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Junk Mileage - Action Drama The Race To The Marathon World Championships!!

Posted 6 months ago

Just like that, things got reallll interesting, my friends. In case you missed it, Athletics Canada released the 2017 World Championship criteria late last week, and for the first time in my memory, they opened up the Marathon time qualifiers to match with the IAAF standards(3 fastest under 2:19 for men and 2:45 for the women), instead of following their pattern of self imposed tougher standards. Put simply, they made it easier to qualify for the world championship race, and  this means that there is a very good chance that we could send full marathon teams to London this summer! There are a lot of reasons to be excited about this decision, but here are a few of the biggest that come to mind.

1. It Has The Potential To Make A Developing Field Stronger
Photo Credit: Sean Tilden

In psychology there is this thing called Expectancy X Value Theory (or just Expectancy Theory), which basically states that one’s motivation is controlled by 2 things: the strength of belief that their actions will allow them to achieve their goal, and the value of the goal. The more they believe their actions will allow them to achieve their goal, the more they are motivated.

So how does this relate to the new standards?

Excellent question. Right now, it seems like we have a few guys in the low 2:20s/high teens...guys like John Mason, Terence Attema and Kevin Coffey. Now, there is no doubt that they would likely put a big value on making a national team, taking care of half the equation, BUT with a nationally imposed standard like 2:13, they probably wouldn’t even think that their actions could get them there, completely nixing motivation to try and make the team. However, with the IAAF standard standing at 2:19,  a mark that I’m thinking they think they can achieved, I’ll bet those guys will be racing hungry this spring.

2. It Will Make The Spring Marathon Season A Lot More Interesting

Remember back to last year when there were some spots open for our runners to go and race the Half Marathon Championships? Remember how exciting things got, as spots changed hands a few times, with plenty of runners toeing the line, trying to get one one those coveted spots...guys like Reid Coolsaet, Eric Gillis, Rob Watson, but also some relative newcomers as well like Trevor Hofbauer, Thomas Toth and Brandon Lord. By my count it was a race of a dozen Canadians to snap up the spots, and a few of them truly had breakout races to try and secure their spots. That was awesome, and with more achievable standards, like with the half marathon champs, it will push the field to get better, which will result in an awesome show for us.

3. Our Awesome Women’s Field Will Finally Get The Recognition They Deserve

It seems that we are living through, and witnessing one of the deepest fields in the Canadian Women’s marathon pool. With Lanni Marchant and Krista Duchene running under old standards in the past and ladies like Rachel Hannah (Pan-Am bronze medalist), Leslie Sexton, and Tarah Korir all fairly close time-wise, now able to snag one of those covetted World spots, the spotlight should shine brightly on what has been, in my opinion, one of the best kept secrets of the distance running. Of course, it would be foolish to ignore names like Erin Burrett and Dayna Pidhoresky who, while dark horses, have shown they have potential to step up and potentially grab a spot, making this whole thing all that more exciting.

Credit where it is due, I think that AC has made the correct decision, and if I’m right, we should have one heck of a Spring in build up to the the World Championships.

User Comments

  • anonymous Anonymous
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    Who else? said 6 months ago

    Let's hear who else might have the potential to hit the standard.

    Just to mention a few others:
    Mens: Rob Winslow, Tristan Woodfine, Jeff Costen, bunch of french guys...
    Womens: too many to list, but please go ahead

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  • anonymous Anonymous
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    Anonymous said 5 months ago

    Steve Boyd

    Quoting: Who else?
    "Let's hear who else might have the potential to hit the standard.

    Just to mention a few others:
    Mens: Rob Winslow, Tristan Woodfine, Jeff Costen, bunch of french guys...
    Womens: too many to list, but please go ahead"

    Quote comment
  • cooperaa User since:
    Sep 25th, 2014
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    cooperaa said 5 months ago

    Reid, Eric, and Rob Watson all have the standard. I'd say Kip is next most likely to get it, having run 2:15:26 at STWM 2015. Dylan Wykes expressed interest in taking a crack at it so maybe we'll see him run a full this spring.

    Thomas Toth, Sami Jibril, and Brandon Lord have run 64' half marathons so if they could translate that into the full distance successfully, they should 'easily' go under 2:19.

    Robert Winslow and Terence Attema have run 2:19 and change. Tristan Woodfine was on pace for 2:19 through half at STWM last fall.

    Kevin Coffey and John Mason seem like they could make the jump to sub-2:20.

    That's 13 guys in the picture. If nothing else, it's a whole lot more interesting than it has been the last couple years with essentially only Reid and Eric capable of running sub-2:13.

