Intervals had to be done on the treadmill again but, with the plan being exactly the same as last week, I thought it would be a good opportunity to see if there was any change. There wasn’t – pace and distance was more or less the same. It was easier mentally, though, but that was probably down to the fact that I was getting used to the treadmill again. Having been fairly frantic, work wise, over the past few weeks, this week I was beginning to get back into a normal routine or perhaps finally managing my time better.
Hills on Friday, however, were postponed until the evening, there was no way these could be done on a treadmill so off I headed with a chest light and waterproofs as the rain was coming down fast. Not to be deterred I found a quiet lane at the back of our house, which I had previously overlooked for hill sessions but thought there would be little, if any, traffic and it would be a safe place to run up and down in the dark. All went well but I still had difficulty running downhill. That said, a 2x10min Kenyan hill session was never going to be easy and I was just pleased I had managed to get up and down!
Sunday’s long run was bliss in comparison, 2hrs 15mins at an easy effort, followed by lunch out to celebrate my daughter Georgie’s 25th birthday. I was so hungry, despite following the advice of High5 and taking gels properly, plus a Protein Hit Bar as soon as I had finished the run. There was no difficult decision to be made; it was going to be the full Sunday Roast!
Lesson 7: Work hard on the training sessions you don’t like and those you do like will be easier and more enjoyable.
I didn’t get my head round Tuesday’s intervals before I started out and, with that lack of confidence, there was always going to be something that went wrong. The session was ‘ridiculous intervals’, set by Richard at Full Potential – 3x10mins with 90secs recovery. First mistake was that the warm-up ended at the beginning of a slight incline, there was nothing to do but go for it!
As I frequently run the same route, I can work out where I should be at what stage, using sign posts as a guide. This came in very useful when I hit my watch to see average pace and accidentally hit ‘stop run’. So it was back to basics using sign posts as rough indicators, and then I quickly reset the watch for the end of interval two and quick recovery and then reset again for the final interval, recovery and cool down and, surprisingly, I wasn’t far off the mark.
With the mistakes made with my watch on Tuesday I decided to head upstairs at the gym to do Friday’s session on the treadmill, where I could set the pace and just concentrate on running at the required level. Job done.
Sunday’s long run? Could not have enjoyed it more!
Lesson 8: Hang on in there. Eight weeks in, 7 weeks until Manchester and 10 weeks until London, this week has definitely been one of the hardest. February is always the toughest month and training is just a hard slog with the end not yet in sight and no obvious improvement.