Marathon Training – Week 5

Its the hope that kills you! Last week the direction of travel started to make me think the odds on London happeneing were starting to improve. Then this week we saw Manchester get cancelled. I had deferred my entry to next year but suddenly an April double header (plus two rearranged weddings) is looking more likely. However, whilst there is no news, training continues and this week I had a clear target in my sights.

In May 2002 an 18yr old version of myself crossed the line at the Silverstone 10k. I was fitter than I had ever been and after an enjoyable race around a memorable course, I set a new PB of 43:56. Little did I know that it would still be standing a lifetime again later. I drifted away from running for several years and when I started up again in 2016, the times I had achieved in my late teens seemed impossible to reach. In block one of training I had managed to get below 46mins and had pondered what was achievable and 6 months to the day later, it was time to try again. Recent exploits over 5km meant I was confident in going sub45 but beyond that I was unsure and I didn’t want to burn out too quickly.

I took in the same 3 lap course I had tried back in January and set out. The 1st km I tried to throttle myself a bit but soon I was picking up pace so decided to switch to my usual race tactics of out fast and then try to hang on (not really the most recommended race strategy!). On this occasion I did hang on and was very surprised to finish in 43:30. The achievement didn’t immediately register though as I had it in my mind that my PB from Silverstone was a minute faster. It was only when I got home I realised this was a new best what’s more, I felt I had a bit more to give and I wasn’t brilliantly prepared (two glasses if squash and a multipack size Mars bar). Once races get up and running and my marathons are complete, I do wonder what I could achieve!

After the happiness of Monday’s PB, the rest of the week was never going to excite as much. It is worth when doing marathon training to remain flexible. Having run Monday, I took an easier 6m on Tuesday and flipped my rest day to Wednesday. I should have followed this with some fartlek training. However, as I found last time, I struggle to be spontaneous enough for fartlek so the run turned into a steady 10km.

Friday then saw me miss my first session of this block. Maybe the impending update from London that is bound to be another cancellation was impacting motivation but I managed to sleep right through my alarm. Doh!

Saturdays non-parkrun was a little disappointing as I just couldn’t find a rhythm. It was though another sub21 that would have been a dream a couple of months ago.

The week was finished with a traditional LSR. This week called for 12 miles. I decided to get it done early doors so headed iut at just gone 6am so much for the summer, it was damp and dank. Some streetlamps will still on it was that overcast! I took in a route that went off road a little and took in another village to knock off some more roads on CityStrides. The route did call for crossing the A1 which I was a little wary of but at that time, on a Sunday and with some restrictions in place, it was dead quiet. The advantage of an early one was I was home to have breakfast with the family.

So another week is done. An update is due from London this week and I do think it will see the race get cancelled. My only fear now is that they won’t honour entries into next year but that is out of my control and as my 10k shows, this training isn’t hurting me!

  • Monday – 10km 43:30 + warm up/cool down – 11.39km
  • Tuesday – 9.93km @ 5:37 pace
  • Wednesday – Rest Day
  • Thursday – 10.27km @ 5:06 pace
  • Friday – Rest Day
  • Saturday – 5km – 20:57
  • Sunday – 19.33km @ 5:33 pace
  • Total – 55.92km
  • Overall Total – 229.04km
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