Gul Darr - I never put pressure on myself by scheduling in a 26.2 as I always like to complete every yard of every scheduled run. I will just schedule in a 20 and then if it feels right take it to 26.2.
On the other hand I tell myself that I have to complete it to earn my rite to do the race - a sort of "rite of passage". I particularly need this motivation to get me up the last hill at about 17-18 miles just before I turn away from home for the extra 7 miles. Oh, and of course I have to run all the way, any stopping/walking and I am not allowed to do the race!
Lorenzo - wouldn't want to bring the wrath of the running community down on me by recommending such a thing!
It was just one of those "spur of the moment" things whilst out training for my first marathon. I had done about 19 miles of a planned 20 and was a mile from home when I realised that there was a 7 mile loop I could do to make the 26.
Why did I do it?
I wanted to know what it would be like to run the full 26.2 quietly on my own before I did it in front of 100s of 1000s of spectators.
Everybody had told me that you NEVER do the full distance in training.
When I went into my house my wife, Julie, said "you have been a long time". I said that I had done the full 26.2 and she said something like "why am I not surprised".
I felt fine and sat down to a full roast dinner.
Trouble is having done it once it then became one of those superstitious routines that I must do every year - NOT LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT YEAR ALREADY!!!
DS2 - it was my eldest daughters 30th birthday earlier this year, now that did make me feel old.
Every year before London I have done the full 26.2 as a VLSR. The last few times I have done it a little earlier in the training (early Feb). It provides me with a good indicator for my race target and every year I have done a race pb was also a VLSR pb. There is usually 15 to 20 mins between the two as my training route is much tougher than London with over 2,500 ft of ascent and descent.
Also-ran, when you posted that you don't do much training on road mostly offroad and the treadmill, I was intrigued to know what runs you did on the treadmill and assumed your long runs were offroad.
20 miles on a treadmill - that is crazy man!!!
I lived in America for a while a few years back with free access to a gym. I tried the treadmill but when I got off after only a few minutes I almost fell over because I forgot the ground doesn't really move whilst you stand still.
I must admit I have always discounted anybody who uses a treadmill as just not having the mental strength/commitment to get out there in the snow and rain and do the miles - clearly not the case with you!!!