I kicked off week 8 with a bang and did my speediest run to date. The Sunday run had given me confidence and I was feeling good about myself and my form.

training week 8 - 1

Sadly that didn’t last very long and after a super difficult strength training session on Tuesday morning, coupled with the speedy run in the evening, my Wednesday mid-long run felt sluggish and tiring. I was generally not impressed and I even had to pause in the middle because my left knee was still feeling a bit dodgy.

training week 8 - 2

My Thursday short run was even worse and even though I wasn’t aiming on running it fast, it didn’t feel good at all. (my pissed off look says it all!)

training week 8 - 3

The Saturday swim session got cancelled due to two burst water mains that left us without running water for most of the day which was a real shame as I was looming forward to it.

training-week-8-MK-Half-before

Sunday started super early since we had a half marathon to run in Milton Keynes. It was meant to be a super sunny day so I decided to run it in shorts and a t-shirt which was a very good move!

training week 8 - MK half Sam

training week 8 - MK half Cata Orsi

The race course was meant to be relatively flat but it wasn’t…! There was a lot of small inclines all around and at mile 12.5 we had to run up a super steep hill (the sort of hill that you go up in a park to get the best view over the entire city!) to then be lured into some sort of 8 shaped loop (where you could see the finish) before we could actually cross the finish line (so in other words – A REALLY MEAN 600 METERS!).

I wanted to give up around mile 10 because the heat from the sun (and no wind) was literally cooking me and I lost the feeling in my right arm for a while. But Cata encouraged me to continue and we even ran up that devils hill before the finish without stopping!

training week 8 - 4

This race really made me worried about how Im going to cope with heat on marathon race day. I usually don’t drink during the race when I run a half marathon or shorter, but on Sunday I took water every other mile, even pouring it over my head towards the end and not even that helped!

Anybody have any tips on how to deal with the sun if you really can’t handle heat? I felt like I had energy left to run longer, but it got destroyed by the heat stroke I was more or less having…

This really was the last “easy” week and from now on it’s full steam ahead with longer weekday runs, as well as weekend runs.

MARATHON TRAINING WEEK 9

MON: REST – DONE
TUE: Strength training & 4 miles – Did 7 miles and no strength
WED: 7 miles – Did 4 miles
THU: Strength training & 3 miles – Did 3 miles and no strength
FRI: REST – DONE
SAT: Swimming – DONE
SUN: 10 miles – Did 14 miles!

Week 7 was a pretty mental week if I’m honest because it involved a lot of running, as well as a lot of late nights and too much alcohol… But what it did teach me was that sometimes, it’s better to rest than to run.

training week 7 - 1

I had to run on Monday night (which is usually rest day for me) after my crap Sunday run but I managed to get through it in a relatively speedy fashion, but I could feel my left knee being a bit niggly and my legs getting tired.

training week 7 - 2

Tuesday was another bad running day… Strength training had killed my legs in the morning (so had 3 days of consecutive training) and it felt like I was running through glue with super heavy legs all through my 6 miles. To make matters and my mood even worse I

1) almost had a nasty fall coming down telegraph hill (super steep hill in SE London) resulting in a super painful left knee and
2) it was my grandfathers birthday (he passed away in October last year) – so I was struggling and crying a bit and not enjoying a single step of the run.

But despite wanting to give up every other minute, the thought of my granddad got me through the run.

I was meant to run 3 miles on Wednesday morning before my flight to Budapest, but my legs and my left knee did not feel very well and I decided that it would do me more harm than good to run.

training week 7 - 3

After 4 crazy days in Budapest I have to admit that I was very worried about my long run on Sunday. I had indulged in many things that you shouldn’t really do whilst training (like super late nights & lots of alcohol) so I thought I would struggle a lot during my run.

To my great surprise, the run from Forest Hill >> Brixton >> London Bridge (that involved tackling 3 pretty big hills!) actually went very well! I managed to keep a steady pace and despite feeling my knees from time to time, overall it felt like I had strong legs and enough energy to continue should I have to, so I was very proud of my achievement!

My running weeks will only get more difficult from now on, and this is what I have on this week.

MARATHON TRAINING WEEK 8

MON: REST DONE
TUE: Strength training & 3 miles – DONE
WED: 6 milesDONE
THU: Strength training & 3 miles DONE
FRI: REST – DONE
SAT: Swimming – No water in SE23 so had to skip it
SUN: HALF MARATHON RACE (MK HALF) – DONE in 2:17

Week 6 was not the most exciting training week if I’m honest but a week where I’ve started to feel like I was making good progress.

training week 6 - 1

On Tuesday I went running with Run Dem Crew and lead a small group of hardcore hares to the Tate Modern and then back to Shoreditch via Tower Bridge.

training week 6 - 2

On Wednesday I felt super confident and tried to push myself speed wise. It was hard but successful, and I think it is due to going back to my regular RDC sessions.

training week 6 - 3

My Thursday run was postponed to Friday due to the We Own The Night launch party and the fun times I had the night before really inspired me to try to push myself even further. I cried and spat by accident and I felt like my left leg would fall off, but I didn’t give up and it resulted in my speediest 3 mile run yet!

training week 6 - 4

My Sunday long run was my worst run of the month by far. I started off good but due to trying to run with a bumbag around my waste, it felt like I couldn’t breathe properly and I had a super bad stitch for most of the run, resulting in having to stop 3 times. If that wasn’t enough, most guys around peckham rye kept shouting and making kissing noises after me, including a guy who followed me on his bike for a while… NOT OK!

This usually never happens because Im not confident enough to run in tight tops and during the colder weather I have been wearing my big running jacket. But since Sunday was quite mild I decided to wear the tighter fitting long armed top I was given at the WOTN launch. It’s super comfy but quite tight so it reveals a lot more of my curves, which Im guessing the people around Peckham liked. Maybe I should feel flattered but it was actually quite uncomfortable.

Anyway… this was the “easiest” week for a long time now – so here’s whats coming up this week.

MARATHON TRAINING WEEK 7

MON: 3 miles DONE
TUE: Strength training & 6 milesDONE
WED: 3 miles NOT DONE!
THU: REST (in Budapest) DONE
FRI: Swimming (in Budapest) – More like recreational bathing…
SAT: REST DONE
SUN: 12 miles DONE