Week four of training - a quarter of the way though my sixteen week journey to the London Marathon. This first quarter has sped by, however this week I have started to feel the demands step up a little notch; a sign of the weeks to come...
MONDAY: I have signed up to a block of 'Strength and Conditioning for Runners' sessions which are being delivered by the therapist I use for my regular sports massage, and tonight was the introduction session going through basic techniques. I am really looking forward to the sessions ahead, and I am hoping it will give me extra motivation to do S&C stuff in the gym when I know it is directly benefiting my running.
TUESDAY: today's run tested my motivation levels. After a long day at work I found myself lacing up my trainers at 8pm at night; which for me felt very late. I tried to put the physical time out of my head and just focus on running, but I couldn't really shake the fact I just wanted to get home as quick as possible. A supposed 7 easy miles therefore turned into 7 steadier miles, approx 8 min/mile pace. I am not pleased with my pacing discipline, as I knew I was running too quick but did not even attempt to rein it in, but I am at least pleased with my motivation to get out there!
WEDNESDAY: gale force winds made me push my planned early morning run back to the evening today - I did not fancy trying to run intervals against the powerful gusts! Thankfully the wind had died down later, and I ran 6 miles with 5 x 1000m reps and 200m recoveries. I aimed for 7.10 - 7.20 min/mile pace on the intervals and hit this target on all bar the middle rep, which I seemed to have a little bit of a mid way slump on, but in general I am really enjoying pushing myself during faster paced running at the moment.
THURSDAY: 7 alternating miles; one mile at an easier pace, one mile at a faster pace. I set myself the goal of trying to keep about a minutes difference between my two paces, and was pleased to stick fairly accurately to this, with splits of 8.17, 7.23, 8.16, 7.35, 8.32, 7.33, 8.23 min/mile. Body Pump class after.
FRIDAY: Rest Day
SATURDAY: I managed to maintain my sub 21 minute Lincoln parkrun record for the year this morning, running a 20:44 time, which as ever, felt really pleasing (see image). It was cold today, colder than I expected, and I did not really feel mentally prepared for the conditions. As I stood waiting to start I was actually thinking we are all nutters for being here! As soon as I started to run though, as ever, I loved it; my legs felt strong and I enjoyed running with a couple of other parkrunners who I kind of naturally worked with to keep the pace going. We finished together and shared handshakes at the finish funnel, and I also enjoyed chatting to a number of other runners at the finish too - there is magic in madness sometimes, especially at parkrun.
SUNDAY: after a few weeks of solo Sunday long runs it was really good to have the company of my running buddy on today's 14 miler. The distraction of chatting meant I paid literally no attention to our pace, and only minimal notice to mileage, so much so we actually ending up running about half a mile in the wrong direction at one point! Towards 11ish miles my legs became a bit tight, especially into my hamstrings and glutes, and the final couple of miles were a determined push to the finish, which I was especially pleased to have my friend with me for. When we finished running I proudly flashed my Garmin in my friend's face - 8.21 min/mile average pace it read. A tough but great end to the week.
Alice's Adventures In Running Land
Read about my adventures in running land...