Friday, July 13, 2012

Training update for Marathon #4

July 29 is a little over 2 weeks away and I can't wait to toe the starting line for my 4th full marathon which is the Milo Manila leg.

For those who follow this blog (are there? hehehe...), the most important question would be this:

After 3 unsuccessful attempts, will I be able to finish under 5 hours in marathon #4?

My heart says yes but in my past 3 marathons, I too was convinced prior to race day that I can finish below 5 hours. On race day, however, the marathon gods had handed out a different judgment:

Milo 2010 - 5:53 (debut PR on a hot, humid, waterless day)
Condura 2011 - 5:23 (PR)
QCIM 2011 - 5:35


Finishing a 42km race is a feat in itself ---for first time marathoners. But I've done this 3 times already. A sub-5 finish, IMHO, proves that you're made of something else. It sets you apart from the average marathoner and puts you into a higher level that makes others know that you take running and all the suffering and training (with stress on s-p-e-e-d) pretty seriously. It's like being a sub30 5k or a sub60 10k runner.

Above average, basically.


Being a stats freak (don't you just luuuuv Excel? hehe), I was able to compare marathons 2 to 4 to see how my training for weeks 1-14 have been versus these two other marathons:

Based on the above stats from my training logs, the results are very encouraging that I can finish better than my 5:23 PR. But can I finish below 5 hours? That is a question that I can only answer after the Milo race.


My training has been a hybrid concoction of the F.I.R.S.T. advanced marathon program and the Brooks-Hanson training program. That is, I took the speedwork and tempo training from F.I.R.S.T. and opted for the back-to-back weekend long runs that do not exceed 2 hours and 30 minutes from Brooks-Hanson's. I read somewhere that the 20-mile (32km) long run is overrated (Google it!) and that a run of 2:30 max provides the same physical and mental benefits as that of a 3 hour or 4 hour long run. This approach to the long run has helped me concentrate more on being "at home" with my planned marathon pace which often ends up between 20 to 21km at 7:00/km pace which is just outside my planned 6:45/km race pace.


After cutting the NAV-band of my Brooks Pureflow right shoe, I am now loving my long runs again. I was thinking initially of using my K-Swiss K-Ruuz for the marathon but I don't think my feet will like it after 21km. The K-Ruuz is a very fast racing flat which made me finish 3 sub-2:20 21k finishes this year but I don't think it will have the cushioning that I may need when I go further than 13.1 miles. As I said, I'm in love with my Pureflows again, especially during my long runs. I'm not only able to keep my pace below 7:00/km for these long runs, but I'm running in them SOCKLESS as well! I love this shoe so much that I'll probably buy another one once this pair wears out.


Well I still have two weeks left to taper before the race. I need to maintain the effort and follow the prescribed paces in my training runs ---although with less miles for the week (which is good for a family man like me!). All the hard work for the past 14 weeks has been put in. 2 weeks from now, I hope to write my race update on a positive note, i.e. with a sub-5 hour finish!

Wish me luck!


  1. Good luck Sir!
    I've been reading your post regarding your training for the Milo Marathon for quite some time because I'm also gunning for sub 5 at Milo also, and I'm also picking up some tips from what you've written and thanks for that!
    Again good luck! and hope that we get our sub 5!

  2. Wow! May ibang nagbabasa rin pala ng blog ko! Ahehehe...

    Thanks Jhunie! Hopefully makuha na naten ang sub5 sa Milo!


  3. hey Roelle,
    Good luck to you. Will also be at Milo but LSD lang for me that day. haha

  4. Thanks Dennis! See you on race day!