Improvements? Week 1 – Week 6

First of all I’d like to apologise that I didn’t write many training posts recently. I had a really busy few weeks, overtime at work, taking on an allotment and spending long hours there and then do my marathon training. I really didn’t have the time and energy to write posts. 🙁

I just finished my Week 6 marathon training. As you know with this plan I’m training for the Berlin marathon and then 3 weeks later I’ll be at the Chicago marathon as well.

In one of my first training post I already wrote about my Coach, if you haven’t read that, then you can click Here to read it.

When I started the training plan on the 15th of May I really didn’t know what to expect, and how I’ll get along with a totally different training approach. Previously I just followed simple plans off from Google.

But my current plan includes loads of different parts:

  • 2 x Easy runs ( Monday & Thursday )
  • 2x Cross training ( Tuesday & Sunday )
  • 1x Track training ( Wednesday )
  • 1x Long run ( Saturday )
  • 1x Rest day ( Sunday )

At first it looked way too much, but eventually I’ve got used to it. I’m not gonna lie I still get loads of muscle ache, but it disappears much quicker.

I knew from the beginning that I’ll need to trust the plan, it wont be easy but if I want to reach my goal I really need to put in all the work I can. My goal is the get finally under 6hrs , my current PB is from New York 2017 and its 6hrs 32mins. So my plan is to shave off 33minutes.

Current PB  Target PB
 Finish time    6hrs 32mins  5hrs 59mins
 Pace  9.18mins/km 8.31mins/km

It’s going to be hard, but I will give my absolute best.

I’m following a 18 week training plan for Berlin and then 3 weeks shorter but steady runs for Chicago.

When I had my first training run I felt totally knackered. I haven’t done much running since New york in November, do to different kind of injuries and also lost my mojo.

But speaking with Denise gave me loads of confidence, and even though the training plan looks extra hard and lot I have to believe in it.

So my Week 1 Run 1 was hard, it was only a short 5 miler, but for some reason I just didn’t feel it. Struggled all the way around, and my average pace turned out to be 9.03mins/km, which would have taken me to a 6hrs 21mins marathon finish time. But I knew that I didn’t feel fit enough and I do want to get better.

I really had to put on my big girl pants and do the training, even when I just wanted to come home from work and lay in bed, when it was raining and also when it was 9pm.

Slowly realised that I need to do my trainings as early as I can, otherwise there’s a chance I won’t do it, I’ll get lazy. So my schedule is to get home from work around 11am, have some light food and drink, watch an episode of NCIS or whatever is on tv and be out of the house at 12pm. At least if I do it like this I still going to have loads of hours left on the day to whatever I want to do after it. Also on Saturdays I’ve learnt to set me alarm to really early, 4.30-5.00am and be out of the door as soon as I can. I’m home from my long runs by 8ish at the moment, bath, breakfast and still have the full day to do stuff with hubby, go to the allotment or just chill out. I’m not going to lie, it’s really hard to wake up in the weekends, when I could just sleep.

As the week passed I slowly started to see improvements. At first I didn’t run out of breath, then my pace started to pick up, and then finally I’m getting to keep the pace for longer periods of times. I can keep my pace on shorter runs at around 7.30mins/km, and on my longer runs, which is 12miles at the moment, my pace is around the 7.36mins/km mark. Have to say it’s really promising. Because with that pace my half marathon pace is around 2hrs 40mins. I’d be totally happy with that in a race. My last half marathon was completed in just over 3hrs.

So in 6 weeks, my pace changed a lot, and I’m able to keep it up for a longer distance. Beforehand I went out too fast and by the end of the races my pace slowed down to the 9mins/km mark. In this 6 weeks I’ve learnt that I need to start with a slower pace but need to be steady with it, so usually starting with a 7.30-7.35mins/km, but according to my garmin I’ve completed a few of my 4-5mile training runs with an average pace of 7.18-7.20mins/km.

Also some of the kms are turning into a 6.xx mins/km, and I’m totally happy about that. I can’t even remember when was the last time I ran that fast.

Below you can see a comparison of my Week 1 Run 1 VS. Week 6 Run 4 

( Click on the photos to see them in better quality ) 

Screen Shot 2018-06-23 at 08.21.05

Screen Shot 2018-06-23 at 08.21.23

As I said I still have a few 8mins/km but they nowhere near as slow as when I started.

I’m really positive that with the rest of the training I’ll be able to keep this pace up for an ever longer distance, if I don’t get anymore faster I really don’t mind, because this is already as massive improvement. I can’t even imagine getting faster and getting an even better marathon PB.

My aim is till to get under the 6hrs mark, but if its going to be 1 second below or more I’ll be happy for both results. If I’d be able to keep up this 7.36mins/km for the whole 42kms than that would mean I’d finish the race in 5hrs 20mins. But I won’t get carried away, I put my head down, keep my big girl pants on, do my training, eat healthier and see what I’ll be able to do in the flat Berlin course and then if I’d be able to repeat that in Chicago.

I still have a really long and hard 12 weeks ahead of me, so need to keep focused and train, train and train.

I’ll try to do as many post about my training as I can, but if I’m not able to do it, then I’ll de a comparison in every few weeks.

Also just a short update about my fundraising, I almost collected the whole $1000 for Chicago, I think I’ll be done with it by July. Then finally I can start to fundraise for Berlin. If you’d like to donate click here for Chicago and here for Berlin 🙂



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