Thursday, November 14, 2013

Training update: Hansons Marathon Method

After 12 full marathons, I achieved my first sub-5 hours (hopefully is the first one). I didn’t follow any kind of training plan as I am not really good to follow thru the 16 weeks routine and all my training was ad hoc. But now I started to wonder if this will be my limit, or what will be my potential if I follow thru some training plan. And Nick introduced the Hansons Marathon Method to me.

I must say I am totally bought over to the ideas shared in this book. The layout of the information is very well and it’s explained the training program before jump into the training time table. I spent some time to first digest the information, and then I spend some time looking into my time table and an event that fit into the timing to test out the result. That’s why I register myself to my first ultra 50km. Back to the training program, it’s explained why the speed work, tempo, strength building and long run, and why the program layout into a full 6 days per week workout.

I picked to start with Beginner program, cause I needed the rest and I got not confidence at all after I looked thru the weekly mileages required in the Advanced program. Beginner program started with 25-35km per week, then step up to 55-68km when speed work kicked in. Then shifted to higher gear when strength building run kicked in, peak with a whopping 85km per week. I can tell you I never ran that much before in a week! Maximum in my records was 60km only, and that’s only happened once! I am sure if I can survived this training program, I will be running any marathon with a comfortable pace (sub-5 will not be an issue any more).
Pace setting for the training program is slightly less emphasized. For any target pace you wished to follow during your race, a set of training paces recommended. So you can move up the target pace (together with set of training paces) if you later found that the pace is too easy, or slowing down if the program is getting too hard for you. Anyway, in order to identify one target pace, the past racing pace should be used. If you ran a 5.5 marathon previously, probably starting with the relevant training paces will be good. For me, I check out the easy pace (7:08 min) that I usually do, then look up to the target pace (6:24 min), which is a 4.5 hours marathon finish time. May be an ambitious target, but let give it a try and see how far I will last in the training plan, and adjust later.

The first test will be the 10k race on 1st Dec. It is recommended in the book to reconfirm the training pace if you have no completed any marathon, by doing a 10k race full out at around 7 week into the beginner training program. Hence I will try to match or better the training pace of 5:52 min. I was doing a 5:22 min pace last year on the same race (pushed hard due to company assignment to win in cooperate category), hopefully I can repeat the same result this year. And then I will comfortably use this set of training pace for the rest of the program.

Anyway, the final test will not be a marathon, but a 50km ultra @ Titi 100. I will need to adjust my 5 hours target for 42km to something like 6.5 hours for the 50km. The target looks great! Let see how far I can go with the training program for the next 94 days.


  1. Thanks for sharing Neoh.

    I really need to check the book out to learn more about the Hansons' method. All I know is the Desiree Davilla is on their team and it's a high mileage program(?).

    All the best to your training and to Titi 50K! :)

    1. You are most welcome
      And good luck to your next year training plan too :)

  2. Hansons is a good guide Neoh but you have to be consistent with the plan for it to bear fruit. Try to find the time to stick to it like glue and you'll be hitting that sub 5 with ease. It demands a lot from you in terms of planning your time to train and stubbornly sticking to the menu for the day. It's tough to follow when you have work and family life involved and some sacrifices have to be made but it's all worth it in the end, my friend. All the best with the programme!

    1. Thanks for the advice, like you said, I will stick to it like glue.
      Hopefully can survived the plan :)

  3. Hello there,do you know where I can find the book? Thanks for the info :)

    1. Hi, I got it from Kinokuniya.
      If you are not from Malaysia, there are providing international shipping too. Else, you can try Amazon.
      ISBN: 9781934030851