Tonight will be the final long run of my training plan. I will be heading out with my good friend Ant, to run 28km. And that will be that. Other than a couple of weeks reducing my running load down steadily, my training will be mostly complete.
This is a good opportunity to reflect on how my training has gone. I think it is easy enough to summarise in one word. Inconsistent.
Starting in earnest on the 2nd January, if all had gone to plan I would have completed around 36-42 training runs at this point. In reality, I have completed 22. So slightly over 50% of my upper training target.
Now any running coach worth their salt will tell you that conistency is the key to marathon training. So why have I been so inconsistent?
Broadly speaking I think this comes down to two main reasons.
- Consistenly applying myself to anything has never been a strong point of mine. I set myself a series of rules or ideas to live by, then instantly rebel against myself. I have no idea why I do this, but I always have done and probably always will.
Now of the two above, I expected number 1 and can deal with number 1. Number 1 has been with me my entire life and I can plan around that.
The injury situation has been less than ideal. Starting with a right knee issue, various exercises and strenghtening have got rid of that, but no sooner did I manage to get the knee working than I developed insertional achilles tendonitis. Queue more exercises and physio, some new running shoes and a drastically reduced running schedule and the tendonitis is much better. Big shout out to Trevor Payne from Athletic Performance and Therapy for helping me with my injuries. As always, I owe you big time T.
What all this means though is that I have trained less than I should have. But I have still trained. Though I have had to battle through two different injuries in 3 months, I have not stopped training entirely for any period longer than 1 week.
According to Yale Medicine, over 50% of all regular runners get injured at least once per year. So I have had mine. That’s all there is to it. Or as my good friend Tim likes to say “It is what it is Snooky”.
Where this leaves us, dear reader, is that I am going to be going into London Marathon rather under-trained. What this means, I am not quite sure. To be honest, this is the most under-trained I think I have ever been for a marathon. This being said, there is absolutely no way that I will not make the start line and also no way that I will not finish. Wild horses could not hold me back from crossing that finish.
Mostly, in fact almost entirely, this is due to the amazing generosity that my friends, family, extended friends and family and some complete strangers have shown to my fundraising. I am humbled by this every time I fundraise. You guys who are reading this, those of you who have donated, you are the real heroes in this story. Not me. I just do the running. The generosity you have all shown carrys me along through those painful runs. The ones where you want to give up. The wind and the rain and the hurt and the pain. I genuinely do think of my sponsors at this time, and it is you that keeps me going.
So thank you.
For the rest of you who have not yet donated, there is still time. The race is in 20 days. Why not join the elite group of people who can say that they helped a middle aged, over-weight and under-fit man complete the London Marathon and raise a bucket load of cash for a great charity? Go on, you know you want to.