Manchester Marathon Training: Week 3 of 18

Week 3 marked the final week of 2014, an enormous year for me running wise and ushered in a new one with new targets. It also saw the last week of training plan disruption caused by the festive period, though this was managed quite nicely thanks to some creative thinking!

According to the book/training plan, this week called for:

Tuesday – 10m GA
Wednesday – 4m Recovery
Thursday – 8m (4m LT)
Saturday – 4m R
Sunday – 14m MLR

And this largely remained unchanged, except Thursday was New Years day! I wanted to take the opportunity to do a “parkrun double” s decided to switch the Tuesday and Thursday session, and add a mile either side of each parkrun which worked quite well.


Tuesday’s LT run was much harder than when I did it a few weeks ago. A Christmas of indulgence made me pay the price by delivering a tough run. I managed to hit the splits but it was far less comfortable. Note to self: Shift the Christmas timber!

Thursday was parkrun double day! In Bristol, Chipping Sodbury and Pomphrey Hill┬ástarted an hour and a half apart allowing 155 people to do both. As I was due to do 10m at General Aerobic pace, I though a mile warm up and warm down for each would be a good way of fulfilling the training obligations provided I didn’t take them too fast…. Jodie and I drove up with friends Nikkii, Steve, Paige and Kam and also stumbled across the Biss family who were also on double duty! It made for a good away day for Yeovil Montacute!


Chipping Sodbury is a 3 lap course on narrow tarmac paths around a rugby club playing fields. The tourism/NYD factor tripled their average attendance and the first lap was quite congested. This helped me keep it easy. I then started getting a bit faster as the run went on and even kicked in a solid finish before having a cool down lap. The people and marshals were lovely, though the course wasn’t the most interesting. Very flat though, and could be good for a PB in the right conditions!

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Pomphrey Hill was similar in that it was a three lapper, but had a feature hill which of course needed to be climbed 3 times! My warm up lap took me down it and it put the Yeovil Montacute hill to shame!┬áThe course is all tarmac apart from the hill and a section along the top which was woodchipping (Apparently the hill woodchippings are quite new – would have hated to have tackled it without them!) and the paths are much wider. I found the surroundings much nicer for some reason, and actually think this is one of my favourite parkruns!

In my run I decided to give it a good tempo effort as I liked the challenge of the hill. I wasn’t going all out but set a pleasing time with a good finish.

1910997_10152973371632241_4597823702280872528_oI couldn’t quite believe it but we had loads of volunteers for Saturday’s parkrun too, so I got the opportunity to run at home too! The idea was I’d do the run at recovery pace. It started well, but the competitive juices got going and upped the pace for the last mile. This was semi conscious – the last mile is ALWAYS the one my pace drops off at. So by injecting a quick last mile in a “training” run, meant I could get a psychological boost without affecting my training too much and taking too much out of my legs for the Sunday long run. I even managed a sprint finish!

16184689495_c73935357b_kThis puts me on 33 parkruns, a tantalising 17 from the 50 club!

Sunday of course meant a long run. 14 miles at LR pace. I managed to keep things nice and consistent, managed a good amount of climbing for strength building. The first 9 miles flew by, and the last 5 got gradually harder – though that’s to be expected!

Week 4 started today with a rest day! And it’s officially the start of Jantastic! The free online motivation challenge helps you to be consistent with your running, as consistency is the key to improvement. Sign up at to take part!


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