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Favorite Marathon Workout? (Read 958 times)

    Yep. What Mikey said. I recently laid out the reasoning for this here:

     

    http://www.runningahead.com/forums/post/634be4e418b7425481c66c9f61cc5aaa#focus

    spinach


      My most effective marathon workout:    In addition to the easy 20 miler I would run each weekend I added a second long run (15 miles) during the week.  In that run the first eight to ten miles were easy and then I go to at least half marathon pace, or slightly better for the the last 5 to 7 miles. I do this maybe three times each month  This almost immediately knocked three minutes off my half marathon time (1:27 to 1:24)  and then got me a sub three marathon. 


      Queen of 3rd Place

        Yep. What Mikey said. I recently laid out the reasoning for this here:

         

        http://www.runningahead.com/forums/post/634be4e418b7425481c66c9f61cc5aaa#focus

         

        Ah, I thought maybe you meant 60min/90min doubles. That would probably be good, too.

         

        There is something about throwing in some longer runs during the week, at one point I was getting in two or three of those "medium long" runs every week and it made a huge difference (as a side benefit, I felt great).

        Ex runner


        just a simple cat

          Now you are confusing me with your "most effective' marathon workout.  I came to post my "most favorite" marathon workout.  It is that nice long 20 miler run by myself early in the morning along the beach path, with the sun starting to come up and the seagulls, pelicans and surfers swooping around to be looked at. 

           

          I  guess as you get more bodacious, you begin to lose more brain cells, because there is a limit to how much magnificence your body can house

            Yep. What Mikey said. I recently laid out the reasoning for this here:

             

            http://www.runningahead.com/forums/post/634be4e418b7425481c66c9f61cc5aaa#focus

             

            I have looked at nearly every variable for the 18 marathons that I have run, and I have found this to be true:  it seems the #1 predictor of performance is mileage.  That's not to say that long runs and tempo runs are not important -- I am a strong believer in both.  But, in this unscientific sample of 1 guy, my experience supports Jeff's and Mikey's thesis.  Lots and lots of (easy) running = I run better marathons. 

             

            The very best example I have of this is my last marathon where I characterize my training as "run a lot" and "run hard once in a while when I feel like it".  In spite of this fairly aimless training cycle I easily managed to run a race that was within 45 seconds of my PR, and if I had actually targeted my PR that day I think I would have beaten it by a minute or more.  Well, that, and maybe if I hadn't thrown in that 17th or 18th mile at sub-6:00 to drop that guy that was seriously annoying me....

            - Joe

            all running goals are under review by the executive committee.

              What about doubles to build the mileage? 

               

              It might work better for me to slip in a 30 minute run before work and a 60 minute run after work rather than a 90 minute run all at one time.  What about 2 - 45 minute runs instead of 1 - 90 minute run?  Maybe do one of each type?

               

              I'm working on my marathon plan and right now I'm just trying to get the mileage down on the calendar and it's pretty tough to get 60 mpw in!

              Age: 46 Weight: 205 Height: 6'2" (Goal weight 195)

              Current PR's:  Mara 3:48:09; HM 1:43:26; 10K 43:59; 5K 21:27

                What about doubles to build the mileage? 

                 

                It might work better for me to slip in a 30 minute run before work and a 60 minute run after work rather than a 90 minute run all at one time.  What about 2 - 45 minute runs instead of 1 - 90 minute run?  Maybe do one of each type?

                 

                I'm working on my marathon plan and right now I'm just trying to get the mileage down on the calendar and it's pretty tough to get 60 mpw in!

                 

                both are good. Magness talked about the benefits of 2x30 or 1x60. Clearly, you do want some of the singles at 60 or 90. But, if you can't fit that in, by all means do the 2x30 or 2x45


                Interval Junkie --Nobby

                  Pfitzinger says that doubles should only be done after you crest 70mpw.  Before that you're getting reduced benefit from splitting your runs.

                  2014 Goals:  sub-3 Marathon 

                  Current Status 08/28: Slowly working back up from a pelvic stress fracture.  4mil distance PR w00t!

                    Pfitzinger says that doubles should only be done after you crest 70mpw.  Before that you're getting reduced benefit from splitting your runs.

                     

                    sure, in an ideal world when you can reach 70 on singles. But if you can't? 

                     

                    http://www.scienceofrunning.com/2009/10/is-9mi-once-better-than-45mi-twice.html

                      Pfitzinger says that doubles should only be done after you crest 70mpw.  Before that you're getting reduced benefit from splitting your runs.

