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Got a training question? Ask Runlab founder and marathon runner, Vlad Shatrov below!

With over 10 years’ experience training runners together with competing at the highest levels in distance running, Vlad Shatrov knows what it means to be a runner.

After completing the 2016 Berlin Marathon in a PB of 2:18, Vlad knows what it takes to set a goal and really work towards it. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience gained by racing numerous prestigious events abroad, at home, on road and on the trails. Vlad has a passion for running like no other and has trained with many of Australia’s best runners and coaches. Plus, he's running this year's Blackmores Half Marathon alongside many of you!

Vlad is also the founder of Runlab, a leading provider of group interval training sessions, group functional strength classes and personalized running analysis and programming. He has trained runners of all abilities, so whether you’re looking to run in the Family Fun Run, smash the Bridge Run, step up to the Half marathon or finish the Blackmores Sydney Marathon, he can help you with your training.

His running career started slowly – after undergoing surgery at the age of 10 to alleviate joint fusions in both ankles, he was told it was unlikely that he would be able to make a career out of the sport that he loved yet caused him so much grief. Undeterred, as a young teenager growing up on a sheep property in South Eastern NSW, he continued to push his body, enjoying the freedom that running provided.

Not only has he successfully competed in many individual road races, but he has helped many people, from absolute beginners to seasoned runners, achieve personal bests in both running and triathlons.

Got a question for Vlad? Ask him in the comments section below!

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Hi Vlad,
I set myself the big goal this year to run the Sydney Marathon in September 2017. I was doing brilliantly with my training schedule and really enjoying it for the past 7 months. However I also decided to play netball again this year and to my own detriment have caused myself to get shin splints from over training quite badly (they didn’t just hurt walking, they even ached at night whilst in bed!). I have rested now for almost 4 weeks, received treatment for them and have also given up netball for the year. I can no longer feel the shin splints, and think I’m ready to head out for some lighter and much shorter running then where I was at to kick back off again.
My question to you is, with your experience do you think it is still possible for me to get fit enough to run the Marathon in September from now coming back from injury? Or should I concentrate on smaller runs this year, and look to complete the Marathon in September 2018? Prior to the 4 weeks off I was running 3-4 times a week up to a distance of 12km.
Look forward to hearing your response, Sarah 
Sarah 07 Jun 2017
Hi Vlad,

Thanks for the training program, and the strength training video that you put on the web. I used them last year for my first marathon, and finished with a time of 3:26 hrs.

I am back this year for my second marathon. But just wondering how should I set a realistic goal time - 3:20, 3:15 or faster? I understand that this will have implications on the pace that I target for each training session. Since September last year, I did a couple of 10 km race in December (PB 43:20 mins.), Six-foot track in March (5:25 hrs), and UTA50 in May (6:35 hrs.). Thank you for your suggestions.

Nirada 02 Jun 2017
Hi, thanks for the training guide. It has lots of great information to build a plan, as I have boot camp that I build around my half marathon plans (so lots of strength work). This will be my second half as just done my first and loved it. A big goal for me as a new runner, dodgy knees and dropped over 30kgs . One question around rest - there's only 1 day built into your plan. Are 2 rest days okay, as I find that I need those given I only started running about a year old and in my mid-40's . Need a little more recovery plus I like a rest before my long run and after my long run so my legs are fresh & recover. After my speed/sprint day, I follow the next day with strength work with a light run. But the plan has rest days differently. What are your thoughts with rest before and after the long run day? Not sure I could do parkrun, then a long run the day after. Thank you. PS - My first half was 2.22, which my goal was to finish, have fun and not go too hard as wanted to baseline that run for future halves. I achieved those. My next goal in the next half is a PB of 10 mins which I am confident I can do and it will be a flatter course. :) Thank you,
Janine 02 Jun 2017
Hi Vlad, I'm hoping to run my first half marathon in September. I have participated in the 10K Sunrun, 10K Lindfield Funrun and 8K Mothers' Day classic. I am a beginner runner. How would you recommend tweaking your training program for the Half based on the following:

> I will be running in the City to Surf this year
> I will be on vacation in Fiji for 2 week in July.

Theresa Chan
Theresa Chan 29 May 2017
Hi V-Man

Hope you're well? I am training for my first marathon this September. May I ask,

1) can I do a spin class as one of my general aerobic days? Or should I really be running?

2) there a place on the website dedicatedly to race specific strength work? I really need a plan to follow. Read in one of the posts that pump isn't great

3) can you swap the days around to fit in with your lifestyle? I am thinking M- aerobic T-strength W - hills / interval 30'mins strength 30mins Th - rest F- aerobic Sat or Sunday - long run

Thank you, you're awesome!!

Zunilka 27 May 2017
Hi Vlad, I was hoping you could give me some advice on how to set a realistic finishing time for the marathon. I feel that I've plateaued and I don't really know what I'm capable of. Of late after my training runs I've been told "you still look fresh, you wouldn't have guessed you've just run 14km" How can I push myself & improve without overdoing it and is it more realistic to aim for say a few minuets off my PB rather than 30 min?
Lisa 21 Apr 2017
Hi Vlad, I have just downloaded the beginners Sydney marathon training program, and I can see that it includes strength training twice a week. Would exercises similar to those in a bodypump class be suitable? EG: upper body once per week and lower body once per week? Thanks, Kirsti
Kirsti 11 Apr 2017
Hi Vlad,
Im a beginner runner and ran two 10km runs last year, I am aiming to run the half marathon in september so Plan to follow the 9km bridge run plan from monday then follow the half marathon plan after that.
I was wondering what drills the plan refers to when it states "easy pace running and drills" I havent had any running coaching before so I dont know of any drills, can you point me in the direction of finding some?
Hope you can help :)
Tea 19 Feb 2017