A week of tapering and I feel good!
As I went out for my run on Tuesday, Sarah reminded me that I was supposed to be slowing down. Sarah was of course alluding to my propensity to ignore the plan and go a bit too fast on my shorter runs and then injure myself.
I’m still having an issue with my right calf, which I did to my self trying to smash out a fast 10k just days after a 22 mile run.
For this run I did what I was told and kept well over my planned marathon pace. Averaging 9:37 min /mil was different for me, and I enjoyed even though every incline felt so much steeper than they were due to Sunday’s very long run.
My injured calf currently warms up at around 4 miles. I’ve never been one to warm up and consider the walk from the car to the start to be enough. Now though I’m having to either take care in the early miles or think about jogging to warm the muscles up.
If you click on the Instagram link for Wednesdays run with Sarah, then you will see us both wearing support for our respective injuries! My calf and Sarah’s ankle. We both ran on Sunday, I ran my last long run of 20 miles and Sarah competed at the Cardiff Bay Run 10k. Both feeling a bit tired and our respective injuries, we took this run nice and steady so as not to aggravate anything.
By Friday I was well and truly in the taper and not running mode! My original intention was to change at work and drop the car off with Sarah but I didn’t. We went home and Sarah decided that it being one of the nicest days of the year She would walk from the house to the roundabout, a distance of about 4 miles there and back. Sarah also decided that I was going too and could run up and down the towpath to get my miles in!
Duly dressed and ready we went out into the fantastic sunshine and I walked with Sarah for just under a mile before heading off to run a bit. My running didn’t last too long! and once Sarah had reached the roundabout, we walked back together enjoying the sun and the walk.
It’s not often we get to parkrun. I went to my first parkrun just about 2 years ago and I have only completed 19 runs. There are large gaps where I haven’t been. Our friend Andrew goes every other week and we have joined him for a few runs recently. There will be a new parkrun a bit closer than our current ‘home’ of Bryn Bach, when the Merthyr parkrun opens on 22nd April. We won’t get to that one until the following week as we will be in London preparing for the big day!!
Back to Saturday. Sarah was hoping for a PB and it being a lovely day at the park unlike the usual cold, wet and windy conditions that normally greet parkrunners, it seemed like ideal conditions to get one.
I was going to stick with Sarah for the run and we started from the middle of the pack. I knew Sarah was on for the PB when we went through the first mile in 10:21. Sarah recently has been running at around 11:00 min /mile so this was a cracking start.
The next two miles were quicker still: 10:11 min /mile and 09:58 min /mile.
As we crossed the line Sarah was pushing her hardest having put in a sprint to the line.
Sarah achieved a Personal Best time of 31:55!
I was feeling the run after lunch and took myself off to bed to sleep! So much for being a marathon runner, 5k finished me off!
As we travelled home with Andrew in the car, we discussed today’s run and where we would go. Last week we briefly talked about running around Usk Reservoir. I hadn’t been before but Andrew had cycled around the tracks there.
It was decided that we would run there and we would meet at 9am and then go for a couple of laps of the reservoir.
The couple of laps quickly turned into, let’s see how one lap goes! The track was good and the views were excellent, however there were a few hills that seemed to go on for a while and with a few wrong turns due to no signage, the lap was just under 6 miles. We both decided that one lap was enough but we will come back with those willing from our running group to run it again.
As we ran around Andrew asked me if I was nervous about the Marathon yet. It’s a question I’ve had a few times in recent weeks as the day draws ever closer and the answer each time, and not at all with a big head, is no.
I’m not nervous about the day or the run, the only thing concerning me is my right calf, which I’m sure will be fine as I have a race and pace plan which I will stick to. I’ve proven to myself in half marathons that I can stick to my plan from the beginning and not shoot off like some runners do at those events. That ‘sticking to the plan’ will help me and my dodgy calf get through the longest run I’ve ever attempted.
The ideal plan for me today would have been 10 miles, I decided that 6 hard miles must equal 10 flat ones and that was good enough for me!
Next week the mileage comes down again to around 16 miles for the week. I’m hoping that my legs will get the rest they need in order to be fully fit on the big day.