We all know what happens when you over do it… Burn out. Injury. Several steps back. But if you under do it the results are missed potential, disappointment and stagnation. If you had to choose between this rock and hard place which would you go for? I’m in this position and trying to find that thin line or middle ground between the two!
When I started my marathon training at the beginning of the year I put together a loose training plan based on my expectations, abilities and what worked for me last year. My aim was a sub 3:30 marathon at Brighton. My London time last April was 3h58, so this was a big jump. But I know it’s in me.
It was all going well – including some great runs while on holiday – but then I fell ill. I couldn’t run for nearly 2 weeks due to a chest infection. I was gutted. I missed 2 of my long runs. I’ve heard or read before that when marathon training the long runs are the most important part of the plan. They prepare you for race day the best, getting the legs used to the time and distance. When I missed a 3rd long run the week before last I thought it was time to re evaluate. My training hasn’t gone to plan so I needed to rethink my goals.
While my long runs haven’t worked out – I do have some quality training runs under my belt. Generally I feel faster and fitter than I did this time last year. As such, I decided rather than cram extra miles in to get back a missed long run I should stick with my planned runs and mileage. This would help reduce the risk of injury from over training but also mean I could shift my focus to the silverstone half this weekend just gone. A long run in the week prior would have stopped me chasing a time.
My PB for a half was 1h41 and I knew I could get sub 1h40. I was aiming for 1h37 as I had seen that as a target half time for someone wanting a 3h30 marathon. I managed 1h35:06! Had I ran for 3hrs on Friday that wouldn’t have happened.
Past silvetstone, I still don’t have the long runs in the bank and my weekly mileage currently at 30 or just over. 3h30 on the 10th April will be a steep goal.
I could attempt to push up my miles – but again, avoiding the 10% rule could mean my next blog would be how I injured myself and had to pull out of Brighton. I don’t want that. So I will opt of accepting the under training and a new target time. Sub 3h45.
NB – on the day it was a hot and hard 26.2 miles! Despite all the above I bagged a time of 3h30m41! Rock on!!!