 1:20:41 off an 18:42 5km test run the previous week and 25mpw + triathlon training.

I’m putting it on the trainers.

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