#Stockholmmarathon

Tags

, , , , , ,

 Stockholm is officially 16 WEEKS away which seem like ages . . . but I remember last year with my Paris marathon, the time flew by and suddenly it was 6 weeks away and I was P-A-N-I-C-K-I-N-G.

I tried to follow the “run less run faster” training program last year, which I didn’t really stick to. However, I am going to try it again for this marathon as I like their philosophy of training. It is designed to produce optimal results with running LESS. They focus on the concept of 3 quality runs a week. You then supplement the 3 runs with 2 days of strength/cross training/ conditioning training. 3 runs a week isn’t actually that much running if you are training for long distance. However, they feel the cumulative training effect of the 3 “quality” runs and additional conditional training, over a period of 12-16 weeks, will improve endurance, leg speed and lactate-threshold running pace. They state that many runners focus primarily on clocking up miles, do not allow sufficient recovery and will occur overuse injuries through running repetitively. In essence, successful endurance training is more than running. 

When choosing a training program, it is completely individual based, there isn’t “one size fits all” marathon training program. That is why I feel it is important to chose a program that you are MOST likely to keep up with.  For me, as a junior doctor, my work/life balance is rather hectic. Especially as I am currently working in A&E #nolife and majority of my time I am either at work or sleeping! So the likelihood of trying to fit in more than 3 runs a week is just not realistic.

IMG_3348.JPG

A Break Down of my Training Program . . . 

I have sketched out a 16 week training program, following the run less run faster program, each week compromises of 3 quality runs and 2 conditional training days. The 3 runs are split into:

Run 1: Intervals/ Track repeats – involves running short distances of 400 metres to 1200 metes at high speed with brief recovery periods.  The aim of interval training is to improve VO2 max running speed. I live next to Southwark Park in South East London so this is ideal to do interval training and means I dont need to go far!

Run 2: Tempo run – begins with an easy pace building it up to a faster tempo phase. The aim of the tempo run is improve endurance by raising lactate threshold.

Run 3: Long run – involves steady running from 21km to 36km, over the 16 week period. The long run will improve endurance by raising aerobic metabolism.

Conditional Training: Yoga – I  have chosen yoga as my other form of training as I really enjoy the practice and think it complements recovery from running. Yoga will help improve flexibility and strength. I love YogawithAdriene Youtube videos and it is so easy to do at home. All you need is a yoga matt, your laptop and press play! Also I have recently discovered the London Buddhist Centre, in Bethnal Green, who offer yoga classes.  Their yoga classes focus mainly around meditation and mindfulness, instead of perfecting the actual yoga moves. I find the classes very liberating, so rarely do we try to switch off and focus purely on our breathing and mind.

IMG_3395.JPG

Summary of WEEK 16 . . . 

With the start of February, I was slightly concerned about my lack of commitment to training. I hadn’t run more than 10km since end of November. Last week I went on a long run with a friend who is training for her first ever marathon #genevamarathon. She wanted to do 21 km [half marathon distance] so I said I probably would not be able to run the whole distance and leave her to carry on at some point. HOWEVER, I  ran the whole 21 km and quite enjoyed it! I could have in fact pushed myself more but my friend was struggling the last few miles. It made me realise that currently my fitness is quite good and I have a good baseline endurance.

IMG_3349.JPG

This week’s training went well- I managed to do 3 runs and 3 yoga sessions. My tempo run I missed and instead ran with a friend. I am going to be flexible with my training program as some weeks I will not be able to commit to the 3 runs, due to my work shift pattern.

Intervals:  I did x8 400 metres with 2 min rest interval. You can see my split times below. I think I am going to find this run the hardest- i was exhausted at the end!

IMG_3394.PNG

Long run: 24 km at an average pace of 5″38/ km. I was pleased with this run. I ran at a fairly consistent pace. I love running along the Thames river, counting down the bridges as I run along! I did find the last few km hard and could feel the lactic acid building up in my legs. I only took one fuel snack with me and I could have done with another one for the last few km.

IMG_3374.JPG

IMG_3393.PNG

Tempo run: missed. Instead ran 16km with a friend around Greenwich Park and Blackheath. Average pace 5″37/ km

Happy Running guys!

 

 

Advertisements

I am back!

IMG_2707.JPG

So it has been a while  …. my last blog post was September 2015! Life got in the way as per. I started my blog when I went to Australia for my elective, back in April and I loved doing blogging out there. I blogged about my adventures, travelling and running. I think coming back to the UK and starting my job as a junior doctor, I had little inspiration and motivation to carry on blogging.

