Marathon Running

Discussion in 'The Green Room' started by RickDeckard, Sep 21, 2014.

  1. mburtonk

    mburtonk mburtonkulous

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    Your body can only absorb so many calories per hour anyway while you're exerting yourself. Your gel/30 minutes is about right, but check the serving size on whatever gummies you're using.

    Just ran 6 miles with my wife and daughter, finishes up my longest week in a year! :soma:
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  2. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    32k run just completed. Both longer and faster than the previous one, clocking at almost 3 hours dead. Lots of hills on that run too.

    Didn't crash out again but still think I could be better at the nutrition. One more long run before the marathon to test taking a bit more.
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  3. Zenow

    Zenow Treehugger

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    Way to go! You're clocking a lot more miles than I am, even though I tried to prep for a marathon the past three months. But 4 times a week was not realistic, with visiting my mom 5 times a week (40hr/week load for that alone, beside a 28 week workload).

    But here I am.. less than two days before I leave for New York! I don't know if I am really ready - not for a top performance, that's for sure, with my longest run being 28km (once) and having had a severe cold this last week from which I am still recovering. But the run is on Sunday, so I should have an empty head & lungs by then, I hope. And I did a bit over 400KM in the last three months, which is reasonable (and a bit better than my first marathon, although I was practically dead when I finished that one)

    I am really looking forward to this - meeting my brother and his son in NY on Friday, and they're staying till monday. I fly back to Holland on Wednesday afternoon (election day!) so I can experience post-marathon NY as well.

    Still haven't decided on whether to get a GoPro for the experience. It would probably be awesome to have some great footage afterwards, but it might distract me from the race and the experience itself. Plus, I have no running experience with a camera, mounted to my head or just taking it out when needed. We'll see. First and foremost: a fun run!
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  4. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    Be sure to let us know how you do in NY.

    I did my last long run of 32km on Saturday. Was slowing down towards the end but managed an average of 5mins 27 seconds. Hopefully with correct fuelling, taper etc. I will be able to maintain that pace on marathon day. Also hit my target of 200km for October, so all going well.
  5. Zenow

    Zenow Treehugger

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    I totally crashed and burned in NY...
    I went out at a pace for a 4h20 marathon, but after about 12 miles I was 10 minutes behind that schedule and had to give it up. It felt harder than expected, mostly because there is almost no really flat part in the entire race. I had anticipated the bridges and trained for them, but not this.. My severe cold in the 2 weeks before the marathon didn't help, nor did the fact that we went over to NYC several days before the race, and in the 3 days preceding the race I walked aroud Manhattan for 19km, 26km and another 17km respectively. Not the best preparation.

    So at 12 miles, I switched to a 4h30 schedule - but by mile 15, I was slowing down even more, hitting 7min/km times or worse. Around mile 20 that became 8min/km or worse, as the pain in my legs became worse, and I had to talk short walking breaks to prevent cramps, and then about 3 miles out my adductors totally cramped, forcing me to stop entirely, since I couldn't move my legs any more - literally. I rubbed them, tried to bend my knees a little, to get some movement back, and after a couple of minutes I was able to very slowly jog again. That lasted for maybe half a mile before it happened again, and that went on until the finish line. So I walked/jogged the last 3 to 4 miles and my legs were really killing me. I hadn't before had the 'pleasure' to feel this much physical pain in a race - I heard people talk about how a marathon can be painful, but I thought: you mean exhausting, not painful. I was wrong. I managed to cross the finish line somehow, but it took me 5 hours, 3 minutes and 26 second. Looking back at the race, I realise I severely underestimated the course, and that taking my minimal preparation for my first marathon in April, the (I can now say) easy Rotterdam Marathon, as my benchmark, was a mistake as well. I only ran 50km more than for the previous one (totalling little over 400KM during the last 3 months), and that is totally inadequate for the New York Marathon. I have the medal, but I will be back some day, to get a rematch.

    Next Stop: the Rotterdam Marathon again, next April.... I'll start prepping for that right after I learn how to walk again.
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  6. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    Less than a week to go and I'm still not sure of my pacing strategy. Need to decide how fast to go out out. I'll be kicking myself if I go out too quickly and crash (obviously). But if I go too slowly and don't do myself justice I'll be pissed off too.

    It's either a 5.10 or a 5.20 per km pace starting...
  7. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    You forget how tough the last 10km of a marathon is. I wonder if my agony is a function of something I'm doing wrong in training or preparation or if that's just the way it is. Yesterday I needed to slow down considerably just to keep going, and ended up with a time of 3:59:09

    Well outside my target which was disappointing. But a PB is a PB and at least I've finally broken 4 hours.

