Entering the final straight

Passing the 10 week mark of my 16-week marathon training programme is always a big milestone for me. It means there’s just the ‘school holidays’ to go. Only three weeks to tapering, so it all suddenly starts to seem more achievable. So I thought I’d wrap up my training and thoughts so far.

I’m aiming for a PB this year, and have been trying really hard to give myself the best shot at it. This has included doing a marathon workshop with the Run Doctor and actually implementing some of what was said!

I’ve always known that some speed work or interval training was good, but I’ve never really enjoyed it before. This time, after the workshop, I decided to have a go at the Yasso 800s, which seems to have worked well for me. They’ve had a positive effect on my parkrun times too, I’ve watched my 5k PB fall over the past few months, an added bonus.

The other thing that I’ve been doing this time, which I’ve always shuddered at and avoided in the past is strength work. I’ve got a set of exercises that I tried to follow, but doing it at home doesn’t do it for me and I can’t face the gym, so I’ve taken to yoga.

There is a downside to this, I’m now really enjoying yoga too and hate to miss a class! I’ve been doing three a week, two of them bikram or other hot yoga and a cooler, less sweaty, iyengar class. Somehow a 30 day plank challenge seems to have crept in to my schedule too. I’ve definitely seen a change in my body with this and I’m happy, so I think that I can say strength work gets a tick.

Another new thing for me is energy gels. I’ve always been reluctant before, but after my stomach was growling at me after my first longer run, it made me think. I’ve tried a few and settled on my favourite, for now. Still a bit rubbish at tearing open the sachet, but that’s what training runs are supposed to help sort out.

With less than six weeks to go, I’m also off the booze now. I’m trying not to think too much about that first cold pint of beer after the race, but somehow it keeps popping into my head. That and pizza.

There’s just over four weeks to go now, hopefully I’ll be arriving at the start line in Brighton the best prepared that I can be.

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