The Wales Marathon 2014 – TW17 : know thy enemy

letourSo week 17 comes to an end and with one week of training or five training sessions if you will, until the big day i decided to delicate this weeks imagine to the Tour de France after getting the privilege to catch them as they passed through Skipton.

Monday 5 miles

A rare Monday outing due to necessity rather than a late mad increase in mileage. Short on time due to things such as trying to catch the Tour de France on Saturday, I was out on my Thursday recovery run. Chosen because I didn’t want to be over working it the day after my 17 miler. Pace wise I chose to take it easy and for a change I decided not to take a drink out with me, despite the fact it was a warm day. Although, I soon regretted this decision when I got a fly caught between my lips and then ten minutes later one came rocketing in, right into the back of my throat!!! Bugger!!

The run itself went fine, I reached the 3 miles point perhaps 20 seconds behind the 7:46 pace but wasn’t too fussed about that, however I did push on over the final 300 metres or so to make it home in sub40, returning home in 39:24


Wednesday 4 miles

Continuing to sandwich my runs around a busy personal life week……. , i got out early morning for 4 mile loop. Which was mostly a box ticking exercise, but at least it included a tough hill decent and climb.


Thursday 6 miles with hill reps

I wasn’t really up for a run but after blasting out a few tracks whilst doing my dynamic warm up that soon changed and off I went determined to make the turn around point of this out and back, plus hill reps route within the 7:46 pace plan. Achieving this with thirty seconds to spare I decided to make the hill zone in good time too, so that I had the best possible chance of making it home after the reps, making it to them in 36:13. Not only did I complete the reps with out much of a break between sets but I then made it home in 44:38…..brilliant.

I feel really for Wales but I’m acutely aware that there is over a week to go and a lot of hours in which something could go wrong!! Concentrate, train hard, eat well, hydrate, sleep well and no risks!!!



Friday 6 miles with hill reps

Who does hill reps first thing in the morning ? A nut, as crazy as a coconut, that’s who!!

That was hard work and in my tired state I almost ended up running my five route by mistake, luckily I had allowed myself to slip into thoughts about what routes and training I had done so far this week. Before I made the mistake of crossing over the bridge I was approaching.

The reps were tough, I have never done any speed or hill sessions so early, but it was a nice feeling as i was pretty much the only person in the park at the time. Then it was a slow run home and despite this six mile run being an easier route than last nights, it took me an additional three minutes to complete it, returning home in 49:63 – but I guess that’s no shock.



Saturday 8 miles with 3 * 1 mile reps

Despite being up early , having eaten little and having drunk very little all day, due to the Tour de France, I set off hard on this on reaching the four mile turn around point in 30:52 ,despite the heat and the long incline of the this first section of my run.

With the reps, I decided just to run onto the first mile rather than actually stop. And you could tell mile reps are not something I do often as I kept falling into a slower pace, but I was more with it on the second and third reps.

Deciding to include the mile reps on top of the 8 miles I recorded a total 11 mile run time of 1:15:54


Sunday 14 miles

An additional mile than what was planned, but it was worth it for one last chance to take in the Longridge double ahead of Wales. Although disappointingly whilst mentally my mind was up for completing this challenge in 7:46 pace my legs weren’t quite with the programme dragging me round in 2 hours. I guess this is exactly why your not meant to do speed work the day before your long run. But today was more about the hills than the time and the fact it was a hot day, meant it was good conditioning training in case the sun comes out next Sunday.


jef hillAnd that’s it, the last long run before Wales……crazy my legs have a nervous tingle!! So on to the final week!! Scary, but exciting.

Tuesday – 7 miles

Wednesday – 7 miles with 2 miles at race pace – I plan to make one last trip to Longridge 

Thursday : 5 miles recovery

Friday : five miles with 6*100 metres

Saturday : 4 mile recovery

Sunday – RACE DAY!!!!!

I have spent a bit of time getting to know the route a little better mapping this race profile out, using

wales marathon profileFor further details see [here]

And with this profile Ive done a bit of a crude comparison against some of my hillier training routes. With the the below line chart showing a mile point by mile point comparison :

hills compare

From this we can see that Ive done a fairly good job at trying to match the route, with the below area chart showing this in a little more detail :

hills compare 2Finally, as the routes all start at different heights, i produced a mile by mile hill climb comparison which has allowed me to establish how the climbs ive been doing, compare to one another :

climb compareSo from this i now have a much clearer idea of what i will be facing and i am a little more confident. Although, i wish i had been getting over to Longridge sooner, that said i think ive visited there maybe 8 times during my training, so thats something and hopefully i will get there again this week. The big question, remains how will my body copy with so many hills over 26 miles and i wish i had ensured my longer runs had more hills throughout. However, there was a period of around 8 weeks in which i wasn’t fully fit, that originally i had planned to start introducing hills on the long runs. So not all my fault i guess.




One thought on “The Wales Marathon 2014 – TW17 : know thy enemy

  1. Pingback: The Wales Marathon 2014 – Race Report | sjpc14

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