An 8 minute mile marathon equates to a marathon in 3 hours 30 minutes.
This is a very achievable time dependent upon your level of commitment.
For many people 1 mile in 8 minutes is a task. You are seeking to do it for 26.2 miles.
A 3:30 marathon is a very respectable time and one many runners all over the world are working to achieve.
How Can 8 Minute Mile Pace Feel Easier?
I wish I could there was an easier way to answer this question but there isn't one.
It takes work to hold 8 minute mile pace for a marathon. The key tactic I used to break 2:20:00 for the marathon was practicing my goal race pace.
I didn't just put in long runs close to 5:19 per mile pace. I focused on speed sessions, hill repetitions and long interval training sessions to do it.
An 8 minute mile marathon is no different than 5:19 per mile pace was for me.
Everyone has different capabilities but the hard work is the same.
There is no way around it.
The art of the sport is to train in such a way as to make race pace feel manageable and not labored.
You're not supposed to be hurting 8 to 10 miles in the race. Will mile 22 to 26.2 hurt? Yes, it is completely normal to be struggling to hold at that point.
The proper 3 hour marathon training plan can help you overcome anything your competition throws at you.
What Do You Need To Do Differently?
There are a lot of factors to make race pace feel more like a moderate paced effort.
A combination of many things.
One of the most important is to get away from thinking about the quantity of the miles you are running and focus on quality.
Your long runs should not be easy every weekend. The long run is the hardest workout I do. Not track workouts or hill repeats. The long run.
If anything helped me drop from 2:43:36 to 2:19:35 in the marathon it was a change in long run speeds.
Spend some time near or below 8 minute mile pace during your long runs. Get out of your comfort zone. Your body will adapt if you are patient.
This does not mean you need to run hard every weekend. Recovery often times get overlooked. Runners focus a great deal of attention on their workouts, how many miles they put in and at what pace.
Easy days are meant to be easy, not moderate or hard.
Repeat intervals on the road are my favorite and one of the key suggestions I make in helping runners get under 8 minute mile pace.
An 8 minute mile marathon effort can become much easier if you do interval runs at 6:30 to 7:00 mile pace.
Think about it. You are running a minute to a minute and half faster than your goal marathon race pace.
I am currently creating a course called the Sub 3 Hour Marathon Pro. It is designed to help runners seeking to break the 3 hour marathon.
If you are focused on first breaking the 4 hour marathon you should check out the Sub 4 Hour Marathon Mastery course.
What Does The Sub 3 Hour Marathon Pro Course Teach?
If you are seeking to break an 8 minute per mile marathon this is the course you should invest in.
I'll be covering everything from mindset and specific training methodologies needed to break 3:30 and 3 hours.
It will also cover the key strategies some of the world's top coaches and elite marathoners taught me to help you get under 3 hours.
The course will conclude with a specific 16 week marathon training plan to help you dip under not only 3:30 but 3 hours.
This is not a cookie-cutter 8 minute mile marathon training plan. It is an advanced course that only the most serious and committed athlete is going to invest in.
Perhaps you don't think sub 3 hours is in your reality. We'll help you overcome that doubt.
We are in a great sport and after 26 years of competing it is my obligation to provide consulting services to runners who need it.
I will be teaching the exact workouts and steps I took to go from 2:43:36 to 2:19:35 for the marathon distance.
The same strategies and tactics can help any runner regardless what ability level you are currently at. If the sub 3 hour marathon is a bit too aggressive for you currently you might want to check out our Sub 4 Hour Marathon Mastery course.
It is the perfect course for marathoners seeking to get a “3” before the marathon personal best time. Feel free to contact me anytime if you have questions.