However, since the start of 2017, I have been thinking about starting blogging again. I follow a few bloggers and I really enjoy reading their blogs. I would like to have my little space again! I worried that my blogs or content would be dull, but to be honest this blog is for ME and I shouldn’t really care what people think when they read it. I have a few ideas I want to blog about . . . but firstly a quick catch up since Sept 2015!

  • I am now a FY2 doctor. For non – medics, it essentially means i am now in my second year of foundation training. Last year I was based in Kent – in a small coastal town called Margate. This year I have moved to South East London and working at Lewisham hospital.  I am loving living in London, being around my family and friends.

img_2586

img_2270

  • I just turned 26- this week in fact! Shitsticks – now I am officially in my mid-late twenties. [I think i will still pretend to be 25 in my head]. Age has never particularly bothered me. . . but two of my close girlfriends got engaged in the past month . . . #letsnotpanic. Maybe this year, I  should really do something about the whole datingmylarkey. I feel I am relating more and more to Bridget Jones [hides granny pants and eatclean books].
  • RUNNING: quite a lot has happened since the last time i blogged. I completed my first ever MARATHON, my first ever TRIATHLON and did the Bristol HALF mara  again!
  • I did the Paris marathon in April 2016. Training wise wasn’t amazing, as running in the winter, dark, cold months isn’t much fun and with work i just didn’t commit too well. I also got patellar tendonitis a month before the race. On reflection, I surprisingly wasn’t that nervous about it as I had the mindset that it was my first ever marathon, so put no pressure on times etc. The actual race brings back such special memories. Yes, I did found it hard, the last 5miles were just so painful. BUT it is that feeling you have after the race of being super proud of yourself and feeling on top of the world!

img_0291

img_0288

  • The triathlon – I entered the London AJ Bell Triathlon which was in July 2016. This was rather a spur of a moment decision. I liked the crazy idea of challenging myself with an event involving 3 different sports. My main reason was i wanted to learn how to swim. I have never felt confident with swimming and being honest, I didn’t really know how to front crawl. The whole experience of putting your head in the water, swallowing water and probably resembling a drowned cat. . . in essence I really needed some swimming lessons. Even more so because the triathlon involved swimming 1.5km in open water [only realised after entering #woaps]. So i found a swimming coach and it was just SUCH fun. I had a couple of lessons in a pool and then we went to straight to the sea. Margate has a couple of lidos so I had open water swimming lessons!

img_2004

  •       What is next with my running? Well I have made a promise with myself that i want to run a marathon every year for the next 10 years and i have certain time i want to aim for in my head.  This year I have entered the Stockholm marathon – which is on the 3rd June #watchthisspace

SO that is a whizzy update and i am quite excited to start blogging again. Who knows it may only last a few weeks but I feel ready to get back into it again.

Happy Running!

 

Race Recap: #BristolHalfMarathon

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

 I am going to start of by saying I am a little bit chuffed with myself as I have been working for less than 2 months, in my new job as a junior doctor, AND I managed to train and run a half marathon #yougogirl. At the start of my job, I was questioning myself as to whether it was a sensible idea doing a half marathon so early on. The last 2 months have been bloody stressful and exhausting, working long hours, doing on calls, coming home from work and just wanting to crash on the sofa. But instead I committed myself to my training and i did a bloody good job!

Training wise, I knew that I wasn’t as fit as I was when I was training in Australia. I can’t be too harsh on myself, as I was in a great form in Sydney, eating well, sleeping a decent amount of hours etc. Now I am lucky if i have time to pee during my day at work and eating lunch is pretty much a luxury. I know I could run the distance no problem but whether I could improve on my time, I highly doubted it. I decided that I wouldn’t put pressure on timings and entered it with pretty low expectations.

Two of my lovely doctor friends- Sina and Cathy- who I work with – came to support me. It makes SUCH a difference when you have some support. I wasn’t nervous at all really, just excited that they were coming to cheer me on. Also it really motivates you to keep running when you know at certain points you will see a familiar face

IMG_9820

How did training go?

