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How to run like me – The Hanson Marathon Method part 2

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the training plan I’m following at the moment in training for the Snowdon marathon at the end of next month.  The feedback was great, and I’m so glad it inspired so many of you to try a different way of training.

This week has been a ‘peak’ week in training for me, and so I thought I’d share how training the Hanson way actually fits in when the miles ramp up.  I had some questions around how the big mid-week miles work – and here’s how:

Monday

Cycle to and from work

I kicked off the week with a pre-work gym session.  I love doing weights, and the only thing I don’t like about a plan that involves so much running is sacrificing weights sessions when things are busy and I’ve only got time for one workout.  I didn’t have time to get any lifting in last week, so today was tough!

Monday is always an easy run, and today was 8 chilled out miles.  I spilt the miles over my lunch break and a mosey around Lewes – where we’ve just moved to – after work.  The aim is to run about 1 to 2 minutes slower than goal marathon pace on easy runs, so I try to average about 9 minute miles for these runs, but don’t get too hung up about it.

Tuesday

Cycle to and from work

When you’re woken up at 5.45 by driving wind and rain against your bedroom window, the last thing you want to do is head out for 3 x 2 mile reps. So I didn’t, and put off my session until after work.

I ended up doing them on the treadmill as it was still all the windy in the evening.  The treadmill isn’t ideal for this type of session, but at least it meant my pace was bang on.  I run these just 10 seconds quicker than marathon pace, off 800m recovery, and the session is 11 miles in total, so takes about an hour and a half.

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Wednesday

Cycle to and from work

Rest day! I sometimes sneak in a gym session on Wednesday’s, but not today. It’s a big week and my body was crying out for some downtime.

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Thursday

Cycle to and from work

Thursdays mean tempodays, and today was the final round of 9 miles – it goes up to 10 next week for 3 weeks – at goal race pace (7.38 m/m).  I always get to work super early, drop my bag off and run down into Brighton and back, as Lewes is too hilly to get any sort of consistency in pace.  I try and do a 1.5 mile warm up and cool down within the run, as with Tuesdays intervals.  As I usually do this run ‘fasted’, it can get quite tough right at the end, but I’ve got used to it. I’m back, showered, fed and ready to go at 9am.

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Friday

Cycled to and from work in the pouring, pouring rain.  Indian Summer.

Did a lunchtime gym session and ran 7 miles after work.  As I ran along the path to Ringmer, an old bloke was cycling the other way, and as we passed said: “good hair”, which made me laugh for about a mile. My legs feel heavy and tired, and much as I enjoy running without the pressure of hitting a certain pace, these runs are often the hardest of the week – the fatigue is allowed to kick in and it can be a real effort to drag my legs around for an hour.

Saturday

To start the weekend off, a relaxed 8 miles exploring Lewes with Bez before breakfast.  He’s been on lates this week, which means he’s not home until I’ve gone to sleep, and I’m up before him, so it’s lovely to have time for a proper chat and catch up.

We did a bike maintenance course in the morning, went to Homebase in the afternoon to choose paints (Dulux Snowman everywhere, incase you were wondering) and then both feel asleep in front on the rugby in the afternoon. I don’t recommend marathon training and redecorating a whole house.

Sunday

Had a great 16 mile run on a surprise beautiful Sunday morning.  I had kind of been looking forward to my long run all week, and I think this says a lot about the way the week is structured under this programme. Once I’d got over slow mile 1, I found my stride and felt strong and in control for the whole run.  Despite a couple of collisions with stinging nettle bushes and a cyclist in a world of his own nearly taking me out, it was a great morning out.   I spent the rest of the afternoon in a cupboard scrapping wallpaper and snacking.

62 miles in the bank for that week and my legs are feeling happy – amazingly!

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P.S Cross-training:

I’ve had a couple of questions around doing cross training and how that fits in. The book does not recommend or leave much room for cross training, as you’re running a marathon, and you’re not going to get better at running by not running. However, as you’ll notice, I’ve continued to cycle to and from work (11 miles round trip) every day and try to do at least 2 weights sessions a week, although they are the first to go when I’m short on time.

I know a lot of people think their bodies can’t handle running every day, and I thought I was one of them, but I think you can train your body to be able to handle the miles: if I can do it, I’m sure most people can.

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5 thoughts on “How to run like me – The Hanson Marathon Method part 2

  1. I trained for my first marathon whilst also doing a massive DIY kitchen renovation every weekend and I don’t recommend it either! Crouching on the floor laying tiles or sanding skirting boards is terrible recovery!! X

  2. Dude that is some week! I’m really jealous of your cycle commute, I’ve just moved offices to about 10mins away by bike and I miss my daily hill over 7 dials! Excited to see how you do at snowden!!!

  3. If I get in for London or maybe do Berlin next year, you’ve inspired me to try Hansons- as long as I’m on a rota that’s a bit less ridiculous than my current one- bought the books and everything! Excited to hopefully meet you at last at Snowdonia and see just how speedily you get on!

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