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Week 29 - 8 weeks to go
Monday, 12 September 2011 07:35

Monday September 12th - another week of juggling the training sessions.  The City- Bay run is this weekend - 13 km that I will run as a competition (because that is how I roll Wink).  

But my program says I should do 26 km, so I'll have to run home again as well.  But the program says that should be all at slower than marathon pace, and that Thursdays session should have 5 km of 10km race pace work.  And that my sprint session should be 1 mile, then 2 miles, then 2x 800 at some sort of sprint pace (I think I'll be lucky if I can do any of that faster than 10k pace).  4 miles = 6.4 km.  So, sunday morning will have all my work load in it.  Plus my distance, all rolled into one.  Hmmm.

I'm still coughing and have a bit of a head cold as well, so I whilst I was going to run today, I will leave it until tomorrow, and plan to just jog.  On Thursday, I will do a sprint session, but I haven't yet decided exactly what to do - if I do the programmed workload, I will be doing too much for the week, which will not be good overall.  I don't think that more is better at this point, especially when I am not 100 % well again.  After this weekend, no more competitions or events, so I will just follow the program.

Tuesday - I did my 11 km jog in the dark with an enormous moon setting in the west - beautiful looking over the racecourse towards the city and the moon.  Light and easy.

Gym session in the afternoon - managing that well, despite it being very different to any other program I have done (ultimately, it is easier, and waaaay quicker - just 1 set of 10 reps of each of 10 exercises.  The reps are super slow, however.)

I hit the wall in the evening, though, and had to beg off my staff meeting - I was tucked up in bed at 7.30 and asleep before 8 - goodness, every night I am in bed by 8.30 anyway!!

Wednesday - no actual training today - just some more lunge / butt work for those pesky little external roators that want to let my knee roll in.

We also had a get together at a local pub to met some of the other runners and collect our Jodi Lee FOundation shirts ready for sunday.  It was good to catch up, and further discussions have me strongly doubting the wisdom of doing my biggest run of 32 km only 3 weeks before the marathon.  So, this weekend I will do a little more than the 26, I think.  And my 29 will be bigger, and my 32 will likely not be any bigger than 21 (that seems to be the prevailing advice - no more than 21 km at a timein the last 4 weeks).  I will definitely get 2 more big long runs in (now 7 weeks to go), but I may not get 3 in.  I should have looked at this closer, sooner, but there you have it.  At least I have done all the training til now, and will still do plenty more.  A posto n the NYC Marathon website in the last few weeks said if you do 80% of your plan, you are doing very very well.  

Thursday - Gym session again - 6th one already.  A little disconcerting to be told by a friend that I had 'bulked up'!!  I didn't think it was possible in 5 training sessions, even though I know I do muscle pretty easily, and have always maintained that I could get back to my maximal rowing strength within 3 months of weight training - I just haven't lost any muscle despite my efforts.  Perhaps my top was just not very flattering?

Friday - another early start to get my run in.  After much consideration, I decided on the same sprint session as is programmed in marathon week - 6 x 400m with 90 seconds recovery.  Some speed, some lactate, but not too much.  Sunday is forecast to be very warm (28 degrees, for the first time this season), so it will be a challenge doing a quick run down there, then  the long slow run home again for my longest ever run to date.  I promise I'll drink plenty.  

Saturday - a rest day.  I was going to go to yoga, but spent more time with Charlie instead - this next week looks like we'll hardly see each other!  I did work for 5 hours, and did the Strong Core class, so I still did get some stretching in.

Sunday - up bright and early on an absolutely gorgeous Adelaide spring day - forecast top oof 26 degrees, but crisp in the early morning.  I jogged into town for the start of the 12 km City - Bay Fun Run, and managed to talk my way into the pink bib section for sub 60 minute runners - only if you had run sub 60 last year could you get one, but I have never done the event before.  It meant that I was able to cross the start line only about a miinute after the first people did, which had me in about the right place for a good run without too much weaving around slower people.

