Positivity, Running, Training

A tough decision…or not

11 days to go until the marathon!

This weekend was pretty busy for me – I had a full day of work on Saturday then walked 10 miles with my dad on Sunday.  That meant no time for the official ‘make or break’ long run, which got shifted to Monday instead.

I intended to do 21 miles on Monday and managed 19, so I’ve still not broken the magic 20 but I am getting closer to the distance.  I also averaged a pace that would get me in under 5 hours, the magic number for me.

The first 10 miles were pretty good.  After they were finished, I looped home and restocked on water and took a gel.  The next 5 miles were HARD.  Back home again, water, gel.  The last 4 miles were rubbish and I was run-walking and thinking ‘what on earth am I doing?’

At that point, I made a decision in my head.  I would drop out of the marathon, and that would mean the holiday we plan to take on October 13th could move forward a couple of days and we could have a much nicer break.  Decision made, I felt lighter.  When I got home, I found that the husband couldn’t go on holiday until the 13th anyway, so the marathon is back on the table.

I can decide right up until that morning whether I’m going to do it or not.  I know I probably can do it (slowly) but I’m not sure if I want to do it, and that’s been the whole issue this year with hindsight.  Will I do it? Probably 🙂  Then standby for the world’s whiniest race review.

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Running, Training

The Yorkshire Marathon…it’s getting close!

Not next Sunday, or the Sunday after, but the Sunday after that I’ll be stood…waiting…nervous…on the start line of the Yorkshire Marathon.

It looks like the husband won’t be able to join me this year due to an injured calf.  The therapist did suggest he could rest and then make the marathon his first run for 3 weeks, but that’s not comfortable position for a first-time (or any time) marathoner to be in.

Last week I was in Italy having a lovely time, eating cheese and sausage and drinking prosecco while not even thinking about running.  When I got back on Sunday I did 15.5 miles, that’s 8 laps of the service road on York racecourse!

If I’d trained better this year I’d be thinking about tapering now but I’ve still not broken the magic 20 mile mark that will be so important for the my confidence on the day.  It doesn’t help that this year has coincided with a very busy time for me at work so even this weekend I have no time for a long run.

The plan is:

  • Long run Monday (break 20 miles!)
  • Then start to taper.

I’ll keep doing between 9 and13 mile runs between now and the big day after that, pray for cool weather on the day and wish myself luck.  Honestly, I’ll be glad when it’s over 🙂

Happy running this week!

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Attitude, Positivity, Training

Week 1 and 2 Training Report – York Marathon 2014

If you read my blog last year you’ll know I followed a six month marathon training plan because I was nervous. It was great because it made me feel like I had forever to prepare.

This year now I’m a super duper experienced marathoner with one under my belt I’ve chosen a four month training plan.  Less time to fall off the rails, but the marathon does feel like it’s coming towards me very quickly!

Here’s how the training has gone so far:

Week 1:

  • Monday – should have run 4 miles, but there was a road closure on my planned route so did 2.5 miles
  • Tuesday – rest – I can these 🙂
  • Wednesday – should have run 4 miles, did a 45 minute spin class and some weights
  • Thursday – rest – getting good at this now
  • Friday – cross train – did some weights
  • Saturday – rest – oh yes
  • Sunday – run 6 miles.  I did it!

Week 2:

  • Monday – rest – my technique is amazing
  • Tuesday – should have been hill training, but I read the wrong week on my plan and did sprints.  Oh well
  • Wednesday – rest
  • Thursday Friday Saturday – go on a training course to London and don’t do anything
  • Sunday – should  have been 7 miles but I managed 4.5

Reading back, it’s not an awesome start 😦   If anything is holding me back I think it’s my attitude (and also my sore knees, ankles etc.)  I need to get back into a routine with this and get serious.  I’m a stone heavier than I was this time last year so upping my training and improving my diet should help me lose weight and therefore run faster.  In theory.

 

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Attitude, Kit, Running, Training

The final furlong

York Marathon are being very good about emailing me EVERY day to remind me how many days there are left to go now…like I can forget!

In 3 days time, I should be coming towards the last few miles of my first ever marathon.  This week has been more tapering and little bits of mental nagging.  I mustn’t forget this…I must be careful to…I should do…

I’ve got my number and my pins ready to go, and I’ve got my outfit prepped as well.  Unless snowpocalypse arrives, I’ll be running in shorts, a compression t-shirt and an asthma UK vest sent by my charity of choice.  Ipod, sunglasses, baseball hat, Spibelt, garmin will then be added on top.  I’ll have some timings written on my arm too so if I fall below my 5 hour goal pace I’ll know and can recover.

