Marathon Training Weeks 1 – 4

After a visit to the London Marathon last April, and my good friend’s Andy’s successful completion of his second Brighton Marathon, I felt sufficiently inspired to sign-up for this year’s Brighton Marathon. It looked like fun and having completed several 10km runs I estimated that completing four of those back-to-back, plus a couple of extra miles, really wouldn’t be too taxing.┬áSeveral friends and colleagues have begged to differ.

Ten months later, Andy and colleagues with half and full marathon experience have helped to instil a more realistic perspective on completing this endurance test. Armed with a book on Marathon running, thanks Andy, I’ve been making plans to properly prepare myself and worked out a training programme based on five to six runs per week over 16 weeks.

Training has not gone particularly smoothly. Experiencing pain from my plantar fascia, the muscle and ligament under the foot holding all the bones and what-not together, I thought I’d give it a while before getting back into running after a month or so with none, so starting from a lack of general fitness. There has been another set-back, but at the end of week four I’m glad to write that I’m feeling pretty good:

Week one: a week later than planned to give more rest to my foot. Only three runs, all easy or steady to build my runs and intensity slowly after a month without running.

Week two: Tempo and speed sessions added in. Up to four runs and a good steady seven mile long run to finish the week.

Week three: The plan to increase to five runs stopped dead in its tracks, just as I was stopped dead in mine by the chain-link fence i didn’t see when crossing a road: one of the pyramid barbs between the links scrapped up my thigh, puncturing it below the groin. Tripping myself up in public, I was far more concerned with looking a fool than any possible injury. Thankfully not too bad, but a bit messy. One tetanus shot later, and a warning of likely infection, I thought it best to give the rest of the week a miss an give it time to heal.

Week four: Another short training week. The puncture wound taking time to heal, plus a cold so no running until Saturday. An easy four miler followed by a steady and enjoyable nine miler Sunday. 8:04 the average pace per mile, reasonably happy that my goal of under three hours forty-five minutes is feasible, and more so that I’ll be in reasonable shape for my first big marker: the Brighton Half-Marathon on 17 March.

Back to five runs, with tempo and speed, next week!

Current stats:

Distance: 54.97miles

Average Pace: 8:35 per mile

Calories burnt: 5735

Ascent/Descent: 18321ft/16590ft