The wales marathon 2014 : TW12 – Hills

RuppThis weeks header picture is of American athlete Galen Rupp who last week broke his own and America’s 10k record in a time of 26:44, which is an amazing time! [here]

So the first week of mesocycle 3 – race preparation is over and again i have manged a full week of training! Which is great news, although i am still by no means 100% I am hopefully of being fully fit in time for the big day. Which is so close, they’ve announced the new medial design is complete!! [here]

So here is how week 12 went :

Tuesday 9 miles with 5*600m strides

Still sore from the weekend I set out on my run, finding the five mile run to the stride zone area hard going with my leg feeling tight and sore once again. I think i should have given the tens machine another go….

Doing the strides themselves was actually ok, as was my run home as I attempted to cover the 9 miles within a 7.45 pace target. Perhaps my leg had l loosened up or perhaps as I was running at a quicker pace I was able to block the pain out.

Run time 1:11:31

Wednesday 14 miles

Setting off having forgotten all about my plan to give the tens machine another run out, I endured 14 miles of mostly pain. Although there were times when that eased off and I did manage to find a gap in the rain, so not all bad.

I did make a note of a target time which was 1:47 but with the injury and the hilly nature of this route I came home in 1:53:58.

With just three weeks until the Freckleton half marathon, the race I had planned to base marathon pace plan on, which itself is now just six weeks off. I am getting slightly concerned, but I’m walking pain free and whilst the runs are not pleasant i am tolerating them. Fingers crossed things continue to improve.

Thursday 6 miles with 6*100m strides

Feeling slightly annoyed with myself after realising that I was supposed to run twice today!!

However on the plus I remembered to give the tens machine experiment another go and once again it seemed to work with my leg feeling looser from the off. I didn’t manage to complete the six miles in the target time but I got all six strides done and once more there were no issues while doing the speed work. Other than them being hard going that is!!

In other news, I think I’ve final diagnosed the issue, I think I have a grade two calf strain…..which is nice to know in one sense, but in another it isn’t as apparently these can take three months to fully heel. Not good!! Then again, i could be completely wrong. 

Friday 6 miles am

I am beginning to wonder if I’m the kind of person, who if not suffering from an injury is off having some sort of running cock up. Anyway, today’s planned five miles was turned into a six miler to make up for one of the four miles I forgot about yesterday.

The run was done without any pain killers or tens machine action and boy could you tell, that said I did make it through the first two miles in 14 minutes before gradually succumbing to pain management.

Run time 50:40 

Now to try and fit in the other four. My current thinking is perhaps running three miles home from work at lunch. The reason being I am due to donate blood after work which means no after work activities. I could perhaps fit them in over the weekend, but I think lunch time might be the most realistic and convenient time for me to fit these 3 miles in.

This would be new territory for me having never exercised during work before and never having been seen exercising by anyone from work before……gulp!

Friday pm

What is with me!! My planned three mile run ended up being a four miler after I got my four mile to park run route mixed up with my three mile to park run route….uff!!! I Work near the parkrun route you see.

Now for a mad rush, lunch, shower and drive back to work

Run time 31:56

Saturday 13 miles

I’m not sure the day after donating blood, on a hot afternoon is the best time to attempt to push your self hard over 13 miles but that what I did. I was down for a tune up race and given that there are few race on a Saturday in England and that I’m still injured I figured taking myself off to the 13 mile loop, out in the sticks which featured in the Preston guild marathon was a good idea.

My plan was to attempt a 7:25 pace at least and for the first four or five miles, I was ahead of that, but eventually the heat , the constant up and down and my lack of sharpness took affect and I ended up finishing in 1:45 which given the long list of excuses I have isn’t so bad.

On the plus my foot didn’t hurt all the much during the run, although once more I had given it a session on the tens machine before I left the house. Could it really be, that this is the answer to muscle stiffness and strain? Hmmm it does seem to be working for me anyway.


Sunday 21 miles

It seemed like logical plan use my twenty mile route add an additional mile. So that i was running a route I knew and by running it in reverse, it would make it interesting. Sadly it turns out running a very hill 10 mile route featuring two sections of three mile climbs takes it out of you and despite the second ten miles being fairly flat the first half of this run had, had such am impact on me that I couldn’t get any pace going. It didn’t help that I had put in a tough session yesterday and that once again it was boiling hot, oh and for some reason I just couldn’t get into the run for the first hour or so.

This was a tough run and one in which I go my route so wrong. On the plus I guess it should give me some mental preparation for the big day.

Run time 3:28:19



So week 12 is over and if anything its woken me up to the fact i must thrown in as many hill runs as i can over these final six weeks.

Week 13 :

Tuesday : 10 miles with 6*1000

Wedneday : 15 mile medium long run

Thursday : 6 mile am & 4 mile pm

Friday : 12 mile medium long run

Saturday : 5 mile recovery

Sunday : 18 mile long run with 14 @ marathon race pace – Which i may switch for the 22 miler i missed through injury a couple of weeks back.

In other news, i have manged to obtain a video of the Wales marathon after a fellow participant posted in the Runners world forum for this event [here]

I also found this more detailed map of the course route which will come in handy [here]

And a couple of great links on hill running :

Runners World :Everything You Need To Know About Hill Training

Runners Boost : 5 tips to improve your running uphill : Running Hills Vs. Running Stairs


Some none hill related links of interest :

Nutrition: Smoothies for athletes

6 easy steps to avoid stomach issues

Win a Giaim chair with the adidas Run Reigate Half marathon





5 Tips to Improve Your Running Uphill
5 Tips to Improve Your Running Uphill
5 Tips to Improve Your Running Uphill



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