Monday, 9 October 2017

Commiserations, Cake and Critical Swim Speed

Last week I got my commiserations magazine and running top through the post for the London Marathon 2018. I'm not disappointed. I've run it before and I didn't really have any great desire to run it again but Dean hasn't run it and so because he entered, I entered. And then we realised we'd be deferring it anyway if we got in because Brighton Marathon falls the week before London Marathon and I'm going for a PB of 4h30 so while I'm not adverse to doing two marathons in two weeks, it just doesn't fit with life, so actually it's worked out ok.

My training plan is ultimately preparing me for my 2018 events (Brighton Marathon, Swimathon, Outlaw Half and To Be Revealed) but is also putting me in a good place for the events I've still got in the calendar this year; Eden Project Half Marathon, Costa Rica Marathon (yes, a marathon on our honeymoon) and Frozen Phoenix 1 & 2.

And training is going well! Since I last posted about training, on the 18th September, I've completed another three weeks of training with only minor alterations to what Ellie planned for me. I say minor... the week I ran The Tolkien Run I switched my long run (2 hours) for the event (6 hours) and then ended up skipping track session entirely as I felt too damned tired. There have been a couple of Tuesdays when I've run my planned session and then run again in the evening to lead run club and one Long run that was split into park run and another run to make up the time later in the day, just because life got in the way. But overall I'm chuffed with what I've achieved so far and I've shaken off the slightly-tired-all-the-time feeling that I had in the first few weeks.
Happy with my 10k time trial session.
I'm getting into a nice rhythm with my swim sessions. On a Monday morning I go straight to the pool, get my set done and then grab a frothy coffee to go with my overnight oats or banana & nut butter sandwich before heading off to teach class. If I can't get to a Friday evening swim session with the Tri Club then I do a second set in the pool, either from Ellie or 220 magazine; another excuse for a frothy coffee before class! My favourite session so far was one where I used arms only for almost the whole set. I was sharing the fast lane with a chap with an M-dot tattoo who gave me some really useful feedback on my technique without being patronising - something I valued immensely.
I've done a Critical Swim Speed session and a 10k time trial which were immensely satisfying. The track sessions have been fun in their own special way and I even got to go mountain biking as part of my plan! I haven't ridden a bike on trails for years, and I wasn't very good even when I did! I hired a mountain bike and took my friend's 17-year old lad over to Swinley Forest for some moral support and encouragement. We only did the green and blue trails, the easiest of the tracks over there, and there were still moments when I almost bottled it. I'm such a wuss. The bike felt so different to my road bike, slippy and skinny and I've no technique at all. But 17YO was very patient and didn't bat an eyelid at my shrieks. I got around without falling off, albeit at a slow pace and with plenty of stops, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Maybe I'll get to go again... Ellie?
Earning my mountain biking stripe :)
All this training has managed to slot in around work, music festivals, dinners out with friends, Dean's birthday celebrations, entertaining children at the weekends and wedding preparations. I had my  wedding dress fitting at the end of September and was absolutely delighted that it has to be taken in! It's sort of what I hoped would happen by getting back into training. And means I don't feel so bad about having some of the Oreo cake I made Dean for his birthday :)

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