Friday, February 26, 2016

Madrid Marathon Week 9/18

Last week was a bit of an odd one, as I had planned to go on holiday - somewhat reluctantly, as I don't enjoy skiing much - with my family. But, as the little one was ill, they only went on Wednesday and I decided to stay at home (in case you are wondering, my wife did have help). As I had cleared my agenda of all meetings, work felt a bit like a holiday-not-holiday, and I enjoyed working on things that required a lack of interruptions with a more relaxed and calmer attitude than usual.

As you can see from the splits, it was much easier to nail the 400m intervals than the 1,600m intervals the week before. I always warm up and cool down about 2 kilometres before and after doing intervals (when I say "always", I mean since starting this plan) - if you have bothered to tot up my kilometre totals, this might explain the anomalies - but I hadn't realized that the Hanson's had intended me to do the same for the tempo runs. This changes things as a 13 km tempo run becomes a 17 km run with 13 km run at Marathon Pace. When I get to the 16 km tempo run, this becomes a 20 km run, which is getting on for being a long run - so the warm up / cool down is more than just a recommendation.

I have to say that I struggled a lot during my long run on Sunday. It may be due to walking around for hours the day before (in search of a birthday present for my wife) but, in any case, the idea of the long run is to simulate the closing miles of the Marathon, not the first few. I have to admit that I stopped 3 times during the run for about 5 minutes each time. I don't know if it was just mental or if I wasn't feeling tip top - but, one thing is for sure, I felt pretty shattered the rest of the day and my resting heart rate during the night was 44 bpm, about 5-6 beats higher than normal. My VO2Max (as estimated by my Garmin watch) took a dive from the 64 it has been showing consistently, to 62, a sure indication that something was up. I tend to blame those "annoying hills" because I think I am usual OK running at a steady pace on the flat - but I can't ignore them as they are an integral part of the Madrid Marathon course and, crucially, rear their ugly head in the critical closing stages of the race. Psychologically I find it tougher to start the long run at a reasonably challenging pace right from the get-go, as opposed to running some easy kilometres first.

Monday: 10 km @ 4:33 (track)
Tuesday: (speed) 6 x 800m w/ 400m recovery @ 3:16, 3:22, 3:26, 3:24, 3:25, 3:26
Wednesday(tempo) 13 km @ 3:52
Friday: 11.3 km @ 4:18
Saturday: 13 km @ 4:16
Sunday: 24.5 km @ 4:15 (with a few short breaks...)
Total kilometres: 88

VO2 Max (Garmin): 62 ml/kg/min
Resting pulse (average): 43 ppm
Fat (average): 6.8%

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