Sunday, July 14, 2019

The 'Monster' training week

Abingdon Marathon Training 

14 weeks to go 

Blue - Both of us 
Orange- John
Purple - Kelly 

Phew! Writing this after a thrilling afternoon of sport! Watching the tennis and cricket simultaneously. The cricket was insane! ...right...back to running! We've had pretty strong week. No races this week which was actually quite nice and probably necessary to let our legs recover a bit. 

 Monday 8th July 2019 

A much needed rest day today. No running for  me. I did cycle to and from work so 6 miles in total. Loving cycling commuting; I've only been doing it for a couple of months but I've found that it puts me in a really good mood. I'd highly recommend it to anyone who is thinking about it. 

No running for me either - legs knackered after last week!

 Tuesday 9th July 2019 

With it being a full on week at work with our school plays in the evening tonight and tomorrow, I knew I'd have to do a lot of early morning runs. I don't actually mind running early. I do like to try and make sure I still get 7 hours sleep and, as long as the sun is shining, it's actually quite nice to be outside in the fresh air with hardly any people or cars around. I started the run at 5:47am with the aim of getting back before 7am when John wakes up!

My mission today was to try some speedwork. I wanted to do 8 miles and thought I'd have a go at some shortish intervals. I decided to 10 x 1/4 of a mile (around 400m) efforts. I did a 1 mile warm up to the Portway and my legs were feeling quite tired still from the efforts of last week. I have noticed though that, as I get older, it takes me longer to warm up; my legs often feel really heavy in the first mile but then perk up. So, I set off for my first rep - not too bad - 6:00mm pace. I did a moving recovery without a specific distance or time; I just waited until my breathing had slowed and I was comfortably running around 8mm again. I also wanted to utilise the flattest/ downhilliest sections of that cheating?!

The next 4 intervals also went really well. I was able to be pretty consistent and managed: 5:56 min mile pace, 6:02, 5:52 and 5:56. At this point I turned around feeling pretty pleased with myself that I had half of the run done with pretty strong splits. The next rep was downhill so I did that in 5:49 mm pace followed by: 6:00, 6:01, 6:02 and 5:52 to finish. 8 miles with speedwork done before 7am! Boom!  

Oh I also cycled to school again as well...a bit slower than yesterday though! 

7 miles out and back on the Towpath at a steady 8:10MM pace... Legs not feeling the benefit of yesterdays rest day... similar to KD - the first couple of miles are always a bit of a slog wth my legs and mind resisting exercise and naturally preferring to be sat down with beer and chip... When I reach 3miles the run was a lot more pleasant and hopefully beneficial to training! I finished the running feeling as though this might be a long week - running wise...

 Wednesday 10th July 2019 

Another late night at school again (really not enjoying 12 hour days...I don't know how doctors and nurses do it!) so I had to run in the morning again. Mission today was to do my (now) regular 10 mile route known as the monster run (because the route looks like a monster). I've done it twice before during this training block. The first time in an average pace of 7:59 minute miles (1:19:48 total time) and the second time with an average of 7:41mm (1:16:55 total time). So my aim was to beat that pace and time. Could be a big ask given yesterday's speedwork...

I knew that my best chance of beating my time was to get all of my miles under 8 minutes. The problem would be mile 1...when I wasn't warmed up. I had to work quite hard in the first mile as my legs were definitely feeling yesterday's efforts. My watch bleeped at 7:52 - phew! Hard work but a positive start. Surprisingly, the miles ticked by pretty quickly and, although my legs were tired, I was able to push through it without too much pain. I managed to finish in a time of 1:16:14 with an average pace of 7:37 - mission accomplished! 

Nice work from KD!! More miles out and back in the evening for me: 11Miles at 7:30MM pace. Good speed but legs really not feeling it still... Not sure if it's the heat or lack of sleep but my ham strings feel like re-inforced bar and my calfs like breeze blocks... not much bounce! Regressive on last weeks 13 miles :-(

 Thursday 11th July 2019 

Just a 4 mile recovery run needed today (the monster again but with a shorter tail!). I definitely needed a slow run. I cycled to work again as well. Another late night at work meant that I was starting to flag a little. 

5 miles out and back on the Towpath at 8:46MM pace - boring I know but still feeling tired and not overly enthusiastic about running... hmm... Getting very familiar with the Towpath this week! It's nice as it's pretty well shaded which means it's pretty cool :-)

 Friday 12th July 2019 

5 mile recovery today (full monster!). Legs felt a bit better. I'm still tired though...possibly more tired. 

I drove to school today as I was meeting my Aunty to go shopping to buy some shoes for my 30th Birthday party tomorrow! 

Went out with KD - for about half a mile - still feeling knackered I stopped, turned around and walked home. I decided another rest day would be more beneficial that racking up anymore junk recovery miles. I did this with tomorrows long run in mind. Got home feeling pretty rubbish about it but got over it pretty quickly by assuring myself I was gonna give the long run a good go.

 Saturday 13th July 2019 (Kelly's birthday party day!)

I woke up feeling very excited about my party! However, before the partying can start, I had to get my long run in. Why today? We'll I'm guessing (hoping) that I'll be in no fit state to do it tomorrow! I wanted to do 18 miles today - a step up from the 14 and 16 mile runs that I've done so far in this campaign. Having had two recovery days, I  was hoping that I would feel pretty strong and be able to do a good average pace. 

A luck would have it, my legs were feeling great. I started slower and then gradually picked up the page to finish 18 miles with an average pace of 7:40mm. Only 1 minute per mile slower than my target marathon pace - not bad for this early in the training. 

I spent the rest of the morning getting pampered! I don't do this very often so was a great treat. I had a massage (much needed after this stressful week!) and got my nails painted. As I currently have all of my toe nails (which is rare for a marathon runner!), I decided to get them painted too!

The party was amazing! It was a 1920's theme and everyone made such an effort getting dressed up. My legs were pretty tired from the 18 miles but I still managed to dance for most of the night! 

Long run for me to! 14Miles @ 7:34MM pace. I probably should have tried for 18 with KD but I decided at the start of the run not to put too much pressure or stress on myself and run a more manageable 14. Conditions were near perfect - cooler than recently and a light drizzle in the air. Out to Avonmouth on the Portway and back home via the Towpath. A nice speedy finish with a 6:13 mile - legs were finally starting to feel like running again! Pleased with the run and with 13 weeks still to go there's still plenty of time to bank some longer-long runs. 

Sunday 14th July 2019 

Oh how glad I am that I did my long run yesterday! What an amazing night - best party ever! But I was feeling slightly wobbly still this morning... After meeting my family for a -much needed-breakfast at Spoke and Stringer on the Harbourside (amazing gluten-free options - would recommend) we relaxed into a day of sport-watching. 

Eventually, around 4:30 we decided that we finally felt well enough to get today's run done. We could only manage 3 and 1/2 miles but decided that would be enough. Next week's mission - run over 50 miles. 

Feeling very sensitive post party.... no chance of a morning run... A very steady 3.5miles @ 9MM round the block.

Total for the week:

Kelly = 48.5 miles 

John = 40 miles 

A big drop from the last two weeks: 60, 52... I think that the fatigue possibly came from quite a lot of racing and maybe too big a jump from 52 to 60 miles... Should stick to the 10% rule as best I can! A fairly steadyish week next week with only a 1mile race on Tuesday.

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