Marathon Training Officially Begins!! A Week in Review (25 Dec – 1 Jan)

Here we go!!! I am now officially in marathon training!

7 days. 168 hours. 10,080 minutes. This is a summary of my running week. Ups and downs. Aches and pains. Feelings and emotions.

Distance: 25.23 miles | Time on my feet: 3:38:38 | Races: 1 | PBs: 0

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Boxing Day marked the start of my official 16-week schedule and in a slight change of format from now on I plan to compare what the schedule says I should be doing versus what I actually did, along with my usual account of how things have gone along the way.

Schedule vs. Actual

Schedule Actual
Monday 4 mile (38 mins) 4.45 mile (37:28)
Tuesday Rest Rest
Wednesday 5 mile (48 mins) 5.01 mile (41:48)
Thursday 3 mile (26 mins) 6.83 mile (1:04:25)
Friday Rest rest
Saturday 3 mile (30 mins) 3.19 mile (31:46)
Sunday 8 Mile (75 mins) 6.2 Mile Race (46:12)
TOTAL 23 miles  25.68

Straight away I have discovered two things:

1. Running more frequently is definitely tiring on my legs, especially my ankles. I hope that my increased fatigue is as a function of less rest and that as the miles increase so will my strength.

2. It’s hard to run slow! I’ve not been able to follow the pace suggested by the schedule at all and always ended up running significantly faster than directed, although I am treating this as a good thing and indication that I am ahead of the curve.

Looking ahead it won’t be long before the schedule catches up with me and I start to push out the mileage, so for now I am content in my performance and sure that I am pouring a solid foundation to build on.

Monday – Boxing Day

With turkey and stuffing still sloshing around inside me I headed out for a cheeky 4.5 miler round the block. Having a purpose definitely helps, and I couldn’t help but remember what Boxing Day morning used to mean to me before I got into running. When something as massive as Christmas can’t get in the way of your running you know you’ve got it bad!

Wednesday

Having repeated much of the same route as Monday, I was slightly annoyed to have to add an ‘out-and-back’ extension to make the mileage up. I really need to work out some different routes to avoid that in the future.

Thursday

Club run. Whilst the schedule said 3 miles, I was conscious that I would be running shorter (albeit faster) at the weekend, so to compensate I decided to go longer. First 3/4 of the run felt good, although the last 0.5 mile was tiring on the ankles – something I attribute to running two days on the trot without the rest I’ve become accustomed to.

Saturday

Having a short run on the schedule gave me an opportunity to run with my wife, Rachel. Having started running to complete the Race for Life in July 2011 she is now once again hitting the streets to join in the fun and games and is now back up to running 3 miles without stopping, which is a fantastic achievement and something I am extremely proud of. It was nice to run together, although my ‘run ahead then run back then run ahead again’ approach made me look like some kind of demented moth around a flame. Rachel’s “what the chuff are you doing?!”  face as I passed her each time was priceless.

Sunday

What a way to start the New Year! The Cleethorpes AC New Year’s Day 10k race had record attendance and I was able to complete the course in 46:12 which although is 7 seconds behind my PB for the distance it is a massive 5:13 faster than last year so a monumental course PB!! Having made such an improvement in 2011 gives me confidence and motivation to improve even further in 2012 and I’ve already had one vote of confidence that I’m capable of taking at least the same off again in 2013. Mmmm, I wonder…

101 days and 10 hours to go…

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