2020 Marathon Training and relevant COVID 19 discussion echo chamber (Read 700 times)

Running Problem

Problem Child

    Welcome to the 2020 Marathon Training Thread.

    We're doing this a lot differently in 2020. Goal time or race pace isn't going to separate us anymore. The race distance is the same if you're doing it at a 5:15/mi pace or a 10:45/mi pace. The joy of running/competing/finishing isn't any different. 


    Running the marathon is as much fun as you make it and some of us want to join in on your enjoyment. Running your first? Trying to get faster than you were before? Lose a bet? Doesn't matter since we're all in this together. Post your goal race and goal time, ask questions, post answers, and learn from others this year because we're going to make marathon training great again. Just don't forget to have fun out there. You get out of this what you put into it. Someone has to be having fun out there so it might as well be you. 


    Ask questions. Provide answers. Engage in the topics.  If you never give feedback, or you only post your weekly runs, you're unlikely to get much in return.  In the down time between marathon cycles, folks will sometimes disappear. You are encouraged to stick around even if your weeklies aren't exciting. Don't let other's weekly mileage discourage you either. No marathon training has ever said "If you average X miles per week you'll run a xTight lippedxTight lippedx.xx Marathon." 

    Post your goal marathon(s) (name, date, and goal time if you have one). I'll put together a table on this first page if I remember how and keep it updated with results and new races/new posters as they pop up. Everyone likes tracking their "imaginary online friends" on weekends. 


    Please post a brief running bio, and state what your goals are for 2020.   

    the race table is below

     2020 Marathon Training Race Table










    37th Jacksonville Marathon

    January 5, 2020

    Sub 2:40


    The Weather was better than predicted.


    48th Houston Marathon

    January 19, 2020



    The wheels came off.


    42nd Cowtown Marathon

    February 28, 2020

    Sub 3


    70+ F and 70+ Humidity.


    National 50k Championship

    1, March 2020



    BQ marathon as part of the 50k.


    34th LA Marathon

    March 8, 2020

    Just Finish


    Sean O’Brian 1 month before


    Barcelona Marathon

    15 March 2020





    NYC Half Marathon

    15 March 2020



    Training race for the Moose Mug


    4th Revel Mt. Charleston Marathon

    4 april 2020

    Sub 4




    Berlin Marathon

    5 April 2020





    Milwaukee Marathon

    April 11, 2020



    2:35:49 in 2019.


    124th Boston Marathon

    20 April 2020



    Moose Mug


    124th Boston Marathon

    20 April 2020





    39th London Marathon

    26 April 2020



    No goal set


    Glas City Marathon

    April 26, 2020

    2:48:59 or bust




    Lincoln Marathon

    May 3, 2020





    48th Vancouver Marathon

    May 3, 2020





    Lake Wobegon Marathon

    May 9, 2020

    3:30-35 BQ


    Mother’s Day Weekend


    16th Fargo Marathon

    May 9, 2020





    York Marathon

    May 17, 2020

    Sub 3:20




    Christchurch Marathon

    May 31





    Grandma’s Marathon

    June 20



    Child #3 due around this time.


    Missoula Marathon

    June 28, 2020











     Rotorua Marathon

    26 September 2020



    Stay 6 feet away from all people


    47th Berlin Marathon

    27 September 2020



    Goal depends on London result








    39th Twin Cities Marathon

    October 4, 2020



    I’m very motivating with a 2:59:10.


    Indianapolis Marathon

    November 7, 2020



    Race Canceled


    Hartford Marathon

    October 10, 2020

    Sub 2:50




    Mankato Marathon

    October 17

    2:40 x


    Saturday Race(TENATIVE RACE)


    16th Grand Rapids Marathon

    October 18, 2020





    Cheaters International Marathon

    December 6, 2020

    2:55 Training run for Boston 2021





    Wairarapa Country Marathon

    October 11





     Harrisburg Marathon

    November 8, 2020

    Sub 2:50

     2:56:09 Weather forecast 50-60F. 1:24 half.





    Many of us aren't sure what the hell point you are trying to make and no matter how we guess, it always seems to be something else. Which usually means a person is doing it on purpose.

