May & B-16 weeks

At last, a proper block of training & no surprise that I’m actually starting to build some reasonable fitness! After the mishaps of February following the disastrous second half of 2015 it’s taken some time just to get back to where I was previously. May – the month I got fit!

W/C 25/4 – 89M & 4 1/2hrs cross training. Including an ok session & 2 quality long tempo runs at around marathon pace.

W/C 2/5 – 91M & 1 1/4hrs XT. Inc ok session, Parkrun, 400’s & 10M tempo on Saturday, hot Bosworth HM inc Leics Champs Sunday (win, 71ish – comfortable solo effort). Again sporting the new Charnwood Accountants vest:Bosworth HM

W/C 9/5 – 74M & 4 1/2hrs XT. Inc a reasonable early session of 400’s, good tempo & Leics 5,000m race immediatey followed by 8 400’s (2nd overall but 1st senior, lead from the start, rusty & glute reacted to compression of the track after 3K. Drifted just outside 15mins (15:04, PB by <1sec!) which was the minimum I wanted from this so frustrating to see what little speed I have currently).

W/C 16/5 – 79M & 2 1/4hrs XT. Inc a good session of 4 x 1 mile in ~4:45 as prep for Highgate, short session of 400’s on Thursday feeling good, Highgate 10,000m on Saturday & good pace 20M on Sunday. After having to pull out of the race after 3K last year I was pleased to be back & coming into some sort of shape! I asked to be dropped down to the C race due to lack of track sharpness, but in hindsight that was a mistake. Pacemaking was too slow to start which set us well back from the 30:30 target pace. Sat well off initially, moved up after a couple of K’s & remained in 2nd/3rd through to about 7K. Compression of the track again caused by glute to stiffen up so I was chopping my stride from about 6K. Drifted off the lead slightly through the last couple of K but happy to hold out for 31:07 & a small track PB. This year the A races doubled up as the British Championships & Olympic qualifiers & it made for an amazing atmosphere throughout the day. Pic is just before I start to drift off the pace (face says as much!):

Highgate 10000m

W/C 23/5 – 80M & 6hrs XT. Inc relaxed tempo, LSAC 3,000m (solo win, 8:52, suffering with mega tight calves since Highgate so just ran to pick up through the race, cold night, happy enough off a 4am start & 17M total day), grass session of 15 x 200m relaxed ~32secs. Planned easy running from Wednesday other than the session but steady pace Saturday & again on Sunday supporting Jo at the Sinfin 10K. Backed off the double days at least!

W/C 30/5 – TBC! But it did start with the London 10K on bank holiday Monday. The idea had been to tick the legs over inside 10K pace on Wednesday & then ease off, but with not feeling like I was gaining anything substantial I pretty much ran as normal through the week. Calves eventually eased off on Saturday & I headed down the London looking to run something inside 30:40. 3am start for Jo to fly to Berlin was a bit harsh & I stayed up from then so needed a strong coffee before my warm up! I did feel heavy legged during my strides, but otherwise I felt pretty good. The wind had picked up through the morning & by 9am it was very blustery. My only plan was to not chase the sub 30 pack knowing that’s beyond me on current fitness but to settle into the next pack to form. Through 1K & a sizeable group was forming so I settled into that, however we were well off pace (slight uphill, windy & all stiff/cold after being fenced in 20 minutes before the start!) & the group soon split. I was with the 2nd group of 6-7 as the first few seemed to have surged after seeing the slow early splits. By 4K I was starting to get into the race & moving through, gradually working back to those in front & went through several between 5K & 7K. By this stage it was well spread out & on occasions we were really getting battered by the wind as it swirled between the high-rises. I worked my way past a couple more runners & focussed on the AFD/Highgate pair ~250m ahead, disregarding my watch & letting the time take care of itself. I knew it must be respectable as I could see Ali Watson from Notts not too far up the road (29:36 at Highgate & would finish with 30:05 here). I was able to work hard through the last 3K & with a 6th mile of 4:38 followed by a typical marathon runner sprint (about the same pace!) despite not quite catching the two in front I crossed the mats in around 30:50. Previous PB is 30:48 & we’re waiting for corrected results to see if I was able to sneak a 3rd PB in a couple of weeks. My usual gurning face on the streets of London thanks to Dave P:London 10K2

So although none of the times in the races were anything like those I want to be running, it’s been a good month of progression with some reasonable racing & sessions mixed in. The aim at the start of the month was to be able to take an easier week now, enabling me to start a specific 14 week block of training to allow a 2 week taper for Berlin from a starting point of sub 31 10K shape & injury free – all boxes therefore ticked & I’m looking forward in a perverse way to cracking on with the marathon work! Berlin is 16 weeks on Sunday so the hard work starts now.


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