Ultra marathon training – recovery week

An easier week this, while I recovered from the Heartbreaker Half Marathon and prepared for my first “long” run of this cycle (more than 13 miles is a long run for me!). Also a week in which I learnt quite an important lesson re recovery…

Running: Run 1 was on Wednesday, after two days of rest, gentle cycling and one strength training session. I went out with a colleague for a 40 minute run. My colleague is super-fast but I had made running slowly a condition of the run. But the thing is, when you run with someone much faster than you, you never run as slowly as you should be running! We chatted all the way round the Isle of Dogs (me slightly more out of breath than he was!) and I was pretty surprised to see how fast we had been running by the end. I knew my legs would not thank me for it…

Run 2: mile intervals were planned for Thursday morning, but I didn’t get home from work until midnight so decided to give it a miss and move the run to Friday morning. Then my legs just wouldn’t work. I had a 3 mile warm-up and each mile just felt awful. I was expecting it to get better as I warmed up but that just didn’t happen. I felt there was no way I could run the mile intervals. So I called time on the run early, deciding that was to be my 40 minute easy run.

Run 3: mile repeats! Despite being out until 3am on Friday night enjoying a tasting menu with matching wines, my legs felt so much springier when I headed out on Saturday afternoon. The 3 x mile repeats went really well and I easily hit the paces I was aiming for (actually, I was about 20 seconds per mile faster than that!). I am increasingly seeing paces that start with a 7 on my runs which is quite exciting!
Run 4: the long run, 15 miles. This was actually quite tough despite the fact it was meant to be an easy run. My legs were heavy from the intervals the previous day I think, and mentally I am used to 13 miles now but those additional miles make it hard. I ran along the Thames Path, in beautiful sunshine and then attacked by hailstones which meant I had to run with my arms up protecting my face – those hailstones hurt!! My phone ran out of battery for the last 3 miles – I really need to do something about the battery – which was a shame as I was listening to a really interesting Talk Ultra podcast! 15 “easy” miles in 2 hours 19 minutes.

Cross-training: two strength sessions in the gym, 5 cycles to and from work.

Something fun that was nothing to do with running: Friday’s blow-out dinner at Pollen Street Social – 6 course tasting menu with matching wines. Lots of amazing food, lots of laughter, lots of interesting wines. It was a really fun night.


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