    VDOT 52.45

    5k19:35 | Marathon 2:56:07


    37 going on 60

      I'm Dan.  35 (turning 36 in june) and living in the frozen north of Minneapolis, Minnesota with my wife, 2.5 y.o. son and child 2 coming supposedly 3 days before Grandma's marathon.   Started running for the first time on 1/1/19 after 3 years away from running.  Am finally back in shape after running for a year. I'll be racing 2 marathons this year as goal races, and a bunch of other races that are part of our local track club circuit.  Former DIII college runner making a comeback-ish attempt at glory. Have goal times for some, but planning on training through all races with no tapering except marathons so it'll be racing on tired legs.


      3/14 O'Gara's 8k 29:00

      4/25 Get in Gear Half Marathon 1:20:00

      5/16 Uff Da Half Marathon 1:18:00

      5/25 Brian Kraft 5k 16:30

      6/20 Grandma's Marathon ??? (2nd kid due 3 days before) 2:45:00

      7/22 Torchlight 5k 16:30

      8/5 Endless Summer 5 mile trail race (who knows)

      8/29 Rutabaga Half marathon (Going for the win after getting 2nd last year) very hilly course so time is out the window

      9/7 Victory 10k 34:00

      10/4 TC 10 Mile 59:59

      10/17 Mankato Marathon 2:40:00


      Looking to go 2:45:00 at Grandma's Marathon and 2:40 at Mankato Marathon.  However my 2nd child is due 3 days before Grandma's so a little up in the air if I'll actually run.


      2021 Goals for my 2 marathon cycles this year

      Marathon Sub 2:40 2:39:27 Grandma's Marathon 6/19/21

      10k Sub 35:00 in Marathon build

      5k Sub 16:30 in Marathon build /16:34 BK5K Memorial Day 2021


      2022 Goals

      Marathon Sub 2:37 2:41:32 Grandma's 2022

      10k Sub 35:00

      5k Sub 16:00


        Mark, 38 from Auckland, New Zealand - married with an almost-3 year old daughter.


        I started running in 2015, after rehabilitating a serious knee injury I got playing field hockey (which I was pretty crap at, but enjoyed).  I quickly discovered that (a) I loved running and (b) I had a bit of talent.  Ran mostly 10k's and half marathons to start with, and some of you might remember me from the 2017 thread, when I ran my first and only marathon (2:57).  I paced it badly, hated the last 7km, still hit the sub-3 goal, and subsequently developed ITB issues which made running miserable for a couple of months, so I swore off marathons.  But I've kept track of a few of the runners on here on Strava, and have got some really great support from many of you too, so thanks (and good to see you all again!).


        I've had a couple of awesome years in 2018 and 2019 across half marathon and 10k races - a combination of consistent training, staying healthy, and a bit of luck too.  I targeted four main half marathons in 2019, worked hard in between them, and the sequence went:

        April: 1:14 (PB)

        June: 1:14 (PB, atrocious weather)

        September: 1:12 (PB, technical course, 3rd overall at National Half Marathon champs)

        November: 1:10 (PB, downhill course)


        With my wife working weekends last year, I had to find creative ways to get the hard work in (sometimes involving 4am starts).  But it got results, and I'll probably never have a year to top 2019, and I'm all good with that.  Worked hard, smashed the goal races, never expected to be that quick ever, it was incredibly rewarding.


        Anyway, it's got to the point where my current FM time annoys the crap out of me - I know I can do a lot better.  Having got the mileage up to a consistent 90-100km during training weeks including 2-3 workouts per week, I think I'm a lot better equipped to manage the demands of a marathon now.


        The goal race is Christchurch Marathon on 31 May.  I ran the half there in 2019 (and PB'ed in atrocious weather), and it's a very quick course - probably the fastest in the country.  I figure if I can run a good race there despite it being a terrible day, it's a good choice for a full marathon!  At this stage the goal is 2:38 - it was originally sub-2:40 but then I figured a moose mug would be 2:38 so what the hell.  JMac will tell me I'm sandbagging, but I tend to run best when I just go out and run without getting too focused/psyched out about a time goal - and I've only run one marathon so I've got quite a lot to learn.


        If that goes OK I might look at doing another marathon later in the year - potentially NYC (my brother lives there, which helps).


