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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 7:38 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sat May 20, 2006 2:56 pm
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Location: No brakes? Way to commit soldier.
I've been talked into a marathon in October, I'm not a complete newbie having done a few 10k events, a fair bit of trail running and a half marathon (1hr49m) although the half was a couple of years ago and these days I ride more than I run.

I have 18 weeks to get to fitness and could do with some motivation. I've got a very short attention span and plodding the streets for four months is going to bore me stupid.

Anyone got any marathon stories, hints or tips to keep me motivated or amuse me?

:)


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:02 am 
Sabrina the Teenage Witch
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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 2:23 pm
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Location: Mammoths deserve to be cloned. From what I've seen in 'Ice Age' they are jolly good sports.
Train with someone else running with you. For me, made it a lot easier and less boring. You can take turns following each other's feet, takes your mind off looking ahead.

But yeah, it's boring on your own. That's why we have bikes :)


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:06 am 
retrobike rider
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Location: Super Sussex by the Sea
The bloke I used to work with did two marathons, both just over 4 hours. He did months of training for both, as well as being a keen footballer, cyclist and triathlete. We were at our yard when we bumped into a mate of mine who had done a marathon and my workmate asked him what training he had done...
"errrm I did a 5 mile run, then a 12 mile run, then a 17 mile run, then I did the marathon"
"what time did you get?"
"Three and a half hours"
"Oh....."

Not very technical advice I'm afraid, but I think the pace you run at is quite often dictated by what sort of person you are rather than how much training you do, although I certainly wouldn't do a marathon with no training, good luck!


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:08 am 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Location: London
I entered a Marathon once .... I got a peanut stuck under my foreskin.

Now that's out of the way ... I did London a long time ago. I was running 10kms pretty quickly at the time (sub 35 mins) so naively thought the step up would be pretty simple and my only preparation was my normal 10km training (long runs of an hour at a steady, club pace; faster 5+kms and the occasional group fartlek) and one half marathon two weeks before the big day. In short, it wasn't. I pretty much discovered that my "natural" endurance threshold was around 1.5 hours and I went backwards after that. I ran it with a friend who was the opposite - he would get around 10km in 50 minutes, but could carry on at that pace for as long as he liked. He was a smoker, which annoyed me even more! We were both early twenties at the time.

I guess my point is that, in my experience, some are more naturally pre-disposed to endurance running than others. Those that aren't need to work more on their endurance. I wish I knew that when I did the marathon because frankly my experience that day (4hr50 having totally blown up at 17 miles) put me off doing it again!

If you're running 10kms now you're off to a strong start and your half marathon time is good enough to give you confidence you can step up. I don't think there's a shortcut to building marathon endurance, though and suspect that pounding the pavements is going to feature in your near future if you're going to enjoy the experience. The trick is to make it interesting, though. This could be following a training programme (Runners World website is very good) but that may not work for you. If you like running with headphones, try and audio book or podcast instead of music. If the course is going to involve hills, find some hills to run up and down.

For me, the most important part is time spent on your feet because nothing other than running 20 miles will reproduce the pain / experiece of legs that are 20 miles old.

Question for you: at the end of your half marathon, how were your legs?

And good luck :)


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:26 am 
Retro Guru
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Location: Runcorn
Kestonian wrote:
For me, the most important part is time spent on your feet because nothing other than running 20 miles will reproduce the pain / experiece of legs that are 20 miles old.


Talking of which...

http://www.rvops.co.uk/Catalogue/Milita ... ftec-Ultra

..Mouldable insoles: you heat them for a couple minutes, step on them, and you have a custom fit. A big help in increasing pronantion efficiency and reducing injuries, especially fallen arches. They come in different thicknesses if you need a lower colume fit. I've given up on running because it's such a poor fit for me, but these did make a difference. Alternative, I think there are SmartFeet insoles that a dealer can put in machine in the store so they'll mould to your fit. Worth thinking about, because so many runners do get fallen arches.

