Considering I have run a grand total of one
excruciating, poorly executed, full marathon, I am hardly what anyone would consider to be an expert. I am fine with that. I have, however, done a lot of reading up on the best ways to train for a marathon, and the thing that seems to be common in all training programs, from ‘I just want to finish with my legs still attached’ to ‘5 minute miles? No problem, sucker!’, is consistency. Well, shit.
After Loch Ness, I had a few more races in 2012, but from about mid-November my weekly mileage dropped. Significantly. Part of this was down to the fact that I felt like I had earned a break, and part of it was down to my very, very, very painful calf/shin combo. A pain that was bad enough that every time I even considered going for a run, my shins would speak up:
This pain stayed with me through December, and while it is still lingering, the rest has made a big difference. I’m no longer wincing every time my left foot makes contact with the ground, but it isn’t perfect – that’s why I’m getting regular sports massage where my leg is turned into mincemeat, and I cry, and I squirm, and I shout obscenities, for £38 an hour. Bargain.
While the rest has obviously benefited me in the sense that I have less pain, I am acutely aware that I am running a little bit behind in my training, highlighted by the fact that the two lovely ladies I will be going to Paris with are currently doing some monster long runs.
Plagued with guilt, and ignoring all sensible advice, I have opted to ramp up my long runs, despite doing little more than zero miles throughout the week. My last 3 long runs were 10.5, 15.35, and 17.5 miles.
Now, before you throw a side eye in my direction, I’m not doing nothing throughout the week. I do spin twice, weights 2-3 times, and plenty on the elliptical machine to keep fitness up. However, it isn’t running, so I’m going to start sneaking a few extra runs in here and there to stop my training from looking like this:
Mon: gym stuff
Tues: gym stuff
Wed: gym stuff and half-assed 2 miles on a treadmill
Thurs: gym stuff
Fri: gym stuff
Sat: gym stuff
Sun: LONG ASS RUN
I mean, what I am doing just now has consistency, of sorts, but not the kind I want – running consistency. Hopefully, as spring gets closer, I will be worried less about a spectacularly catastrophic, ass-over-head fall on the ice, and can enjoy being blinded by the early morning sun, risking a head on collision with a bus instead.
This weekend will be the Forfar multi-terrain half marathon, and I’ll be running with a group of myself and three others at a relatively non-killer pace. Our aim is to get some miles in and demolish the ‘gigantic feast’ that we are promised will be presented for hungry runners upon finishing. A ‘drop-down’ week, if you will.
“Thank fuck.” – my legs.