So here we go again, my journey to the London Marathon start line. In 2015 I began training for my first London Marathon, which was also my first ever marathon. Three years later I probably did not think I would be starting training for my third London Marathon and my sixth marathon overall. I have come a long way since 2015 when a tentative 10k runner started this same sixteen week quest to run one of the worlds most renown running events, and this year I won't be secretive about my target, which is to run a sub 3:45 time. Can I do it? I think you have to have some confidence when setting a goal - but I know I will have to work hard across the next weeks to stand a chance of making it happen.
MONDAY: a New Years Day trip to Clumber parkrun - more here.
TUESDAY: the return of intervals. I actually quite looked forward to this run; it had felt a while since I had pushed myself like this and I was happy to have the test. It was actually a relatively gentle introduction; 5 miles with 4 x 800m reps. I aimed for the intervals to be close to 7 min/mile pace, and whilst the first two were, the latter two were a little slower - but overall I was happy - it was an ambitious target and the slight burn in my quads told me I had pushed myself enough!
WEDNESDAY: 4 steady miles at around 8 min/mile pace - this was too fast really for a steady run, and although this is my sixth marathon training cycle, I still struggle to rein the pace in a little at the start despite recognising I do this every time!
THURSDAY: another 4 miles not really on plan pace wise. I ran a good tempo run with the middle two miles at sub 8 min/mile pace; however this is not really my marathon pace as my plan recommended! For the last couple of months I have been running quite free without looking at my watch, and I need to instil just that little more discipline now I start focused training again. I also returned to Body Pump after the Christmas break this evening; weight training which reduced me to almost instant muscle soreness!
FRIDAY: Rest Day
SATURDAY: the first Lincoln parkrun of 2018. I literally am not sure where my run today came from. Earlier in the week I was commenting how I would like to run sub 21 minutes at parkrun again at some point during 2018; and today I did just that. As I started running I felt I could hit a good time; at parkrun I sometimes have the sensation where everything is in sync, my breathing, my legs, my arm movements etc. - it all just feels smooth and I can focus all my effort on pushing the pace instead. Today was one of these days, and as I collapsed hands on knees in the finish funnel and saw a time of 20:46 staring at me from my watch I was obviously very happy. This was actually a new PB for me too - I had ran the exact same time once before at Lincoln, however due to a course change the route was a little too short, and I have never counted the time - now I can.
SUNDAY: icy miles today, really icy on certain paths. I quickly realised this run was going to be about just getting round safely, and 10 miles actually passed quite fast as I focused intently on what I was doing/where I was stepping rather than the overall distance covered. I was really cautious at some points, but this seemed to make my legs pick up the pace a little on safer pathways, and I actually finished with an average pace of 8.23 min/mile - a little too quick really for a long run, but I was just happy to have safely completed week one of my marathon training. I am excited for the challenge of the weeks ahead.
Alice's Adventures In Running Land
Read about my adventures in running land...