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  • michaelrochus User since:
    Nov 26th, 2014
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    MichaelRochus said 5 months ago

    Quoting: cooperaa
    "Reid, Eric, and Rob Watson all have the standard. I'd say Kip is next most likely to get it, having run 2:15:26 at STWM 2015. Dylan Wykes expressed interest in taking a crack at it so maybe we'll see him run a full this spring.

    Thomas Toth, Sami Jibril, and Brandon Lord have run 64' half marathons so if they could translate that into the full distance successfully, they should 'easily' go under 2:19.

    Robert Winslow and Terence Attema have run 2:19 and change. Tristan Woodfine was on pace for 2:19 through half at STWM last fall.

    Kevin Coffey and John Mason seem like they could make the jump to sub-2:20.

    That's 13 guys in the picture. If nothing else, it's a whole lot more interesting than it has been the last couple years with essentially only Reid and Eric capable of running sub-2:13."


    Exactly! I think that the 2:19 looks enticing enough that I we'll probably see a few unexpected debuts/returns to the race this spring in chase of the standard.I see this being really healthy for growing the marathon field in Canada.

    I notice that no one (myself included) has mentioned that Seth Marcaccio is taking a crack at the marathon this spring and has his eye on 2:18...looks ambitious, but we'll see how it works out for him.

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  • anonymous Anonymous
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    Nona said 5 months ago

    Kelly Wiebe could come out of retirement?

    also, former D1-Gardner-Webb University - lucas Mcaneney ran 2:18 in Houston

    ps. If you have never run a marathon, your 21.1 time means absolutely NOTHING!

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    Andrew Jones said 5 months ago

    Michael, this is a great thread in terms of fun speculation as the new standard application was announced.

    I'm going to take a bit of a GOM (Grumpy Old Man) position here for a sec., though, and say that in my experience of hanging out with/chatting with/watching all kinds of runners: club, sub-elite, elite, that the marathon is an event that should be cautiously approached -- as regards running it, but also regarding speculating on times and performances. In other words, those who are watching athletes who aspire to marathon excellence should be careful when tossing out numbers that these athletes have yet to achieve.

    As we know, so many athletes that have shown prowess at shorter distances/other disciplines just don't translate that into equivalent (or greater) marathon achievement. Someone once said that "distance running" (see track, XC) and marathoning are two different sports". That may be hyperbolae, but when you consider the specific physical and psychological requirements of the marathon, it may not be far off the mark.

    "Stay humble", as many have said in general, and regarding the marathon specifically, I think it is a great policy -- for both athletes and those discussing those athletes.

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    Anonymous said 5 months ago

    Quoting: Nona
    "also, former D1-Gardner-Webb University - lucas Mcaneney ran 2:18 in Houston


    Don't see this in the 2016 or 17 results.

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  • anonymous Anonymous
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    Anonymous said 5 months ago

    Quoting: Andrew Jones
    ""Stay humble", as many have said in general, and regarding the marathon specifically, I think it is a great policy -- for both athletes and those discussing those athletes."


    For the athletes yes, but not for commentators. Wild speculation is even more fun wrt the thon.

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  • michaelrochus User since:
    Nov 26th, 2014
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    MichaelRochus said 5 months ago

    Quoting: Andrew Jones
    "Michael, this is a great thread in terms of fun speculation as the new standard application was announced.

    I'm going to take a bit of a GOM (Grumpy Old Man) position here for a sec., though, and say that in my experience of hanging out with/chatting with/watching all kinds of runners: club, sub-elite, elite, that the marathon is an event that should be cautiously approached -- as regards running it, but also regarding speculating on times and performances. In other words, those who are watching athletes who aspire to marathon excellence should be careful when tossing out numbers that these athletes have yet to achieve.

    As we know, so many athletes that have shown prowess at shorter distances/other disciplines just don't translate that into equivalent (or greater) marathon achievement. Someone once said that "distance running" (see track, XC) and marathoning are two different sports". That may be hyperbolae, but when you consider the specific physical and psychological requirements of the marathon, it may not be far off the mark.

    "Stay humble", as many have said in general, and regarding the marathon specifically, I think it is a great policy -- for both athletes and those discussing those athletes."


    Fair point, Andrew. I know I (specifically my poor achy hamstrings) can say from personal experience that there is a major difference between even a half marathon or a 30km race and a marathon.
    With that being said, in drawing my conclusions above, there are a few points: 1. It's all in good fun 2. It was to illustrate the reasoning behind my belief that AC made the right call on this one. 3. Expectancy Theory is a well known and highly regarded theory, and I think you could replace the names I mentioned with any runners who are just on the brink of qualifying, and the theory would probably hold true (although, admittedly, I haven't talked to 2/3 of the guys that I mentioned in the article about the new standard).
    As for Seth, I said nothing that he hasn't said publicly himself.
    Obviously, both you and I want to see our marathoners do the best they can, so while I see your point, I don't think there is much harm in writing posts like this one.
    (On another note, you're the same fellow who was passing on some info about Tillsonburg Legion, right? I'd definitely love to chat with you more about that some time!)

