Marathon de Paris : Two weeks to go
Or; ‘The unorthodox training continues…’
In a recent post I talked about my ‘unorthodox’ training build-up for Marathon de Paris, but that I had managed to find a strong finish to the last week of training before the taper.
Or so I thought. Turns out my cold which stopped me running for the early part of last week decided to rear it’s (very ugly) head on Saturday and Sunday, so I missed my last long 30km run in my schedule.
Yeah, I admit I have a bit of trepidation about missing that run, but I’m sticking to the key rule that is relevant to all runners of all experience – always stick to the plan.
In my case, I’m now in the taper period, so even though I was tempted to try and get in my long run on Monday or Tuesday I’ve ignored the temptation, and controlled my fear surrounding missing my long run. The taper is important to make sure I get to the start line in the best shape I can. It is one of those situations where less can actually be more.
Sure, maybe I would have a little percentage more endurance for the race if I had done my run, but there is nothing that doing that missed long run less than two weeks out from the race will give me that isn’t instilled in me from the previous 12 weeks, regardless of how ‘imperfect’ that build-up was. However, trying to cram in a long run during the taper period brings the risk of insufficient recovery before the race, or worse, picking up an injury.
Instead, it’s time to trust the training (regardless of the quality of that training), and trust that more training now will make for worse performance on race day.
Two weeks out : Metronome week
Looking forward, I’ve dubbed this week ‘metronome week’, and the week is all about pacing – getting used to the pace, honing my pace, and mental pacing.
As I’ve been following a training schedule that combines speedwork, hills, short fast runs with medium steady pace runs and long, slow distance runs, I’ve not done a huge amount of running at actual marathon pace. I don’t actually have the data, but I would think that probably less than 25% of my running has been at this pace (my midweek medium distance run generally). By doing a ‘metronome week’ I get to do two things – get my body and mind used to the pace I’ll be trying to keep on race day, and reduce mileage without losing too much intensity in my training.
Tonight was my first run of the taper and it it felt pretty good. Probably because of the lack of fatigue due to the missed weekend run, plus I ran it at a slower pace than I usually would for that distance. I was however a bit quick off the mark and had to focus on slowing down. I’ll need that training for race day where properly paced kilometres at the start will equal easier kilometres in the later stages of the race.
I also took the opportunity to wear my ASICS Gel Hyperspeed 6. They are racing shoes so not very good for high mileage, but by using them for the short runs this week and the next, I’m going to be able to keep the mileage in them pretty low, but get my body used to running in them. I did wear these in the Silverstone half marathon and loved them, so I’m pretty confident they’ll be good for the marathon. I’m waiting until after the marathon to do a review of them. I kind of figure that a marathon is by far the best test of a pair of shoes, especially ones designed as racers!
Anyone else racing a Spring race in the next few weeks?
Happy running everyone!
Get Going, Get Running!