I was delighted to be lucky enough to win a place through the club ballot. Having only completed my first ever half two and a half years ago I seem to have become addicted to marathon running and have completed 6 so far in the last 18 months, with varying degrees of success, finishing between a pb of 4 hrs 2 mins 45 seconds last year at North Dorset and a pw of 5 15 at Purbeck last October (although Purbeck is a brutal hilly, but fantastically enjoyable race).
My plan for this race was to follow a 4 hour plan, doing more longer runs at a consistent marathon pace than previously and to try to hit the sub 4 target on the day.
With 3 marathons completed last autumn (Purbeck, Bournemouth and Portsmouth Coastal) I started the plan with a certain amount of fitness already, so the early weeks were spent running 20 ish miles a week. The final 10 weeks of the plan dictated that I should have run 332 miles (not including the race) and completed five long runs of 13, 16, 17, 20 and 20 miles.
So how has it gone?
In summary fairly well. I have stayed injury free and have run 245 miles in the last 10 weeks, some 87 short of the plan, but more than I have ever run before. I have not hit the plan mileage because of a decision I made, due to tiredness and finding time to train, to run 4 times a week rather than 5 (omitting the Wednesday run from the plan). So I have run Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday most weeks and have adjusted my long runs to be longer than those in the plan.
I have found that, unlike during training for previous marathons when I have slowed considerably, my 5k time has been consistent throughout this period (regularly running 22 - 23 minutes), and I have achieved 5m pb of 36: 48 and a half marathon pb of 1 43 53 since the beginning of march.
My 5 long runs, 2 * 16m, 1 * 20m and 2 * 21m have gone well, with my final 21m completed at an average pace of 8 min 56 secs per mile. If I repeat this run on the day I would be looking at a finish time of approx 3 hrs 55 minutes
So I go into the race in good shape and thoroughly looking forward to running one of the best marathons in the world for our club. I hope, at the seventh attempt to finally complete the race in under 4 hours.
Here is the full details of Richard's plan.