One of the [many] things I am striving to do differently in training for this marathon than in 2008, is to do more training at my goal marathon pace – 7:35/mile. Starting this week in my training plan, Thursdays are designated for MP (“marathon pace”). Today, I ran 6 miles, with the last 2 miles at MP. I’ll build to running 10 miles, with 8 miles of it at MP.
There is also a lot of debate over the standard long run. The typically piece of advice I’d always heard was to do your long runs about a minute slower per mile than your goal pace. The newer advice I’m hearing is to start your long run easy, and then about half way through, build to marathon pace. Some say to do an easy long run 1 weekend, and then a build to MP long run the next. I’m planning on trying that.
So today, a measly 2 miles at MP … (the idea to run MP after several miles of running is to teach your body to run at MP when tired) … I actually averaged 7:19/mile for my 2 miles. I’m sure as the miles build, physics will kick in and aiming for 7:35 will be enough of a challenge!