Sunday, 16 February 2014

Marathon training starts

Here begineth the odyssey to the June 1 marathon. I might have to be a little cautious to start off with because of the half marathon just gone. 
Wednesdays will be speed work - 5k pace intervals - for February and March. For April and May, "strength runs" take over. These are one long continuous run at between half and full marathon pace, around 4:20/ km in my case. The plans for the speed runs are tough to remember in your head (1.5 minutes with 2 minute recovery for example), so I bring a note with me.
Friday was my first ever marathon pace training run. Amazing to think that all this time, with 3 marathons behind me, I'd never done one till last week.
Saturday called for a 10k easy run. On that day I usually do core work at the gym. I didn't want a run to replace weights and balance training, so I took the bus to the gym and did my strength work, then ran home. When it's extra cold weather, this could mean carrying quite a bit with me, although running with a backpack does generate extra heat. 
By now I have quite a range of clothing options to make it all doable no matter what the weather. After 2 hours of squats, lunges, single leg dead lifts, etc. my legs felt rather lifeless on the run. I felt them stiffen a bit, so dialling back the pace to what I reckon was mostly fat burning, they started to recover. I reckon more glycogen had cycled into them by the end, as I ended up running more comfortably at a faster pace.
I was greatful for the butter chicken, quinoa salad and Turkish bread once I got home. 
Sunday was windy, with gusts up to 60 kph. At times I could only exhale looking over my shoulder. The last k (of 16) was straight into the wind, and walking was just as good a workout. 
Hamstrings felt tight, and I wondered if I'd be ok for family day's 10 k easy run. Nice and gently does it, I told myself. Legs gradually loosened, and felt slightly better even for Tuesday's identical 10k. That is normally a weights day, so I did that in my basement at home. Another first. Now that I've changed my weight routine, all I need is a mat, a kettlebell and a pair of dumbbells. 
Wednesday was speed work, into a strong wind for part of it. Experience counts here, knowing what effort to put in when a gale stops you from reaching target pace. 
So there it is, my first ever 6 days in a row of running. Every week until June 1 is going to be like this. Good posture, smooth technique, being mindful of what condition I'm in and visits to the chiropractor every 3 weeks ("State of the Legs address") are the order of the day every day for the 100 or so days. Onward with my most focused training ever.


  1. Sounds like you are well on your way Peter! Yummy food. What kind of backpack do you use? I love mine but might need a bigger one to fit all my winter rungear in. Yikes! I hope spring comes soon! :)

    1. Thanks! Trying to match your endurance ability:)
      For backpack I just use an old Adidas one. It's quite small and with the straps pulled down tight doesn't move around much.