Was supposed to run 27km today and test ‘hydration and fuelling’ strategies. This after a ‘technical’ session of 45 sec hard climbs yesterday in the Parc de Sceaux (photo). Lost some time because of the ‘switchback’ character of the coulée verte south and north from the Parc de Sceaux, and had to make today’s run a little shorter (24.8km) Discovered the power of the ‘cherry bomb’ for refuelling after 1 hr 50!
Oh no, I did it again!
Headed off down Avenue Jean Perrot, but it was too cold in the shade of the blocks of flats on the east side! So I ran back to get the (relative) warmth of the morning sun, and then did the prescribed intervals of 3 min tempo and 2 min jog recovery. That explains the curious figure plotted by RunKeeper. Then the hamstring felt a strain in the right leg. It was not a show-stopper, but uncomfortable, and later in the day I was limping slightly. Now, two days later, stiffness seems to have continued down to the calf muscle in the same leg. With the half-marathon in three days, I’m getting massage today, tomorrow and Saturday, and no running, in the hopes that will make me able to run the course. Right now, it feels like a 50-50 chance!
Sometimes I feel optimistic; the legs want to go, the oxygen machine and blood pump seem to be game for the distance. At others, like this afternoon, you wonder whether it’s going to work! There seems to be an endless list of things that can go wrong in the old bones, and in the old muscles that are woven tightly around them. This afternoon it was a pain in the right hip, the one that fell hard on to the ice rink in Grenoble more than 20 years ago, and I feel it’s never completely recovered since then! Training is good because you lose weight, but in so doing it seems you open up loopholes for various unexpected disorders. It’s funny how after an initial complaint like this afternoon, which made me start at a ridiculously slow pace, the body seems to be able to kick into action and do what you’ve been programming it to do! But the Marathon is going to be nearly five times this afternoon’s jaunt! You can only hope that it all holds together, but the stories about the 35km barrier and grinding articulations are a little worrying!
Thanks to all for your interest and support.
This was 8.84km in 47′ 51″, average 5′ 25″ per km.
After a break of 10 days following the minor hernia in the groin, back in action today Saturday, with a pause after 9 min to get my watch repaired! The idea was to take it relatively gently, hence the 5′ 37″ average per km shown on this sinuous route.
Down to Grand’Place (the watch repair man) then round Jean Vilar park, with thoughts for Kevin and Sofiane who were tragically battered to death here for trying to broker peace between two rival gangs in September 2012. Lots of right angle bends on this route; they break the pace, and I sense that it’s important to get used to that.
It took a long time to get cracking and clock up the miles, following the hamstring injury on November 21. But thanks to the physio Samuel Clément, it seems to have healed, so here we go! This is the programme for the last 50 days until the event in London, taken from the Virgin Marathon News (advanced programme) and adapted because I’ll be running the Grenoble-Vizille semi-marathon on April 5. The objective is to raise £5000 for the Inland Waterways Association. Please visit my sponsorship page
I’ll update this page after each session to give the results. Variations in pace will be considerable because of relief and the nature of the terrain. My favourite along the Isère is the rough and winding path down along the foot of the embankment (see header photo, click on title if it doesn’t show), while today’s run (10/3) was along the cycle path at the top, much faster! But as the map shows, it was only 1600m along that embankment.
Monday 9/3 — 10 min jogging, 10 min ‘steady’, 10 min marathon pace, 10 min threshold, 10 min jog recovery
—————————– DONE 10.77 km in 58′ 55″, average 5′ 33″/km
Tuesday 10/3 — 40 min ‘easy’
—————————– DONE 7.69 km in 40′ 6″, average 5′ 13″/km
Wednesday 11/3 — 20 km
—————————– DONE 20.19 km in 1 hr 55′ 05″, average 5′ 42″/km
but felt a groin injury (right side), diagnosed the next morning as a hernia, not too serious, but have to cancel runs for about 10 days! Hence the gap to March 21.