The other thing I've picked up on talking to runners that may help you is that these days some people do a large part of their prep even for marathons using interval training. If boredom is your worry, then this would have the advantage of replacing a good number of slower high mileage sessions with much shorter vomit inducing ones. I have no idea whether this body type or skill level specific - but it might be something to ask about on real runner's forums. The cycling equivalent has always worked in preparing me for distance, and I know intervals have taken over a lot of long distance cycle racing training. But I get crazy bored doing low intensity long mileage, so I'm prejudiced!


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:10 pm 
South East AEC
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Make sure you get a few long runs in 20+ in the lead up.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:36 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2010 10:49 pm
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Location: North Somerset
I'm also doing my first marathon in October. Having done several half marathons in the past with a best time of 1hr 30 I've now realisied that slowing the pace down is the key and that it is a marathon and not a race. I've also found off road running to be more beneficial in keeping the boredom at bay and helping strengthen ankles and it also makes returning to the road seem easier but as above I think you just have to put the miles in with gradual increases. Good luck


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 9:20 pm
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Location: Chained to the mash tun.
Russell wrote:
I've been talked into a marathon in October, I'm not a complete newbie having done a few 10k events, a fair bit of trail running and a half marathon (1hr49m) although the half was a couple of years ago and these days I ride more than I run.

I have 18 weeks to get to fitness and could do with some motivation. I've got a very short attention span and plodding the streets for four months is going to bore me stupid.

Anyone got any marathon stories, hints or tips to keep me motivated or amuse me?

:)


Off road hill reps with steady jog backs for strength, football pitch sprints for speed (sprint diagonals and very slow jog the width and repeat for 15 mins) increase time as you get stronger and get a few steady 2 hour + runs in as mentioned earlier. The key to getting fitter is your recovery time between intervals. The stonger you are the quicker you will recover between interval sessions. Dont forget to include a rest day in each week, V V IMPORTANT this one.

Steady plodding has its place for recovering but can be counter-productive. Sounds daft but if you want to run faster you have to be able to move your legs faster, so train faster but under-distance.

Most important of all have lots of fun and good luck!


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2013 11:05 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 9:06 pm
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Location: Herts UK
very important - may sure you fork out for a good quality running shoe, none of the 20 quid stuff from primark or tesco.

if you have bad gait, then get shoe inserts.

get a calendar and list the target distance you need to run each week - intersperse it with rest and other training e.g. swimming and cycling.

you need to get to about 20 miles-ish so no need for the full distance - the other runners in the event will pull you through the additional 6 or so miles.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2013 1:48 am 
National & North West AEC
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Location: Macclesfield Forest
I've done seven marathons so far since being coerced into running back in 2004. I say so far, as I did say never again a couple of years ago. I am however kind of committed to another one in 2014.
My fastest time was at the London Marathon in 2006: 4 hours and 47 seconds. If I hadn't stop for that energy gel on the Embankment I could've been sub fours hours in only my second marathon...
The crowd and atmosphere really helped on that one and I just felt good on the day.

Anyway... I've never felt properly trained or conditioned for any of my marathons, simply because the tedium and time spent on training has always been too much for me to handle.
My biking fitness has helped in terms of cardio and endurance, but to run well you need to condition your legs by doing alot of regular running.

Long runs in training will obviously help although my training runs never exceeded about 15 miles and rarely exceeded about 6 miles. There is much to be said for lots of shorter runs to condition your legs to the abuse they take. If you can get out for some type of run five days a week then it will pay dividends.
Long term endurance can be built up on the bike and is also good none load bearing exercise to help your legs recover a bit.
A physio I had to use once told that 'when you are a runner, you are either injured, recovering from an injury or about to get injured'.

As others have said, good quality running shoes are essential and fitted insoles are also great. I'd also keep ice packs in the freezer and read up on hold and cold self treatment. Find a good sports masseur too.

I'd also advise picking which marathon you go for. 6 of the 7 I've done have been the Jungfrau Mountain Marathon in Switzerland. All uphill with a total ascent of 5,960 feet (1,823 m). Hard work, but the scenery is stunning. I've also only ever run this in some form of fancy dress. Wigs can be very hot and caveman outfits can chafe awfully.

I'd also probably advise against cycling out from the UK to Switzerland (twice) taking a day off and then running. It kills your running legs. I'd happily cycle out again, but I wouldn't run when I got there.

Good luck with your training.


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