        Goals for 2020 (the first three are standard annual goals!):

        Have fun

        Don't get injured

        Run at least one new race

        Lay down a damn good marathon time


        PS No discussions about my easy pace, unless you're my coach.



        Southern Lakes Half Marathon, 4/4/20, goal 1:10:45 (what the hell)

        Christchurch Marathon, 5/31/19, goal 2:38:59

        3,000m: 9:07.7 (Nov-21) | 5,000m: 15:39 (Dec-19) | 10,000m: 32:34 (Mar-20)  

        10km: 33:15 (Sep-19) | HM: 1:09:41 (May-21)* | FM: 2:41:41 (Oct-20)

        * Net downhill course

        Last race: Run the Point 10k, 27 Nov, 35:00, 1st overall

        Up next: Clevedon Country Half Marathon, 5 Feb



        37 going on 60


          PS No discussions about my easy pace, unless you're my coach.




          Ps. Brew- child 2 due in june not child 3 


          2021 Goals for my 2 marathon cycles this year

          Marathon Sub 2:40 2:39:27 Grandma's Marathon 6/19/21

          10k Sub 35:00 in Marathon build

          5k Sub 16:30 in Marathon build /16:34 BK5K Memorial Day 2021


          2022 Goals

          Marathon Sub 2:37 2:41:32 Grandma's 2022

          10k Sub 35:00

          5k Sub 16:00


          Mother of Cats

            Thanks for getting us started, Brew!.


            My intro (cut and pasted from elsewhere, because I'm lazy/efficient):



            Darkwave - female and 45 years old.  Goes by "Cris" or "Cristina" IRL.  I'm in the part of Northern Virginia that is essentially Washington DC without the negatives of living in DC proper.  About 50% of my weekly mileage is run in DC or Maryland, not Virginia.


            I race pretty much everything from the mile (road only) to the marathon.  I avoid track races and I hate trails - I'm an asphalt/concrete princess.   I started running 11 years ago, at the age of 33, so I'm an adult onset runner.  My previous sport was horses - hunter-jumper to be exact.  If you want to see me riding at the age of 17, it's here.


            I train with a coach and a team (same coach for 9 years now, I think).  It's worked very well for me


            I have moderate-to-severe asthma (that's what they call it), am allergic to a whole slew of stuff, and have a bunch of auto-immune issues to boot, including Ulcerative Colitis.   I have not, as of yet, been diagnosed with hypochondria.  The asthma and allergies are managed fairly well with medication (all carefully checked to ensure it's allowed under WADA/USADA); I control the autoimmune/UC stuff mainly by lifestyle (diet, etc) and occasionally meds when things flare.   I'm also fun at parties..


            I'm injury prone and overtrain easily (possibly age, possibly autoimmune stuff) so a fair amount of my training is cross training (pool-running, swimming, yoga, weights), and I run my easy runs very slowly relative to my race paces.


            (I'm good with punctuation and grammar in general, but abuse parentheticals)


            I have a law degree and do ediscovery/workplace monitoring work for a large international corporation.  I telecommute full time and live very close to a track and an indoor pool - very convenient for training.  If you're wondering how I fit stuff in - that's how.


            I live with my boyfriend/partner of a decade plus and three cats, all defective (one has severe allergies, the other two are visually impaired).  A horse that is sound enough to live happily as a "pasture ornament" but can't be ridden completes our collection.


            PRs as of 11:59 pm December 31, 2019:  Mile: 5:25 (2017); 5K: 18:51 (2017); 4M: 24:55 (2019); 10K: 38:56 (20:17); 10M: 1:02:28 (2019); Half: 1:24:08 (2019); Full: 2:57:42 (2018).


            Goal races for first part of 2020:


            Houston Half - January 19, 2020


            One City Marathon - March 1, 2020.



            Up in the air but not confirmed: Cherry Blossom 10 Miler, BAA 5K, Boston Marathon, Broad Street 10 Miler.  (obviously will not do all of these)

            Everyone's gotta running blog; I'm the only one with a POOL-RUNNING blog.


            And...if you want a running Instagram where all the pictures are of cats, I've got you covered.


              Brew - thanks for starting this!


