Wednesday, 5 November 2008


.......Where to go from here! This has nothing to do with the reason I have not posted for 2 weeks (that's due to a combination of lack of running and a temporary ongoing home computer malfunction - bloody thing won't come on). I continue running - of course. for marathons - yes. ........................exclusively for marathons - well!. .........After Amsterdam Austin advised that I should concentrate on shorter distances for a while as marathons tend to blunt speed. Although to be quite honest I had no problem with my speedwork coming into the marathon - after all it is my marathon time (PB) that is so out of sync (slower) with my times at the shorter distances. So perhaps it is a few weeks or months of endurance training I need - long slow runs at low(er) HRs - before embarking on a race specific programme involving a shorter (4 to 5 week) period for speedwork. I know Thomas is going back to a high(er) mileage regime for his next marathon commencing with a base period of "aerobic" running under 80% HR. Jamie is following the Pfitz/Scott programme for Advanced Marathoning which also starts with the traditional "endurance phase" before embarking of lactate threshold and race specific speedwork. This programme comes heavily endorsed by those who have reaped the benefits from it. However I have a few concerns with the programme in that (1) the endurance phase still involves fairly challenging lactate threshold runs @ 15k to HM pace and (2) the peaking phase includes 3 x 8-15k tune up races the day before long runs. Recovery where are you? or is this scheduled "back to back hard days"? So if there are any other suggestions out there (for marathon training that is) i'm all ears. While i've heard of Lyiard method and have a fair idea of what it involves perhaps someone could direct me to a definitive text on the subject. Running I did get back to running since Amsterdam and even took in a 4 mile race last Sunday, topping out recovery week No. 2 with about 20 miles. I couldn't have asked for a better course to beat my softish 4 mile PB of 25:19 set at the start of the year. However I could have done with a better body - no niggles as such but just not enough speed, endurance or kick to take me over the threshold. However, despite my reducing splits of 06:07, 06:17, 06:25 & 06:27 I did manage to make the threshold and equal my PB, crossing under the line in 25:19 exactly - so not too bad........or too good for that matter. I wouldn't mind but 2nd and 3rd M40 came in at 24:36 and 24:40 respectively (well within my range on a good day with the wind blowing in the right direction). Cross training (code for tri) While I promised myself a recovery from running by swimming and cycling to renew my enthusiasm for triathlon (i'm certainly going to include more of these in 2009) I failed miserably on the bike (something to do with misplaced shoes) but managed to get in a few decent swims with a 3k pool swim last week in 61:28 (my longest swim ever - the last km actually felt better than the first 2 - perhaps it's a matter of getting over the boredom threshold) and another 1.5k swim this week in 28:43 with 2 x 500 easy, concentrating on form, and 1 x 500 steady (splits of 09:54, 09:54 & 08:55).


  1. Hi Gellen

    I'll be interested to follow your progess as you train for your next marathon.

    If you've not seen these blogs they would be worth looking at in relation to following Lydiard

    Also for a really good article on tips to running marathons have a look here ...


  2. sorry I misspelt your name ... Grellan!!

  3. Lydiard has written some books, I own "Running with Lydiard", but the faster guys seem to think that "Running to the Top" is better. Neither is an easy read. The best book about Lydiard Training that I know of was written by Ron Daws and called Running your Best, which I can lend to you if you're interested. All of those books are available from Amazon as well.

    I've got a few pdf's about Lydiard and his training, which contains much the same information as his books. I'll email them to you if you want.

    And then there's the Lydiard Foundation web site. I recommend you check it out, especially the forum.

  4. For Lydiard on the web, this is a good page.

    My belief is you need to adapt a program to suit your circumstances and physiology. Not all runners are going to thrive on 'pure' Lydiard. Some runners enjoy, and do well with lots of speedwork and variety, and less miles.

    Whatever program you decide to follow, enjoyment (and confidence that it will work for you), should be high on the list of priorities.

  5. Wow Grellan, very nice job on the 4-miler! Equaling a PR just two weeks after a marathon is very impressive. As you eluded to, imagine how well you'd do with fresh legs.

    I'm far from an expert on training matters, but I think it's safe to say that everyone responds differently to each program. Good luck in whatever you decide, hope you find a good fit. Experiment of one...

  6. WITH OVER 15 YEARS OF RACING UNDER MY BELT i HAVE TRIED MANY TYPES OF TRAINING, THE BEST SO FAR IS LYDIARD, some might call it old school, but who cares when it works!!!

  7. Good to have you back! I think it's a great idea to mix up the training plans, as it keeps things a bit fresher. I would suggest looking into the marathon plan on

    It may take a bit of searching to find, but it's all about getting the marathon time down and is very specific to that. In short, if you want to run the marathon fast, you've got to run your long runs fast. There's also ample rest.

  8. HI Grellan

    First, I think you need to take it easy on yourself. You trained hard for this marathon and ended up getting hurt right before the race and that certainly had an effect. It is certainly OK to try some different training methods and I am looking at Lydiard's stuff myself. I honestly think that if you stick to your training your time will come in the marathon. I have run 18 of them now in the last 5 years and don't feel like I have learned even half of what I need to know to really run a smart race.

    Best of luck.

  9. What do you think would work for you? I have something I could share with you but it is focused on speed. Email me if you're interested:

    Michael dot Lord at gov dot bc dot ca