The weeks seem to be flying right now, and it’s another double catch up! Weeks 10 and 11 of Marathon training.
Week 10 saw yet another attempt of a 20 miler, beautiful weather and the feeling of starting to fall apart in a bigger way. Queue a week of backing off any intensity, and banking all the easy miles. I needed it. I didn’t recover well after Brighton half, which surprised me as it really wasn’t a great run. Anyhow, the 20 miles turned out to be the worst day weather wise. I ran 19.65 miles and not a step further, finishing at a pubs front door for a well earned pint after battling in horrid winds. The run had been great up until mile 12. I then had a complete wobble, the wind had picked up, a hard section of trail, and a little switch went off in my brain. I can’t do it, this sucks. The difference in that run from that moment was astonishing. The run of two halves, yet again completely ruled by the mental side of running.
- Monday – 3 recovery miles
- Tuesday – 7 easy miles
- Wednesday – 4.2 easy miles (and a lovely catch up with a friend)
- Thursday – 5 easy miles
- Friday – Rest Day
- Saturday – 19.65 miles long run
- Sunday – 1.6 recovery miles – abandoned due to niggles.
Total Miles – 40.4 Miles
I really felt the benefit from an easier week. The niggles I was beginning to feel backed off again, and I felt like I could ‘crack on’ a little more.
- Monday – 5.6 easy miles
- Tuesday – WU, 3 x 2 miles at MP, 3 minutes recovery, CD (8.1 Miles)
- Wednesday – 4.6 recovery miles
- Thursday – Rest Day
- Friday – 4 easy miles
- Saturday – 3.1 Shake out miles
- Sunday – The Big Half
Total Miles – 38.6 miles
Ah, the big half. The week finished with a road trip to London to participate in The Big Half. The winds also decided to show up and the yellow weather warning wasn’t nonsense for a change. The differences between this race and Brighton, were huge. I didn’t get the time I was hoping for, I’m still far off my PB. I still went off a little fast. But I was over the moon finishing this race, because I did actually run it better, and some confidence was restored. It also felt extra badass as the wind was horrific in places. Tailwind is great, but turning into sections of the course with rip your face off headwinds was hard. I was astonished to hear of so many PBs, extra kudos obtaining those in the conditions of the day.
I’m going to be honest. My struggles the last few weeks haven’t been physical. I’m putting the miles in, staying consistent, and generally feel really good for it. I certainly couldn’t have asked for better especially coming back from the stress fracture. Sure I’m tired, my legs are fatigued, but I’m running. I’m putting the effort in. My struggles are mostly in my head. For some reason, I’ve become a little doubtful, Brighton knocked my confidence a lot, not hitting paces I should be hitting, and struggling to run full stop left me feeling a little negative. Just feeling tired, makes everything seem a little harder. But two weeks later, it was a different story at Big Half. 6 minutes off my time from Brighton, feeling strong. I didn’t push it as I could have done, I just needed a solid race to get some confidence back. It’s getting to that crunch time, where you question your goals, paces. Can I really run a whole marathon at that pace, when I struggle to hit it even for a short time in training? I’ve been questioning my abilities, rather than thinking logically about the whole cumulative build up of marathon training. About poor preparation for long runs or races. Or even about difficult weather conditions. Or even if I haven’t had a doughnut that day. Whatever. Point is, there are so many factors, and it’s all about going through these, learning, adapting, ready to put it all together on the big day .
There are just two more big weeks of training left to get through. Then it’s a two week taper. Just enough time to freshen up, and get ready to go go at Manchester. Then again at Paris the following week. Nothing like a marathon to recover from a marathon.
Hang in there folks!