Saturday 21/3 — 40 min easy
—————————– DONE 7.29 km in 40′ 58″, average 5′ 37″/km
Sunday 22/3 — — 12 min easy, then 6 times [4 min marathon pace – 60 sec faster – 60 sec jog recovery], 12 min easy
—————————– DONE 8.84 km in 47′ 51″, average 5′ 25″/km
Monday 23/3 — 12 min easy, then 6 times [4 min marathon pace – 60 sec faster – 60 sec jog recovery], 12 min easy
—————————– DONE 10.21 km in 57′ 18″, average 5′ 37″/km
Tuesday 24/3 — 12 min easy, then 10 times [2 min threshold – 2 min jog recovery], 12 min easy
—————————– DONE 5.25 km in 27′ 22″, average 5′ 13″/km
200 metre bursts with the team from Ville de Grenoble
Thursday 26/3 — 20 km
—————————– DONE 20.64 km in 1 hr 55′ 05″, average 5′ 42″/km
Saturday 28/3 — 10 min easy, 15 min marathon pace, 15 min faster, 10 min easy recovery
—————————– DONE 9.35 km in 49′ 42″, average 5′ 19″/km
just under 5 min for the 6th kilometre
Sunday 29/3 — 32 km, trying to run the last 5 km faster (unlikely!)
—————————– DONE 32.36 km in 3 hrs 15′ 51″, average 6′ 03″/km
Monday 30/3 — 40 min easy
—————————– DONE 7.21 km in 40′ 02″, average 5′ 33″/km
Wednesday 1/4 – 10 min easy, then 5 times [3 min tempo – 2 min jog recovery], 10 min easy (total 45 min)
—————————– DONE 8.17 km in 45′ 01″, average 5′ 31″/km
but slight pull on hamstring in right leg
Thursday 2/4 — 20 min easy CANCELLED, massage session
Friday 3/4 — 15 min easy CANCELLED, massage session
Sunday 5/4 — semi-marathon Grenoble-Vizille, take it easy on the long climb up, remember this is a training run, and not too fast on the way down!
FAILED!! hamstring played up after 3km, forced to abandon and follow the race for 3 hours in the broom wagon! Shameful
Tuesday 7/4 — 12 min easy, then 5 times [6 min threshold – 2 min jog recovery], 12 min easy CANCELLED
Wednesday 8/4 — 80 min steady CANCELLED, massage session
Friday 10/4 — 60 min steady CANCELLED
Saturday 11/4 — 10 min easy, 20 min ‘steady’, 20 min marathon pace, 5 min fast, 10 min easy CANCELLED
Sunday 12/4 — 90 min easy, replaced by 20 min only to see progress
Monday 13/4 — 30 min easy (morning before departure for Budapest)
Tuesday 14/4 — 10 min easy, 15 min marathon pace, then 4 times [60 sec tempo – 60 sec walk recovery], 10 min easy (total 43 min), along the Danube in Budapest
Thursday 16/4 — 10 min easy, then 5 times [2 min ‘tempo’, 2 min jog recovery], 10 min marathon pace, 10 min recovery (total 50 min), in Budapest park
Saturday 18/4 — 30 min easy (evening, on return from Budapest)
Sunday 19/4 — 70 min easy
Monday 20/4 — 20 min easy
Tuesday 21/4 — 10 min easy, 3.2 km at marathon pace, 10 min easy
Thursday 23/4 — 15 min easy
Saturday 25/4 — in London of course (arrive St Pancras Friday evening) 10 min easy
Sunday 26/4 — D Day!
The 16-week ‘official’ programme started on Monday! Saturday I was reassured when 10.5km went by without feeling the slow-repairing hamstring in my left leg. Monday even better: 9.5km in 56’14”. Wednesday was a longer run with Jean-Michel, and the hamstring began to make itself felt again after about 7km, but finished OK, 13.5km in 1hr 17’44’, so I was beginning to think naïvely that the troubles were past. But today, running along the Isère, it was here, after less than 3km, that I had to stop and walk. Frustrating when one leg wants to run faster than the other! Probably running a bit too fast, too cold. There was ice on the roads. Will have to ease up and give it more time.