Date(s) - 09/06/2019

Durban City Hall


The 2019 Comrades Marathon UP RUN will soon be upon us. The UP RUN is known for The Big Five Hills: Cowies Hill, Fields Hill, Bothas Hill, Inchanga and Polly Shortts. The 1st 3 are all run in the 1st 40km with Inchanga taking you to 50km and Polly Shortts with a little over 10km to go. There are also many other climbs like Little Polly’s, Umlaas Road, however it’s the unnamed hills that get you down and creep into your mind. In summary: The UP Run is an enormous challenge.

It is important to prepare physically for the challenge, and equally important to prepare mentally for the challenge of running 87 odd kilometers from Durban to Pietermaritzburg.

The focus this year is to run consistently and regularly. Some running must be done in the winter to lay a platform for spring and summer. If you completed the 2018 down run or are a regular runner with a 21km PB of 2:20 or faster, this programme will be too easy for you, so add bit more than what is on the programme but do not get too carried away, in the coming months less is more, and the focus is on improving your half marathon time in November, your Marathon time in January and we focus on Comrades from March/April.

If you are a true beginner to running, then this is where you start, with a very slow but consistent build up to race day on 9 June 2019.

This programme is time based so people of more experience and greater running ability will get relatively more out of the programme and progress faster. Time based programmes also prevent you from settling on a route that you need to run faster every time you run that route. It is easier to maintain discipline and run easy on easy days. The aim is to be able to run a sub 5:00 marathon before Comrades.

Because you will employ a run walk strategy for your Qualifier, Long run and Comrades we will use this strategy in training. Very important to note about using a run walk strategy is that the walk is not a Sunday stroll but fast walking with purpose. It is a change in focus on the muscles not a “rest”. DO NOT add extra running, it will however be massively beneficial if you add cross training or strength training to your schedule.

Note that training days are interchangeable, if your club does hill training on a different day or club long runs on a different day then you can change days around.

Training Paces for a 2:20 half marathon:

Recovery:                     8:00-8:15

Easy:                            7:20-7:40

Long Runs:                   7:20-8:00

Time Trials:

4km                              23:45

5km                              30:15

8km                              50:00

Start at the slower end of the training paces and move towards the faster end as you progress through the coming months of training.

Please note that if you cannot run the Time Trial times this does not mean you are not capable of a 2hr20 half Marathon. These are guidelines so there is some room either side.

Enjoy the training!