Today was a massive challenge for my training routing this week – building up from 17km to the full distance for the Half Marathon in one leap. My target times are all based on continuing at the same pace for the whole distance – even though I hadn’t actually ran that far.
Both Edgie, my training buddy & I had a route in mind and an extended loop to complete the full 21.1km distance. The only thing we had to agree was the pace we wanted to take during it. After agreeing to a 7mins per 1km pace, we set off and worked at aiming for this target time/pace. But as usual we kept speeding up and ended up doing the first 7.25km in sub46mins – 3mins ahead of our time.
For the next 7km it was a similar story of being too fast – completing the distance in a time of sub45mins, a total time of 91mins for 14km+. Now this pace wasn’t very challenging in comparison to our previous distance – about 5mins slower, even though we aimed for a 10mins slower time.
The final 3rd of the distance was not as straight forward as the previous 14km – a few hills added to the challenge and my breathing/sore throat started to play up. I was struggling to breath when I started to do the elevations – this caused me to include a few walking periods to get my breathing back to normal, before the next rise. It was during the last 3km-4km that I really needed the support of Edgie, running buddy, to get me through it – the 7km distance was still completed in sub48mins – again ahead of our target time.
In total we completed 21.38km in 2hrs 19mins – which was 10mins ahead of the target time, but also 4mins slower than our predicted time for completing the English Half Marathon in under 3 weeks time.
To be fair, Edgie was able to run much faster than me today and he should have knocked another 10mins+ of the time, but he stayed with me to encourage me to carry on at the pace we had slowed down to. (We started off around 6mins 20secs for the main of the distance, but I drastically slowed down to about 7mins 30secs for the last 4kms – ish!!!! Our average time was 6mins 37secs for each 1km over the total distance. Still a lot faster than the planned timings.
It was then a quick shower, something to eat and a couple of hours to rest/chill before Part 2 of today’s efforts.
Back to the gym to meet up with Derek, another running buddy – I had agreed to ‘PACING’ him for a 5km road run today. Derek did his warm-up on the treadmill whilst I was doing a few stretches to loosen my aching leg muscles. Then off we went around the local park and hills to improve his time & distance. Now for Derek, he’s not a natural runner and see’s it as a chore – but he gives his best. (He is also 10yrs older than me and that is impressive.)
I did my usual motivational tricks with him and increased the pace slightly, without telling him. I also increased the distance to ensure he completed the 5km quite easily. So at the end of this session Derek had completed 5.5km in a time of 38mins, which was a New PB for him today. He was very pleased & impressed with his efforts and he said he actually enjoyed doing the extra loop at the end – my little trick to say we hadn’t completed the 5km at that time – #Fibber #BadMe.
In total today, I have ran a distance of 27km in 2hrs 57mins which isn’t bad going – seen as I was only up to 17.5km at the start of the day. Now that I know I can do the full distance and have a focused time to aim for, I am looking forward to running the EHM in 17days time. Will be aiming to beat today’s time and also to get rid of this sore throat/breathing issue.