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  • sethmarcaccio User since:
    Apr 2nd, 2015
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    SethMarcaccio said 5 months ago

    For starters, I wouldn't be talking about running 2:18 if I didn't think I could. My time goal is within the range of 2:18-2:23 for what I would like to run this spring. 2:18 if I have a great day and nail the nutrition but I know how difficult that can be. As for being prepared for the race, I have been running between 120-140 miles a week the last five weeks with multiple fasted runs over 35k. In peak weeks I would like to be running around 150 miles. I know fully well what I am getting into but I am excited to tackle the challenge. In terms of talking about times that I haven't run yet, what is the point of entering a race if you don't have a specific goal in mind? Some race for placings and some for time, it's all relative. If I go out at 2:18 pace and blow up 20 miles in so what. I will be turning 22 a few weeks before the race and there is lots of time before I will hang it up and call it quits. However, I will be doing everything I can to get into that sort of shape.

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    Andrew Jones said 5 months ago

    Michael, as you said, it is fun to imagine what might happen now with the standards change, and I know we both have the best interests of the runners at heart.

    I take your point on expectancy theory and other forms of internal motivation/psychological preparation and hardening, but my fine point is just that I think marathoners (especially inexperienced or lightly experienced ones) should resist racing to "hit a number" and possibly crashing and burning (or being a DNF) -- but rather try and learn the event and "marathon craft" by running at their current fitness level and improving each time out.

    And yes, feel free to drop me a line at bannister359@hotmail.com to chat a bit about the old Tillsonburg club. I know the basics, and maybe you can springboard off that and get in touch with one of the "insiders".

    Best,

    Andrew

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    Andrew Jones said 5 months ago

    Seth, good stuff on that training and am impressed by your motivation. I would love to see you achieve your goals.

    We just have a slight disagreement on how to get there, is all. As I said in my previous thread, from what I've seen over the longview, the best "play" in the marathon is to take it gradually and learn from each attempt:

    >first, "get one in" that is well within yourself;
    >second, after learning and registering what is really involved, do the appropriate preparation (either keep the prep. the same, or make necessary changes) and improve on the first
    >third (or fourth) really hit one out of the park. BTW, the studies of elites show that it is, on average, their third or fourth marathon that ends up being their PB.

    Love to see you prove that my theory is completely wrong. All the best and keep 'er going.

    -Supporter in London

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  • davef User since:
    Nov 15th, 2014
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    DaveF said 5 months ago

    Firstly, I'm beyond happy and excited to see these changes, it's going to encourage marathon development and in tern hopefully provide opportunity for people to gain valuable experience on the international stage. For fans of national running it's going to be very entertaining and should lend itself to some fun storylines.

    Seth, I'm amped up to watch your progress man, I think your the type of guy who's going to be going under 2:19 for sure. If that's the first one or the 5th one I'm cheering for you and all the boys. (I'm going to debut myself this fall, but I'll be taking the approach Andrew is talking about, if I'm in 2:19-2:23 type fitness I'll likely aim for 2:24-26 on my first one and go from there once I know what it's all about, but eventually I'll want to go under 2:20 as well, not with the hopes of making a national team, just because it's a career goal.)

    Now, to echo what Andrew is talking about, I'm very much of the mindset that one sees best improvements when they train at CURRENT fitness and not at the fitness they HOPE to attain. We see the physiological gains when we string long uninterrupted months/years of training within ourselves and staying in the paces/zones that will elicit the proper physiological response and in tern adaptation. When we train at a higher fitness they we are currently at we see burn out, injury and blow ups.

