Monday, January 20, 2014

Bupa London 10,000 Week 2 / 9

Monday: 15 x (1' @ 3:00, 1' @ 6:00) + 3 x (1' @ 3:00, 1' @ 6:00) w/ 5' rest
Tuesday: 20' @ 4:00
Wednesday: 6 x (400-200) + 400, 400 @ 3:10 w/ 1' rest, 200 @ 2:50 w/ 30" rest
Thursday: 40' @ 4:00
Friday: 2 x 3 x 1,600 @ 3:25
Saturday: 60' @ 4:00
Sunday: -

I made a bit of a newbie mistake by letting my exuberance get the better of me on Sunday and "doubling up" because, on Monday - surprise, surprise - I was qute tired and, as a result, didn't quite manage to complete my workout as intended. I struggled a lot more than the previous week doing the same 15 sets I had done then without too much difficulty so that the final three really were the straws to break the donkey's back: I did them in the end, but not without a good long rest in between. Lesson learned for next week: don't push it on the easy days or you won't be able to push it on the hard days (when it really counts). Also, the easy days are there to give your body a chance to make the necessary adaptations to all the training stresses you are subjecting it to. If you don't rest properly you won't reap the benefits of training in the first place. I know this!

The other downer from the weekend was that we ran out of fuel for the boiler. Yes, in this day and age, we still have to call a lorry to come and deliver diesel to our house. We only noticed that we were out when it was too late to call so we spent the whole weekend wearing jumpers and having cold showers. As a result (although I don't really believe in the connexion between being cold and getting a cold) I got a cold. With all this in mind, I didn't feel so good on Tuesday so I only ran for 20 minutes instead of the 40-50 minutes I had set myself. Instead, I thought of it as a day off from training as I had gone for over a week without taking one.

I was about to leave home on Friday morning with my computer in my kit bag, all primed to be able to watch another episode of "The Walking Dead" to distract me from the discomfort and boredom of my training, when I (luckily) realized that the kids would have gone ballistic: Friday evening is their opportunity to play Minecraft. Funny that we should all be vying for the computer for zombie related activities. I wasn't looking forward to having to do my training run in the stifling work gym (I couldn't do it at home as I was going out with colleagues after work) without any entertainment. Then I had a brainwave - I set up my iPhone for a blind user and coaxed it into reading Daniel Kahneman's excellent "Thinking fast and slow" book to me on my Kindle, albeit it in a slightly robotic voice. I was surprised how well I was able to follow what she (it) was talking about.

I bumped into one of the monitors at the gym who asked me how my training was going, saying that I must be quite motivated after my recent Personal Best times. I realized that I am lacking a little bit of faith in my training plan because I am not so used to preparing 10K races - especially not so seriously - as triathlons and Marathons. Why is faith so important? When you are in the midst of a training programme you are almost by definition not at your best; if you were, then it would mean that you are not stressing your body enough and therefore not likely to improve (or be at your best...). You feel tired most of the time right up until the last minute when you taper down for the race and when you instead start to drive yourself crazy thinking that you are putting on weight and getting out of shape. The confidence comes with experience and being able to compare training performances with previous sessions at a similar point in the cycle.

In the meantime, my blog has made it to 100,000 hits! I was hoping to actually catch the moment (without cheating by pressing F5!) but in the end I forgot and it had already got to 100,015. Thanks for following the blog, it's nice to know that someone is reading it.

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