    The course had some challenging hills, and it was a cold day which certainly made things harder on the legs. Still, I'm immediately contemplating another one - this time it will be on a flatter course at a larger event. So I must not be feeling quite as painful as on my first attempt.
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  8. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 the only real finish line

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    Perhaps running isn't a linear function - it gets exponentially harder as you get closer to the end. Guessing, since I'm not a runner. The last few reps in a set of weight-lifting or push-ups or whatever get harder & harder so I'm sure the last part of a marathon must be epic difficulty. It must be hard knowing it will take HOURS to know if you will have a great run or a bad run at the end of the run. :shep:The suspense would kill me! Four hours is a long time and many things can start going south. You could end up with four hours of pain - but to keep going is awesome. I really respect distance runners. I couldn't do it - one mile is about all I have time or motivation to do, but it keeps me healthy and doesn't burn me out. I might start running 5K beginning in January, just for a change -of-pace since they have them all the time here on Fort Gordon. I need to finish my first fitness goal first though, getting down to 160 pounds from 200 (almost there!) without losing any muscle/strength.
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  9. Zenow

    Zenow Treehugger

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    Way to go man!! You broke 4 hours!!
    Yes, the idea of a certain PR can be tempting, but you really need more than 1 goal in a race, so you can adjust to reality without having the feeling you failed later. That's not moving the goal posts, it's being realistic.

    @oldfella1962 - running is definitely not linear, just like the reps in weight-lifting. When you want to lift 15 times, you do not pick the weight you can barely lift once, you start off with something that is easy for the first x times. In running, that means you start off at a pace that is easy the first x miles/km. But the difference is, that in running you can adjust the 'weights' while lifting, and because it takes so long for you to get tired, the idea that you can actually lift more than you know you can, becomes very tempting. You start to think that if you just run a little faster in the beginning, you will finish faster and not need that much stamina. But it just doesn't work like that. Maybe a car comparison is best: you need to find the best speed to optimise fuel economy & burning efficiency. If you run too fast, you'll run out of gas.
  10. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    Ran a 10k at the weekend. Clocked at 45:49 which ordinarily I would have been super-happy with, being 2 minutes off my previous PB. But the GPS tracker on my phone tracked the course 400 metres short at only 9.6km

    It seems a pretty fundamental mistake for the organisers to make, but the GPS couldn't be wrong, could it?

    Anyway, that's probably it as far as races go for 2016. I'll see how I go in 2017 but some of the things I'm planning and/or would like to do are:

    Reading half marathon in March.
    Belfast/Derry marathon in May/June.
    Great North Run (largest half marathon in the world) in September.
    Dublin marathon in October.

    There's an emphasis here on flatter courses and larger events, both which should help with my times!
  11. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 the only real finish line

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    Yes the GPS could indeed be wrong if it didn't take into account the road surface area increasing/decreasing as it gained/lost altitude.
  12. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    I thought that might be one possibility actually...it was a bit hilly.
  13. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 the only real finish line

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    yep....distance increases as the angle increases - basic geometry. Of course this peaks at 45 degrees then decreases until it gets to 90 degrees. That's why your "pace count" varies when you are going up or down hill when doing land-navigation the old-school way with a compass. Be aware though degrees and percent of incline are not the same. In other words a sign warning drivers of a a 5 percent grade is not a 5 degree grade two different animals.
  14. Aenea

    Aenea .

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    I find it odd that you can know that but not be able to master the most basic of quote function. :unsure:
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  15. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 the only real finish line

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    I thought I was doing the quote function right! :bang: Regardless you are correct that my brain is odd - it is wired completely different than just about anyone except my son, who shares my genetically similar brain wiring. I can only describe it as "awesome, just misunderstood!" :D What is easy for others is beyond my grasp, but I notice and pay attention to the subtle details and patterns that are beyond the grasp of the average AKA non-awesome person. It's the cross I happily bear.
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  16. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    So, back at it following a bit of a break. I'm a little out of shape so will take some time to get back.

    I've entered a local half marathon in 3 weeks time (my time won't be good but whatever) and then both the Reading half in March and the Belfast full marathon in May.

    I've also started using Strava if anyone wants to connect.
  17. TheLonelySquire

    TheLonelySquire Fresh Meat

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    Just when you think your time won't be good or that you're out of shape or whatever, consider that you're far ahead of most people who'll never run a 1/2, never mind a full. You'll get there!
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  18. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    Surprised myself with a time of 1:45:33 today for the half, which is my second best ever. Seems it hasn't taken me long to regain fitness.

