Determining Marathon Pace / Marathon Shoe recommendations

edited December 2012 in General
1) What's the best way to determine marathon pace?

August - HM - 1:49:27
September - 5K - 20:54
December - 10K - 42:50

Would 8:00/mile be out of the question for a Marathon in February?

2) What shoes should I use for my marathon? I currently run in zero drop shoes mostly, as anything above 5-6mm really gives me a problem.   I have the below shoes:

Altra Instinct - Used my for my HM
NB RC5000

I've been looking at either the Sketchers GoBionic or the Altra Instinct 1.5.


  • 1) Is this going to be your first full marathon? If it is, I wouldn't be shooting for 8 min./mile time with a 1:49 HM. Just go out and enjoy the experience. My HM PR is 1:46 and I ran my first full in 4:07 (I left a little on the table and just went out and enjoyed myself). Felt great after. I also ran 5 half marathons before I ran my first full. With that being said, if you still want to shoot for a 3:30 (8ish min/mile) it depends on your training and if you are doing speedwork regularly and religiously getting your long runs in (making sure you get a 20 miler or two in before taper).

    2) As far as what shoes to wear, I recommend wearing the shoes you use for your long runs. If you used your Altras for the half and had no issues, they should be just fine for the full. I use Kinvaras for full marathons because I prefer a 4mm drop for the longer distance because my form tends to break down in the later miles. I do run in more minimal shoes, but just never tried them for that distance. Not sure about the Go Bionics, never tried them. Pete should be able to chime in on these.

    Sorry for the lengthy post and good luck on your marathon!
  • I'd second what Senzation said, if it's a first marathon be very conservative with your predictions on time. I went into my first full with a 1:41 half under my belt and ran something like a 3:43. Things happen late in a marathon that you can't really predict, and the mental aspect is way more complex than in a half. Use the first one to have fun and learn, set time goals for subsequent marathons.

    I do like Jack Daniels' formulas for pace prediction, I wrote about a free app that will do it here:

    For shoes, just reviewed the Instinct 1.5's - I'd stick with what works:
  • Thanks Senzation and Runblogger.  I learned a ton during my first HM, I hit a wall @ 11 miles.  I probably didn't train enough, so that's definitely something I'm avoiding this time around.  I'm using the Hanson-Brooks method for this marathon, currently putting in 45MPW with 8 weeks of training left before my marathon.  I'm using 8:00 as my race pace, to dictate the rest of my training paces. 

    Using various race calculators, I'm getting anywhere from 3:20 (10K time) to 3:50 (HM time). 

    As for marathon shoes, I think I'm going to go with something a little more elevated.  I have some Adidas adipure gazelles that just arrived.  If those don't work, I think it's going to be either the NB RC1600 or the Skechers GoRun2's.  Although, I had the GR2's and the sizing didn't quite agree with my foot, I'm somewhere between an 8 and 8.5.
  • All three options are good ones for shoes.Good luck!
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