My training plan was fairly similar to my Sydney one. I worked on a 6 week countdown with 3 runs a week, gradually increasing my distance up to max 18km than tapering off in the last 2 weeks. However, last time I was doing reg yoga x2-3 a week [this is something that has been lacking from my training- and i am paying for it now – incredibly tender muscles]. Also exciting . . . I treated myself to a gorgeous [notsocheap] road bike with my first pay check, so incorporated that in my training plan. I am based in a hospital, on the coast in Kent, and i am really enjoying exploring the coast line on my bike.

IMG_9650

[sunset cycle]

IMG_9786

IMG_9693

My training plan

WEEK 1: 2 short runs [5,5km] and a cycle

WEEK 2: 2 mediums and 1 short runs [4, 8, 8] and a cycle

WEEK 3: 3 medium runs [8,10,12] and a cycle

WEEK 4: 2 medium and 1 long run [10,10,15] and a cycle

WEEK 5: one long run [18] . . . I was on call this week so working long days.

WEEK 6: 1 short, medium and long run [5,10,15]

WEEK 7: two medium runs [8,8] and a cycle

RACE end of week 7.

How did the race go?

The first 5km i ran with the lovely Lauren – I was running at quite a slow pace but I was enjoying running with someone. Lauren then needed a toilet break but I decided to carry on and pick up my pace. 3km later i hear someone shouting “CAZ” and it is Lauren behind! I was super impressed, as i was running quite fast but she caught up. We carried on the next 4km together, then i decided to pick up my pace again. Now this is properly where i ran too fast, too early. I had been sucking on an energy gel and it just kicked in so fast, i ran the next 3-4 km at 5”00, 5”10, 5”05. At around 14km the route re-enters back into Bristol so the crowd support was great. I was running really well at this point and then saw my GIRLS at the side line, shouting my name.

IMG_9831

I then sped up more [error] and didn’t realise until i looked at my watch and my heart rate was going at 187!! I dont like it to go above 170 as i find i will exhaust myself and begin to slow down considerably . . . this is what happened. The final bit of the route i really didn’t enjoy as it was over cobbled streets and you kept going back on yourself through the city centre. All that kept me going was seeing my girls again, near the finish line. I saw them just before the 12 mile mark which i didn’t expect and that really boosted me on. I then saw Lauren when i looped around on the last mile, she was doing amazingly and had really caught up a fair amount of distance. I sped up for the last mile but was beginning to feel rather light headed and my heart rate was now creeping up to 185. I was being stubborn and didn’t want to slow down . The last 300 metres i sprinted partly because I could see the time and realised how close i was to my last race! When i crossed the line my heart was thumping SO hard at 195. Woapsies.

My race time really surprised me – it was 1 min slower than my sydney speed. With my training, I was anticipating on being maybe borderline sub 2 hours.

Also my friend Lauren got her PB which she has been chasing for awhile. I was super proud that I could share it with her and especially since we had a run a section of it together!

IMG_9810

What I learnt?

I can REALLY push myself. I was running sub 5 mins in some segments. My max HR [sprint at the end] was 195! My pace was a bit all over the place, normally when i run i like to keep at a steady heart rate. That strategy just flew out the window after the 10km point, where it just exponentially increased.

Most importantly, the race made me realise I am a good runner and I have potential to run faster and better, if I really want to.

What is next?

My current thoughts switch between

1. Continue with halfs and run faster
2. Train for a marathon
3. Train for a triathlon

I have been seriously thinking about whether i want to do a marathon- ideally I want to do one next year or the following. The issue is do i really want to commit to the training? The idea of 26 miles, really does not appeal to me, but who does it appeal to? No one really runs a marathon for fun. It is a challenge and a bloody achievement. The Paris Marathon is on 3rd April next year, that is an ideal length of time to train for it and also it is in freaking Paris! Most runners i have spoken to have said you can train for a marathon in 20 weeks if you already run well. So 20 weeks would be mid November. . . on paper it is feasible. Am i crazy though??

BUT then since getting a road bike, I have played with the idea of entering a triathlon. The AJ Bell London Triathlon [Olympic distance] happens in early August every year. I am tempted, but the issue is i just dont do swimming. I would need to find a local group that i can train with.

Instead of thinking about it, being sensible and weighing up all options . . . what have i gone and done . . . ENTERED MYSELF INTO THE PARIS 2016 MARATHON #letsnotpanicnow

Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 19.12.49

My current thinking

1. Work on interval training [HIT]- to increase my speed

2. Join the Thanet running club [I need to train with other people, especially in the winter]

3. Enjoy my bike more

4. Convince my family and friends to come and cheer me on in Paris [#hinthintmajorhint]