Ran my third marathon yesterday and in every single one I’ve blown up at 30-33km. Whereas in the first two the problem seemed fairly obvious (1st poor training; 2nd poor pacing in warm windy conditions) Yesterday in Berlin was just baffling. I trained well. An 18 week plan with 7 long runs with plenty of marathon pace effort in them, 2x36kms runs, workouts on Tues/Thurs, 80km-110km a week. HM PB this year of 1:26, 10km in 39:09.
My goal yesterday was to run 3:15. I posted in here prior to the race and was told this was a conservative but sensible goal - and I agreed. As we saw from Kipchoge’s incredible run, the conditions were perfect. I also paced myself perfectly for the first 21km, going through halfway in 1:37:21 and feeling good. Nutrition was perfect, gel at the start and every 6km during. So why, why oh why, did I fall to pieces again at 31km? Pace slipping slowly to 5:20kms, losing over 10minutes in the last 10km to finish in 3:25. It didn’t feel like I was bonking, my legs just went. I had no strength. The 3:15 group sailed off into the distance. Naturally, from that point on, it was pure torture. I finished only as a point of pride.
So here I am again. The day after another poor marathon searching for answers. This time I’m lost. Do I need to up my strength game in the gym or with more hills? Was my 18 week plan too long and I was overtrained? Was my race week too stressful (very stressful week at work, HRV dropped like a stone for the 5 days prior)? Did I just have a bad day? Or do I just suck at marathons?
All advice and insults welcome!