Posts Tagged With: MK Half

Week 10 – London Marathon Training Review

A good week on the training front – all sessions planned were completed and completed well! The Monday swim session went well. We only have a hour as it’s a public lane swim but didn’t manage to get in the pool until 10 mins into the session. I had planned 3x1km but was never going to manage that in 50 mins, but was quite pleased to fit in 2x1k plus 400m – this also included some rest between each set – but each one felt quite easy making the 5km swimathon in April not seem too far a challenge.

With the MK Half coming up on Sunday, I wasn’t sure what sort of pace to run so after an easy 2 miles on Tuesday I tried to run a bit harder for the second 2 miles to see what my achilles would withstand – I wasn’t far off 9 min miles so gave me a good indication of where I needed to pitch myself on the day.

Wednesday was the weekly swim training with GreenlightPT. The sessions do seem to be getting tougher now, but I think I’m hanging in there and managed to get through 3km in the hour. Really looking forward to doing a triathlon this season just to see how far I have improved in the swim.

It’s DLRR club night on Thursday and took a steady 4 miles with the early group, which was one of my fastest for a long while – still a good 6-7 minutes slower than I have done in the past but still feeling good. This was then followed by the main club run which was four miles, but with loop backs I pulled in 4.8 miles. Towards the end I started to feel quite strong and gained some confidence for Sunday.

Today was the MK Half, I’ll add a full report tomorrow but in short – whoo hoo!! Planned to run up to 7 miles at 9:30 pace then quicken it up after that – and thought I’d come in around 2 hours. But found myself running at 9-9:20 pace for the first 7 miles, had a slow mile 8 as I stopped to stretch my achilles – just felt a bit tight – and then thought I’d put my foot down to see what I’d got, but still holding back enough not to do any damage. Started churning out 8:30s and was passing people like they were standing still – event managed one of my quickest miles on the final mile which included the infamous beacon hill in Campbell Park (v.steep uphill – just what you need at 12.5 miles in a half!). Came in at 1:57 – with the biggest grin on my face you can get! I had also ran three miles before the start so I could get 16 miles in. The time was no where near my PB but considering just over two weeks ago I couldn’t even run 4 miles without pain, I think that’s a pretty good result!

All that’s left to say now is – London – BRING IT ON!


Monday – swim session (2.4km)

Tuesday – 4 miles easy/steady

Wednesday – swim session (GreenlightPT)

Thursday – 8.8 miles steady with DLRR

Friday – rest

Saturday – rest

Sunday – 16 miles (including 13.1 race)

Miles for the week – 28.8 miles

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Time is ticking…and we lose an hour!

The countdown widget says it all, 29 days to go….less than a month, just over four weeks left. The panic hasn’t quite set in yet – despite the extended downtime with various coughs and colds I think I’ve just about got enough miles in the tank to get round in one piece!

If you had asked me at the end of December if I would be happy to be at this point in this state, I’d have bitten your hand off as I never thought I’d still be walking let alone running and running quite well (for me anyway!). I was still receiving treatment for plantar fasciitis and had really accepted that a get you round result was the best outcome I could hope for. But I think the mixture of injury and illness early on has actually helped me out as it’s forced me to keep the mileage low in the first few weeks and enforced rest. I’m a bit old school when it comes to training. If you’re not on your knees at the end of a session you’ve not got anything out of it but I’m now firmly in the ‘less is more’ camp.

To be honest apart from the PF the only issue I’ve had so far is a sore quad muscle and that only started once the miles started to rack up. Bit of ice and ibuprofen gel and think that’s just about licked!

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Official logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

With just 8 days of hard training left, long run tomorrow (must remember to get up an hour earlier else I’m miss it!) and the Oakley 20 next Sunday it’s then time to taper.

But to more pressing things – tomorrow many will be running the Sport Relief mile throughout the UK and a fellow blogger Jules who will be competing in her first ever event. So good luck Jules – you’ll breeze through it! May it be the first of many!

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Review of Week 11

Mixed week this week. Started OK with some stretching on Monday but by Tuesday was starting to get a bit worried about a sore thigh I’ve had since the MK Half. It was started during the MK half, but then disappeared and I didn’t notice it again until the 16 miler last weekend, but only after 10 miles or so, so had just put it down to the longer mileage. But during the run on Tuesday it was troubling me from the start and during the fast sections was even worse. I ran again on Wednesday, just very slowly but after 5 and 1/2 miles called it a day.

