18 Weeks Training - Race Cancelled

20 messages
24/03/2013 at 09:26

What do other people do when their training reaches a peak, they're straining at the leash and the race is cancelled? Find another race and repeat their last few weeks training? Go out the door and run the distance anyway?

I've trained through all the bad weather, wind, everything since before xmas, missing just two sessions, only to find the half marathon cancelled 3 hours before the start. I'm not blaming the race organisers as the weather's pretty bad - just thinking about all that training investment. What have others done in the same situation; it's the first time it's happened to me.

24/03/2013 at 09:30
It's hard luck, I would find another race ASAP. My first half this year was cancelled due to weather, my second my car suffered a major breakdown on the way. They weren't "A" races though. You must be gutted.
24/03/2013 at 09:36

I am gutted. I'm psyched up, ready to go. I'm thinking about just going out the door and running a half anyway, but then there's no race atmosphere - just like another traing run albeit a hard one!

24/03/2013 at 09:45

I had a race booked and paid for this morning. It was cancelled on Friday due to weather forecast and boggy ground (off-road race). So I looked around and found a substitute, on road, not too far away. That too got cancelled, just this morning! Although thankfully I saw before setting out.

Shit happens, I guess. I'm grateful to the organizers for doing their best and letting us know. I'll go out for a run today anyway, and all those training miles are in the bank so it's all good.

24/03/2013 at 10:04
Gutted for you mate. Hopefully you can find a similar race nearby in the few weeks. All the best.
24/03/2013 at 10:48

the training gains will not go away...it's gutting, but keep yourself in tip top shape and sign up for another race in next few weeks

24/03/2013 at 11:14

Keep it going and get another short term target. Not ideal but shit happens 

24/03/2013 at 12:42

Thanks for the encouragement guys. There's another half locally in 3 weeks, so it seems as though all is not lost. I went and had a look outside but it is pretty grim out there - a near gale force wind here on the Suffolk coast and raw with it - even the dog turned back which is a first!

World cross country on the telly though...



24/03/2013 at 14:08

Cut the volume of of your training by 50%

Cut the frequency by 20%

Leave the intensity as it is.

You can now remain at your current fitness level for weeks on end. Race when you like.

seren nos    pirate
24/03/2013 at 14:14

I'd get pissed and then find another race in the next couple of weeks and tick over till then

24/03/2013 at 14:27
seren nos wrote (see)

I'd get pissed and then find another race in the next couple of weeks and tick over till then

Good advice. I will be having a drink tonight after living like a monk for the last week, in bed asleep at 9pm with no alcohol. Grrr!

RicF, thanks for more good advice; I'll do that - my current fitness is probably the best it's ever been and I want to hang on to it - as the alterative race has the words "challenging" and "hills" in the previous race reviews, I'm going to need it!

24/03/2013 at 15:59

there are so many races these days, I usually get annoyed that so many of them clash!


24/03/2013 at 17:03

Hi Ric, when you say volume do you mean volume of the longest week or average of 18 weeks or something else? thanks

But keep the hard quality work out/s say intervals and threshold run.

24/03/2013 at 17:13


I work on the average of the last 12 weeks myself.

Once you reach a peak its possible to remain there for ages (how does 18 months sound?) with this kind of schedule.

All the hard work of reaching the peak has been done.

Just keep the key sessions as maintenance, and not even full effort at that.

24/03/2013 at 18:20



this is just the sort of answer and detail I needed. Makes sense to me as I'd already tapered for this, I didn't see much sense in increasing the training load by too much again as it could be counter productive.

Previous to doing the half marathon training, I'd trained for and run the Kielder marathon (hard for a first marathon!) then run a 10k pb a few weeks later off the back of it and based my half marathon training times on the 10k result - started training for the half a week or so after the 10k, hence feeling really fit and wanting to maintain that level. I'll do as you say to keep there until the new half in 3 weeks time.

25/03/2013 at 20:08

Thanks Ric. how does racing effect this, I take it you can't race too much and still maintain the same level? I ask because I have a marathon in may, first one, and a half marathon in november but between that I want to do a 10k and a 5k.

The marathon isn't really a race, I'm just trying to get round in under 4 hours. But I would like to push myself on the other 3. Thanks for any advice.

25/03/2013 at 21:34

This keeping "topped up" is interesting to me also. Now that I've decided to do a half marathon on the 14th April, I'll have two months between that race and starting training in earnest for the Loch Ness Marathon on 29th September. During that time I planned to tick over doing a long run of about 10 - 12/13 miles once a week (marathon pace + 30/45 secs), and one or two 5 to 7 mile tempo runs to keep on pace. Probably drop the interval sessions as they're bad enough when they're programmed - nice to have a break from them to be honest. May & June is a really busy time at work for me anyway and takes enough of a physical toll without making it worse for myself (I'm a gardener).

25/03/2013 at 22:55

Muttley - were you doing the Lightning Run by any chance?

26/03/2013 at 11:25

RicF's idea of maintaining fitness is very appealing. I'll be running a marathon in 5 weeks, then training for 5 and 10ks for the next 6 months, but then from Nov onwards I'm going to be a bit more time-constrained for 6 months or so; so the idea that lower volume will help me to maintain a plateau sounds great.

26/03/2013 at 11:41

Taken me a while to get back.

Ok then. Races. If you recover from them (10k for example) almost by the next day, then you can run them almost each week. Recovery is key though.

I prefer to keep to one race every two weeks if only racing up to 10k and three weeks for 10milers and Half Marathons.

The intensity of a race when fully fresh can enhance the fitness levels and when combined with maintenance levels can actually lead to improvements.

A clubmate of mine was so pressed for time once that his only running for a few months were races. He still won them and continued to do so until an injury stopped him. He lost fitness after that though.


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