Looking back my most recent marathon result with hindsight and being able to analyse my training and what was successful for this race. In this race I was able to achieve my goal of a sub 3 hour marathon.
I planned this marathon with a 14 week preparation and tried to fit my life around the training but still make it specific to the goal. My life consists of a full time job, a part time university degree and a family of partner and two children. So being able to commit to all of these aspects of my life was just as important as the marathon result. I planned to run five days per week, almost always morning and early.
I had planned on three quality sessions per week. My long run, hill repeat session and an interval or tempo session. My long run I built up over the 14 weeks from 1:30-3 hours three weeks before the race. My hill repeats were weekly and over a tough 1.9km hill distance with two steep inclines in the 1.9km. This session I did religiously and believe it had a big effect on building leg strength and conditioning for the marathon. The other key session was an interval session usually 800m to 1km intervals or a tempo session of a 10km at slightly quicker than race pace. My other runs were recovery runs, usually over the beach to add variety and keep me motivated.
The one thing I did in this 14 week period was stay motivated and consistent. All my key sessions were completed and completed with quality. I worked hard during those sessions and that paid off on race day. The other thing I did was stay healthy, I didn’t get injured or I’ll at all through this period of 12 weeks of building speed and endurance phase however did get a moderate head cold during my two week taper.
Overall this approach worked well and I got the result I wanted on race day. Next marathon I will repeat this program again and hope for a similar result.