Marathon Training Tips | Q&A With 2:20 Marathon Man Modesto Álvarez


Athlete Profile


NAME: Modesto Alvarez Dominguez

EVENTS: Half Marathon/Marathon

PB’s: 67:17 / 2:20:25

MyProtein Ambassador and Spanish elite athlete, Modesto Alvarez Dominguez ran a personal best of 2:20:25 at the Seville Marathon on 22nd February! Most top runners would be the road to recovery, yet Modesto won another two other races within 21 days.

Just 2 weeks later in Seville on March 8th he won a 13km mountain road race in Loja, Granada and a week following – March 15th – he won the Baza Half Marathon in 69:04! Modesto Alvarez Dominguez is nothing short of a sporting champion!


Marathon Training Recovery


We believe at MyProtein that the key factor we can influence and one of the key indicators of high level success in distance running is recovery.




We sat down with Modesto to ask him how he recovers so quickly and what he has changed recently to allow him to compete at such a high level, so frequently.


Q 1)  Modesto, first of all congratulations on a successful and jam packed 21 days. How are you feeling now?




“To be honest I’m really happy with the results obtained in this early season. My fitness is shown in the results and without doubt, part of this is due to the my new diet and supplements program for recovery which I started last winter!”



Q 2) What was your goal time for the Seville Marathon and can you tell us a bit about your training program over winter in the lead up to the race?



“My main goal was to improve my previous PB of 2h24’10” which I ran at the Seville Marathon in 2012. The specific training towards this marathon started on 15th December, 9 weeks before the marathon day (22nd February).

Within this training plan, I included three tune-up races such as a cross country race in late January (Military National Championships) and a 10 km road race at the beginning of February but I knew I was in good shape when I ran a Half Marathon PB of 67:17, exactly 4 weeks before Seville Marathon on 18th January.


marathon running


In terms of long runs, I did four ranging from 28 km to 33 km within the 10 weeks of specific training with progressive pacing, below 4min/km (6.24 per mile) and then included lots of long interval sessions. My biggest mileage week was week 8 with a total of 115 miles (187 km).”


Q 3) Given you took more than 4 minutes off your previous personal best marathon time, what would you say had changed or differed from previous training programs?

 whey protein shake post-marathon training



“Mainly, I have increased my overall training pace. In the past, my daily runs were much easier. My long runs have remained the same but in this training program I’ve also included more long intervals, such as 3 x 6 km with minimum recovery time.

I have also placed a much bigger focus on recovery. The race to recover fully starts as soon as my last session finishes. I have amino acids and a whey protein shake after all sessions and on long runs and of course races, I use gels to fuel every 10km.”


Q 4) I noticed your time from 25km to 35km was the fastest 10km of your race. How were you feeling at that point? How did you fuel yourself during the race?




“Yes, those were the fastest and I remember it perfectly because in that moment I was leading the group and in 27 km, I risked everything and decided to move out. During the race, I had the use of the elite race drinks table. My carb drinks were prepared for every 5 km table plus an energy gel every 10km. “


modesto marathon training


5) For us, what is most impressive is your ability to recovery very quickly between hard efforts and races. Most of us are still struggling with stairs 2 weeks after a marathon but you were winning races. Can you tell us how you recovery so quickly and what advice you’d give our readers?




“Just after finishing the marathon, I had my special drink which includes a mixture of carbohydrates, Glutamine and Beta Alanine.

Lunch was light and included a large glass of protein shake. In the evening, I ate high protein snacks, and I went straight to a freezing cold natural pool in my town for 30 minutes legs bath.” – lovely!


whey protein shake


6) Final question, what are your future goals for the marathon and your objectives for this year?




“My next objective for Marathon is to reduce this 2h20‘.

This year I plan to get a good place in Spanish Championship Half Marathon in my city, Granada, to win as many races as possible in Diputación de Granada circuit and especially, to obtain a good result in the Marathon of the World Military Games (Military Olympics) which will be held in Mungyeong (South Korea) from 1st to 13th October, 2015.”


modesto marathon training


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