After some googling, established that I’d probably not done anything too serious, slight tear at worse but most likely a result of overtraining. Although I’ve not trained huge volumes of miles, this last week or so is probably the most volume I’d done after my everlasting cold so I probably had upped the mileage a bit quicker than I should have. Decided to not run Thursday and rest until the long run on Sunday. I was going out on the bike with my father in law and brother in law on Saturday but the weather was awful when I woke up and as someone who tends to take the odd tumble on the bike decided that it was safer to stay at home. With London only five weeks away (is that all?) really can’t afford any broken bones! I went for a short jog instead to see how my leg felt and was pleased to see the rest had worked (that and the ice and ibuprofen gel).

Sunday was due to be an 18 miler – the longest run yet (in my life, not just this training plan) and after some gentle persuasion from a work colleague decided to run with the DLRR group. Their plan was 14 miles which sounded good to me as I could always go for a few more afterwards. I was a bit nervous (for various reasons – see yesterdays post) but needn’t have been. They were all lovely and made me feel very welcome and part of the group. This was a big group of a wide range of abilities, but with loop backs, the group is kept together (the faster runners loop back towards the back of the group). I really enjoyed the run and it was great to be among like-minded souls after weeks of running the streets in isolation. Although it was  14 mile route today, with loop backs I’d actually completed 16.5 miles by the time we finished so afterwards I ran another mile and a half to get to the magic 18. I did run out of path on the way back so ended up running a couple of loops of the (rather small) car park – much to the amusement of several dog walkers returning to their vehicles!

So, bit of a dodgy start to the week but it finished well and I think DLRR will probably be getting a new member very soon…watch this space!


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Training for Week 11

Going to try to get some good mileage in this week. Feeling ok after the long 16 miler today so will try some faster stuff earlier in the week building up to 18 miles on Sunday.

Monday – stretching

Tuesday -7 mile (1m jog, 3 x 1.5m fast with 400m rec, 1m jog)

Wednesday – 8 mile slow

Thursday  – 5 mile (1m jog, 3m brisk, 1m jog)

Friday – stretching

Saturday – cross training (bike)

Sunday – 18 miles slow (with 3-4 miles at race pace towards the end)

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Review of Week 10

Not a bad week overall. Still carrying the last legs of the cold – just an annoying cough left, but on its way out…

My legs still felt quite heavy from the MK Half so on Tuesday decided not to do the hill reps and went for a 6 mile slow jog to get the legs moving again. The lighter evenings meant I managed to get most of the miles done on different roads and only had to do two circuits of the village to get the distance in – good job as I was starting to get pretty dizzy with running around in circles!

The 7 mile tempo run on Thursday wasn’t as fast as it probably should have been, but was still quick enough – just on the hour mark so not so bad.

I finally managed to get my 16 mile long run completed today. It’s been on the training plan for four weeks now but for various reasons just hasn’t happened, so this morning, got up nice and early, bit of breakfast, decided on my route and off I went. It was a truly beautiful morning – sun shining, not too hot, slight breeze – not had many of these lately. No gloves, hat or long sleeve shirt, it was complete contrast to the week before when I finished the MK Half in the snow. I also wanted to get out and back before the Silverstone Half started as my route took in some of roads near the circuit and I knew they’d be busy in the lead up to the race.

I really enjoyed it too – never thought I’d say that about running 16 miles, but once I got past the initial couple of miles (they’re always horrible!) I felt really good. I deliberately tried to run it slowly as it was the furthest I’d ever run but by the end I felt quite strong and put in a couple of quicker miles just to see how it went.  What was quite reassuring is that even at the end of the 16, I felt as if I could have happily done a few more. I resisted the urge though as I don’t think I would have gained much from it and just exposed myself to injury, but it has done wonders for the confidence. 18 next week…. 🙂

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Training for Week 10

Here’s the plan for the week. My legs still feel like lead from the MK Half so am going to ease into the week easily and see how I feel, but build up to the 16 miler that has been on the table for nearly a month – its psychological now – I just need to do it!

Monday – gentle stretching – legs – ouch!

Tuesday -10 x 90 sec uphill, jog back recovery

Wednesday – 6 mile slow

Thursday  – 7 mile tempo

Friday – stretching

Saturday – cross training (bike)

Sunday – 16 miles one way or another!

