And just like that, the 13th of April is nearly here!
Somehow, I only have 4 hard sessions and a long run left before the London marathon. It’s been a tough old regime to follow, but do you know what? I’ve actually enjoyed it. I know it’s not cool, but I love routine, and I’m not a confident enough runner to try and attempt to write my own program: I’d constantly be second guessing what I’d told myself to do and if it was going to work.
Much as I’ve liked Hansons, it really won’t be for everyone: it’s a lot of running – 6 days a week for at least 6 miles on the advanced plan, and it can take up an awful lot of your life: even more than your average marathon plan.
It’s funny (and incredibly boring), but I can tell you pretty much exactly what I’ve been up to over the past 15 weeks, and what I’ll be doing for the remaining 3 too…
Mondays – easy 6 or 8 miles, first thing in the morning, at around 9 – 10 minute miles
Tuesdays – gym in the morning; speed session after work on the treadmill
Wednesdays – off or swim or gym
Thursdays – tempo session – I started running 6 and am now on 10 miles at tempo. I’d do this in the morning if I’ve had time, or straight after work if not.
Friday – easy 6 or 7 miles, first thing in the morning, at around 9 – 10 minute miles; “metabolic” weights class after work.
Saturday – 8 or 10 easy miles, at whatever speed my legs will let me go!
Sunday – either 10 easy, or 12 – 16 at 8.40ish minute miles.
(mileage for each week comes in around 55 – 60 miles on average)
And that’s how it’s worked. Week in, week out. I’ve occasionally broken up the easy runs into a lunchtime run with a run commute, but really, this is how every week has looked.
I feel quite physically prepared – I think. I am constantly running fatigued, and this means the ‘easy’ runs are not easy at all. For the past couple of weeks, the only runs I’ve felt strong in have been the speed and tempo runs: which is how it should be I guess, but also feels bizarre. I know that I must be fitter than I’ve been before – surely running 50 plus miles consistently must mean something?! But mentally, I am up and down. Most of me is sensible, and I know that I should trust the Hanson way and BELIEVE that their plan will work, but not running over 20 miles is mentally challenging in that I’m not sure I can actually run this distance. 16 miles is 16 miles, but can I do that other 10? 10 at (just faster than) marathon pace is all well and good, but it’s certainly not anywhere near 26.2.
I have a 16 this week – the final one- and I am so incredibly tempted to run faster… but luckily sensible Drew comes along and reminds me to TRUST the mmmbop method. TRUST!
The end is so near now, and I absolutely cannot wait to get to that start line. I said a little while ago that I didn’t think I’d be getting anywhere near my time dream… and I’m still worried I won’t, but also hopeful I will. I’ve been reading some other people’s reports of their experiences with Hansons, and there are PRs and PBs a-plenty… so I am crossing everything that these final 3 weeks go well, and that I might surprise myself – watch this space! (but not too closely.)