Overdone it?

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24/09/2012 at 18:35
Okay coach - that works - although at moment there is no way my 5 miles tonight is going to be very easy - there's about a 50 mile gale and the rain is bouncing off the ground and has been for hours - its also flippin' cold! Think I might skip the post run cold bath and go for a hot shower instead!

Cheers, Skinny
24/09/2012 at 18:54

the peril of living up north!

25/09/2012 at 08:59

5 miles easy done. 7 training runs to go - feedback after Weds run tomorrow.

Cheers, Skinny

26/09/2012 at 14:13

10 miles done as follows:-

3 miles easy (25:09 - a litle fast but only just)

6 miles at MP pace (7:23,7:16,7:19,7:14,7:03,7:04) Last two miles a bit fast - found a few times on these paced runs that as the pace feels harder rather than drop the pace I push to keep it at same level and this seems to result in me going faster - better than me not being able to keep to the pace I suppose?

1 mile 9 mins WD

Starting to worry a bit now about my time target - first few miles at MP pace felt hard today and not sure how I will manage mentally if feels this hard on the day after 1 mile when I know there are still 12 to go - not like a 10k where you've nearly finished once you've started! Anyway I'm sure its just start of pre race nerves building up - 6 training runs, 11 days to go.

Cheers, Skinny 

PS Saturday's run - I presume it would be okay to go 7 miles,3,3,1 - just easier for timings.

Edited: 26/09/2012 at 16:57
26/09/2012 at 19:24

Good run Skinny. You'll often find that it seems hard to keep the pace down on such sessions as you're at the peak of being warmed up and have momentum on your side.

Taper week's always feel sluggish, as you're usually doing less mileage or intensity than you've got used to.

Your 10k, and recent training suggests you'll hit your sub 1hr 35 target fine.

As long as you haven't signed up to a monstrous hilly course and not told me, you'll be fine, don't worry.

The beauty of a half marathon over a 10k, is that the pace is less intense. When you start the race, have your HMP in the back of your mind as a loose guide to see you through.

However, if you're feeling good, by all means motor on!

Fine on saturday, i'd slightly edited the MP down to 7.5 to keep it all to a 14, but your way above will do.

Trick with that run is not to break into the steady pace too early in the first 7miles.

26/09/2012 at 19:40
Its not monstrous hilly but I plan to explain profile and my race plan next week once know I'm injury free and done all my hard sessions. Over my worries now and feeling positive again - planning a 4,3,3,3,1 on Saturday but nice thing about those first 7 is I can play it by ear without failing the session - next feedback Saturday - Monday. Cheers, Skinny
29/09/2012 at 22:41

3 mile easy on Thursday - done.

14 mile quality done today as follows:-

8.15, 8.07, 8.26, 8.21 (4 miles easy), 7.45, 7.42, 7.39 (3 miles steady), 7.16, 7.08, 7.15 (3 miles MP), 6.57, 6.54, 7.00 (3 miles HMP) 1 mile WD.

Was surprised when looked at total time when had completed the 13 miles and realised I was sub 1.39 for 13 miles. I believe had I ogne out hard today based on how I felt when I finished I could have beaten my PB today - however the race was not today but next week so need to coast in now and be good and fresh next Sunday morning.

Looking at last 6 miles I actually ran them in an average of 7.05 so am definitely ready for this - bit of race day adrenaline and a few runners in front of me should enable me to stretch this out for 13 miles.

4 training runs to go (none hard - YAY!) and 8 days. My youngest daughter has been ill for two days in bed with a fluey cold - I will not be happy if .....!!

Cheers, Skinny

29/09/2012 at 23:11

Skinny ,youre in shape  to smash it lad.Pure and simple

30/09/2012 at 06:25

Good one Skinny. You smashed that so hard that your MP sections came out comfortably ahead of the 7.20-7.25 range, and even the HMP came easily on the 7.00-7.05 range.

Therefore, you're definitely in sub 1hr 35 form as a minimum.

I think you can afford to go off at 7:00-7:05 pace on sunday, and bank time as you go, knowing that sub 1hr 35 is 7:15 pace.

