At 8 weeks from race day things were getting tough but they have got tougher still, due to work encroaching on my training, my personal life and especially my sleep. I have been doing two major pieces of work in parallel which meant I didn't get an off day, including weekends, from 15/2 to 28/3. Have almost kept to my training plan when viewed over a week as I juggled sessions at extreme ends of the day and did some double training days but some effort sessions and some recovery runs have gone and my weekly mileage dropped, although I've already banked 457 miles of training since December. Been a bit lax with swimming, foam rolling, leg exercises and stretching....but when many nights I was getting 2-3 hours sleep it was no wonder things would go.
Now, as I train I keep getting told off for:
1. Being too hard on myself (can't help it, that's me!) but I want to do the best job.
2. Not getting enough sleep to allow rest, recovery and muscle build. Tricky this one as I still have to work, at times, very stressful ultra hours with immovable deadlines.
Long runs have been protected though and, as well as the thoroughly enjoyable Bramley 20 mile race, there have been great miles in an 18 miler (horrid, sore toe issue), a 19 miler (excellent!), various 13-14-16 milers and a faster paced Reading Half Marathon with Amy, my running buddy, who has got me through many a low point in our runs this year. We had a target, beat it by 3 mins plus and were very pleased with the days work.
Now though, the pattern changes as I move like all other marathoners toward the taper weeks as the amount and intensity of running reduces. There are still Sunday long runs although these now go 2.5 hours, 2 hours and 1.25 hours so no more 3 hour runs. Yay!
VMLM and Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research have put together a fantastic facebook video headed up by Stephen Fry – it could even go on various websites – as I raise money for a charity very close to my heart. https://www.myfundraisingfilm.com/view/60075f65-5cb6-473b-ad24-5805c4a9a7fe?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=socialshare&utm_campaign=myfundraisingfilm
Hope you enjoy it, and many thanks for any support you can give. Cheers, mark