We are now into March and that means a bit more focus on faster marathon pace runs for me. Its just seven weeks today until the Asics Greater Manchester Marathon takes place Enter here. I was thrilled to be selected as an ambassador for the race and here is an update of how my training is going. http://www.athleticsweekly.com/featured/road-asics-greater-manchester-marathon-18184/
Since my last blog I have benefited from a couple of weeks o solid and consistent training with a 65 mile week which included Snake Lane 10 organised by Pocklington Runners and a 70 mile week this week.
Snake Lane 10 was a great race for me with a 7th place finish in 55 minutes 56 seconds. Had it not been for a strong headwind in the second half I am sure I would have ran quicker but in the end it was not so much the time but the way I ran it feeling strong all the way and working my way through the field from about 30th place in the opening few hundred metres to 7th overtaking runners all the way though the race.
In age grading terms that performance is one of my best only surpassed by last years Middlesbrough 5km so it certainly confirms I am heading in the right direction for the 26.2 miles around Greater Manchester.
The Snake Lane 10 was always planned in as a halfway point for me for the marathon training. So this week I have deliberately increased the speed of some of my longer runs to really tune into marathon pace. That included a 14 mile effort at marathon pace today with the added effort required by a windy seafront. As it was more of a crosswind I opted for multi laps of the seafront path - probably 6 laps in all so there were a few funny looks from the dog walkers who were braving the elements. The mental toughness of multi laps does appeal to me and I will need that a plenty when i do the Locke Park 20 in two weeks (20 laps of Park - one lap short of 7 parkruns!
I'm certainly enjoying my running at the moment but its a fine line as the intensity increases. I was reminded of the impact of marathon training on Friday as I "enjoyed" a sports massage. As usual it was my calf muscles that were the most painful reminding me that my foam roller is there to be used not just as a doorstop!