Nearly at the end of the 4th week of marathon training. So far weeks 1 and 2 were perfect and week 3 pretty much could not have gone worse. On the Saturday of week 3 I did manage a gently parkrun doing the 1st half with my wife and the second half just seeing how good I felt.
Week 4 was always down to be a taper week which worked out well to get myself back into running after the sickness. Monday I did 2 miles and then on Wednesday I did a new running club session that is the normal run Katie and I would do but we have invited the Plodders to join us. The session went well and we did a good 7 miles, I felt it a bit afterwards but overall a good run.
So to this morning, Christmas Eve parkrun and I was hoping that someone would offer to take the buggy, as it was Mia wanted to stick with me anyway and based on the last few weeks I thought I was in with a chance of a new buggy PB. You see they, they being the books, professional coaches and scientists, say that it takes 2 weeks to fully recover from running, so given that the 2 weeks before 2 weeks ago things went perfect and then I basically had no running to recover I was in theory in good shape. Katie has a similar trend to me so I was also hoping that she would do well.
I was feeling good this morning, probably about 95% with the slight cough I have left but just before the start they announced that someone had offered to pace 20 minutes. With my buggy PB, from April, standing at 20:14 I thought that I was in with a shout of sub 20.
It was really busy at parkrun so I had to sprint off of the start, the 20 minute pacer came past me and got about a 15 minute lead on me as I battled with traffic, once we were on the slightly wider path and the field thinned out I managed to tuck in behind a group of 4 or so runners with the 20 minute pacer to help block me from the wind, which was steady but not too significant. The first mile was a few seconds up on what we needed and it felt pretty good, the second mile included the turn around and was bang on the required pace and then it started to feel a bit hard at around 2.5 miles. I knew however that I was on for something special, at least it would be special for me. It was about a year ago that I broke 20 minutes for the first time without the buggy and doing that with the buggy was not something I had considered.
I had to dig deep and the 3rd mile buzzed through again a couple of seconds up, my pace was holding just about on what I needed and then we hit the grass finish and a push for the line... I am under no illusion that I probably looked awful at this point, with my hands firmly on the buggy I could do nothing tidy myself up. Stopping at the finished I felt done for, I can't really remember the last time I really pushed at parkrun, put everything into a 5k and delighted that I got that buggy PB and that sub 20 with 19:57.
Stood around telling everyone as I couldn't really believe it myself.
So the above was typed yesterday but life got in the way and I forgot to post. This morning we ran down to parkrun, did Christmas day parkrun and ran home. It all felt really tough today apart from the last 200m when things started to click, typical!
Merry Christmas everyone.