Training Recap Week 25 – The Moors And Unhelpful Expectations

Two weeks today I will run the Hardmoors White Horse Half Marathon, 16 miles up hill, down dale and an event 6 months in the making. Wow, has it really been six months since I started Jayson’s structured training plan?

I couldn’t have asked for a better build up as this was the week of records, nothing major, but a few break throughs for sure. First off, my longest weekly mileage of 32.44 miles, completely niggle free and secondly my fastest 10K of 48 minutes.

Despite all this I still managed to chew myself up over the most ridiculous expectations but hey, lets start from the beginning. So, my tight calf is now, well…no longer tight so back to full throttle there. Tuesday was a tough pyramid session which saw me gain the new 10K PB despite running an additional two miles and mixing the tempo from slow to fast. I wonder what I could achieve with a properly paced 10K race? Hopefully we will find out this year.

Thursday was another great day, Nick and I mixed the usual route up finding a faster than usual pace for what is meant to be endurance effort…the old Garmin showed good for heart rate, so certainly some improvement there.

My biggest issue to date is unhelpful expectations. We all have them, mine was hoping for mid 9 minute miles around the North Yorkshire Moors on Saturday’s LSR. Of course, the ground was unpredictable and sapped all my energy making it hard to find a rhythm or gain any bounce. I pushed too hard chasing my own tale and could feel the effort levels tipping over that of endurance. This could potentially leave my muscles open to fatigue and eventually injury. I felt good despite the extra effort though so felt it an OK, calculated risk.

Slap on the wrist and hopefully I will stop been such a tit (no guarantees) but come Sunday morning I felt fine and my recovery run was good too so all should be fine. And for those wondering what ‘chasing my own tail’ looks like, below is a POV from one of my descents.

Week 25 Training Recap

Monday – Strength and conditioning

Tuesday – Pyramid session – 8.05 miles – New 10K PB 48 minutes

Wednesday – Strength and conditioning

Thursday – steady run – 6.84 miles

Friday – Rest day

Saturday – LSR run around Hole of Horecum & Levisham Moors – 12.75 miles

Sunday – Recovery run – 4.8 miles

Totals –  = 32.44 miles  = 4hrs 57mins  = 2514ft

OK, I’m about to go all Mathy on you so bare with me. I can’t see White Horse been as bad under foot as my jaunt through the Moors and the ascent gain is almost identical. The two differences I can see are an additional 3.25 miles and the climbs are sharp as opposed to long. If I completed the 12.75 miles on Saturday in 2 hours and 6 minutes then the other 3.25 miles should take no more than 32 minutes. I would love to go sub 2hrs 30mins but would settle for 2.40.

I know what you are thinking, I’m at it again with the unhelpful expectations, but we have to have goals. right? I just need to manage my reaction if circumstances prevent me from fulfilling them and not get carried away in the race. Coach says start slow and assess myself late on, sounds like a plan.

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Darren Smith

Training with purpose since October 2016 Darren has gone from trailing the pack to winning local races and the times keep on falling. A true believer in hard work over natural talent he writes to help others realise their true potential. Darren's race schedule for 2018 includes the Hardmoors Wainstones marathon (1st place), Keswick Mountain Festival (10th place), Scafell Skyrace and Salomon Ring Of Steall (World Championship race.)

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