Marathon training


I’m in training for the next London marathon.
It is painful and exciting at the same time.

Have any of you run a marathon? Advice please.
Does anyone want to encourage me?
Would anyone like to sponsor me?
Would anyone like to pee on my bonfire?

Gimme your best shot.


I’ve done half-marathons.

The art of training is not getting injured. I suggest six days a week; alternate between hard and light day, and have one day off a week.

Slowly build up your training times. Humans were built to run. With a bit of luck, a chap can move from couch potato to marathon runner in just 3-4 months.


[quote=“almas john”]I’ve done half-marathons.

The art of training is not getting injured. I suggest six days a week; alternate between hard and light day, and have one day off a week.

Slowly build up your training times. Humans were built to run. With a bit of luck, a chap can move from couch potato to marathon runner in just 3-4 months.[/quote]

Cheers matey, thats the sort of thing I was looking for.

I wet to a specialst running shop and bough the right footwear for my supernating plates. (Feet that turn inwards.)

I did 3 miles this afternoon, (yes, that’s where I went for those 25 minutes) and plan to do the same tomorrow, or take a walk instead if the old pegs (legs) knacker (hurt) in the morning.

The guy at the running shop said that new recruits in the army all fall apart 9 weeks into their training!


I’ll second that. I used to run a lot when I was young. Then after college, after I’d put on a few pounds, I took up running again and all the pounding on the roads permanently bruised the tendon that runs under each heel bone (that tendon never gets a chance to mend as one walks on top of it), so much as I would love to take up running again I believe that would be unwise (and painful) and I’d better stick with cycling.

Maybe on dirt trails through the woods but not on pavement, as I learned.

So I definitely agree with AJ’s points about taking it slow and easy. Do lots of gentle stretching before and after each run, increase miles gradually, get enough rest, don’t push yourself if you feel an injury coming on, alternate long and short. And, don’t most marathoners do one really long run on Sat or Sun, gradually increasing that up to 20 miles or so, at which point you should be ready?

My brother did the Avenue of the Giants Marathon, in the beautiful giant Redwoods of Northern California. That’s one race I would love to run.

But the London Marathon would be a kick too. I’d imagine your feet might not touch the ground for the first half mile or so, packed in with the crowd. But it sounds great. Good luck.


One of my grandfather’s took up marathon running in his mid-60s after his doctor had told him that if he didn’t quit smoking and drinking he’d be dead within 6 months. I’m not sure what his training was like, but he managed to complete a couple of marathons - took him about 4 hours or so, which is pretty good for someone in their 60s who’d never previously done anything healthy. Good luck.


Running is absurd.

One should always walk in a pleasant and respectable manner. If one is particularly well dressed, a saunter and tip of the hat is allowed.


And don’t forget to always run with a pair of scissors in your hand…

Good luck! So, when you’re pottering along at 12 km/h, think of the top four or five people in the race who will hold 20km/h for more than 2 hours! Now that’s incentive for you.

New shoes a few days before the marathon (same as your current shoes) as you will have crushed some of the spring out of them by then.


Marathons are the same as Snickers, so you can start training on those, see how many you can do in one hour, then build up from there.


Interesting article on the subject in today’s NYT.

[quote]SO you want to run a marathon?

During the first running boom three decades ago, aspirants embarked upon a six-day regimen of arduous runs hellbent on crossing the finish line in the fastest time possible. Hollow cheeks, hobbled feet and an overuse injury or two were badges of honor for the mostly middle-class men who tackled the 26.2-mile challenge. Their icon was Frank Shorter, a Yale-educated lawyer whose victory in the 1972 Olympic marathon ignited the mass running movement.

Things have changed.

Today’s marathoner is less likely to have been motivated by an Olympian than by Oprah. Her slow-but-steady completion of the 1994 Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C., is considered the start of the second marathon boom. . .

Today, some popular schedules involve as little as three days a week of pounding the pavement. “It’s gone from being excessive training for what many would consider to be an excessive event to a very trimmed-down, less-is-more approach,” said Toby Tanser, a marathon coach in Manhattan . . .

One of the leading less-is-more programs for running the marathon involves walking. It was developed by Jeff Galloway, a 1972 Olympian who believes that regularly timed walking intervals increase the likelihood of covering the 26.2 miles. . .

“The expectation has changed,” said Bill Pierce, the chairman of the health and exercise science department at Furman University in Greenville, S.C., and the creator of a popular three-day-a-week program. “It’s O.K. now to walk. It’s O.K. to finish over five hours. . .

the primary goal of all marathon programs is the same: to build your endurance to the point where you can cover 26.2 miles. Hence, the common denominator of every program is the weekly or every-other-week “long run” — a slow-paced run that starts at whatever distance you can now complete and, over months, grows longer. . .

The long run is the one element, experts agree, that cannot be red-penciled out of a marathon program. But how long is long?

