Monday, 25 May 2009

A Poor Weekend

What should have been a busy training weekend has in fact been a disaster.
Another new pair of shoes, again Mizuno Wave Rider 12s, purchased on Thursday having discovered that I could poke my finger through the mesh at the join with the sole on my newest pair and the previous pair having been past safe wearing on roads a long time ago. I set off for Milngavie by train on Friday, running home from there via the WHW and Cycle Route 7 to the Vale where I opted to catch the train home rather than drag my sorry ass over the Carman just to prove I could. Why? I set off with a pretty full rucksack, plenty fluid, plenty snacks and a skip in my step. But ended up with a hamstring that was pulling with every step, tight calfs that also felt they were about to snap and so many negative thoughts in my head, calling into doubt my ability to run 95 miles in one go in just 4 weeks time.I know that I have yet to recover from the Fling; and running in so much sand in Portugal probably didn't help. I've again taken two days off,I'm still feeling my calf and my lower back is suffering too. My pace was deliberately slow and the trip took me 4 and a quarter hours; as close to race pace as I could manage without running backwards!
JR is always on about learning to run tired and he exhausts himself every year before tapering and getting his strength back, but I am firmly of the belief that I should listen go my body, and stay as fresh as I can no matter what I'm training for. Having said that I've probably erred on the side of caution too much and I definitely should have done more mileage. My longest run has been the Fling and although I'd have liked to get a lot of miles in this weekend, I don't think I have enough time left to recover if I do a lot now or next weekend.
So it's down to getting running again, tapering from now and getting as much recovery in as I can before deciding whether or not to run the WHW race. If I'm not enjoying my training a week before the race then I won't start. As there is no reserve list left I'm not doing anyone out of their place so I'm under no pressure there. I know from reading the blogs that I'm not alone in struggling at this time so I will give it till the last moment before making my decision.


Subversive Runner said...

Dave, I wouldn't regard your experience as a disaster. A setback maybe but not an insurmountable one. If you're not injured on June 19th I reckon you ought to run. If you can manage The Fling then it's just mental doubts messing with you, not physical. If you start and DNF you'll be in good company but at least you'll have gone out, bitten off more than you can chew, but fuckin' chewed anyway. And how much will you know about yourself if you don't run this year?

John Kynaston said...

I agree!

Unless you are really injured go for it. My first year I was struggling with an injury after the Fling and a different injury during the race but got through it.

Some of the best advice I was given was to see it as a 2 year plan. Use this year to learn as much as you can and then aim to put into practise all you learn for next year.

I really hope you'll be there at 1am on 20th June!


Tim said...

Hi Dave,

I don't know why it should be but feeling like crap in the run-up to the race is a very common experience for some runners. Perhaps tapering is just unphysiological, I dunno.

I would just agree with JK and Subversive and say don't get too spooked by it. In my first year my longest run in the build up to the race was only 28 miles due to injury but I finished.

A lot depends on what your goals are but I'd say go for it.

Debbie Martin-Consani said...

Chin up, buddy. I could barely walk at the end of June last year - problems with the arch of my foot forced me to rest for two whole weeks. Like the others said, give it a bash. I believe that if you can still walk (I had to walk from Tyndrum) then you'll make it to the end. It's the mental drive that you need.

Billy said...


I'll echo the others and say go for it if you can. And give yourself a fighting chance on the day by starting S-L-O-W!

Davie said...

Thanks for all the foregoing.
JR (Who?) e-mailed me last night and had me toeing the line this mornig at 9am for a S L O W canter round Balloch Park. My back is still giving me gyp and my hammies are singing, but I've had the proverbial boot by JR and told to stop greetin'!

BTW Billy, I started even faster than your analysis. I arrived at Drymen in 1hr55 but didn't give my number until I left after changing shoes!