Paris Marathon Training – Week 7 – When A Bad Run Becomes The Best Run

Have you ever got to a point in a training plan where you begin to wonder if it’s actually working for you and you can’t decide whether to stick with it to see if it gets better or can it and do something else? That sums up my week and if you’re wondering, I chose the latter.

The week began badly as I managed to mess up marking out a route for one of my running groups. The plan was to measure a route then let the runners do it except the pathway I’d chosen was short and I needed to add on an extra loop somewhere and so I ended up having to do it again with the group at lunchtime and while the run was slow, my legs felt weary and not the ‘recovery’ I was needing the day after the 16 miler!

On Tuesday, I did my usual early morning 4 miles and followed this up a couple of hours while taking a client out for a run. Again, this run was fairly slow for me and my legs felt did feel weary after. I ignored it as I thought the extra time spent running would benefit my marathon training.

On Wednesday, I decided to repeat the run from last week with running 2 miles faster, 2 miles recovery but did this 3 times instead of the 2 I did last week. This was great except I felt more tired going into it and the faster miles felt I was using much more effort trying to get anywhere near the pace I managed last week. I started getting those “is this really working?” thoughts the rest of the day and when I woke up on Thursday, I decided to rest instead of getting up and going for my usual run then did the same on Friday too. I figured having a few days rest might help improve things.

Yesterday I got up at 7am, had my usual bowl of porridge then headed down to Parkrun. I started off in the middle of the pack (something I used to do previously) but found it harder to find space to move through than I’ve done in the past and so the 1st mile was slower than normal. I felt like I was speeding up in mile 2 but the mud fest along the grass section put paid to that and then felt my porridge just sitting in my stomach like I was carrying a weight around with me. I finished the run, not feeling as nimble as usual.

Today was a different story! I had avocado on toast for breakfast, lots of water and a hydration drink then went out to do 16 miles and try to run every 3rd mile faster. None of the sluggish feeling in my legs that I’ve had the last couple of weeks or even as far back as Wednesday and actually felt like I was flying. The hardest job I had was to run slow enough in the miles in between the faster ones! The run felt the best one I’ve done so far and the training I’ve done so far has helped but I’m going to go back to what I have done previously that was easy for me to fit in and got me pretty good results.

How’s your training going? Do you find it hard to do as much as you think you should be doing?

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