Farren Morgan sounds somewhat tired on the phone, which is quite understandable a day after running the London Marathon in full military gear wearing a 34-kilo backpack. He not only ran marathons but did so in world record time of six hours and 50 minutes just waiting for his certificate to come.
“I want it to inspire the military community as well as the wider community to make people realize that you can do anything,” he says, “I also wanted to make sure I pushed myself out of “There are not many things that are pushing my fitness levels at this point.”
And I can see why. Farren is section commander of the British Army, a member of the Coldstream Guards – the oldest regiment in the British Army – and served with the Guards Parachute Platoon for two years. To get in, Farren had to undergo the notoriously difficult P-company training to earn his naval bar and British military fountains.
He is also PT, both inside and outside the Army, has his own military-style fitness program called Tactical athlete and is a Grenade ambassador too. It’s easy to see why he had to make a Guinness World Record attempt just to get out of his comfort zone.
“I do not want to lie, every minute was uncomfortable”
However, it was not easy. Carrying a 34kg backpack 26.2 miles puts a lot of pressure on people physically and mentally. “I will not lie, every single minute was uncomfortable,” Farren explains, “I will go so far as to say that this was the hardest thing I have ever done mentally and physically.”
It is said that you win endurance races with your head, not with your legs. Things get uncomfortable and you have to be ready to hit the wall which will inevitably come sooner or later. “If you have any kind of niggles on your body or different thoughts in your brain, everything gets amplified a thousand times over,” Farren says.
That said, it went swimming at the start of the marathon. “The first six kilometers were pretty easy, it was pretty fast. I was really excited. Once you’ve done six miles, it’s time to settle down and start thinking about your strategy, ”he says.
Some problems occurred around the 9-mile mark. “I strained my femur at mile nine,” admits Farren, “but I drifted through and used the warrior mentality to work through the pain. I would not advise people to push themselves for another 17 miles after feeling a bit of an injury. , but that was the decision I made that day. ”
One thing that definitely helped was the support of his friends and family members. “30-40 people came to see me on the day, including my wife, who gave great support and even went to three different places to cheer on me during the race.”
“I did about a thousand kilometers of weighted races”
Training for such an attempt is also not a walk in the park. “During the six months of training before the race, I would say that I did about a thousand miles of weighted running and followed my own Tactical Athlete Coaching program,” Farren continues, “This includes one run, three strength training sessions and one tactical session. every week. ”
This is on top of his usual training load. “Normally, if I was not training for a marathon, I would do PT for the military guys in the morning. I can even skip that session with them if it’s a race or a weighted race. Then I do my strength training in the afternoon “, he adds.
However, it is not just hardcore training. “As I get older, I put more and more emphasis on flexibility and recovery. “Before COVID, I did very hot yoga. I really enjoyed it, ”he says,“ I use a lot of foam roller and I really enjoy using Theragun massage pistols. They are excellent. “The father actually wore his Theragun in his bergen during the marathon and used it to open his calves a little up before the race.
“You need to listen to your body,” he recommends, “If I feel really tired or burnt out because my work-life balance took a hit, my sessions will also be a hindrance.” It is not uncommon for him to take a day off if he feels energyless. These days, he might be doing some stretching and making sure he is hydrating as well. “Hydration is just so important,” he adds.
“I ate 4,000 calories a day for the last four weeks”
Runners love to talk about their carb-loading sessions before longer races, but as expected, Farren’s version of this was as hardcore as one might expect. “I took 4,000 calories a day in the last four weeks before the marathon,” he explains, “I put on quite a lot, to be honest. I had pasta for almost every meal I had.”
Needless to say, Farren is not famous for getting rid of carbs every day. As he says, diet is “massively important” in his life and is a “secondary goal” for him. He is also intermittently fasting: “I want to do my strength training early in the morning in the fasting state”, he says, “Usually I eat a massive meal in the evening, not long before I go to bed. It is enough to give me energy to the training session the next morning. ”
“I have been training for 18 years. I know exactly what my body needs for fuel. I know exactly when my body tells me to stop when I need to rest. And that’s a big point that some people don’t realize when they exercise: When your body tells you something, you have to listen to it. Otherwise, you can put yourself further back than where you are at the moment. ”
The father will not sit on the laurels, even after his world record event. He wants to compete Hyrox Birmingham event, even though one day after trying the Guinness World Record it feels a bit much: “I don’t want to think about competing at the moment because I feel completely exhausted,” he says with a laugh.
He is also launching his new Youtube channel, where he summarizes his London Marathon experience. I’m sure that no matter what he plans to do in the future, Farren’s warrior mentality will help him overcome any obstacles he may encounter. Maybe not with ease, but that would still not be his style.
You can read more about Farren’s attempt at a grenade by clicking here.