London Marathon Training: Week 3

If you follow the tennis you may have heard about Heather Watson crashing out of the first round of the Aussie Open due to, as she phrased it, ‘girl things’.  Now perhaps she should have taken the Pill or injected the right hormones and chemicals to make sure her periods didn’t get in the way of a major tournament. Or perhaps, as some commentators said, it was all in her mind and she just used that as an excuse for for her loss.

I know for myself, as I once tried to give blood during my ‘girl time’, that my iron levels plummet to below normal,  and I generally feel like crap for a couple of days. This Thursday when I was supposed to run five miles at a slightly fast tempo, I could barely reach three at a jog,  and that was only with several pauses. Only a slight hiccup in the plan but I was gutted, especially as I wanted run 15 miles on Saturday which would be the longest I’ve ever done but I couldn’t see how that would be possible with this display.

Friday was pretty much a rest day anyway but I didn’t do any core or cycle to work as I would normally. I just completely chilled and tried to tell myself that I would be okay.

I got my porridge eaten first thing Saturday and then had another hour or so kipping before setting off. Fairly good going until mile eight when I start thinking: my legs are tiring, I can feel my hips, my feet are rubbing in my new trainers, why did I put on my new trainers for such a long run already? how the bloody hell can I keep going for another seven miles?  stop thinking! And somehow I did keep going and as soon as my app woman told me I’d hit 15, I stopped. My legs were so wobbly I looked like I was from the Ministry of Silly Walks. Luckily I’d miscalculated my route and found myself nearly a mile from home but that walk helped me recover, along with a hot bath and some sexy compression tights because by the evening I was fine, apart from a couple of blisters and a headache. Today I feel great. I haven’t come out of my pyjamas at all but nothing hurts and that is good!


London Marathon Training: Week 2

I had a half marathon race scheduled for yesterday which got cancelled due to the icy conditions. Unfortunately it was stopped at the eleventh hour – when we’d all arrived and squished into the club hall trying to keep warm and waiting to line up. That meant that I had to go back home but still get my 13 miles in. Obviously physically I could do it else I wouldn’t have entered the race but motivationally? What a complete drag!

But I set off with a friend and fellow nearly competitor who gave me a proverbial kick up the arse and pootled with me at my pace around the park a bunch of times.

I could have picked a more varied route but as the ground was unpredictable we stuck to the same loop. It was a lesson in putting one foot in front of the other and grinding the miles out. I didn’t feel pumped or excited before we started as I would have in a race. But it got done, mainly thanks to my friend, in an okay 2 hours and 11 minutes, the miles were banked and happily today i didn’t feel any stiffness as I’ve done in the past. So I must be getting a little bit fitter which is nice to know by the end of week 2.


London Marathon Training: Week 1

Last night I had a glass of wine in the evening and it took a very long time to finish which is seriously unusual for me. Also, I turned down an invitation to have lots of free glasses of gin as I was a bit tired!! What am I turning into already?  Over the past month, what with it being Christmas and all, I’d done a lot of drinking and eating and a fair bit more drinking and very little running.  So after just one week of knuckling down I am a bit surprised at my wussy behaviour.

Still, 11 miles bagged yesterday and a week of actually sticking to the programme may possibly be worth it.  Fartleks on a hill (well a bit of an incline) on Tuesday, out for a nice canter with the running club on Wednesday, intervals on Thursday and finally my LSD on Saturday.

But this is only week 1 of 16 and I’m not naturally a ’sticker’.  I’m very easily distracted and prone to giving up when things start to get a little bit difficult.  This time I’m not allowed to give up as I’m on the starting line. I’ve got this date hanging over me for 15 weeks time and I’m telling everybody and going to be raising money so I can’t really back out of showing up on the day.  Oddly enough it’s a bit like when I told all my family that I was having a 40th birthday party and then after having booked it all I felt a bit sick at the idea of being the centre of attention. But I got through that, and had a terrific time and I’m positive this will also be great.

But already I’m vacillating between wondering if I can get under my target time (4hrs 45mins) and thinking about the least training I can get away with in order not to die on the day.  But my kit bag is packed for tomorrow.


LSD          -not in this case a hallucinogenic compound but the Long Slow Distance run that apparently needs to happen every week.

Fartlek      -a word that always makes me giggle and also a sprint/recover/sprint/recover… training run method

Intervals   -chit chat pace for a mile followed by barely able to talk, back to chit chat and repeat..