Thames Path Challenge 50k: 4 weeks to go
4 weeks to go. Ouch. I’m going to get this over with early in the post – this is the least mentally and physically prepared for ANY race I have ever been. Ever.
You can use the quantum of my blogging and interaction with other bloggers a yardstick for how much race preparation I’ve been doing. Very little…
- This is the part where I open up my little big book of excuses.
- This race is closer to the end of the football season than my previous fall races, cutting preparation time
- I’ve recently started a new job and figuring out how to fit training around a 7.30 start has been difficult
- Over-share warning – I’ve been going through a breakup and that has proven a big distraction from running, not to mention the training time spent reviewing new flats and, sigh, flatmates
- I’ve been struggling with a football induced glute injury
- I went to Ibiza the weekend before last and ate too much, drunk way too much, had too little sleep and did even less training. But geez it was a fun time!
Anyway, you know how the saying goes – “excuses are like a£&#%@!#s…, everyone’s got one” – so instead of focussing on why I won’t achieve my goal, I have accepted that I’ve blown my chance of this being a goal race (other than the fact it’s a new distance achievement), and now re-focus one what’s achievable and look at the situation positively – “What can I do?”, “Where am I now with my running?”
Last Saturday’s run should have been 32km according to my original plan. I have always followed, and now always give this one piece of advice:
Always pick up a training plan up where you left off
Following that advice I had already decided before my run to dial it back to 28km, however only completed 25km due to some ITB related knee pain. I could have definitely struggled on, but I just didn’t want to push too hard this close to the race and after so little running in the last fortnight. I did recover from the run pretty well and if it wasn’t for wanting to protect my knee I could have run today. Well, that and the fact that this afternoon the physio bruised my leg pretty nicely with some deep, deep, trigger point therapy up and down my troublesome ITB…
Looking at my plan, that leaves me about 7km short of where I want to be distance wise, but I’m recovering well so I don’t think I’m overtraining. Yet. Basically what that tells me is that I’m 2-3 weeks behind in my training (and on the cusp of an overtraining). With four weeks to go, no amount of extra training or ‘good luck’ is going to bring back my endurance in such a short period of time, but it will bring forward any injuries I’ve got lurking, so I need to be realistic that ‘completion’ is the goal and time is irrelevant. It’s like running my first ever 10k all over again!
The new plan:
Next Saturday’s planned 36km run will therefore be cut back to 30km, but I’ll see how the knee reacts and if it isn’t going well, I’ll shorten the run and protect myself. I’ve had ITBS before and I’d much rather go short on the distance now and ‘only’ risk a DNF, rather than try and run through the pain and go straight to the bank with a DNS…
Onwards with my mantra-of-the-moment:
Goals are flexible, be sensible, protect your body
Let’s see what this week brings.
Happy running everyone!
Get Going, Get Running!