                       

                      I think he is wrong on this, if this is what he says. I would like to see a direct quote. It is one thing to say that doubles are of minimal benefit below 70mpw, but it's another thing to phrase it as you have, which is that they should only be done past a certain threshold. That's a much stronger claim.

                       

                      In my opinion frequency is a training fundamental -- which is to say that if you increase the frequency of your training, you are almost always increasing the quality of your training.

                       

                      Frequency

                      Volume

                      Specificity

                      Intensity

                       

                      Four pretty good fundamentals for a "metaphysics of training."

                       

                      I have found that one way to shift a "stimulus" especially when a runner is stale is to move from singles to doubles or vice-versa. Also, it seems to me that there are certain types of runners who benefit from longer singles and other types who have a tendency to break down with longer singles and thrive off of doubles.

                        My most effective marathon workout:    In addition to the easy 20 miler I would run each weekend I added a second long run (15 miles) during the week.  In that run the first eight to ten miles were easy and then I go to at least half marathon pace, or slightly better for the the last 5 to 7 miles. I do this maybe three times each month  This almost immediately knocked three minutes off my half marathon time (1:27 to 1:24)  and then got me a sub three marathon. 

                         

                        What about doubles to build the mileage? 

                         

                        It might work better for me to slip in a 30 minute run before work and a 60 minute run after work rather than a 90 minute run all at one time.  What about 2 - 45 minute runs instead of 1 - 90 minute run?  Maybe do one of each type?

                         

                        I'm working on my marathon plan and right now I'm just trying to get the mileage down on the calendar and it's pretty tough to get 60 mpw in!

                         

                        One thing I learned recently (from Nobby I think), and hope to put into practice in a few months, is the additional adaption that can be made from a 90 minute mid-week medium-long run.  Probably a bit longer than 90 minutes, but Spinach combines this with another of my favorites, the fast-finish (i.e. progressive) long run.  Thanks, Spinach, for the anecdote.  There's always something to learn here, something new to try on the next training cycle. 

                         

                        npaden, I whole-heartedly agree that it is difficult to find ways to make a 60-70 MPW schedule fit between work and family.  The 90 minute mid-week run is probably the hardest workout to accommodate but I doubt that its training value can be captured by a 2x45 minute double. 

                        2013 H1:  7 hours/week base.  Q3: Train for goal race.  Q4:  Goal Race.

                          Loving all of these responses! So much to work on for the next time.

                           

                          Jeff, here is the Pfitzinger quote that I think stadjak is thinking of:

                          "For marathoners, the basic guideline is to not to double workouts until you've maximized the amount you're running in single workouts. If you're preparing for a marathon and are running less than 75 miles a week, then you shouldn't regularly be running doubles. If you're running less thn 75 miles a week, by the time you get in your long run and a midweek medium-long run, there's no reason to double more than once or twice a week to get in the remaining miles. It's better to get in longer runs and give your body 22 or 23 hours of recovery between runs.

                           

                          That comes from chapter 7 in Advanced Marathoning.

                           

                          I think the easiest way for me to increase my mileage up to 70mpw would be to do more 60 minute runs in the morning instead of 35-40 minute runs.

                           

                          --

                          Nashville, TN

                           

                            Loving all of these responses! So much to work on for the next time.

                             

                            Jeff, here is the Pfitzinger quote that I think stadjak is thinking of:

                             

                            That comes from chapter 7 in Advanced Marathoning.

                             

                            I think the easiest way for me to increase my mileage up to 70mpw would be to do more 60 minute runs in the morning instead of 35-40 minute runs.

                             

                            Good stuff -- but check this out:

                             

                            midweek long / long total mileage: 30-35. That leaves only 40 miles for the remaining 5 days. At 8 miles a pop, you are looking at easy recovery running, and I'd agree it wouldn't be too productive to split those runs up into 4/4 (though it probably wouldn't hurt anything). I'd also venture to guess that Pfitz has in mind someone who is running roughly 7 minute miles when he is writing about all of this...

                             

                            The problem is: how many runners are ready to handle that 75 mile a week schedule?

                             

                            So, would Pfitz be against doubles to build to 75 a week in the general base phase (i.e. before we are doing a 15 mile midweek run and a 20 mile long run)? Is that "marathon training"? Well, it's not specific marathon work, but it's the work that allows you to get to the point where you can do the marathon specific work.

                             

                            And then, what if you can't crank out an 8 miler in 60 minutes? Then, I would argue that it would be productive to split some of those 8 milers up....

