What are the steps involved in picking a marathon goal time?

  1. Use effort first- Depending on your level of fitness and experience you can typically run a marathon anywhere from 50-85% of maximum effort.  If you know your heart rate values then this becomes easier.  If you do not then you will need to develop a keen sense of how hard you can run and for how long.
  2. Match your effort to a pace range- Once you know the effort you can sustain for a marathon you can match that effort to a pace range.  A pace range is important because as you get fitter you will be able to go faster at the same effort level (whether you are using heart rate or perceived effort).  More experienced runners will typically know what pace they are aiming for and use this as there guide.  Inexperienced runners should start with effort first and match that to a goal time.

Posted in: Goal Times and Effort