Latest posts by stutyr

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Posted: Today at 15:10

Everyone is different, and everyone will react differently.  But I would urge caution - my initial recovery was quick, with no painkillers needed the day after and able to walk rather than limp within a few days. However the bit that took longest to recover was the deep bruising under the knee and around the inside of my leg, which made the knee tender to touch and unstable when load bearing.  

All told, it took me about 12 weeks to be back to normal, although I probably could have started running after about 10 (I ended up getting over-cautious towards the end as I'd been a bit too keen at the start).   Between 8 and 12 weeks I started cycling, gradually building over the weeks until the knee felt stable when sprinting out of the saddle.     

The consultant who operated on me had said it would be two months until it was back to normal, which suggests I took a bit longer than average to recover. 

As I said, everyone is different so you may be back after two weeks but don't be too concerned if it takes a bit longer as it will recover after a relatively short while.

The tale of two knees

Posted: 21/07/2014 at 13:56

My experience is the same as Jane's - I had a meniscal tear that didn't really affect day-to-day activities, it felt a bit weak and kneeling on it was uncomfortable but otherwise it was fine.  However I couldn't run on it, and ended up giving myself a groin strain due to trying to minimise the weight on my knee whilst running.

The surgeon was a straight talker, and said it was my decision whether to have the operation, as I could have a decent "quality of life" without the operation. As running was important to me, I decide to have the Op and I'm glad I did. I'm now able to run without injury or discomfort.

I think medical practice has changed a lot over the last few years, with more focus on doing enough to ensure that patients can live comfortably rather than trying to fix every defect.   You need to decide on an individual level whether the compromises you need to make to accommodate the tear are worth making.

Marathon training advice please

Posted: 03/07/2014 at 17:26

I'm not sure what plan you are following, but its unusual to include a significant number of speed sessions within a marathon plan, as the focus is normally on endurance.

I think your on the right lines, make the aim of your first marathon to complete the distance (which is an achievement most of the general public will never accomplish) and then after that reconsider if you want to focus on long distance or increasing your speed over shorter distance.

Also you will probably find that your speed will improve anyway, as the marathon  training will make a 10k feel like a 'short' run and you'll find it easier to complete the distance etc.

Advice on training paces please

Posted: 03/07/2014 at 17:16

Believe in P&D ...

It does depend on how realistic your 3:15 time is.  From memory, this is around the 7:20 pace for the marathon.  Therefore your easy runs should be noticeably slower than this.

I used your target time when I last followed P&D and my easy runs were just over 8:00 pace, I based this on HR levels within the book.  This would be a good starting point for you.

I like the P&D book, and I'm following it again for my next marathon, but one thing I've learnt this time is that it is written from an elite runners perspective.  Be careful when adding percentages to pace and remember that they are thinking of around 6:00 race pace.  This means that 10% is only 36 seconds slower than race pace, and 20% only 1'12" slower than race pace.   Adding 1'12" to a 7:20 pace would give a 8:30 (ish) pace which is closer to what I find is the slow end of my usual easy runs.  Going down to 8:55 pace is getting to the slow end of recovery heart rate zone for me. 

This is a sample of one (i.e. me) so your experience may vary!

New to intervals/speed work

Posted: 23/06/2014 at 09:58

As others have said, you don't need to do intervals yet, as just by running regularly you should see significant improvements.  

Have a look at a beginner training plan or something similar to add some structure to your training.  

Once you've been running for between six months and a year, you will probably find that your improvements plateau.  This is the time to start adding intervals and tempo sessions etc.

Half Marathon in 6 months

Posted: 06/06/2014 at 15:31

Have a google for the 'mcmillan pace calculator' to give an indication of what you could achieve at half marathon distance based on your 10k time.  Your current 10k time translates to a 1:40+ HM time.

This assumes you can maintain an equivalent level of performance over the longer distance, which typically is a struggle for most people when they double the distance. As an ex-footballer you will probably struggle with endurance as it relies on short sprints rather than sustained, paced running.

 For your first HM the target should be finishing (as any time will be a PB) and then you can try to get faster at subsequent attempts. If your using a training plan, you'd be better of using 1:40 as a target time for setting training paces etc.


P&D Autumn Marathon Training Thread 2014

Posted: 30/05/2014 at 15:49

The pace thing might be misleading if you're not an elite runner, as the %age of pace creates much wider gaps as your min per mile race pace increases. 

For my last marathon my target was 3:15 and I ran around the 8 min per mile mark.  I used the HR guidance for this, staying within the 60 to 70 percent of HRR that's also mentioned in the description of a GA run.  This seems right as its described as a "moderate effort" run, whereas 8:30 to 9:00 min would be more recovery run pace for me.


energy gels/drinks

Posted: 29/05/2014 at 13:28

As cougie mentioned, they aren't really needed for the half-marathon distance.

If you do decide to use them, then you'll want to experiment prior to the event.  There are plenty of brands out there with many different flavours, but most people find that they will prefer some and detest others. You want to try and find one that you can tolerate the taste and doesn't upset your stomach.  You should also test consuming it during a training run as ingesting them whilst exercising can also be a challenge.

The other thing to consider is whether you want to use a concentrated one or a diluted one. The concentrated ones need to be taken in conjunction with water, but this means they are smaller and easier to carry

As a starter have a look at either SIS or High5 as these seem to be the most widely available.  Or pop into your local running or cycle shop to see what brands they have.

12 month training programme

Posted: 27/05/2014 at 15:21

I don't think you'll find a specific 11 month training plan, as the chances of anyone completing this would be close to zero.  What you need to do is break it down into 2 to 3 month chunks and pick a specific goal for each period.

To work out what these goals will be will depend on you making an honest assessment of what factors contributed to your last marathon taking half-hour longer than your target time.

For example, did you start fast and then slow down or did you run a fairly even pace throughout (NB even the elite tend to run a positive split, so don't be too critical if you ran the second half five mins slower than the first half).  If you ran fast then slow, this means you need to improve your endurance and would benefit from longer, steady runs.  If you ran fairly evenly you need to build speed, so you need to have an interim target of a sub 1:30 half marathon to achieve your 3:15 time. 

I have to recommend the Pfitzinger & Douglas "Advanced Marathoning book" as it covers all the things that contribute to improving your marathon time, including stuff like diet, core strength and race day planning.   

You also have to be willing to commit to the work involved, most sub 3:15 marathon runners will be clocking more than 50 miles per week during their training.  This takes significant time & energy, and is difficult to accomplish if you have an already busy lifestyle. 

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