                             

                            MTA: finally, regarding the best way for YOU, jxn to get to 75 a week, I would say would be using doubles and definitely not a 15 mile midweek run, a 20 mile long run and 60 minute runs.... I think you would benefit from something like:

                             

                            M: 30/45 (10)

                            T: 60 (7.5)

                            W: 90 (12)

                            Th: 30/45 (10)

                            Fr: 60 (7.5)

                            Sa: 30/45 (10)

                            Su: 120 (16)

                             

                            Total: 72.5ish

                              And then, what if you can't crank out an 8 miler in 60 minutes? Then, I would argue that it would be productive to split some of those 8 milers up....

                               

                              MTA: finally, regarding the best way for YOU, jxn to get to 75 a week, I would say would be using doubles and definitely not a 15 mile midweek run, a 20 mile long run and 60 minute runs.... I think you would benefit from something like:

                               

                              M: 30/45 (10)

                              T: 60 (7.5)

                              W: 90 (12)

                              Th: 30/45 (10)

                              Fr: 60 (7.5)

                              Sa: 30/45 (10)

                              Su: 120 (16)

                               

                              Total: 72.5ish

                               

                              That same schedule would end up like this for me.

                               

                              M:  30/45 (8)

                              Tu: 60 (6)

                              W:  90 (9.5)

                              Th: 30/45 (8)

                              Fr:  60 (6)

                              Sa: 30/45 (8)

                              Su: 120 (12.5)

                               

                              Total: 58 mpw = 9 hours and 15 minutes.

                               

                              I'm going to be out there closer to 3 hours on my long run days especially if I top out at 20 milers that would be 3:20 for me to not be killing myself on the pace at the end.

                               

                              I was also thinking I was going to have to go over the 90 minute mark on the medium long run during the week to make it work.

                               

                              Here's what I was thinking a tenative plan for a week of 60 miles would look like for me.

                               

                              M:  60 (6)

                              Tu: 90 (9)

                              W:  60 (6)

                              Th: 30/45 (8)

                              Fr:  60 (6)

                              Sa: 200 (20)

                              Su: 50 (5)

                               

                              Total: 60 mpw = just under 10 hours of running.

                               

                              I was thinking that on a couple weeks that I might do a longer mid week run and offset it with a shorter long run that week.

                               

                              M:  60 (6)

                              Tu: 120 (12)

                              W:  60 (6)

                              Th: 30/45 (8)

                              Fr:  60 (6)

                              Sa: 160(16)

                              Su: 60 (6)

                               

                              Total: 60 mpw

                               

                              Is 10 hours a week too much?  Do I need to reduce my mileage down to 55 hours a week which would get it right around 9 hours?

                               

                              I'm assuming I will be still getting faster, and might be under 10:00 per mile on my easy pace eventually, but knocking 30 seconds a mile off doesn't really change the numbers much.  I got in 151.7 miles in October and averaged a 9:34 pace for the month, but that included some races and some 5K specific speed work so I wouldn't expect that as an average pace on more of a marathon base building phase.

                               

                              It's crazy to me how different the advice is here than what most of the training plans would have me doing.  A training plan for a sub 4 hour goal marathon on one of the sites I use (runkeeper) only has 4 workouts a week with 3 complete rest days.  They also have a lot of interval and speedwork mixed in there.  I know I will need to mix in some speedwork eventually, but right now my thoughts were to just get back to building base with a ton of easy miles.

                               

                              Oh well, very interesting discussion to a slow poke like me.

                              Age: 46 Weight: 205 Height: 6'2" (Goal weight 195)

                              Current PR's:  Mara 3:48:09; HM 1:43:26; 10K 43:59; 5K 21:27

                                That same schedule would end up like this for me.

                                 

                                M:  30/45 (8)

                                Tu: 60 (6)

                                W:  90 (9.5)

                                Th: 30/45 (8)

                                Fr:  60 (6)

                                Sa: 30/45 (8)

                                Su: 120 (12.5)

                                 

                                Total: 58 mpw = 9 hours and 15 minutes.

                                 

                                If you ran this schedule for 6 months and kept working on getting your weight down, you would be flying -- I bet you would be averaging 8:30s instead of those 10 minute miles. But if you spend the next cycle working on the marathon chances are good that you will stay running 9:30s and 10s since the difficulty of marathoning for a 4 hour + runner is handling those really long runs.

                                 

                                To your point about training plans, I think the difference between the perspective I am offering here and what you are seeing with other online plans is that this perspective is about building the runner's body first, and then once you've got that, you can begin asking yourself how to get that body to run its best marathon. Whereas many plans are concerned with getting a person who does not necessarily have a runner's body through a marathon more or less happily.

                                 

                                In my opinion, for the reasons discussed here, it is hard to build that runner's body and train for a marathon simultaneously. This is why you so often hear the advice from experienced runners to wait on the marathon and work on something like the 5k.

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