3 30 Marathon Pace | Pro Running Tips

September 29, 2022

Are you seeking how to sustain 3 30 marathon pace longer and finally get to that 3:29.59 marathon time? If so, welcome to Nutrition Geeks. My aim with this post is to help provide some running tips that will set you up for success. Running a sub 3 30 marathon is not an easy task. You will need to sustain 8 minute miles for 26.2 miles or 4:58 per kilometer for 42.2 kilometers to run 3:29.59. The good news is that you can achieve this time, others have done it and so can you.

That being said, you will need to change up your training strategy. I created the 3:30 Marathon Training Plan Blueprint course to help speed up your progress. In addition, have created training plans ranging from 8 to 24 weeks in duration. I highly recommend a longer rather than a shorter training block preparing for marathons. In fact, 20 to 24 weeks is optimal. The main reason is you will not be rushing your fitness. It takes a minimum of 3 to 4 weeks for the body to adapt to the heavy stresses we place on it in training.

So, trying to prepare for a marathon in a matter of 8 to 12 weeks is a tough task. Of course, you can still get into legitimate share in this time frame. That being said, if you really want to master sub 3 30 marathon pace then I would focus on 16 to 24 weeks.

How Fast is a 3 Hour 30 Minute Marathon

You will need to sustain a minimum of 8 minutes per mile in order to run a 3.29.59 marathon time. Are you outside of the united States of America? If so, you will need to sustain 4:58 per kilometer for 42.2 kilometers in order to break the sub 3 30 marathon barrier. It can certainly be done. That being said, you need to run a higher percentage of your weekly mileage at faster paces.

A common mistake many runners make is simply running too aerobically, too often. It makes them superior long, slow distance runners. So, in order to master 3 30 marathon pace you have to train faster. Yes, easier said than done. The first focus of yours should be on running a minimum of 4 weeks easy and relaxed. I would recommend adding in strides into your training as well doing these twice per week. Strides are too short to build up any significant amounts of lactic acid.

So, you can do these 100 meter long sprints on top of the other workouts you are doing throughout the week. The overall goal is to improve our lactate tolerance. The result is you will be able to maintain sub 3 30 marathon pace longer. In addition, you will slow down less. Also, be able to react to any of the pace changes in the race that your competition may be throwing at you.


Is 3 Hours 30 Minutes a Good Marathon Time?

Yes, a 3 30 marathon is a very competitive time and one that only a small percentage of runners achieve each year. Again, sub 3 30 marathon pace comes out to 8:00 per mile or 4:58 per kilometer. So, I highly recommend working to get your tempo runs out toward 16 to 20 kilometers in length. Remember, it takes about 4 weeks for the body to adapt to any specific intensity. The longer your build up preparing to break the sub 3 30 marathon barrier, the better.

Coach Pennington finishing as the top American and in 4th place at the 2007 California International Marathon in 2:19:35

The sub 3:30 marathon barrier is not an easy goal to achieve. You have to use leverage and train at a higher heart rate more often. In addition, you also need to ensure that you are jogging on easy days. The real benefits if your hard training come from within the rest period after the workout is done. So, jog on easy days and don't get so caught up with what pace per mile or pace per kilometer you are running at on these days.

Is 3/30 A Good Time for a Marathon?

Yes, a sub 3:30 marathon time is an extremely competitive time. One way to speed up your progress is to use a heart rate monitor.

I regularly use the Garmin 245. Of course, there are many other models to choose from but I have found this one to work best for me. It helps me to stay in the correct heart rate zones while I am doing my tempo and long runs. It is a much wiser move to be undertrained than to be over trained.

I still see far too many runners running too fast on easy days. In addition, too slow on hard days. So, a strategic way to get better prepared to break 3:30 for the marathon is to train at the proper intensities.

How Hard is a Sub 3 Hour Marathon?

Once you have mastered 3 30 marathon pace your next goal should be to break the 3 hour marathon barrier. I created the Sub 3 Hour Marathon Pro course for athlete seeking to run 2.59.59. It is not an easy task to break 3 30 nor 3 hours for the marathon. Again, you will need to start running more of your weekly mileage at or below your anaerobic threshold effort. In addition, will have to also train adequately at your vo2 max effort.

We run between 85 to 89 percent of our maximum heart rate at the anaerobic threshold. In order to master 3 30 marathon pace you need to start lengthening out that tempo run. Sure, a 3 to 4-mile tempo run is sufficient for a 5k or 10k but not for a half-marathon or marathon. My recommendation is to work your ways toward 10 to 12 miles or 16 to 20 kilometers. Remember, it takes several weeks to adapt to each, specific intensity. So, master a 3 to 4 mile tempo run before moving toward 8 to 12 miles in length.


How Many Miles a Week Should I Run for a Sub 3 Hour Marathon?

I would recommend running upwards of 70 miles a week for runners seeking to break 3:30 or 3 hours for the marathon. Remember, it isn't so much about the volume as it is the quality of running you are doing that matters most. You could be running 100 miles a week and still never break the 3:30 or 3 hour marathon barriers if running too slow. Again, the goal here is to improve your body's ability to clear lactic acid faster than it is building up.

Easy running will not help you do this. Faster, anaerobic training will. Explosive activities like weight training, speed workouts, fartlek running and hill repetitions will help you recruit more fast twitch muscle fibers. The more of these we can recruit the faster we will be able to race and the easier 3 30 marathon pace is going to feel. The world's top runners are running between 35 to 40 percent of their weekly mileage at or below their anaerobic threshold effort. Again, this is running between 85 to 89 percent of your maximum heart rate.

3:30 Marathon Training Plan

The training plans and the 3:30 Marathon Blueprint course I created are designed to help increase your chances of breaking this barrier. You will be doing the exact workouts that are needed to master 3 30 marathon pace. In fact, you will be doing similar workouts that I was doing prior to breaking the 2:20 marathon barrier. I was taught specific training and racing tactics by 3 of the world's top distance running coaches.

So, these resources take the guess work out of your preparation. You will be doing at least 1, vo2 max workout per week. Vo2 max is our body's maximum oxygen uptake. It is running at specific intensities that are so great we simply can't clear lactic acid faster than it is building up. That being said, it will help to make sub 3 30 marathon pace to feel more like 4 30 marathon pace. The result is you will be able to sustain it all the way to the finish line and achieve that 3.29.59 or faster time you are dreaming about.

Closing Thoughts

How often are you devoting time to mental rehearsal? The world's best runners pay close attention to mental training. So, in order to break the 3 30 marathon barrier you also need to train mentally. I credit mental training to helping me lower my marathon best from 2:43:36 to 2:19:35. Of course, you need to combine both mental as well as physical training together to maximize your results.

That being said, you need to start taking 10 to 15 minutes daily to rehearse mentally you breaking the 3 30 marathon barrier. The best time to do this is when you first get up in the morning or when you go to bed at night. I would love to keep in touch with you.

Make sure to subscribe to the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. I focus on making new content there weekly to help runners such as yourself make massive gains in their fitness. I'm looking forward to hearing how the resources mentioned in this post helped you run that 3.29.59 time.


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