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Review of Week 9

Another mixed week. Still fighting the cold lurgy thingy but things are looking up. A gentle five miler on Tuesday got some confidence back in the system (the doubts were starting to creep in). Raced twice on Wednesday. A quick 1.1 mile leg of the OU relay and even managed to make it on the ‘All Time List’ – just! This was followed by a 5km race in the evening – part of the Race Timing Systems ‘Run for Nothing‘ series. My time was just as quick as the previous one in the series so looks as if the form hasn’t deserted me just yet.

On Thursday I had a six mile tempo down. It started well, but about four miles in the races the previous day and the lack of training over the last few weeks started to take its toll and the tempo turned into an easy jog, but at this stage I think miles are more important than pace so was quite happy and it was a lovely day for a run around Caldecotte Lake.

That just left the Milton Keynes Half-Marathon on Sunday and overall, taking the rocky build up into account was pleased with the outcome but I wont go on about that here as I’ve already posted a race report here.

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MK Half – what a wet one!

Today was the MK Half Marathon as part of the MK Festival of Running and boy was it a wet one. It didn’t just drizzle, it didn’t just rain, but it poured and poured and didn’t stop and just to add insult to injury it then snowed! Having said that I quite like running in the rain and I wasn’t too bothered and it was definitely one way to keep cool, although the hot shower when I got home was heaven!

I was a bit nervous about today. My eternal cold that I thought had disappeared mid-week reared itself again on Saturday but following a decent sleep on Saturday night and my traditional pre-race carbonara pasta I woke up on Sunday feeling ok – not brilliant but ready to run.

The race started well, ran a bit quick for the first three miles but it was all downhill and wanted to see what 8 min race pace felt like. I then had to stop to retie my shoe as it was too loose but got going again and settled on 8:15 pace and ran the rest of the race at this quite comfortably until the final mile or so where three sharp inclines meant I had to walk as my calf muscle felt like it was going to pop. With London only seven weeks to go it wasn’t worth the risk so with a final mile of 9:30 I just got under the 1:50 mark, but on closer inspection it was a PB so all was well.

Several positives came out of today. I ran at a possible marathon pace which was comfortable and when I finished I still felt there was stuff left in the tank which bodes well for the next few weeks as I need to get a crack on with higher mileage. I also used the race as an opportunity to try out some new kit and nutrition.

I bought a fuel belt to hold some gels and this worked well although my Extreme Sport Beans (jelly beans with a kick – not for the kiddies!) tasted nice but you need the hands of a small child to get them out of the packet. But, this did pass a mile or two very quickly while I fought to get them out of the packet and eat them. Might need to rethink how I take these round London…

I also wore my SANDS running vest for the first time and had some really nice comments from fellow runners about what a great charity it was to support.

I have to say that considering the weather, turnout on the route was brilliant. There were very few spots where there wasn’t a supporter cheering away. The David Lloyd Redway Runners were very well represented and the support they gave their club mates was amazing. It has got me thinking about joining a club again as it can get quite lonely training on your own at times and a club is a great motivator for getting out there even when you don’t feel like it.

So, all in all a good, if rather wet and cold day 🙂

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Back in business!

Despite the rather negative past few posts, I think we may be back in business! Felt loads better yesterday so put an easy 5 miles down, then raced the OU relay at lunchtime with my work colleagues (best time since I started there!) and then ran the Run for Nothing 5km at Willen Lake tonight and ran almost the same time as my pre-cold time – and I was holding back a bit.

I’m now looking forward to the MK Half on Sunday.Still undecided as to whether to run it as a race or at a test marathon pace. Will probably decide as I’m actually doing it – i.e. if its a bit slow – it’s marathon pace and a training run or if I’m doing well – I’ll race it. My t-shirt arrived today (another one for the collection) and as race shirts go it’s not too bad!

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Training for Week 9

On the road to London well and truly now – although with my longest run only 14 miles I think it’s fair to say I’m a bit behind where I’d really like to be at this point but still plenty of time yet.

Monday – rest

Tuesday – 5 miles steady

Wednesday – OU relay at lunchtime, Run for Nothing 5km in the evening

Thursday  – 6 mile tempo

Friday – stretching

Saturday – cross training (bike)

Sunday – MK Half marathon with possibly a few miles after to make it into a proper long run (trying to make up some miles!)

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