With a 3mile recovery run already plotted for today, let's do the below for next week

  • M            OFF
  • Tu           8miles,  (3m easy to steady, 5x75m strides, 3x1mile @ HMP, off 2mins, with 0.5mile HARD at the end . 1m cool down.
  • We       3m recovery
  • Th        5miles easy
  • Fr         OFF
  • Sa       5miles easy with 4x75m strides
  • Su       TARGET HALF MARATHON (1mile warm up, 13.1mile race, 1m cd)

Tuesday's is a lighter version of what you've done before. You do the 3x1mile at HMP off 2mins, and then after those you do your 1/2mile HARD. (ie just once)

Stay away from that cold as best you can, and keep healthy and warm this week, and I look forward to next sunday mate.

Edited: 30/09/2012 at 06:38
01/10/2012 at 13:21

Coach - update. In last half mile of my run on Sunday I got a pain in my left knee (always the left leg that is the problem) which felt like as I stretched forward it got locked in position (it didn't it just felt like that??). The pain continued through my mile WD although I was able to jog all way home without stopping. 

Started worrying about it on Saturday night (although it wasn't hurting by then) and so scrapped the 3 mile run on Sunday and went for a 6 mile walk instead plus did plenty of stretching. No pain with walking and haven't run yet on it.

We have agreed throughout this process that I am responsible for managing any niggles and you can only provide the training and advice - this has worked really well with my Achilles. However I am thinking about the Tuesday run and wondering that if my knee is an attritional injury is it sensible to do 8 miles - I will definitely do the two 5 mile sessions as if can't do these have no chance of doing 13 at full pace.

I think I can look at this from two directions:-

1) If I do it what do I gain?

2) If I don't do it what will I lose?

I think from a Risk and Rewards point of view these are two questions I could do with help from you on to help me decide whether or not to just rest up to Thursday or not.

Finally from a more positive perspective!! Your post talks about me banking time against 7:15/miles. Back in 1982 (were you even born then?) you didn't get your time in mins and secs only mins therefore unless I run 1:34:29 I can't be certain I have run a PB! However your suggestion is roughly what I am thinking too.

Miles 2 to 4 of the race are probably the hardest (mile 1 flat) so provided I hit the 4 mile point at 29mins or below and feel okay I can start squeezing the pace upwards from there. Height gain from start to high point just before 4 mile mark is only 240 feet so its not exactly fell running anyway but a couple of the hills are enough to slow you down a little. After  that though it is a pretty fast course.

I doubt you are interested but have attached a profile of the course I had to find just in case.


Cheers, Skinny.

01/10/2012 at 13:51

Skinny, definitely wise to ease off. Pain is always something to listen to.

You can't really gain anything in the last week before a target race, but you can lose the hard work for sure.

The light target pace reps session is a nice one for confidence, but you can do without it.

As walking seems fine, your next step is a short easy paced run. I'd sub that in tomorrow instead of the reps.

Then all being well try the light easy paced runs already plotted. Don't try and sub the reps session in later in the week as it'll be too close to race day.

Hopefully that will see you through to the big race

We'll leave tactics talk until just before the race...make sure you're right first.

ps yes was just about born in 82!


Edited: 01/10/2012 at 13:55
01/10/2012 at 14:11

Thanks coach - that has really helped me make up my mind. I'll hopefully confirm everything went okay on Wednesday.

Cheers, Skinny

02/10/2012 at 22:39

3 miles 25 mins - no actual problems although plenty of imagined ones!!

Surrounded by illness at home and at work - every morning I wake up and first thought is have I got a sore throat - doing my head in - Sunday can't get here soon enough!

Will report back Thursday morning after easy 5.

Cheers, Skinny

PS While I remember - do I do strides in my WU on Sunday?

Edited: 02/10/2012 at 22:40
03/10/2012 at 06:17

a pre big race week wouldn't be complete without worrying about feeling sluggish or slightly ill...best of luck in riding it out til sunday!

Less important for the strides for a half marathon than shorter distance races.

Shorter the race, the longer the warm up needed....so i'd only worry about doing a 1miler or so, couple of racepace strides if you want.