Here, experts disagree. Many say 20 miles is sufficient. Others, like Mr. Galloway, recommend conquering at least the full marathon distance in training. Still, whatever the distance of the longest long run, novices can’t go from zero to 26 miles overnight, which is why most plans are at least 12 weeks long, and some last up to 30 weeks. What’s more, most coaches and exercise physiologists recommend against even starting a marathon program until you have regularly run shorter distances for a couple of years. . . [/quote]
Link to the article


Thanks MT.
So many people are knocking my efforts.
They need some love.
I will make it.


I started running again on Tuesday, after a long period of idleness (which also correllated with weight gain and less tolerence for stress). God, it was shit and horrible. But I’m keeping at it, because in a few months it will feel good again.

The trainer at my gym keeps shouting at me; ‘Miss Buttercup! You eat fish! Chicken! Run slow!’, which is about all the fitness advice I have.

Are you doing it for charidee? I’ll sponsor you.

Good on ye, Tom. It’ll be grand.


Please go to a proper running shop and tell them of your plans. (Think of your pins first!!!)

If your knees go it doesn’t matter how much you desire fitness…
For once I suggest for you to take care of your joints first.

Good quote: Buttercup is wicked. (Spinoza.)


Ach, I’m ok. Little danger of me over-exerting myself. Springy shoes, lots of stretching and warm up slowly. I walk really fast for a bit, then ease into it.

I walk a LOT and sometimes jog around the park in the evenings (too hot, now) so it’s not a big shock to my system.


[quote=“Buttercup”]Ach, I’m ok. Little danger of me over-exerting myself. Springy shoes, lots of stretching and warm up slowly. I walk really fast for a bit, then ease into it.

I walk a LOT and sometimes jog around the park in the evenings (too hot, now) so it’s not a big shock to my system.[/quote]

You need a goal, and you need to frame it in a positive question. Don’t say, ‘Why can’t I …’ say, ‘What’s the easiest way to…’ then you manage your goal, but you frame it in a way you can deal with.

And tell people who hurt you, ‘I don’t mind you being jealous of me.’ It really works.


My goal is basically not to be dead of a heart attack in my 30s or 40s like half my father’s family. This is a source of motivation but also of immense stress and fatalism.

It’s 12 o’clock on my day off and I haven’t left the house yet, though…

Edit But this is TomHill’s thread!


It depends…

Did they die of marathon heart attacks? Or maybe sedimentary ones (where fossils form?)

A marathon is about mental and (to some extent) physical endurance. It is a battle of wills. Can you do it against what all the naysayers say? And can you frame it in a positive way? What is the most elegant way in which you can run the London marathon with me next year?

And once you are passed the tipping point (thats a real point) it is easier to run than not to run.

Join me, Buttercup. You can do it. I tipped the tipping point and I was convinced that I wasn’t for turning.


I may be too late with this post…has the marathon already taken place?

For whatever it’s worth, I’ve been running competitively for 10 years. I can count on one hand the number of days I haven’t gone running/ biking/ or swimming. I usually run 8-10 km/day, at least 6 days a week.

I’ve run a plethora of half-marathons and ran the Taroko Marathon last year without any training. I signed up for the half-marathon and decided to run the full marathon the night before. It almost killed me. I can do 21 km easy, but 42 km was very mentally tough. And I’ve been running 8-10 km/day for the last 5 years!

So hopefully you’re mentally tough. After 42 km, you will be.

Good luck! Let us know how you do.

***I think Brooks running shoes are the best. In 10 years, I’ve rarely had knee or shint pain…and I chalk it up to thick soles.


I’m moving to Taipei Sept 10 and found this thread 'cause I’m considering doing the marathon there. I’ve done three: Richmond (VA) was my first in 2004, then I did the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington DC in 2005 and I did Boston in 2006. I’m a triathlete and so, like Gym Rat, I swim/bike/run nearly every day. I try and force myself to take off one day a week but it can be difficult.

So I guess I can answer any specific questions you may have. Oh, doing a marathon hurts more on my legs than a half-ironman, I can definitely confirm that. (A half-ironman I did in July was 3k swim/ 80k bike / 20k run, 5 1/2 hours, it hurt much less–mentally and physically–than the marine corps marathon I did in 3:36.)

Anyways, some questions for you all: where do you run in Taiwan? In 2005 I lived for two months in Beijing and it was HELL. TWO HOURS on a treadmill because the air outside gave me an upper respiratory infection… please tell me Taipei won’t be like that…

Also, are any of you in any running or triathlon groups??? I’m freaking out that I may have to live somewhere for a year without my beautiful Northern California forests to train in… yes I’m spoiled.



there are plenty of places to run in Taiwan!

I think you’ll find it much nicer than Beijing.

I was in Beijing for 2 weeks and almost went crazy trying to run around all the people on the sidewalks. I knew better than to run on the side of the road! I almost got nailed by buses several times.

There are running clubs here…and the races get better and better each year.

Check out this website for more race info.:

I recommend running in the early morning…when only the old people are up doing their exercises. It’s peaceful, quiet, and cooler.


Oh dear. 3 weeks in the UK and a kids summer school put paid to all that.

TomHill, how’s it going?

Well done, the rest of you.