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Winter Training final recap

We are now in spring and that means my winter training has finally finished. It’s been a long winter and while I’ve had one or two blips (missing Ribble Valley 10k, Brass Monkey HM and having a poor run at Trafford but since November I have managed to set a new personal best at 3000m (x3), 5k, 5 mile (x2), 10 mile and half marathon as well as winning 3 races. So I can safely say the winter training has reaped it’s rewards. In the 20 weeks I’ve covered 1,161 miles, with highest mileage week being 80 miles and my weekly average being 58 miles. The average would have been higher had I not had a second low mileage week in January to allow me to race Inskip and the 38 mile week I had for Trafford. My long run voodoo was broken with me finally running regular 16 mile runs and I managed to clock up five 20 mile or longer runs in my training. One thing I got annoyed at was the amount of times I was asked if I was doing a marathon. I’m hoping the long runs over the winter will give me a good endurance base and over next 6-8 weeks I can build more speed into legs so I can smash my 10k time!

This week is a cut back week but after my last training post I still had two more weeks of training, so here is a look back at those weeks. The first week was after what for me personally was a bad run, in truth I wasn’t in 10k race shape and both my 10k race times showed that but it was still a set back. However I was back out Monday morning, following the new plan set by Running Made Easy (worth mentioning again, that they took over as my coaches from 1st of March, slight changes to begin with, more structured sessions and less double days).

I wrote my last training post on 16/3 and had up to that 3 bad days of running, feeling at little lost and questioning a lot of things. The on going tooth issue was finally sorted on the Wednesday and having finally got the head right midway through the week I was determined to give the new link up chance to actually work and as I said if I’m to have a coach I need to be 110% committed to allowing them to coach me, in doing so I will reap the rewards. Monday I did 7 miles at 7 pace back home from Penistone. One thing I fed back to my coaches was I was finding the switch from running 6 and 4 mile double days to longer 7/8 mile single runs. However after speaking to them I can understand their thinking behind it. Tuesday should have been track but getting to track on a Tuesday was proving difficult, in the end I ended up joining club members for a social run. I felt afterwards annoyed at myself as run from a training view point was pointless, although it was good to catch up with club mates. Wednesday was an easy 8 miles and after getting the root canal done I was feeling a lot better in myself. Thursday was when mentally I finally gotten myself behind RME and their plans for me. The track session was 6 x 800m, they gave me 10 reps to do, first 6 with the group and final 4 on my own. Aim was to run them at a set pace, so that’s what I did and then last four was a case of trying to up the pace. Was a really good session and I felt good. This was then followed by a strong weekend. First I had a 7 mile tempo run at 6:00/mi pace, I managed to average 5:59. Was my hardest and longest ever tempo run but at same time I feel I’m going to massively benefit from that session. I finished week with an 18 mile solo run, again finishing last with a strong final 4 miles.

  • Mon – AM 7 miles easy
  • Tue –  AM 7 miles easy
  • Wed –  AM 8 miles steady
  • Thu – PM track session – 10 x 800m
  • Fri – PM Rest
  • Sat – AM 7 miles tempo
  • Sun –  AM 18 miles easy

Last week I began to cut the miles back but work on speed, the coach put in a double day Monday, this I enjoyed with easy 6 in morning and steady 4 in the afternoon. Tuesday I caught bus out to Millhouses and then after a warm up, I did 3 x 2 miles with 90s recovery. Aim was to get the mile splits in 6:00 minutes. I averaged 5:53. Really enjoyed that session. After an easy Wednesday run, it was back to the track with a 2 mile tempo run before session on my own then with group it was down the clock, so 1000m to 400m off a 200m recovery. Despite the windy conditions managed to nail the session. After a rest Friday, I had choice of 20 x 1:00 on the road or 20 x 400m on the track. I opted for track, my wife acted as my time keeper for splits and managed them all in 82s or quicker with average being 80s with last 4 all being 76s or quicker. For first 16 I kept my discipline and held back but I reckon I can get them all under 76!. The week finished with an easy 10 miles from Stocksbridge over to Holmfirth. Now while it’s a scenic route there were certain roads that are not designed to be run on!

  • Mon – AM 6 miles easy / PM 4 miles steady
  • Tue –  AM 3 x 2 mile reps
  • Wed –  AM 8 miles easy
  • Thu – PM 2 mile tempo & track session – down the clock
  • Fri – PM Rest
  • Sat – AM track session – 20 x 400m
  • Sun –  AM 10 miles easy

So that’s winter done, enjoying my cut back week and then focus switches to getting my speed up so can have a good track season as well as sorting out my 5k and 10k road PB’s over the spring and summer.

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