Week 8 of my marathon training has gone well, with runs of 3, 6 and 3 so far. All managed despite the snow, which I’m pretty proud of. However the long run this week has been worrying me, well, all week. 14 miles – not the longest run on the schedule, not that much longer than a half marathon (of which I’ve run a few by now!), so why such a stress? I think it’s because in my interrupted training for last year’s London marathon, my longest run (well, run/walk) was just 14 miles. Anything longer than this, and I think I’ve been presuming my training is going better than last year and so this year’s marathon should be better.
Anyway to cut a long story short (but not cutting the run short!), I spent Thursday night plotting out routes to try and get the right distance, as well as one that wasn’t on snow, ice or (as the weather has been a bit milder) mud. So I decided to run towards town and hope that the pavements were clear.
I managed to find clear pavements, and snow, ice and mud to run on, so a bit of variety. I also managed to include a long hill on my route which was not a good idea!
So any bad points about today’s run? Well, my measuring last night was obviously not quite right, as my run was actually 15.2 miles long. It did feel hard, particularly after stopping for a comfort break in town. When I started again I felt very chilled, and my pace times were noticeably slower after this stop. There was an icy wind blowing, which meant I was constantly putting my gloves and fleecy headband on, then taking them off again, then getting cold and having to put them on again.
Best points about the run? Well, it turned into my longest training run, ever (so far!) And an most unexpected high light. As I was headed back out from town with just a few miles to go to get home, I came upon an old man out walking. All by himself, no dog. I called out ‘hello’ , as I tend to do when passing people in the country lanes. He replied, and stopped to ask me how far I’d run. When I replied “12, and a couple more to get home”, he said “I wish I was as fit as you!” He went on to tell me he’d recently had a big operation, and had been advised to get out and walk to help him recover. This was only his third walk. It struck me how lucky I was to be able to get out and run. How lucky I was to be able to push myself to go further, with nothing worst than sore muscles the next day (hopefully!)
Right, week 8 DONE! Thankfully next week is a step back week, so not such a long run. Phew. Right, off to eat some late night cheese on toast, as for some reason I’m starving. Oh, and another glass of wine (muscle relaxant, darling 🙂 )
Still managed to find some icicles