              My background: I'm 40 and have always considered myself a runner, but I just didn't actually take it all that seriously. My main sport was soccer growing up, and I totally focused on that. I started running marathons back in 2002, but it was with non-existent to horrible training. Finally in 2014 I decided that instead of just saying "I could run a good marathon if I spent time training" I decided to see if there was any truth to that. I got to the point where I could run 50 miles in a week, and started training for the Houston Marathon in January 2015. Before that I had a PR of 3:46. I first ran 3:09, then eventually got my time down to 2:57 in March of 2017. I managed that 2:57 despite dealing with a bum psoas since March of 2016. That really made things difficult, and in the marathon in particular. I'm finally clear of that and am where I want to be for a marathon in 17 days (Houston).  So I'll go for a PR, and hopefully get close to 2:50 or under.


              Other details: I'm a lawyer in Houston, married with three boys (6, 7 and 8).


              Mark - I can't remember what you said about your easy pace???? Fair game to talk about??? I think we should be allowed to talk about it, because I find it fascinating. I might be wrong, but it seems to me that your easy pace has remained more or less the same (somewhere in the 6:30 to 7 range), even though you've gone from 1:18 to 1:10 in the half. Is that right? Assuming you're really a sub 2:30 marathoner, your easy pace at least makes a little more sense. Doing an "easy" run in less than 6:45 when your marathon pace is 6:45 was...interesting (is that okay to say?). I'm a big believer in everyone is different when looking at what works for them. You certainly get the benefit of the doubt--your methods have paid off big time in the 4 or 5 years you've been running. You're right to not worry too much about the goal at this point. You've got so much time. See how things go and figure it out later. I usually think about marathon goals at that point in the cycle as if they were written in very light pencil. Easy to scratch off and write something new. But I do think it's good to have something there just to guide you in your training.


              DP - Welcome! What were your previous race times?

              Upcoming races: Boston

              From the Internet.

                Hey what up marathoners!!


                Lauren, 33/F from greater Boston area. I had a HUUUGE breakout year in 2019 and am hoping to keep it rolling for the next few years.


                I picked up running in grad school, mid-2012, when my daughter was a preschooler and my stress levels were through the roof. I had ridden horses from age 10 through the end of college but dropped it when I got pregnant and no longer had time/money to put into it. I needed SOMETHING to focus on outside of work and family, and running was cheap and easy to try. Took me a while to build up to being able to run for a couple of miles straight, and even more time after that to realize that I was trying to run all my easy runs too fast and that was why I kept getting injured, but I've gotten smarter about training every year and trying to look at the big picture versus being beholden to this week's schedule or this day's workout. Racing doesn't 100% fill the horse-shaped hole in my heart but it's gotten pretty close to what I was missing, and I've met a lot of awesome people both IRL and on the internet through running!


                I like the idea of trails and ultras, but the marathon and the mile are where I've really found my sweet spot(s) for now, and I'll probably be focusing primarily on those distances for a while, with some other race distances sprinkled in as part of a nice well-rounded training philosophy.


                Races planned thus far:


                - Chip some more time off the mile during the 2019-20 indoor season. Just ran 5:43, getting down to 5:39 should be doable based on that performance, may get closer to 5:30 if things go really well. Still figuring out the strategy quite a bit.


                - 3/15 - New Bedford Half Marathon - tentative, haven't signed up yet. Ideally I'd like to target ~90 minutes but who knows.

                - 4/20 - Boston Marathon - training with a PR in mind (current 3:13:15; think somewhere between 3:05-3:10 should be realistic). Given that the weather is such a crapshoot that time of year and training through the Boston winter means that I'm gonna melt if it hits 60 on race day, number one goal will be to enjoy the day and run a smart, even race regardless of finish time.


                - 5/17 - Sugarloaf 15K - destination race with a group of friends. Should be an easy PR as my only other 15K is slower than my current marathon pace! Maybe targeting 62-63 minutes.


                Fall race plans are still up in the air and dependent upon spring races/training. Will likely pick something flat/fast for a marathon PR, but if Boston goes well I might spend some time focusing on a good half marathon instead.


