Global Marathon Domination
This means I have until October to be able to run at the same pace as my last half marathon for twice the distance. Something I believe I am definitely capable of. It will require some really good training.
My history in the marathon is a little mixed. Years ago (2000) when I first decided to really take up distance running I managed 3:20:11 in my first effort. Coming back in 2003 after really hammering triathlons I set my personal best by covering the 42.195km in 3:09:10. Otherwise I have a couple of efforts at around 3:18-19, and another couple of 3:30-3:35 which were run comfortably as training runs in the lead up to Ironman races.
From my time performing as a lab rat, the countless physiology measurements suggest my best possible performance is heading towards the 2:45:xx mark. I take this with a bit of salt. In triathlons I consistently raced above these so-called predictions from the laboratory. The marathon is a different story. This 2:45 prediction made quite a few assumptions, not the least being I train to my maximum capacity. Might be something I cannot do with full time work and a family.
This time I have chosen the 3 hour mark for the following reasons:
- It appears realistic
- It is unknown territory for me
- It requires a challenging training commitment
- There is something magic about a marathon time that begins with a two.
The Training Plan:
I'll get into more detail in the future, but for now here is a brief overview of the training.
Six phases: Base 1-3, Threshold, Specific and Peak.
Base and Threshold phases are each made of 4 x 7-9 day cycles that include 4 key sessions:
- Long Run
- Medium Run
- Intense Run (threshold or above)
- Speed work
All other runs will either be 45-75min at aerobic conditioning pace, or very easy recovery depending on how I'm handling things. The 4th cycle of each of these phases is for recovery and testing. Throughout I expect to gradually increase my average running speeds while steadily increasing volume.
Once into the Specific and Peak phases things get a little different. Here I hammer race specific pacing plus some higher intensity work before tapering.
It looks simple enough on paper. Naturally I have a few more considerations in the plan than is evident in the above table, but the most important element is: