What a Full Day of Training for a Sub-3-Hour Marathon Looks Like

A sub-three-hour marathon is a coveted milestone for long-distance runners. It demands peak physical fitness and a meticulously crafted training regimen. Customized training programs tailored to individual needs are the cornerstone of success in challenging endeavors like these.

On May 20, 2024, hybrid athlete Fergus Crawley published a video on his YouTube channel, sharing his first week of training as he aims to break the three-hour barrier in his marathon scheduled for Sept. 29th, 2024. Check it out below:

[Related: A Guide to the Best Pre-Workouts, Tested and RD Approved]

Morning Strength Training Session

Here is a summary of Crawley’s strength-focused workout:

Deadlifts — 3 x 5 

Safety Bar Split Squats

After completing a 250-kilometer race, Crawley opted for six weeks of unstructured training while intentionally keeping training volume low. “My snappiness and power in strength movements and running have diminished after the 250K,” admitted Crawley.

Crawley prioritizes heavier lifting sessions, and higher-intensity runs to regain his lost strength and endurance. The Scottish athlete’s first training session of the day is a heavy lower-body workout.

Crawley opens with three sets of deadlifts for five reps at 190 kilograms (420 pounds). He performed them raw (without lifting straps) while wearing a weightlifting belt before transitioning to safety bar split squats with one 45-pound weight plate on each side. 

After his workout, Crawley refuels with a bowl of Greek yogurt topped with frozen raspberries and oats, followed by black coffee and a protein bar in the mid-afternoon to stave off hunger.

View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Fergus Crawley (@ferguscrawley)

To enhance his marathon performance, Crawley maintains a calorie deficit to reduce body fat while consuming 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight to preserve muscle mass.

“For the marathon and my strength goals, I want to be as light and functional as possible,” Crawley said. “Carrying any excess body weight would be detrimental [for the sub-three-hour goal], making it more sensible to get leaner and lighter.” 

Evening Endurance Training Session

Below is a snapshot of Crawley’s track session:

2 x 400 meters (warm-up)

4 x 800 meters

Crawley’s afternoon training consists of a track session designed to improve his speed, featuring four 800-meter repetitions with equal rest intervals. He primes his body for the main set with two progressively faster 400-meter warm-up runs.

Here are Crawley’s 800-meter splits:

Rep One — 2:40

Rep Two — 2:43

Rep Three — 2:48

Rep Four — 2:46

As his marathon preparation advances, Crawley’s focus is twofold: increasing his running speed and gradually lifting heavier weights while decreasing the repetitions.

Featured image: @ferguscrawley on Instagram

The post What a Full Day of Training for a Sub-3-Hour Marathon Looks Like appeared first on BarBend.


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