    Adjusting my goals a bit, I now hope to break 1 hr 40 minutes in March.
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  19. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    Managed 183km in February. Starting to recover faster from my harder runs now which is going to help me get more of them in...
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  20. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    Bought a heart rate monitor, as a way to measure effort. Apparently my heartrate needs to be between 140-145 bpm to stress the aerobic system. I'd assumed that my long runs had probably been too fast. Turns out they were too slow.
    So, staying in that zone, I've just run 30km in 2:37:04

    Urrgh.:shock:

    Tired now. That's my fastest time over that distance by about 15 minutes. :)

    Assuming I retain my ability to walk after this kind of run, I'm sure it will help knock quite a bit off my race time.
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  21. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 the only real finish line

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    140 is on the low end of stressing it depending on your age and (more importantly) experience/conditioning level. Example I'm age 55 so (depending on what formula you use) 141 would be 85 percent of my (max) heart rate of 166 and while that rate works my aerobic system it's not really "pushing the envelope" where I am really feeling it getting to the edge of making me gas (go anaerobic). My point being the more efficient your body gets at running (and you run a lot compared to my short mostly HIIT sessions!) the more it's going to take to get big improvements from your aerobic system. So running at a faster pace (higher heart rate) might be the only thing that really nets you any overall improvement. I don't know your age but it's way less than mine so no doubt you can run forever with a BPM of less than 140. So staying at that rate means you will develop the ability to run further and further but you won't reach 26 miles any quicker. :(

    That's the way the human body adapts - it figures out exactly what it needs to do something as easily as possible if you do the same thing over and over. Start jacking that pace up intermittently during your runs and your heart will develop the ability to run at that faster pace for longer and longer periods until that is the new "normal" for your body. Bottom line it takes you less time to run your distance. Obviously I can see fast improvements in my little baby distance of 5K because a few more minutes of increased heart rate effort is a bigger fraction of the overall distance. The sheer volume of improvements to make a difference over 26 miles would just take much more time and effort.

    My hat is off to you though! The sheer amount of training for a marathon would be daunting :drama: and counter-productive to my personal fitness goals. My body would start to shed muscle to get rid of any extra weight to conserve energy in an effort to adapt to the punishing distances. That would reduce my overall strength-to-weight ratio so for me just getting faster at shorter distances (up to 5K is perfect) works for heart and doesn't stress out my immune system or upper body/fast twitch muscle strength.

    That said I'm knee deep in losing that last 4 centimeters off my waist and gaining 1 centimeter on my neck which will bring my body fat to 15 percent! :techman:
    I'm taking my own advice on "adaptation" by wearing a 16KG rucksack when I do my chinups/pullups starting tonight, and other extra challenges too.
  22. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    I'm not sure that what you're saying is correct. 145 is my max aerobic heartrate, so 140 is quite close to it. If I "jack up the pace" and go any higher, I'm breathing hard and into anaerobic territory, which is of limited benefit for marathon training.

    If you're older then your max aerobic heartrate is lower again. And you would expect to be running above it for a 5k anyway.
  23. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 the only real finish line

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    Ah, I see the disconnect - I'm referring to very general fitness guidelines as far as what is fat burning/cardio/aerobic/etc. heart rates but a marathon is a whole different level entirely! :yes: You have to have total control over your breathing and heart rate. Every mile counts. With a short distance like a 5K if I start to crash I can suck it up and power through since it will be over with in a few minutes - anything can be tolerated for a short time! But if you start getting your ass kicked in a marathon you'll never get out from under with your energy draining and draining. :( I've never ran a marathon, but I would imagine there's a lot of science behind it. It's like going to mars versus going to the moon - 26 miles of shit that can go wrong. :brood: Well my hat is of to you just for dedicating all the work and time to improving your performance!
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  24. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    I ran the half today in 1:40:29 which was 29 seconds slower than my target. But a new PB and welcome progress. Breaking 1 hour 40 minutes is a long - term goal that will have to wait for another day.
  25. mburtonk

    mburtonk mburtonkulous

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    Ran a 25km trail race yesterday in about 2:36 with very little training. Walking is difficult today.
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  26. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    I've been training hard, and completed my longest run of this cycle today, of 35km in just under 3 hours. Heavy legs towards the end but my increased endurance is definitely showing and I feel right as rain after it.

    It may be a bridge too far but I'm allowing myself to hope for sub 3.30 in the marathon. One month to go.
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  27. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    I ran the Belfast Marathon in 3 hours 34 minutes. Very pleased. 25 minutes taken off my PB. Hilly course too.

    I was close to the 3. 30 pacer most of the way but my legs were fading a bit over the last 10km.
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  28. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    And a new 10k PB at the weekend of 43.34

    I've dropped the mileage somewhat now, but I'm determined not to let myself slip too much over the next couple of months before ramping it up again for the Dublin Marathon. In the meantime I will do a couple more 10ks and halfs, and mainly work on speed in training rather than volume.
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  29. RickDeckard

    RickDeckard Socialist

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    1.45.04 half marathon this morning. I'm disappointed with that even though it was a hot day on a tough course. A couple of months ago, I was going faster in my long runs without even pushing myself.

    Not long before I step up my training again for the Dublin Marathon.
  30. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 the only real finish line

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    just curious - how hot does it get during the Dublin marathon? In other words will heat be a factor at all, and if so is that a consideration? Sometimes weather can throw you a curve-ball in any endurance activities.