Marathon Training Week 12 – Celebrating a Milestone

An anniversary crept up upon me this week. It wasn’t until I got to work on Thursday that I realised that I had celebrated the one year anniversary of my partial meniscectomy with a 10 mile run commute which included 8 miles at 7:45 pace (slightly faster than target MP). I woke early, I ran strong, I felt good – and I was so pleased to discover I had celebrated the anniversary with a bang, rather than a wimper of a rest day or simple recovery run.

I’ve said before that I am making huge progress both in the year 2015, the year post-surgery, and in my running ‘career’ full-stop and this week has further proven this.

Training included the standard recovery run on Monday after last weeks’ fast-finishing long run. The track session was 6x800m with 3 minutes recovery (middle minute active) – I hate those middle minutes because they are such hard work (and I can’t do pushups!) I finished with another 3 miles at 7:45 alone on the track.

Parkrun was a celebration. A regular runner is getting married soon and her parents surprised her with a massive wedding dress to run in and they put on a huge spread of croissants and bucks fizz. It was brilliant fun. No PB again this week (but much closer than last week) but I did come second for the first time ever. Yet again, another three steady miles immediately afterwards.

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A little mid-run refueling. You saw nothing, OK!
A little mid-run refueling. You saw nothing, OK!

Today’s training plan called for 19 miles, though I did mention to Marc that for my own mental well being I might like to bump it slightly to 20. Well, I decided all week to get to that magic number and I plotted a few different routes to see where to go. Given that I am running a marathon on road I am keen to do lots of road mileage, and so far I really have but now the mileage is building up, I really struggle to avoid some big, fast, dangerous roads so I decided to head out an back on the downs link. I set off out the door for Christs Hospital School this morning, and had a brilliant time.

I don’t think I have ever, ever, enjoyed 20 miles quite so much. I felt comfortable throughout and, unlike recent weeks, I took a gel every 30 minutes rather than every 5 miles which seemed to power me through the run. Mile 17 included a big hill with a sharp incline which required a brief walk during which I still overtook some cyclists.This was the only thing that really slowed me down so I maintained my target pace overall, and finished the run in less than 3 hours. A brilliant run.

Followed swiftly by a very cold bath, a tasty lunch and then a stroll into the village with the little munchkin.

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