Downgrading and refocusing w.e7/9/2014

Another week of decent mileage and effort wrapped up.

Not all that much to report from this week really, looking forward to Ladybower although I’ve been pondering whether to drop to the 35 mile race from the 50. Couple of reasons really, despite it being several months away, I’ve got my eye on a road marathon in spring 2015 with Ally & I looking at Rome as an option to spend a little time there to celebrate her 40th and I’d love to run a sub 3 marathon just the once so I’ve begun thinking about how this tallies with training for ultras and I’m of the opinion that I lack the fitness and overall speed to compete at longer distances (50+ miles) at the level I’d like to (winning or placing top 3-5 in smaller races) and I also currently lack the structure and pure running speed and form for shorter races so I need to decide on my priorities.

I did a tempo run on Tuesday just to get a feel for the sub 3 marathon pace I’d like to run at and while it didn’t break me, I certainly don’t imagine holding the pace for much more than a half marathon at this stage.

During my long run this week and last, I’ve also been paying attention to my form, especially after about 15 miles and it’s pretty raggedy and bordering on a quick sturry / ultra-shuffle which I want to avoid at all costs so it’s left me wondering right now if my focus after this next block of races (up to Xmas) shouldn’t be on getting faster and becoming a “better runner” because when I am focused on my form knocking out 7 minute miles actually is reasonably comfortable but it definitely requires more focus and attention. I also want to break through 17 minutes for a 5k at some point next year so perhaps the longer ultra training is something to really think about how much I want it right now.

I do know that training for the speed part will naturally improve my options for longer races anyway so it’s entirely all or nothing but to get to the speed level I think and hope I’m capable of I need more focus and specific training efforts in those areas.

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It’s been quite tough but also immensely satisfying heading out at 5am to begin a long run in the dark on the moors again this week. I relish training when the conditions or circumstances are tough because I know it’s a session that others might not be so keen to do and pass on so it’s tough miles but miles that make me stronger and more prepared so I’m going to keep to that once a week schedule for a while and see how it helps after Christmas when I look at a specific marathon plan.

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  • Tuesday – 10.1 miles
  • Wednesday – 21.6 miles
  • Thursday – 7.4 miles
  • Friday – 7.4 miles
  • Saturday – Rest
  • Sunday – 10.9 miles

Total: 58.9 miles, 4,291ft elevation.