Sub 3 Hour Marathon Training Guide

Marathon Lifestyle

As was mentionned in the Recovery section, a few compromises to a "typical" lifestyle will need to be made if you are to run good times in the marathon.

We are not saying that you should not enjoy yourselves by going out and having a good time, but just that you need to be aware of the impact on your training of what you do away from running.


Smoking is an obvious problem for runners, as it damages your lungs which are vital for maintaining the flow of oxygen to your body.


Drinking (alcohol) leaves you dehydrated, so you need to have plenty of water to drink as well. Also, it contains a lot of empty calories, that can't be easily utilised for running.

Also it interfers with synthesis of proteins need to rebuild muscles when you are recovering.

We are not saying you should abstain completely, but do think carefully about how and when you have alcohol.


Athletes, because of the nature of what they do need more sleep than most people. Poor sleep (under 6 hours a night) is a common result of athletes trying to cram all their training into their lives, whilst not missing anything else that everyone else does. It leads to a deterioration of all aspects a persons life, which is often noticable first in a drop off performance levels.

This is both a physical and mental deterioration with loses in cardiovascular performance and also a tendancy to lose motivation.


Nutrition is what keeps us alive (with a bit of breathing!). If your diet is very poor you will not be able to perform optimally. Sports nutrition is discussed in other areas of the site, but here just be aware that you will need to look after your diet to be able to train and recover well.


Support from family and friends is very important. You will be putting a large amount of time into your sport and will need, at the least, understanding of what you are doing from your family and friends. This will often be helped significantly by having friends who are helping you with your running, whether it be other athletes, a coach, a mentor or even just a person who acts as a sounding board.


Take ownership and responsibility for what you are doing. It is your life and your running career. You need to take control of what happens in terms of all aspects of your sport, even if that involves the conscious decision to delegate aspects of it to others - eg a coach, masseur, nutritionalist etc. This is very important for motivation and essentially, if you believe in what you are doing then it will make you run a lot faster than if you are told to do something you don't believe is right - even if it is!

Learn more / further reading

  1. Types of Training
  2. Mileage
  3. Long Runs
  4. Weekly Plan
  5. Recovery
  6. Running Technique
  7. Strength / Power
  8. Marathon Running Gear

If you would like some more help with your training to move you on to the next level with your running, why not try our Online Coaching facility.
















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