I thought I'd start sharing with you my training progress as I build up to the Western States Endurance Run in late June. It will hopefully provide you with an insight into what I do and maybe there's something in here that you can use in your own training as well!
Since I got my place in December I've been focussing on building up my base level of endurance. This has taken the form of steadily increasing mileage week on week for a period of 3 weeks, starting at about 45 miles, dropping off the mileage for a week then starting again at my last highest point. I've now comfortably hit the 70mile per week mark and this is where I'm going to hang for a while.
In the past when I've tried to push things further I find I start building up niggles and frustrating injuries that take an age to go away so this seems like the most sensible option until I'm ready to push further.
I've started to incorporate lower body strength work, mostly taking the form of a variety of squats throughout the day. I know I need to do more on this and also my core to develop efficiency and I'll be sharing my training programme for this as and when I start it. For the time being though I'm focussing on running as I prepare for my first race of the year - the Barcelona Marathon.
Ironically enough, I'm currently sitting on the sofa nursing an upper body injury. This was caused by getting my arm caught in a jacket and overextending as I tried to reposition myself. As ridiculous an injury as they come! This meant my mileage for last week was too low and whilst this is now my 'rest' week, I've done absolutely nothing at all so far. I'm not a happy non-runner.
This is mearly a glitch, albeit a very frustrating one. I'll be back soon enough but i hate being so non-active.
Anyway, back to the plot. Barcelona Marathon.
This is going to be my second effort at the event and I'm beyond excited about going back. I set my PB at this race two years ago and I'm going to try to go faster this time. There was such an incredible atmosphere in the city last time round that pushed me on to post a time that I didn't think was possible so all being well I'll have the same buzz again. It's also going to be great to catch up with some friends we have out there, and see our Godson again.
I originally thought about a sub 3 hr effort but that was before the Western States thang happened so I've reset my plan to go for a 3:10. Challenging enough for this stage of my training.
After recovering from Barca I'm going to really focus my efforts on doing hill work. The ups are obviously important but everything that I've read about the WS100 is that the downs are the things that really kill you so I need to find a hill local to me that I can smash both up and down.... a lot!
Beyond that I've managed to snag a last minute spot with a charity to run at Brighton Marathon, a race that again I've done before (in fact this was my first ever marathon in 2013!) so it should be a lot of fun. I've decided that I'm going to run home from this event so I'm going to be taking it nice and easy during the event and then push on through the 30-35 miles (depending on the route i take) home. I've been looking for a 50 miler to do, a chance to test out my kit for the WS, so this seems like a 'logical' thing to do.
It's also still a couple of months before the big race so I'll have plenty of time to recover before kicking on again.
So that's me at the moment. I'll keep posting with updates with how things are going and any changes that I'm making along the way.