I can understand how Rob did his first few marathons and hear me out on this before you all go running your mouths off.....Of course I wasn't there so don't know the full story but here is my theory for what it's worth. Rob would have done his first marathon as a run just to finish it for his bet. He would have had no idea how it would affect him or not. It appears that it wasn't that stressful so he did his second one faster and so on. This is not a crazy thing and I see it often. People do hold back until they see what they can really do. I know Rob has a preferred speed that he runs at optimally.
No. Absolutely not. Not even remotely possible. You do not get off the coach and run your first marathon on a whim with no training and no prior marathon experience in 4:08, and then run a second one nine hours later in 3:28, and then a third one seven hours later in 3:19. All of this he quite plainly claims in his book. I explain that here:
The times should deteriorate, not progress as Rob claims.
You can read Rob's own account of this in his book at:
Click on "Look Inside" and read it for yourself. Or you can go to the local bookstore and find it in the comedy section.
I'm not being stubborn to insist upon this. You would be a fool to even consider it a possibility.
I've seen data for only 3 certified marathons he has run (London 2015, 2016; Brighton 2016). He ran those in 3:07 (quite impressively in the midst of the Race Across the USA), 4:02, and 3:30, respectively. And yet, after first becoming a marathoner on a whim and untrained, he claims he was able to run a second and third marathon within the next 24 hours at times faster than two of those certified marathons he ran later.
Or to put it another way. The 30K run leg of his 2004 triathlon was run at a pace of 8:14/mile.
Yet, Rob claims he ran his second and third initial marathons at a pace FASTER than that. A 3:28 marathon is 7:56 pace per mile. A 3:19 marathon is 7:36 pace.
You say this is not a crazy thing that Rob claims and you've seen it often. Name one other person who ran similar times in a massive batch of 78 mile running on a whim with no training or no prior experience. Name one if you've seen it often.