                  Andres - haha I was more just trying to avoid starting another easy pace argument.  As I pushed the mileage up over the last year my easy pace definitely dropped back - more like 7:15 to 7:45/mile now.  When I switched from running 5 days a week to 6, I was also super-conscious of keeping the easy days easy since that extra day off always really recharged the legs.  I guess I've just focused on running to easy effort / heart rate, it just always seemed to end up relatively quick compared to others.  I know some folks think of a specific pace target for easy runs, like 5:00/km or 8:00/mile but I just tend to run it on feel (hopefully correctly).


                  Thanks for the advice on goals - I'm definitely not locking in a hard goal at this stage, but if start really crushing workouts in March/April (or failing them miserably), I'll put something a bit more solid in.  It's going to be exciting to see what you can do in a few weeks now that you're finally clear of those injury niggles.

                  3,000m: 9:07.7 (Nov-21) | 5,000m: 15:39 (Dec-19) | 10,000m: 32:34 (Mar-20)  

                  10km: 33:15 (Sep-19) | HM: 1:09:41 (May-21)* | FM: 2:41:41 (Oct-20)

                  * Net downhill course

                  Last race: Run the Point 10k, 27 Nov, 35:00, 1st overall

                  Up next: Clevedon Country Half Marathon, 5 Feb

                  "CONSISTENCY IS KING"


                  37 going on 60

                    Andres to answer your question...


                    I don't think I'll break anything 10k and under this year because of mileage and no taper, but if I do Boston 2021 then I'll go after the shorter races summer and fall of 2021. This year is all about moving the marathon time down. I have never raced a half marathon as a goal race (other than 2019 as part of my getting back to running) so that time is by far the softest.




                    PR post college/non track


                    16:02 (road)


                    29:18 (cross county)


                    34:32 (road)


                    1:00:52 (1st time in 2019)

                    Half Marathon






                    2021 Goals for my 2 marathon cycles this year

                    Marathon Sub 2:40 2:39:27 Grandma's Marathon 6/19/21

                    10k Sub 35:00 in Marathon build

                    5k Sub 16:30 in Marathon build /16:34 BK5K Memorial Day 2021


                    2022 Goals

                    Marathon Sub 2:37 2:41:32 Grandma's 2022

                    10k Sub 35:00

                    5k Sub 16:00

                    Running Problem

                    Problem Child


                      PS No discussions about my easy pace, unless you're my coach.




                      Ps. Brew- child 2 due in june not child 3 


                      Two....three...it is just a pace number.

                      No discussion on family size, unless you're my coach wife.

                      Many of us aren't sure what the hell point you are trying to make and no matter how we guess, it always seems to be something else. Which usually means a person is doing it on purpose.

                      VDOT 52.45

                      5k19:35 | Marathon 2:56:07


                        DB - Soon to be 51 Male from Wisconsin.


                        I have stepped away from the sport since 2013 ... multiple failed comeback attempts.  What used to be easy is now hard.


                        Goal is sub 3 ... with 60# to lose and a lot of fitness to gain before it can be a reality.  Currently jogging, walk/jogging and walking at incline with the only goal being weight loss.  Lifting weights, playing tennis, racquetball and volleyball ... some downhill skiing and if we ever get enough snow -> cross country skiing.


                        Current goal is the same every day ... get miles in ... burn more calories than I consume ->->->  Repeat.


                        My prior PR's have no correlation to what I can do today

                        5K - 2005 - 17:51 Fox Cities

                        10K - 2006 - 35:46 Otto Grunski Runski

                        1/2M - 2010 - 1:21:24 Oshkosh 1/2

                        Mar - 2006 - 2:45:58 Fox Cities

                        50k -  2012 - 3:44:20 Mad City 50k

                        50M - 2010 - 6:52:48 Door County Fall 50

                        12 hour - 2012 - 84 Miles - Split from Badgerland Striders 24 hour race

                        100M - 2010 -15 to 15:15 hours ... split from 24 hour race

                        Long dead ... But my stench lingers !




                        Stotan Disciple

                          Nimmals -  aka Slammin from  RWOL. 47 year old male living and training on long island.  I run for a local running shop and I train a small contingent of the team.  I am known for inventing the Truth run.  I am also 1st and foremost a miler. In 2019 I ran a 4:14 mile on Long Island running faster than the 4:16 mark I set on same course back in 2008. I also won 5th Ave Mile  both in the 30-39 AG and this year 40--49. AG.


