Updated: Nov 8, 2020
A couple of weeks of ups and downs. Following the cancellation of the Anglo Celtic Plate 100km I got a place at Wrexham Elite marathon on October 4th. There's a great piece on the Fast Running website that describes why races like this are so important as an alternative to the Championship start at London. I don't feel like I'm on the ascendancy to faster times but it's great that there is a race that's catering to those who are. The race aims to have entrants that can run sub 2.40 if you're male or sub 3 hours if female. A tough ask but one I felt I might have a shot of doing after a very long training block, a previous sub 3 hour marathon five years ago and a 3.01 marathon in February. Sadly it looks like the race will be postponed or cancelled. If postponed it will be moved to a weekend when I'm on call. And to be honest, I don't feel like I've got the capacity for another 2 weeks at peak marathon training. I'm ready for a break!
As Plan C I've entered Goodwood marathon (laps around the race track) on September 26th. The other alternative was Dorney Lake marathon on October 4th but it promptly sold out and I train there quite a lot so am very familiar with the cross wind! Overall I'm feeling pretty unmotivated and tired. Along with 2 tough work weeks and the rise of coronavirus numbers I've had a few days of wanting to go to bed and wake up when coronavirus has gone.
At the end of my last blog post I'd been on call for the weekend and had a serious case of quad DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).
Monday 31st August
Rest day! A rest day from running at least - like most runners I work full time so my rest days are still pretty busy. A full and busy day on my feet, 2 dog walks and a collapse on the sofa to watch the Tour de France highlights.
Tuesday 1st September
Where does the time go?! How is it September!?
AM Recovery 30 minutes in the morning, before work.
PM Team Vosser session
Always a great group at these sessions and I seem to pull myself out of a tired day and into track mode when I'm training with others. The session was 8 x 500m on grass in 2 sets. Some decent numbers (for me!).
Wednesday 2nd September
Early 60 minutes before work, easy pace.
Thursday 3rd September
Felt really tired after work so thankful that my husband was happy to join for moral support.
Warm up, 10 x 200m off 200m jog, Cool down
The track isn't open in Winchester so I did these on the viaduct bridge. Went better than expected. Home for dinner, le Tour, a dog walk and bed. Eat, sleep, train, repeat.
Friday 4th September
To and from PT with Tom Smith - 50ish minutes total.
PT for one hour - an easier session as racing in the morning.
PM Shake out, easy run
40 minutes easy
Saturday 5th September
Warm up, Half marathon at Dorney Lake, Cool down
Covid-secure event by F3 Events. Very impressed by all the protocols. I ran hard from the gun and didn't look at my watch. There was quite a tough head wind on one side and a lovely tail wind the other way. Went pretty deep on the last mile and was disappointed to run 85.07. The looked at my watch and realised the course was long. 13.5 miles! This was confirmed by email later that day.
My half marathon split was 82.23 on my Garmin. Even if that's a bit off, it's still a massive PB and a 10 mile PB too. Training going well, just would have loved the official time to be correct. Sarah Gurney, a blog interviewee and fellow WADAC runner ran an enormous PB and stormed past in the last mile along with Tamsin who was doing a marathon pace run.
Got home and went out for lunch at the Chesil Rectory. Two glasses of wine with lunch and I needed an afternoon nap!
Sunday 6th September
Had a chat to my coach, Tom Craggs, via text about how my legs were feeling. Decided to go long but all super easy and run in loops in case I wanted to call it a day. Did the first loop on my own and second one with my friend and ex-colleague Dani. We went over some lovely albeit hilly trails. Total distance 22 miles.
Afternoon in London with some of my friends who I haven't seen since before Covid.
Monday 7th September
I should have had a recovery run today but work intervened. Didn't get home until 9.30pm and by that stage I was too tired and hungry to think about running. It probably says a lot about my personality that I hate external forces interrupting my schedule. Got home in a bad mood - long day!
AM Recovery run early for 40ish minutes, before work. I did not want to hear my alarm at 5.30am.
PM Recovery run with strides at the end. Got out of work a bit late again so just about managed to run in the light. I really hate the reduction in light in autumn and winter - the thought of getting my head torch out again makes me sad.
Wednesday 9th September
Session before work. I had the fear before this one. Just felt tired and not keen on another early start. Surprisingly, it went really well and I hit the paces I wanted to. Encouragingly the marathon pace felt do-able. The aim was 20/16/12/8/4 minutes off 3.5 minutes 'steady' float with the 20 and 16 minutes at marathon pace and the others faster. The total session time was 100 minutes.
Long day at work and another late finish at 8.30pm. Home, food, le Tour highlights and bed.
Thursday 10th September
Easy 60 minutes before work.
I had a 45 minute run scheduled in the afternoon but didn't get out of work in time to do it before friends arrived for dinner. So lovely to de-stress after a long week and before another weekend on call.
Off before starting on-call at 6pm.
45 minutes to and from a PT session
1 hour with Tom Smith
Massage in the afternoon with Kyle Pepperman-Hackett. I've had a bit of a hip niggle since the weekend so good to have a massage and be reassured it was nothing serious - just stiffness and muscle soreness off the back of a few big weeks.
Woke up to an email from Wrexham to say that it would be cancelled or postponed. My planned run was 23 miles with 4 x 5km and I'd hoped to be out early. Instead I spent the early morning hours trying to figure out what Plan C would be. Goodwood is a week earlier than Wrexham so instead I did 2 hours with the final 30 minutes at marathon pace. It felt pretty terrible and I struggled to hit my target pace. Hard to know if it's off the back of a big weekend last week, the mental aspect of another change or the end of another big work-week.
Home for second breakfast and got called into work. Thankfully back in time for an early dinner.
Easy run at Farley Mount with two WADAC teammates and their dogs. Gorgeous morning!