Posted on March 22nd, 2018 by John Armstrong
If you’re following our marathon schedules this weekend’s long run should be a bit of a celebration.
If you’re doing the Brighton schedule, it should be the easiest long run you’ve done in a while and should feel pretty comfortable. Given that it’s still a long way by any normal standards, this should make you realise how far you’ve come.
For those following the London schedule, this weekend is a 20 miler. For many of you that means its your longest training run, so make sure you enjoy it. Go somewhere nice and take it easy. Bask in the glory of knowing that you can now run 20 miles continuously.
Some of the faster runners who have already achieved the distance will want to do a bit of marathon pace, but absolutely no more than 10 miles at that pace. 5 miles easy, 5 miles steady, 5 miles easy, 5 miles marathon pace might be a good option. But I’ll say it again, if this is going to be your longest run, do it all easy.
Are you worrying how you will ever run 26 miles at race pace? If so stop worrying and have faith. Right now you are knackered. You are not in the ready to run 26 miles at race pace. It takes about a month before the benefits of a training session can be felt. That’s because you need time to grow new muscle etc. So in a month you’ll be even stronger than you are now. Even better, we’ll be lowering your training workload. The next month will be about recovery. On race day you will be totally fresh. Prepare to be amazed what you can achieve.
But, and this is important, you will only feel like that if you have the recovery you need. If you foolishly decide to run a 20 miler at race pace you won’t have time to recover. You will have thrown away your marathon on a training run. So follow my advice and don’t do more than the schedule says.
Where should you do this 20 miler. I strongly recommend going to Gade valley and doing the run there. Not only will it be an enjoyable change of scene, but they’ll hand out water on the way round. That means this is the perfect opportunity for a marathon dress rehearsal. So wear the clothes you have in mind for race day. Take the gels or sweets you’ll be eating. Try out your race day nutrition plan – so that might mean an early dinner the night before and maybe try out your beetroot shots or Imodium if you want to try them on race day.
Gade Valley is just a couple of train stops from Euston. Entry is on the day only for £10. There’s tea and cake when you finish. Hope to see you there, but if you can’t make it, take it easy and make sure you enjoy your biggest training run.