Loch Ness Marathon – 3 Weeks to go

It’s the 1st of September.  How did it get here so quickly.  As I write this post, and according to the Loch Ness Marathon website it is exactly 22 days 3 hours and 14 minutes.  I better not take too long to get this published now 😀

Loch Ness Marathon - this runner loves purple

The summer heatwave has almost but gone.  Temperatures are now much cooler, almost perfect running weather.  Although yesterday morning it was 9°C,  a bit on the chilly side.   Since my last update I finally found work.  It has taken me up to Leicester.  I travel up on Mondays and return on Fridays.  You would think I would have my evenings free to update my blog and record/edit youtube videos.  But for some reason I have been having less time.

I go to work, fit in my run, then go and find something to eat.  By the time that’s all done it’s already 9pm-10pm!  I am too tired to do anything else.  I’m also getting used to the drive and doing a bit of self learning to get me up to speed on a few things I need to know for work, that has filled the remaining gaps.  My weekend seems shorter too – unpacking, parkrun, junior parkrun, long run, seeing my dad, food shop, laundry, house stuff, repacking … it is over in a blink of an eye.  Then it’s Monday again!

I am enjoying working again though.  It is a shame I have had to go so far from home.  It is initially only for 3 months, of which 1 month is now complete!  Again, that’s flown by so quickly.  I have been able to join in with a few of the guys at work. We do a weekly boot camp session on a Wednesday night straight after work.  It is full of strength body work training and drills.  Definitely a fun and welcome change to just running.  But I definitely feel those muscles I have not been using!!! DOMS!

Loch Ness Marathon - this runner loves purple

Boot Camp Crew!

Wednesday has usually been the first run of the marathon training week – of 5km.  I have now switched this to Tuesday and only do 1 mile run after boot camp.  I switch my Garmin to the other activity during boot camp – and we do cover up to a mile with the warmup, suicide drills, moving lunges and frog jumps (I call them)!

Staying in a different place has allowed me to go exploring too.  I have even switched where I have been staying each week so that I have a different starting point.  I have come across some lovely street art on my travels too.

Loch Ness Marathon - this runner loves purple

But how is the training going….???  Well, due to the heat slowing me down, I succumbed to the myasics prompt to change the goal 🙁  It kept bugging me to change it.  It’s now set my goal to 4:48:02!!! I was not happy with that at all!  But it is what it is!  With that change, my target paces have slowed right down.  5 km jogs are now at 7:58 min/km pace and my “fast” pace is now 6:40–6:30 min/km!  Training race pace is 6:49 min/km with the target on the day pace at 6:45 min/km!

These changes, and the cooler weather, means that I am now always within my targets.  I’m sticking to the advised distances too.  Although this weekend will be a slight change.  I am due to run a 20 miler, but I have a half marathon race, at Bedford.  I would like to attempt a PB (1:57:20) for this one – so I have pushed my longest run to next week instead.  That still gives me 2 weeks taper time. I also think I had a 30km and 32 km in my last training cycle – but it’s only given me one 32 km this time round.

I am pleased that I have been able to keep up with the training.  My paces are slowly getting back to where they were. I’m proud to say that I got the trophy for 1st Vet 45 Lady for my performance at the Stopsley Striders 5 mile trail race.  I came in with my course pb of 45m 55s!  This is amazing to me as it is a very hilly course and is only 4 minutes slower than my overall 5 mile pb, set on a very flat Hatfield course.

My race paces are definitely much faster than my training paces are, I’m finding.  A good 40-60 seconds a minute faster.  Is that just me or is that usual?

At this point I am still planning to aim for 4:16:22 or beat Manchester at 4:29:33! But since the course elevation looks like this:

Loch Ness Marathon Course Profile

……  I won’t be too disappointed with the outcome, as long as I finish!  Although overall it does look downhill for a lot of the first 15 km.  But that steep incline at 7-8km and having more hills near the end will remove any thoughts of an easy run.  Easy and Marathon do not go together.  😀 😀 😀 I am looking forward to a beautiful scenic run though!

Will you be at the Loch Ness Marathon? Not long to go now!!

How  are your autumn training plans going?

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