                          My background was in track and field,  I  ran D1  Track and XC in college. I was OK at everything but great at nothing. My specialty was 400m/800m, ran on all relay teams from 4x100m to the Distance Medley. Like I said I wasn't good but if you let me hang around with 200M to go....


                          I played football (soccer) field hockey and volleyball in high school and was also a member the Junior National teams for Track  (800M, 4x400M) and Olympic shooting (rifle).

                          I broke my foot several times and suffered through college so after feeling burnt out from college I quit running  ballooned up to 205 lbs and made my way back to running in 2007 after a 12 year lay off. I sought running as a way to get back into shape.


                          (I'm good with incoherent sentences and bad grammar in general, almost everything I say is lost on Cal's (actually most readers)


                          I identify myself as a Stotan, I train most mornings at 5AM before commuting daily to the city. I work in a Manhattan Law firm as an e-discovery analyst. I help attorneys and clients collect and manage large sophisticated e-discovery projects for litigation or investigative (SEC) purposes. I am a problem solver.


                          I also remote coach a small cadre of OTQ aspiration athletes and a few "Trainers and dreamers". People who want to push their training to fulfill lofty personal goals.


                          I run with and coach a severely Autistic Runner who has run 16:58 5k, 1:16:30 half, 2:48 marathon


                          I will be running London Marathon 2020 as part of the Abbot World AG championships.


                          Berlin 2020 (No goals depends on London results) and considering NYC as a ceremonial run to commemorate the 50th anniversary.  (Still undecided)

                          Thinking should be done first, before training begins.


                            OMR (Steve), 55 years old, married (31 years), no kids, two cats (if you have a cat with GI issues, I feel your pain)...live in MN, across the river from the land of the woodchipper.  Teach music composition/technology/theory at a small liberal arts college.


                            Started running in 2010, ran my marathon PR in 2014 (2:59:14 at Grandmas).  Since then, I've been mostly focused on longer things.  Tore my meniscus in January 2018 when a treadmill malfunctioned and the belt jerked to a stop, had surgery in April, came back too soon and tore a calf muscle in June.  Wound up with 8 months of no running, and since then, I've been slowly making my way back, pretty much from scratch, focusing on longer races with mostly easy running and lots of hill work (back on a treadmill).  I finally feel like I can get back into some harder work again.


                            Goal marathon is most likely Twin Cities, October 4.  Brew beat my PR by I believe 4 seconds a few weeks ago, and I just can't let that go by unnoticed.  So, while it is probably a huge stretch, let's just go with sub-2:59 as the goal.  I may be too old for such fantasies, but there's only one way to find out.


                            Other goals for 2020:


                            Black Canyon 100K (2/15/20):  Finishing in the 11th hour.

                            Other races: TBD

                            Mileage: 3000+


                            DB:  6:52 at Door County is impressive.  I've completed it twice (plus one DNF due to impending hypothermia).  I'm a huge fan of that race.


                            37 going on 60

                              Strong representation from northern midwest. Excellent!


                              2021 Goals for my 2 marathon cycles this year

                              Marathon Sub 2:40 2:39:27 Grandma's Marathon 6/19/21

                              10k Sub 35:00 in Marathon build

                              5k Sub 16:30 in Marathon build /16:34 BK5K Memorial Day 2021


                              2022 Goals

                              Marathon Sub 2:37 2:41:32 Grandma's 2022

                              10k Sub 35:00

                              5k Sub 16:00


                                My name is Sean.  I’m 41.  I didn’t start running until I was 33.  I swam at a pretty high level collegiately and then got lazy for about 10 years.  I read an article in a runners world on a flight to Vegas.  I then ran 4 times and entered a 5k and I was totally hooked.  I spent 38 years living in Chicago and then moved to Flagstaff about 2.5 years ago.  I race and train based off power these days and have been working with a coach for the past 18 months. I have big goals still so we ll see how it plays out.  

                                pr s 10 K 34:56 in 11/19

                                     Half marathon 1:18:53 1/17

                                      Full marathon 2:46:04. 12/18.

                                HM: 1/17 1:18:53. FM: 12/18 2:46:04