The last couple of weeks have been really busy for me as I’m currently doing my CIRF (Coach in Running Fitness) while still trying to fit all my training around everyday life. I spent last weekend down in Birmingham at the Alexander Stadium on a two day coaching course so didn’t get the chance to update my blog.
I was hoping by reducing my training volume in week six it would have left my legs feeling fresh and ready to push on with my training over the next few weeks but I felt like it had completely the opposite effect and left me feeling sluggish. My legs were heavy and I was lacking energy, it wasn’t until the end of the week that I started to feel refreshed. I wanted to get my training back to normal which includes three threshold runs and a tempo session on the track, this stress load seems to be working really well for me at the minute. The key to heart rate training is sticking to the correct training zones even if it means running slower than you have been at the same heart rate and trusting what your body is telling you. I still get the same training benefits by doing this but it’s hard when you see that you’re running slower than you have been. I really didn’t feel like running a track session on Thursday evening as I was shattered and could have done with a good sleep. This is were having a good training group really helps to motivate you to keep training hard even when you don’t feel like it. Continue reading →
I wouldn’t call this week a recovery week but after finding Tuesdays recovery run home from work a lot tougher than it should have been, I decided it would be a good time to have an easier week and took Wednesday completely off. I still wanted to include the sessions that give me the biggest training benefits but felt I could sacrifice my recovery runs for the rest of the week. I know when I’m feeling tired as I start to get really grumpy and snappy with my wife and this allowed me to catch up on some much needed sleep. Previously I would have kept pushing my body until it was my rest day and stuck to my training plan but I’m slowly learning. The more time I spend training the more I’m learning about what does and doesn’t work for me. I’ve started listening to what my body is telling me. If I’m feeling good I will make the training run count, if I’m not feeling good and I’m having fight to get my heart rate up I will have an easier day. I wouldn’t have gained anything by having another high mileage week and probably would have ended up injuring myself. In the long run it would have caught up with me and eventually had a negative effect on my performance, when I needed to find that little bit extra. This week was more about quality not quantity, my sixty four miles still included two threshold runs which are the most important of all my runs. A speed session and a nighty minute long run which I think made a very good weeks training. I have twelve weeks until my target race to hopefully get in to PB shape. Hopefully having a couple of treats this week and the reduced training load will help me to recharge and freshen up and allow me to make the same improvements in my next block of training. Continue reading →
Monday morning run commute problems, how to fit all your clean work clothes and food into a small running bag. It can be a real pain as I have so much stuff to take back to work but the positives far out way the negatives. Running to and from work saves me so much time and helps me to get the weekly volume of training I need to run well. On the plus side my recovery runs are getting quicker which is a good sign and shows my body is dealing with the build-up of lactate more efficiently. Training by heart rate makes training so simple, you just run within the required zone and don’t have to worry about the pace you are running. My pace will vary depending on a number of factors like terrain, weather and tiredness, Monday morning I ran at 7:28/mi @ 154bpm and on the way home my pace was 7:02/mi @ 150bpm so four bpm lower but nearly thirty seconds quicker and still within my recovery zone. If I had run my morning run at the same pace as I did in the evening, I would have worked too hard and not got the recovery run I needed. My threshold runs this week have all been run at a very similar heart rate around 165 bpm but each run has progressively got quicker. We managed to get a good training group together for this week’s long run which I’m still keeping to a maximum of nighty minutes. In the hope to keep my legs fresh for the more important threshold runs which seems to be working well. I feel like I’m having to fight with myself to get into my threshold zone at the minute which isn’t helping me run very fluently but this will start to get better over the next few weeks. Continue reading →
I find the months after a marathon, the hardest in the whole marathon process. After my first marathon in 2014 I rushed back into hard training after a few days as I wanted to get even fitter off the back of my marathon training. This approach backfired on me and caused me to tear the ligaments in my ankle, leaving me unable to put any weight on my foot. The pain lasted for around four weeks stopping me from doing any kind of cross training to keep some base fitness. I lost most of the fitness that I had worked so hard to gain, which resulted in my resting HR increasing gradually over the weeks, to the highest level it had been for many months. This also left me unable to race through the summer months, like I had wanted had and unable to enter the races I had already paid for. Continue reading →
This weeks post follows on from my last blog were I wrote about how I thought my Manchester Marathon build up had gone and my disappointment on race day. You can see below my 18 week training plan I carried out for the 2015 Manchester Marathon. It shows the types of runs I did each day with information on the distance and speed. All the runs were ran within my heart rate zones, the pace depended on the factors such as the weather, terrain and general fatigue.