A bit behind with getting this updated. It might have something to do with the last 2 weeks which have been pretty intense from a running point of view!
With the flu messing up the previous two weeks, this week became a long week instead of a step-back week. It started with 5M on the Tuesday, followed with 10M on Wednesday and another 5M on Thursday. Tuesday and Thursday were OK, but Wednesday was a struggle. I was suffering with stomach cramps from about 4 miles all the way home, despite a toilet break.
This forced me to go back to the doctor’s on Thursday for another check up and it was concluded that I had a bladder infection, which explained the problems when running but being OK the rest of the time. My bladder was inflamed, and the action of running was aggravating the problem. I was given some stuff that made my urine bright orange and 2 weeks of antibiotics.
So it was with a certain trepidation that I set out on the 10M run on the Saturday, but there were no issues. I ran quicker than I expect to in the Marathon, and felt OK. A couple of times I thought I was about to cramp, but it passed. This made me hopeful of a not too bad day on the Sunday.
The Sunday run was 22M, and the longest of the training plan. The previous run I had done over a couple of 10M laps with a bit added on to make it 21, I had planned to do the same on this one, but once I set off I decided to go off as far as I could in one direction and then come back. I just wasn’t in the mood for laps, so I went 8M up to Public Beach and then back again, with a quick loop down to Prospect Point and then back past the house to make it the complete distance. The plan was to go out at about what I expect to be Marathon pace and then at half way check my heart rate and then try to come back at what I believe to be the maximum heart-rate I can manage on race day.
The reason for this is because in January I ran the whole marathon pacing myself by what my heart-rate was. With all the training last year, my theoretical lactate threshold was 157bpm, and I ran the whole marathon at 150bpm (ish). I tired a bit towards the end, but the heart-rate was about the same. I figured this year, with not having as much cardio work in the the plan, my limit would be a bit lower. So I decided to try for 145bpm and see how it went.
So at half-way on the long run (11M) I switched my watch over to heart-rate view, and found I was going along at <140bpm, which was quite amazing, as I was averaging 9:18min/mile (which for me is fast this year!). I thought I would be somewhere around my limit and it would be a case of managing it on the way home. The end result was that I actually sped up the second half of the run. Initially I upped my rate to just over 140bpm, and with 10K to go I upped to about 145-150bpm. With my last 6M all <9min and the last mile being under 8:20! This meant that by the end my average time had come down to 9:06min/mile, which is just under 4hr marathon pace!
Needless to say I was a bit shocked! I hadn’t run anywhere near that fast since the Marathon in Jan! I am, however, not getting carried away. The weather was cool, and there was no wind, which helped, although it will probably be cooler in Disney. Another thing was I definitely had one of those runner’s high’s, and that can’t always be guaranteed, not to mention that in all 3 of the marathons I have done so far I have dropped off towards the end. Last time out it was the last 4M, and I dropped about 25secs/mile which would put me out of 4hr pace if it happened again.
Still, it was nice to know that I could do it, especially at the end of the hardest week I had ever had. 52M in total, and nearly 8 hours of running!
Whilst I felt good about it, the problem was I had to do it all again the following week!