    Also, for the first marathon it is definitely not smart to go for the fast end of ones ability and just run with caution and respect for the distance. A prime example was the national marathon champs last fall. Why did Jeff Costen and Eric Bang come 3rd and 4th respectively when on paper they were seeded to be in the bottom half of the top 10? Because both are very intelligent, astute racers and most importantly they were honest with themselves about their "current" fitness. This resulted in them both running down and outlasting guys who should be running under 2:20. (Eric will certainly continue to take minutes off his PB and Costen has sub 2:20 in the cards within a year or two, he's the right mix of scrappy, tough racer and very mentally strong/intelligent)

    Do I think every athlete mentioned thus far in this thread can break 2:19, your damn right I do and I'll be the first one fist pumping when they make it happen. I just don't want to see anyone trying to force a sub 2:19, there's a reason we don't see many of them, it's a freaking fast time, and even though you don't HAVE to maximize your shorter distance ability, you damn well better be "capable of at least a 66:45 half, not that you need to run one, but you need that buffer to come through in 69 flat feeling like you aren't straining at all and have the mental and physical ability to fight off muscular breakdown/fatigue.) (Not to mention the effort be relatively comfortable so that your not burning too high of a percentage of glycogen rather then being effective at oxidizing fat at that given velocity)

    Pumped to watch, cheer and high five all taking a crack at this standard!
    Dave

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  • kinrunner User since:
    Sep 27th, 2013
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    KinRunner said 5 months ago

    What about the ladies.... Who else may throw their hat in on the women's side?

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  • anonymous Anonymous
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    Anonymous said 5 months ago

    He's run under 2:20 several times.

    Quoting: Anonymous
    "Don't see this in the 2016 or 17 results."

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    FearTheFortyTwo said 5 months ago

    What's the point?

    Hey if it was Around The Bay 30K sure not a problem but if you have not "raced" past 36k then Fuggedaboutit.

    Once you fall off pace in a marathon, there is just way too much time to start thinking about dropping out.

    The fear, humiliation and embarrassment of running 2:35 seeps in and can get the better of you.
    Then you start thinking about all the "elites" you know who have also dropped out or you tell yourself if you drop out now you can race another marathon in 2/4/6 weeks.

    What are we talking about here?
    unexplored, uncharted territory son so RESPECT the distance :)

    sincerely,



    Quoting: SethMarcaccio
    "For starters, I wouldn't be talking about running 2:18 if I didn't think I could. My time goal is within the range of 2:18-2:23 for what I would like to run this spring. 2:18 if I have a great day and nail the nutrition but I know how difficult that can be. As for being prepared for the race, I have been running between 120-140 miles a week the last five weeks with multiple fasted runs over 35k. In peak weeks I would like to be running around 150 miles. I know fully well what I am getting into but I am excited to tackle the challenge. In terms of talking about times that I haven't run yet, what is the point of entering a race if you don't have a specific goal in mind? Some race for placings and some for time, it's all relative. If I go out at 2:18 pace and blow up 20 miles in so what. I will be turning 22 a few weeks before the race and there is lots of time before I will hang it up and call it quits. However, I will be doing everything I can to get into that sort of shape."

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  • rc User since:
    Apr 9th, 2015
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    RC said 5 months ago

    Quoting: FearTheFortyTwo
    ""


    By the training he's doing he is obviously respecting the distance and going for a realistic goal time. Seth has shown he can race and seems to have that strong grinder mentality you need to be a solid marathoner so why not go for. Theirs a difference between respecting and fearing the distance. If you're scared of it then stick to the shorter stuff. Not sure why you're so pessimist about a young guy willing to put it on the line and doing the work to back it up.

    No matter the level of runner you are theirs always going to be unknown territory in a marathon, that's one of the beautiful things of the distance.

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  • oldster User since:
    Sep 25th, 2013
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    Oldster said 5 months ago

    Quoting: SethMarcaccio
    "For starters, I wouldn't be talking about running 2:18 if I didn't think I could. My time goal is within the range of 2:18-2:23 for what I would like to run this spring. 2:18 if I have a great day and nail the nutrition but I know how difficult that can be. As for being prepared for the race, I have been running between 120-140 miles a week the last five weeks with multiple fasted runs over 35k. In peak weeks I would like to be running around 150 miles. I know fully well what I am getting into but I am excited to tackle the challenge. In terms of talking about times that I haven't run yet, what is the point of entering a race if you don't have a specific goal in mind? Some race for placings and some for time, it's all relative. If I go out at 2:18 pace and blow up 20 miles in so what. I will be turning 22 a few weeks before the race and there is lots of time before I will hang it up and call it quits. However, I will be doing everything I can to get into that sort of shape."


    I'm with the others in liking your chutzpah about this. A friendly word of advice, however: Do not push your volume into (for you) uncharted territory in your first build. My advice would be to stick with your current top levels (which are more than sufficient, even a bit risky at this stage of your development), and redistribute them accordingly (i.e. according to the demands of the marathon). Every runner, no matter how confident, has to think about what happens in the event of failure-- and contrary to the cliche, failure IS always on option, particularly when it comes to the marathon. If you blow this one up and want to try again at some point, you will have to investigate what went wrong in your first build (if your failure wasn't just a matter of dumb luck, that is), and it's never a good situation to have to consider reducing volume the next time out; better to leave room for increases in volume on subsequent attempts. This probably doesn't make much difference one way or another physically, but it will make a difference psychologically ; having to consider reducing mileage in subsequent builds will feel like retreating rather than advancing, and no one wants to feel that way when facing the challenge of a marathon.

