"It's a treat being a runner, out in the world by yourself with not a soul to make you bad-tempered or tell you what to do." - Allan Sillitoe

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Melbourne Marathon training - week 5

141km this week and by the end of the week I felt like I have made some real progress over the past month.

As mentioned in my previous post, on Monday, I did 16km with 8km tempo. Although I felt ok when I headed out I just didn't crack it with the tempo run. Felt comfortable aerobically but just not the pace I was after. No excuses with the conditions either which were perfect, cool/cold and no wind. Averaged 3:43/km which is the slowest session of the past few weeks.

Interestingly though my overall pace for the 16km was the quickest at 4:11/km (compared to 4:14/km) mainly due to a quicker cool down. I think the problem may be that my aerobic strength is ahead of my muscular strength. I have been a bit slack on doing my strides and this won't have helped. Also just a bit generally tired both from training and slightly reduced sleep from watching the TdF.

So I am making an effort to get more sleep and try to fit in more strides. I have succeeded on the first aspect despite Tour de France watching but not on the second as yet.

Tuesday morning was a 24km medium long run. I spent about 15 minutes in bed after the alarm went off hoping it would stop raining ... it didn't. Made for a pretty dark and miserable start but the rain stopped about 10km in and as it got lighter, I seemed to naturally pick up the pace. Average pace for the first 12km was 4:34/km brought down to an overall average pace of 4:28/km by the end. 3-4km were around 4:10 so not quick but enough to feel like I had extended myself.

Double recovery runs on Wednesday and Friday and the usual medium long run with Rob on Thursday. On Saturday here was no netball due to school holidays so I was able to head out a bit later than normal at around 8am for key long run - 34km with 16km at marathon pace. First 16km @ average 4:28/km then 16km @ MP. Had some ups and downs during the MP section. Got to around 3km and thought there is no way I am going to be able to maintain this for another 13km and then a km later I was going at 3:46.

Managed to average 3:49/km for the MP section before a slow 2km jog home.

One good thing about Strava is the comparisons it makes with previous performances. Because my Houston Marathon is on Strava, it has pretty much been my benchmark for anything over 10km so it was pretty encouraging to have a 15km PR come up from my run on Saturday 57:22 just beating the 57:36 I ran in the middle of the Houston Marathon (my real 15km PR is 55:34 from Deepwater Point last year although I hadn't run 16km before running that).

So I am tracking well against my preparation for Houston with my current MP runs averaging just under 3:50/km compared to 3:52/3:53 in my Houston program.

Spent most of the afternoon on the couch watching the Diamond League from London with a great performance by Collis Birmingham in the 5000m. Here is a video of the last couple of laps - not great quality and the commentary is in Chinese but it was all I could find online.


Here is a much better quality video of the mile race. Nick Willis has been saying on Twitter that he feels as if he had backed off to 60 secs on the third lap he could have closed with a 58sec for the win, instead of 62 secs for 4th.

This week for me will be a slightly down week after 5 weeks of building up. Strides planned for Monday and some hill intervals for Friday.

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