Week 4 of the build up allowed a little bit of flexibility with no quality sessions planned just mileage as and when the festivities allowed. As it ended up it was a decent week with 72 miles bagged. Put in a couple of runs with some efforts but generally all runs were fairly steady and consistent.
The wind has dominated much of the week and been a bit of a nuisance. Its the weather most runners dislike most but at least it offers the opportunity sometimes to work hard into the wind and then feel the benefit out of the wind.
Saturdays run was an out and back effort in the end not quite at tempo more an aerobic run. With the first half into the wind it provided an opportunity to come back with the wind behind me and "tune" into marathon pace on the return. Job done and just the long Sunday run to complete a decent mileage week.
Sundays long run was a 20 mile run with the last three at marathon pace. This was the first of my marathon pace efforts and I consciously kept the first 16 miles easy and closer to 7 minute miling. Really pleased to manage three miles at marathon pace at the end with room for a warm down mile to complete the 20.
For those who enjoy the Marathon Talk podcast the interview with American running legend Pete Pfitzinger was my recovery run accompaniment this week. Pfitzinger adopts the long runs with marathon pace finishes and that has been a feature of my training in my last few marathons. Another key element that Pfitzinger advocates is the use of strides over 100m or so repeated up to 10 times. I've yet to get into these so this may be a new year resolution in the making along with the usual eating better, training harder, racing more craftily etc.
So...stats for the week.
Total Miles: 72
Longest Run: 20
Ave Speed: 9 miles per hour
Key Session: 20 miles with last three at marathon pace
Weeks until Manchester Marathon: 14
Next Race: Helsby Half Marathon
and yes I did train on Christmas Day!