I had set a goal of trying to run 4.30 per km all the way, which would see me run 54-55 minutes, with a view to a long run home to simulate the second half of the marathon when tired and hot.  The run itself went pretty well - I ran past a couple of black skirts of fellow JLF runners, and spent the entire second half about 20 metres behid another one - I never could quite catch up.  I had a slow patch again with 4 km or so to go, and told myself off - it is so much just in my head - I was able to run faster at the same point in the half marathon a couple of weeks ago, but again i was able to pick it up in the last km or so to finish strongly.  I kept trying to find someone just to run with, but eventually the right song came up on the ipod and I was able to snap myself out of it.

I finished in 54.26, according to my watch (official results pending), so wass very pleased, and the exact distance meant that my average pace was indeed 4.30 - a big pat on the back for a job well done, I thought.  An apple, lots of water and a gatorade, a quick chat to Charlie (who rode down), Beck (who ran well) and some others in the JLF tent and it was time to hit the pavement again, running against the stream of people back to the city and home.  It was amazing to see sooooo many people running and walking and pushing wheelchairs or prams, holding children's hands, dressed in team t shirts supporting so many different charities.  A record number of entries this year of 34 700 or so, of which 19 996 (!) were women.  It was a big run, with only 1 water stop along the way, as I rapidly reached the end of the sea of people to find the police motorbikes and pack up trucks  and clean up crews - they also did an amazing job.  The street had been littered with plastic cups, but by 11 oclock the entire highway would have been restored to normal.   Very impressive.  

I set myself the goal of running 30 km today, rather than the 26 km programmed.  There were a few reasons, mostly detailed in wednesday's entry, but I also thought it would be pretty good psychologically - if I don't do 3 big runs, at least the 2 I do will be proper big and well completed, so I won't be underdone.  I have written before how important I think it will  be for me to make sure I do all the training to keep telling myslef I have prepared properly when it hurts in the last 10 km or so of the marathon.

So I did.  I ran all the way back along Anzac Highway, along Greenhill Rd and through the parklands back to my side of town, running until I reached 14km on the home trip.  My total for the day was a little over 31km all up - 4.5 or so into town, standing around for 20 mins or so before the start, 12 and a little bit to the Bay, more standing around and drinking and then the 14 home.  I walked the remaining 700m or so home, showered, dressed for a lunch date, enjoyed that very much, then had a quiet afternoon at home.

I am feeling really good about the journey so far.  Setting goals in terms of weight loss, speed targets, distance targets and making them achieveable, and actually achieving them.  Whilst it is easy to say that I was really fit in the past, so it is easy for me now, I really didn't do as well as I am now mentally back then.  I am much stronger, much more determined and taking complete responsibility for my successes or failures.  In contrast to when I was young.  And then, for the last 15 years since I stopped rowing, I was a long way from fit for most of it.   So today, and especially during the run home, was a period of reflection for me and a bit a quiet back patting.  You've done good so far, enjoy these last 7 weeks.


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Health News

This weeks links

The Cancer Council came out this week and announced that there is no safe level of alcohol consumption, and that alcohol should be considered to be as carcinogenic as smoking and asbestos are.  As well as being highly associated with throat and mouth cancers, it is now found to correlate highly with breast and bowel cancers.  Perhaps it should not be so surprising that a substance that can so alter mood and ability, even at very mild levels should turn out to be in fact, not good for us.

This story, an editorial from the British Journal of Sports Medicine earlier this year has some amazing targets - it ties in with our look at sitting and health, and is about developing healthcare systems that support exercise - recognise it as being as vital a measure of our health as is blood sugar levels or blood pressure.  It recommends 150 minutes of physical activity per week for adults as a minimum.  30 mins on 5 days.  For children, it is 420 mins / week - 60 minutes every day.  How close are you?

This is another article on inactivity / obesity and health from Sports Medicine Australia, highlighting the link between an inactive childhood and a lifetime of battling depression.  It is food for thought (!) these days where there seems to be much paranoia about safety of children away from their parents watchful eyes, and therefore a tendency to want to keep them closely under watch instead of encouraging more activity and indeed risk taking behaviours.  The ability to judge situations for risk and to be able to take appropriate risks builds self esteem and resilience.  Not much to do with bowel cancer awareness, but close to my heart as well.

Another article on sitting

This one is in really simple terms - if you walk 30 mins (as recommended) and sleep 8 hours, most of us still have 15.5 hours per day not moving.  You cannot sit all day behind a screen, then drive your car and sit and watch tv with out it being bad for you.  A good read.