Most of us can’t imagine running anywhere near as fast as Eliud Kipchoge did in the Berlin marathon last weekend. 2:03:33 was a mere 36 seconds outside the world record averaging 2:56 per/km. An average pace that most of us struggle to be able to run at , let alone hold it for any amount of time.
There is some valuable lessons to be learnt from Kipchoge’s race that every marathoner can take away though.
- Consistent splits from 1 – 42Km
41 of Kipchoge’s splits were between 2:51 -3:01 per km. Only kilometre 40 at 3:09 was outside this 10 second parameter meaning his control in being able to run at a consistent pace is amazing. Although he has pace makers setting the pace he understands that to run his best race he will need to run 42 very consistently fast kilometres. Every runner in any distance can learn from this by pacing their race consistently.
Kipchoge doesn’t go too fast early in the race he is patient and disciplined and runs every moment of the race strategically. If you want to run your best on marathon day run consistently from the start to the finish.
2. Marathons get hard near the end.
Even for the greatest marathoner in the world it is evident that the marathon distance shows in the last 10km. Six of his last 10km are slower than his overall average of 2:56 min/km. He is able to work hard and doesn’t lose much time but over the last 10km is where Kipchoge loses touch with the world record.
Anyone whose run a marathon knows how hard the last 10 km can be. What doesn’t happen to Kipchoge is he doesn’t pay in the last 10km for going too fast early in the race and even still it gets very tough.
3. Drafting runners will help
From Breaking 2 to Berlin Kipchoge was three minutes slower. The advantage he was able to use during his breaking 2 attempt in using the arrowhead pacers available cannot be understated. It created a significant advantage that Kipchoge didn’t have in Berlin. When an average runner goes to a large city marathon they should take advantage of the crowd and use them to pace their race. Running within a pack of runners may greatly increase your chances of running your best time as long as the pack is running consistent splits.
Obviously we all don’t have the ability to have a team of pacers taking us through each marathon we enter but using the crowd to your advantage may assist you run a personal best.
We all may not run as fast as Kipchoge, but using the methods of the best may just help you run faster.