I wrote the 4 Hour Marathon Blueprint for runners seeking a 9.09 per mile pace or better for 26.2 miles.
That being said, it doesn't matter if your goal is to break 5 hours, 4, 3 or the 2.30 marathon barrier.
The goal is getting accustomed to handle that pace comfortably.
Is it hard to maintain anaerobic effort for long periods of time?
Absolutely, but tough goals require tough training.
There are no easy shortcuts.
I want to hold 5.16 pace for the marathon distance (2.17.59) and I can tell you from my own weekly training experience that training under that pace is a real pain in the ass for me but I know it's necessary.
Going out for 20 milers at paces that are 2 minutes slower than what you want to race 26 miles isn't going to cut it when we are talking about specific goals. Expect it to be tough, that is why it is special.
Create Your Art
It is an art form that only you can create. We all have choices. Are we going to do the work necessary to get the job done or as we going to half ass it and miss the mark?
If you fail does that mean your time is past? Hell no.
There is a thing called desire that not enough people put enough trust in regarding their beliefs.
It may take you a few months or a few years, it may take you a decade to attain what you want.
Desire and hustle are everything.
Stay Positive Throughout
One thing that pains more than I can explain is people who don't personally know you who will try to belittle you, your progress, your joy for something you did well in the past.
Forget them, if you get someone like that, end it immediately.
We are on this earth for far too short amount of time to waste our mental energy.
Find something that will motivate you, somewhere you can go to learn more about your sport, topic of interest, stay motivated.
Wanting And Doing
A big difference between Kenyans and Americans is Americans say you are only as good as your last race.
The Kenyans believe that they are as good as their goal regardless if they have achieved it or not yet.
Have the patience and fortitude to practice far below your goal race pace often and take your time.
It can't be rushed.
I did a 5 mile tempo yesterday hitting splits of 5.08,5.10,4.55,5.03,5.06.
This is an example. I have to get used to 5.16 pace.
Training at these paces are optimal, preferably well under 5.00 pace.
It doesn't just matter if I am doing 20 milers at 5.30-6.00 pace.
It is more of how much time during the week is spent at or below 5.16 pace.
Increase Your Pace
The harder long runs are just an extension of these hard workouts. Easy days, should be EASY.
Whatever pace you have in mind practice it.
If you are losing motivation to workout keep your focus.
Find something that is going to keep going.
Don't be afraid to fail.
You may only be able to go a half mile at goal pace for starters, than 15 minutes and so on.
Continue to build, surround yourself with positive people. Keep building