My latest running challenge- The NZ Sth Island double

I’ve been a little awol lately.

I’ve been working and running and thinking and planning.

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Frosty sunrise on my Saturday morning run, it was -1 and my hair froze

After being sidelined, I have been trying my best to “listen to my body” as everyone says. If somethings hurts I don’t push through, I’m drinking more water, following the 10% rule and all that.

I’ve been doing a lot of research into training for an ultra marathon and running in general. I guess I’ve been trying to reassure myself and make sure that what happened before doesn’t happen again. Every book, every article, every podcast, all pretty much said the same thing, don’t over do it.

Prior to running the half marathon at the Gold Coast Marathon Festival, I went through my Strava and Garmin Connect stats from the past 12 months.

I realized I wasn’t really keeping a training log or anything and was “tracking” my training on Strava but when I actually looked into it, it really wasn’t a diary. Vague headings like “morning run” and “treadmill session” without any details didn’t really help me make an assessment of where my fitness was at.

But what I did realize was there really wasn’t much difference between the amount of kilometres I was running each month last year and what I have been doing this year in the rebuild. The difference was I wasn’t paying any attention or planning out my runs last year. I was just throwing in races, a half marathon here, a 50k there and with the taper and the recovery after each, there wasn’t really much training going on at all.

With that in mind, I set my next challenge. The Shotover Moonlight Marathon and the Old Ghost Ultra, back to back, in February 2019.

Both being in the mountains on the south island of NZ, these races are certainly going to be a challenge for this flat lander.

This week was week 1 of my training and it has been one of the most solid weeks of training I have ever had.

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It’s around 350 steps to the top of Flinders Peak.

I started the week with an actual plan. My job can be unpredictable and so sticking to a plan of “do this on Monday” etc is not always possible and can cause me unnecessary stress and frustration. That is one of the reasons I initially loved the SquadRun program, they set out 7 runs and I just picked. Problem was, I didn’t plan or pick. I usually did the priority one and that was it.

The plan was to do two strength sessions, a long run and the rest nice and easy.

Monday- Easy 5-8km
Tuesday- Strength session- two repeats of Flinders Peak steps
Wednesday- Easy 5-8km
Thursday- Srength session at gym- Incline session on treadmill and leg resistance training
Friday- Rest Day
Saturday- Easy 10km
Sunday- Long run- 18km

That was the plan and I executed perfectly. The strength work hurt and burned my legs for days. The week day runs relieved stress and the long run was slow and steady.

And I logged my first 50km week since my set back in January. Looking forward to the next 216 days of smart training.

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