    Otherwise, best of luck with the build!

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  • sethmarcaccio User since:
    Apr 2nd, 2015
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    SethMarcaccio said 5 months ago

    Thanks for all the feedback, both positive and negative haha! As previously mentioned in my last post, 2:18 is on the very fast range of what I think I can do if the build continues to go smoothly, and I do get a bit of "dumb luck" and get the whole nutrition thing and the weather is perfect on the day, it is in the cards. In terms of playing it "safe" and going for a time well within my capabilities, I don't see the point. I literally have nothing to lose going for it so why not try? I am handling the training fine (and thoroughly enjoying it!) and I do "respect the distance". I know how brutal the marathon is and I know it will crush even the best runners out there but I'm not afraid of it. As Rejean said, if I'm scared of it, I might as well stick to the shorter stuff. I thought that's the reason why we do this sport, to test our limits and take on challenges? I'm not going to shy away from pushing my limits because at the end of the day, I do this sport because it is something I love and have a great passion for. I will continue to do it for as long as I enjoy it and will run more marathons in the future. So if you don't think I can do it, that's fine. It's your opinion and everyone is entitled to one. I know what I can do and I can't wait to toe the line on May 7th. If I run 2:18, I will be over the moon! If not, I'll take some time to rest and take another crack at it in the fall. If anyone wants to say anything else or point something else out to me, feel free to message me on Facebook as I won't be reading this thread anymore. So have a nice day everyone and good luck with your training and future endeavours. I am going for a run!

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  • mauricew User since:
    Dec 5th, 2012
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    mauricew said 5 months ago

    Quoting: SethMarcaccio
    "I know what I can do and I can't wait to toe the line on May 7th."


    Mississauga or Goodlife Toronto?
    Note that to qualify for Worlds, times must be run at an event on the IAAF list of approved marathons. The only Canadian events remaining in the qualifying period are Ottawa and Calgary.

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  • cooperaa User since:
    Sep 25th, 2014
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    cooperaa said 5 months ago

    Quoting: mauricew
    "Mississauga or Goodlife Toronto?
    Note that to qualify for Worlds, times must be run at an event on the IAAF list of approved marathons. The only Canadian events remaining in the qualifying period are Ottawa and Calgary."


    Last I heard, he was looking at Pittsburgh.

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  • mauricew User since:
    Dec 5th, 2012
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    mauricew said 5 months ago

    Quoting: cooperaa
    "Last I heard, he was looking at Pittsburgh."


    Not on the current list either. https://media.aws.iaaf.org/competitioninfo/45c47e4e-22f4-499f-ad22-0326e89b6a11.pdf

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  • anonymous Anonymous
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    Anonymous said 5 months ago

    I bit off more than I could chew one fine marathon day and the injury sustained from that one race left me riding the bench for the next 18 months, 6 of those months no running at all.

    Be careful out there lads.

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  • anonymous Anonymous
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    Anonymous said 5 months ago

    Rather than thinking about what you have to lose, you could think about what you have to gain.

    Go out in 69, come back in 69, job done.

    Go out in 69, come back in 72, you learn you're pretty close, go back and work on the endurance and you'll be a bit better next time.

    Why people might urge caution is what if you go out in 69 and come back in 82, trotting the last 10k? In that scenario you learn nothing about your marathon ability.

    With a cautious approach, you might go out in 72.

    Come back in 69 and you know you let a lot out there, you got the training spot on. Do the same again next time and you'll smash it.

    Go out in 72, come back in 72, you learn you're at 2:24 level, got the trainIng right, do the same again and you'll chip a couple of minutes off next time and so on.

    Go out in 72 and come back in 75 and thank your lucky stars you didn't go out in 69!

    I like Andrews 3 marathon approach above.

    Best of luck to all going for it.

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  • new-post-last-visitanonymous Anonymous
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    FearTheFortyTwo said 5 months ago

    Reminds me of a dude I know. Great guy, great racer trained very hard.
    3rd CIS XC
    1st-5th in all the big name 10k races

    runs under 30:00 in his sleep

    He was set to run sub 2:20 in 2014 and was forced to drop out at the 21.1 mark and never did attempt another marathon after that.

    There is no shame in being cautious even though all the online calculators and all your friends and coach are telling you what they think you are capable of.

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