I've only been running with others in the last few months, again since joining my club, and I think depeneding on the size of the club depends on how far/fast the club runs can go. We are lucky enough to have on "club night" 4 distance options, and within them usually at least 2 different paces. Its only through that I've run with others, the drawback being now I hate running on my own and find it quite boring.
The LSR topic is an interesting one. Like Eggy, I haven't got an athletic bone in my body and everything I've done has been through sheer bloody mindedness. I'm not sure I'd have the balls to even try Dannir's approach. In my mind, the more long runs the better. I managed 4 for Paris, and for this springs I really want to try and do 6 - which appears, according to the literature I've read, to be the magic number. My endurance as a runner can only be built through doing these long runs - but then again, its only my second marathon. Like Jimbob, for me the long running is my bread and butter mileage, though I also do 2 other quality sessions a week focussing on speed and tempo work.
I guess the more marathons you do, and the more long runs you do as part of that process, you are conditioning the body to the point where less is more? Because your body (And more importantly perhaps, your mind) knows it can do it its not necessary to do the long arduous LSRs that us rookies do.
I'm terrified that taking a running break will undo all the hardwork I've done! I'm going to keep going until I reach a PB plateau then have a few weeks off.
Brilliant news Rich! Now just take it easy a bit and don't take on too much too soon!
I also struggled with my long run this week. My legs just felt so heavy, but managed to get through 14m at about a 9.05 average, so a little short of target. It was one of those runs where mentally I was thinking "How the hell am I going to be able to run this distance at 7.35m/m" (My target is sub 1.40). I'm trusting in my training though. I am 1 week away from peak week, so I am expecting to be feeling worn out a bit, I've done an awful lot of elevation gain this month too. So I know I need to trust the taper and it'll be OK.
Battle of Sedgemoor 10k on Sunday, a local flat race. Resting up Saturday so I can have a blast at this and hopefully finally get a sub 45 time!
Looks like Ecce and I may be racing to be the first to the line! I have 160km to go. Should have been less really but had to miss my long run last week and a 7 miler got canned too due to work commitments.
160 - the year the first buddhist monks arrived in China