The Perfect Ten

fullsizerender-12London Marathon Training
Week 6, Day 4

I didn’t go on my ten mile run yesterday. Work and life got in the way.

However, dear reader, I had a cunning plan- and that was to incorporate the distance into tonight’s club run. In other words, go out with the club first and then continue on my own to make up the distance.

But, this being me, I didn’t think I would do it. I toyed with the idea of breaking it up. Do 2-3 miles on my own before the club, do 3-4 with them and 2-3 on my own back home again. I decided against that in order to save face. I mean, I’m slow enough at the best of times without turning up to tonight’s club session already knackered!

So the plan was, do the 45-minute club run (I had toyed with going with the 60-minute group, maybe next week), tell enough people what I was intending to do (accountability and all that) and then set off on my merry lonesome afterwards.

And that’s exactly what happened … and it was bloody fantastic!

The club session was thoroughly enjoyable. I tried to keep it nice and steady but did allow myself moments to loosen my legs with a wee bit of speed work.

I still hadn’t convinced myself that I’d head off on my own afterwards so I decided to see how I felt after the stretching exercises at the end – and I felt good so I thought I might as well go for it.

We had done 3.75 miles so I had basically another 10k to make up. I surprised myself that I was able to keep to the same pace and tempo, I honestly didn’t think I could manage it without the group around me.

I followed part of the same route I had already done, before turning down Parkway, along the Cullybackey Road, up Princes Street the wrong way, Galgorm Road, Dans Road ….. basically running away from home (!) before turning onto the Tullygarley Road and back home via the Toome Road etc.

When I got to the bottom of the Toome Road I still had a mile to do so I turned left away from home – which was tough – but I knew if I’d turned right and gone up the Antrim Road the temptation to end the run then would have been too much.

I kept a good, steady and consistent pace throughout which pleased me. Tonight was also an experiment in fuelling etc., and it was only at around the nine mile mark that I started to get hungry, so that’s something to bear in mind for next time. My salt intake also seemed spot on so I’ll try to adopt the same method as my distances get longer (ie: three capsules every 3-4 miles).

Time wise I smashed it. My last ten-miler was the Great South Run in October and tonight I was 13 minutes faster. I’ll take that!

But, more important than anything, I proved to myself that if I miss a run, particularly a long run, for whatever reason I have the capacity within me to pick it up the next day and not let it ruin my schedule or my motivation. That wasn’t always the case.

London Marathon Training (91.6 miles – 22 runs)
Week 1 – 12.2 miles (4 runs; average 3.05 miles per run)
Week 2 – 9.3 miles (2 runs; average 4.65 miles per run)
Week 3 – 17.7 miles (4 runs; average 4.4 miles per run)
Week 4 – 18.8 miles (4 runs; average 4.7 miles per run)
Week 5 – 14.9 miles (4 runs; average 3.7 miles per run)
Week 6 – 18.7 miles (4 runs; average 4.7 miles per run)

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