Thursday, March 09, 2006

The Fade

I was talking about marathon pace strategy with a friend recently and promised to provide more information. I thought that she should start at 4:50 pace and finish 5:10. The 5:10 would come in around the 30K mark or thereabouts. This seems to contradict the "start slow" line ...... The 4:50 would in fact feel slow and certainly be way above what she might feel like doing to start off with.

So now to provide some support:

1. There are several pacing calculators that cater for the fade.

This One and Here is another

2. These articles Advise 1 and Advise 2 are helpful. What sticks most in my mind and from my experience is your running economy will tend to decrease slightly during the race.

3. Looking at some real race results for:

3 hour marathoners (Avg 4:16) they averaged 4:09 pace over the first half and 4:23 after the 32K point,
3:15 (4:37) were 4:27 first half and 4:51 after 32K through to the end,
3:27 (4:54) were 4:45 first half and 5:02 after 32K through to the end,
3:30 (4:59) were 4:46 first half and 5:15 after 32K through to the end.

So that folks is about all I have to say on this topic but welcome your comments as always.


Blogger Clairie said...

Thanks Mark,

I appreciate you post and it has given me more food for though in addition to our recent chats.

I am coming around to your way of thinking so will have to work on a strategy this weekend for the marathon. Might take my mind of the half marathon anyhow to focus on it.

4:50 then 5:10 sounds reasonable to me. Your a chum!

9:03 am  
Blogger Tesso said...

Interesting links. Thanks.

1:34 pm  
Blogger robtherunner said...

I do not like the fade method, but I seem to use it every marathon I run, or at least when I am pushing myself.

The one time I ran 2:59:19 I ran 4:05/K the first half, 4:23/K from the half to 35K and 4:37/K from 35K to the finish.

I would love to finish as fast I start, but oh well.

4:04 pm  
Blogger E-Speed said...

i think you should only factor for fade if you like me aim to go out even pace but get too excited and run too hard the first half :)

Most real runners I know pr'ed on negative splits. After running Youngstown I have a little more confidence that I can go out a little slower and hammer in and still be fast.

3:35 am  
Blogger *jeanne* said...

The FADE. Story of my life! Not at all surprising, considering the way I train.

(I run a weekend race, then tack on the extra miles afterward to bring up the mileage to my LSD distance. Sort of teaching my body to start FAST - for me - then SLOW WAY DOWN. Not a very *bright* way to train, I know, but it keeps me from having to do LSD runs by myself - which takes me FOREVER. Slow-butt me.)

1:34 am  
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11:37 am  

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