The biggest thing I need to do now is sleep!  I need to get lots of rest because I’m pretty sure I won’t be sleeping the night before.  I also need to charge all of my gadgets and gizmos – nothing worse than a flat garmin when you set off on a run.

Have you got any pre-marathon rituals?  Is there anything I should remember or do?

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Attitude, Positivity, Running

Uninspired

This week I’ve been completely uninspired – uninspired about running, blogging…doing pretty much anything.  With 2 and a half weeks to go before the marathon, it’s probably not the best state to be in.

I’ve blogged before about  my tendency to self-sabotage, whether it’s going out drinking the night before a long run or eating a massive chilli pizza 2 days before, I don’t seem to be able to help myself.

It occurs to me looking at my life now that I’ve embarked on my biggest self-sabotage exercise yet.  At the same time as training for my first marathon, the husband and I have embarked on a huge extension build that has turned our home into a filthy, undesirable place to be.   Dust and dirt is exacerbating my asthma, and we’ve had no kitchen for 2 weeks so I’m trying to cook healthy meals in a microwave and will be doing so until after the marathon.  What was I thinking!?

I do wonder if the front of my brain (I can do a marathon!) is in complete conflict with the back half of my brain (no I can’t, and I’ll make sure of it too!).

So, where do I go from here?  I’ve taken a little break to nourish myself.  I had a rest day yesterday and I’m going to do yoga today with only a very short run.  Saturday will also be a rest day before I do one last longer run (about 15 miles) on Sunday.

After that, I’ll follow my taper plan for the last 2 weeks and eat completely cleanly.  No booze, no pinching biscuits from the builders…my front and back brain are going to have to get used to the idea.  I CAN DO THIS.

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Attitude, Diet, Positivity, Running, Training

Week 19 Training

Week 19 included some travel with work so it’s been a bit up and down for training.  I completed most of my planned sessions, finishing with the Great North Run on Sunday which was a disaster…but more of that in my race review in Thursday’s post.

I’ve lost my way a bit with both my training and my diet – I was sticking to a healthy diet and feeling great, but recently I’ve had more cheat meals than not-cheat meals.  These last 5 weeks have got to be focus, focus, focus.

Here’s what week 19 looked like:

  • Monday: rest day after Sunday’s 22 mile monster run
  • Tuesday: 30 minutes on a bike, interval training
  • Wednesday: nothing – I had a killer 5 hour drive and didn’t have time to train
  • Thursday: fartlek 52 minutes
  • Friday: jog 20, 10 minutes to the gym, 1 hour weights (shoulders), 10 minutes home
  • Saturday: rest
  • Sunday: half marathon, 2:27 – not good!

I took the rest of Sunday to sulk after my dismal half marathon time, now I need to process the lessons and move on.  I’m still targeting a sub-5 hour marathon, so the next 5 weeks have to be about mental strength and physical readiness.

Enjoy your training this week!

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Running, Training, Weather

Week 16 Training

This week I got back on track with my training – except none of it was on a track because I did everything on a bike to give my whingy ankle a rest, but you know what I mean.

Here’s how week 16 looked:

  • Monday: jog 20 – 10 minutes to the gym, 1 hour weights (legs), 10 minutes home
  • Tuesday: sprint 60 seconds, recover 3 mins, sprint 50, recover 3, sprint 40, recover 2, sprint 30, recover 1 on a spin bike
  • Wednesday: 1 hour on a spin bike, which was quite dull
  • Thursday: did a yoga session that absolutely killed me
  • Friday: jog 20 – 10 minutes to the gym, 1 hour weights (back), 10 minutes home,
  • Saturday: rest (my birthday – nice timing!)
  • Sunday: 19 miles!!!!!!

Sunday was amazing.  I did 2 x 9.5 mile laps and managed to do 19 miles in three and a half hours.  This is the longest I’ve ever run and I feel like I’m actually getting up into “I can do this marathon” territory now.  The second lap was hard and I had some walk breaks, but even so I’m on track for a sub-5 hour marathon which is my target.

One thing I’ve found is that heat really kills me when I’m running.  It’s no coincidence that on the second lap the sun had come out.  I’m finding it very  hard to carry enough water for these long runs, thank you to the cafe on Skeldergate who refilled my bottle for me.

It sounds weird, but for my remaining long runs I’m going to run laps that go past my house so I can dip in, grab water and get back out again.  It’s better than stressing about water or trying to work out a new system when there will be water stops on  the marathon route.   Running in and out of home should be good for mental strength too.

It should cool down soon as well which will mean I drink (and whinge 🙂 ) less.

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