OK, I’m fully aware I’m risking things by dedicating a post to the subject of marathon training and my upcoming race… but here we go. Finger’s crossed I’m not jinxing anything.
I qualified for the Boston marathon last year at the Liverpool marathon and it was one of my favourite races of the year, if not ever (though it battles with the Cakeathon for that one…).
To qualify for Boston I needed a comfortable sub 3:35 to get in. Boston works on a tier entry system, so by qualifying either by over 20 minutes or 10 minutes, you have a good chance of getting in. Luckily my time was 3:24:06 which meant I could enter in the second tier of entries, guaranteeing me a place.
After doing some base-building through December, marathon training has fully begun now. Currently I’m about 14 weeks out from the race date. I won’t be doing week by week check-ins on my blog as I find these are really only interesting for the author (unless you want me to…?) and it’s really tempting fate to give me an injury. (I’m on Strava if you want to see all my runs though and I post a lot to Instagram).
My goals: Obviously a PB would be amazing. However, I’m not going to aim and train for one. I’d like to enjoy the atmosphere, soak in the sights and not risk injury. I’m going to Boston with my mum (my dad would come too but he can’t due to work) and we’re going to head to Cape Cod afterwards and not being injured would really help both of our enjoyments 😉 Plus it’s such an iconic race I’d like to remember it and not be watch-watching. The course is supposed to be quite challenging as well so letting off some pressure will help me enjoy it a bit more. Also, the worst thing (aside from injury) would be to finish the race feeling disappointed I hadn’t hit a certain time.
The plan: I’m loosely following the training plan I used for Liverpool as it seemed to work so well. But I won’t be sticking to it religiously as already I have different races and events coming up that means things are being tweaked. Ideally I’ll be running four times a week: a speed session (hills or intervals – probably going to be hills rather than intervals if I’m honest as that’s my preference), a medium run (6-8 miles), parkrun and a long run. I’m hoping to run 18 miles two or three times with possibly the Meon Plod 21 mile race (a hilly trail race, not to be raced!). My mileage will probably peak 35-40 miles but only briefly. Most of my weeks will be 25-30 miles. My body likes that best and I know I don’t need tons of mileage to run a marathon (at least to run the times I’m currently happy with).
Added extras: My love affair with the gym continues strong. I was able to maintain gym visits with Liverpool so I’m hoping to do the same. At the moment I’m gyming 4-5 times a week. It’s highly likely to drop to three sessions. Superfluous sessions which are purely for my own enjoyment and aesthetic purposes, like shoulders and arms, will be the first to go. I hope to maintain a legs, glutes and back day (with core work) as I find they’re very beneficial to running.Nutrition: All the cake all the time… 😉
And that’s it really. Obviously there is a fair amount of pressure to NOT GET INJURED as an expensive holiday (and expensive race) is on the cards here and my mum is coming with me. But if the worst comes to the worst and I do get injured and really cannot run the race, we’ll still go but just go to Cape Cod sooner rather than spend the time in Boston itself. I’m going to try and be sensible though and do most of my training (apart from interval sessions and parkruns) on my own as that way I can manage my own paces and stick to my plan. It worked for Liverpool so I’m hoping it will work again!
Are you aiming to run any specific races this year?
Where are you going on holiday?
Have you ever been to Boston before?