04/10/2012 at 09:32

5.2 miles easy in 44 mins - knee felt fine except when I changed my stride suddenly to avoid a big lump of cow dung when could feel same feeling - so something is not right with it but don't think it will stop me getting to start line on Sunday now - hopefully that magic race day adrenaline will keep any problem at bay until race is finished. Then physio can tell me what is wrong with it on 12th.

Have been battling a sore throat for last two days but just hoping that the same magic adrenaline will keep that at bay too!!

That adrenaline is going to be busy come Sunday!!

Re race plan I've now modified my plan to be sub 28:30 at 4 mile point - 29 was too slow and reduces my options for second half of race (based on 7,plus 3 @ 7.10). Then next 5 miles in 6.55 - 7 range (some nice running miles in those 5) for  about 34.45 making 9 mile target 63:15.

Then its just a case of keeping that pace going for as long as I can - there is a short fast downhill section with about 1.5 miles to go with no further uphill - if I get to that feeling okay I will surf the pace off that to try and blast the last mile and a half.

Race target 1:32:30 - 1:34 - I'm in good shape (best running shape I've ever been in provided knee holds up and I don't get ill!!) but I'm not in sub 1:30 shape and I need to keep that out of my mind as a bad race pace strategy could stop me getting sub 1:35.

Would welcome any observations you have. I know in the actual race anything could happen and depends how I feel but I'm a great believer in targets and plans and gives me something to think about other than how much its hurting!

Cheers, Skinny

PS Young Cowboy - if you're out there lurking well done on completing your first marathon - I know you were disappointed with your time but completing a marathon is an achievement in itself - something I've never even tried!

04/10/2012 at 12:32

Cheers Skinny lad,i now realise that doing 5 long runs totalling 96 miles wasnt going too get me my time,bit naive to think that to be honest.

3 things to be looked at

1 underestimated how hard it would be from 18 miles at that monster of a hill at Dores.

2 naivety/over confidence on my part thinking all i had too do was turn up and get my time in regards too the training i had done for it.


But hey ho you live and learn and ive got 2 A races for next year and ive got a more structured programme nearly finalised on paper for them.

Enough about me lad,this weeks all about you.Under stevies guidance i predict your finishing time to within 10 seconds either way  of 1.33 17.

Good luck fella and just remember youve had a good mentor in Stevie G and trust in your training.

Dont be a mumpty at the start and that pb is yours

All the best pal


04/10/2012 at 12:34

Meant to say"numpty" not mumpty lol


05/10/2012 at 08:58

Coach - had in laws round last night and had a couple of glasses of red wine - woke up this morning - sore throat gone - just the knee and my pace to worry about now!

Weather also looks set fair with a light wind - 7 degrees C bit cold for my lungs but manageable.

Finally starting to look forward to it.

Cheers, Skinny

05/10/2012 at 10:01

Skinny, hopefully the knee holds up for sunday.

let me put my sensible coach hat on for a second, and just say if you do find you're slipping into pain territory rather than that "working hard and its uncomfortable" feeling, then consider dropping out. Barring an Olympic final, one race is never important enough to risk a long lay off for.

That said, all being well, I am certain you'll smash the race on Sunday. I really look forward to reading the report.

Sounds like you have in mind a decent strategy. I'd love to say keep the first mile sensible, but I've never managed that in a race myself, so can't really advise anyone else to.

From the training paces I'd set, 7.10 was your original, and then the new one was 7:00-7:05 based from your 10k race., Therefore, you should be able to run 7.10 pacing as your bottom line figure, and quicken as you feel good.

Young Cowboy has it correct, you're certainly in pb form, so remember the hard sessions you've come through pretty comfortably, and race hard and keen on the day.

Drop me your mobile number on a pm, and I'll be in touch on Sunday so I get your result asap


Edited: 05/10/2012 at 10:04
05/10/2012 at 10:14

Thanks - of course this is my first Olympic Final!

Race pace management may (may!!) be the one running thing I am better than you at!

I won't have my phone with me at race as nowhere to leave it so will probably be after 12 before I let you know success or fail.

Either way I'd just like to thank you for all your help - both advice and motivational - I know that I have done more training than I would have done if I had been on my own and also that training has been better quality - thanks! and fingers crossed the result on Sunday will back that up.

Cheers, Skinny

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