Training Runs FAQ

When do the Winter 2014/15 Training Runs start?

Sunday 30th November 2014.

What level do you cater for?

We aim to cater for all levels, but realistically you need to be able to run comfortably for 1 hour, whatever your level, when the Sunday runs start.

What time do the runs start?

Normally we start promptly with a warm-up at 8.30am. We suggest you arrive between 8.00am and 8.15am to allow time for registration, for any excess kit to be stored in the Saucony van or at our base location, and to meet everyone beforehand and gauge which pace group you wish to run with.

However, when the runs are held in conjunction with one of our seminars, eg the first one on 30th November, the timings are different. Please see http://runbrighton.wordpress.com/runbrighton-training-seminars/early-bird-session-sunday-30th-november/

Will the runs be every week?

They will be weekly on Sundays, from 30th November 2014 through to 5th April 2015 (the Sunday before the Brighton Marathon). However, please note we will not have a regular RunBrighton Sunday run on 22nd February and 15th March (the dates of the Brighton Half Marathon and Worthing 20 Miler respectively.)

This is because most of the RunBrighton runners and Ambassadors tend to participate in these two events, leaving just a handful turning up for the group run.

Both of these events will fit well in the RunBrighton marathon training schedule.

What distance will we run?

The Sunday runs will normally be based on time-on-feet rather than distance, with the durations starting at 1 hour and gradually increasing to a maximum of about 3 hours. This is an effective way of marathon training. Those of you who anticipate a marathon finish time of 5 or 6 hours, please do not feel you need to be on your feet for that long in any one training run. The rationale for this will be explained at the seminars.

What can you tell me about the routes?

The routes are changed regularly and the terrain is varied to include both on and off road, and including both flat and hilly runs. They are usually out-and-back courses rather than loops. This is much easier to manage as everyone finishes at broadly the same time. We also received some great feedback from last year, particularly from those towards the back of the group who were able to enjoy being close to the front on the return leg.

The first couple of Sunday runs will be on flat routes so as to ease you in gradually. Thereafter, many of the routes will be hilly, off-road. We would therefore suggest that if you are not used to hills, you begin to do small amounts on your runs over the preceding weeks so that you cope better with the Sunday runs from mid-December. By doing this you will be less likely to pick up injuries.

Will we have pacers?

Although we all start out on the runs together, we divide into pacing groups based on minute-per-mile pace.

Please bear in mind that the Sunday runs should normally be done at 1 minute-per-mile slower than your target marathon race pace. For example, if you’re targeting 3 hrs, which is approximately 7 minutes-per-mile, you should be running your Sunday run at about 8 minutes-per-mile. (This is flexible, you’re not obliged to stick to the same group each week.)

We can cater for sub-3hr runners as well as those likely to do 5hrs plus.

Please note, however, that the Ambassadors are not employed as pacers. The above paces are approximate. The key reason we divide into these groups is to ensure we have Ambassador support spread evenly throughout the whole group, and so that everyone is running with others of a similar ability.

In the latter half of the season, some of the runs will be done with marathon race pace efforts in the last hour, for example, but we’ll make this clear nearer the time.

Do I just need to do the Sunday runs?

Whilst we shall be accompanying you on your long Sunday runs, please don’t rely solely on these runs for your marathon preparation. You will have far more success come race day if you are able to train a minimum of three times a week. Training programs (whether you consider yourself a beginner, an improver or an experienced marathoner) will be provided for you by our official coach, Nick Anderson. Nick has a vast amount of experience and success as a coach – click HERE and scroll down to Training Schedule. The schedules will be emailed to you each week.

Can I park nearby?

Where possible, we aim to base the runs in car-friendly locations so that you will be able to park your car for free, i.e. Stanmer Park, Saltdean Lido, Studio57 in Hove, Adur Outdoor Activity Centre in Shoreham, etc. However, in the interest of being nice to our environment, please see if you can jog, cycle or car-share to these venues.

 I don’t drive!

Most of the bases will also be accessible by buses or trains. (As above, please see if you can jog, cycle or grab a lift with other runners.)

What can I do with my belonging whilst I am running?

You will be able to store your excess kit / bags with our support vehicle or at our base location.

What should I wear?

Before you start out on your training, please do go to a specialist running shop and have your running gait analysed. This will ensure you select the most appropriate trainers to help prevent injuries. Ladies, it is also worth investing in a suitable sports bra.

We suggest you bring additional clothing for warmth after your run as your body temperature will soon cool down once you stop. Extra clothing can always be stored in the support van.

Please also make sure you wear your yellow RunBrighton armband (see below FAQ).

What if I fall behind?

Those of you who have been on RunBrighton runs before will have been given a yellow armband to wear on the runs. New members will be issued with one. Whilst these can be used to house your phone / keys / money, their key function is for us to identify you as part of the group. If you happen to have dropped off the back of your group owing to an injury, it enables us to see you from a distance and know you are a part of RunBrighton, and Ambassadors in the following groups can check you’re ok. It’s also a great way of spotting each other if you wear them in races! But please do remember to wear them on all of the Sunday runs.

Will I need to bring water?

500 ml water bottles will be provided at end of the training runs. However, it is advisable to be responsible for your own hydration during the runs. A drinks belt is a good idea.

What if I want to pull out early?

The training runs are predominantly out-and-back courses, so you can turn around earlier than planned if need be. This will enable you to walk some of the way, if necessary, in the knowledge that you will be returning with lots of runners behind you, rather than being left behind. An Ambassador will always be on hand, and can call to the standby vehicle to alert them that you are heading back.

What if I want to increase the distance?

The key benefit of running out-and-back courses (often with everyone turning at the same time) is that everyone finishes back at base more or less together.

We can know in advance the approximate location of the turning-point of the faster front-runners. This makes the runs easier to manage, particularly should the need arise for a vehicle to pick up an injured runner.

Therefore, if you would like to run over-distance, we would prefer you to add on the extra miles back at base after completion of the pre-arranged route.

What if I miss a run?

Don’t worry, just turn up when you can.

Please note that you will need to take responsibility for your own safety when running without the support of an Ambassador beyond the scheduled run.