Saturday, December 18, 2010

Merry Christmas Update!

Greetings all!

Unfortunately up until this week I have had professional exams which tend to dominate your life rather unfortunately. With studying, Hayley and training time came at a bit of a premium which meant blogging went on the back burner!

I did however get used to regularly updating on twitter and for easy daily updates you're probably best off checking that although I will try and update around once a week from now on.

So how are things going? Well fitness is increasing very gradually and I'm pleased with the progress but also slightly frustrated at how long it seems to take to get back to where I was. This has partly been exacerbated by the approach to not do any real faster stuff until well after Christmas. This might slightly hurt the performance at the Bath Half in March but I also feel it's crucial to try and give myself the base in order to really push forward this year.

Mileage has generally been quite restrained, following the ridiculous toe blister mileage has roughly been 80,95,95,56(easy),72 and this week will also be in the mid 70s. Last two weeks have been relatively low but this is just a matter of circumstances with studying taking over. I'd have liked them to be higher but I won't have lost any fitness with two mid 70s and can now put in 2-3 weeks high volume training.

This week will be a 75 off of only 5 days training and 6 runs so the training that has been done is quite substantial. This is also with bad snow and ice in the second half of the week restricting mileage - for the length of time I was running today I'd normally expect to be about 15 miles and only covered 13 and a bit. I find it quite difficult running in the snowy conditions but it's a great whole lower body work-out. Must admit I was shattered by the time I got back.

As far as the faster stuff goes -the closest thing to a rep session I've done is 4 x 10 minutes - and that wasn't fast! I've really been focusing on my continuous high-end aerobic efforts. Mostly been hitting 2 sessions a week with one a longer tempo of 70-90 minutes at around 5:50-6:00 minute miling and a shorter tempo of 30-50 minutes at 5:40 or so pace. I was hoping to do a shorter 5k effort at the Brockwell parkrun but it was cancelled due to the snow (not the current lot- the last lot!). This has obviously held back fitness in the short term (I'm sure if I was bashing out 8 x k on the track each week progress would be quicker!) but I think it'll be worth it in the longer run - there's a limit to how much progress you can make from the intense track sessions - hopefully a 6 week stint before the Bath Half will let me see some strong gains before returning to the tempos (but with more strides and faster efforts) before hitting another 6 weeks hard before my early track season.

As far as improvements go - I need to be doing more strides and drills - I got really good during my initial injury period but am now being lazy and not doing them which needs to be rectified quickly to keep some semblance of leg speed. What I have been good on is doing some basic leg strength exercises, stretching and a lot of self-massage using the stick. It meant I was running 95 mile weeks on singles and my legs were feeling fresh.

That's been the final major recent change to my training - singles - for the first time in a few years I've been concentrating on mostly running singles as opposed to doubles, simply because that fits in a lot better with my schedule over last few weeks but really seemed to help my legs recover a lot faster given the full 24 hours. Not sure if long term it'll be better but certainly right now it seems to suit.

In summary - I've been mixing things up quite a bit and training differently, that isn't to say the training I was doing before was wrong but the body adapts to things remarkably quickly and often altering training routines can make a real difference - hopefully we'll see this in March.

So, toodle pip and see you on the roads.

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Bryn Running

Training diary and musings on running in general.