Marathon training: Month 1

Four whole weeks of marathon training have flown by!
I’m training for Bristol to Bath Marathon on October 25th and have a 20 week training plan.
I started on June 8th and the first week set me up well for the next few, finishing with 9 miles to kick off a summer of Sunday morning long runs. 
Week two and I started to find my groove, intervals on Monday evenings and a 8-12km steady paced run on Wednesday evenings both with Fulham RC. I’ve found that now I’m running with the club on a regular basis and sporting my stripes (Fulham RC striped club vest!) at races, I’m much more likely to make the effort to get to training sessions, as much as for the run as the social aspect. Still signed up to ClassPass, I’m doing two reformer pilates sessions, two yoga sessions (one hot) and at least two strength/spin/HIIT classes a week. This might seem a lot on top of my running but it’s what my body and mind is used to, so for now they are staying. If I find they get too much or in the way of my running sessions later on in the schedule I’ll hold back, but I’m finding pilates in particular a great way to increase my glute strength, my weakest area, and yoga a good way of stretching and improving hip flexibility. Hopefully my cross-training will maintain my strength, help me prepare for and recover from my runs and fend off any niggles or injuries. 
I ended week 2 racing Edinburgh Seven Hills, a 14 miler with some serious inclines, not quite to schedule but it was already on my race list for the year so had to be incorporated into my training. 
Week 3 was a holiday for me, from work and London life not training, so I took my runs to new places in Ireland and North Scotland. I managed to fit in all my runs, including intervals and my long Sunday run, but cross-training took a back seat apart from a fun yoga class and one BodyPump weights session.
Week 4 was back to a more normal routine but also included the last of the Wimbledon Trail races and a fun relay running event in Windsor. 
The Wimbledon trail race was a tough 8 miles in blistering heat on the hottest day of the year so far in London! Despite a lot of runners dropping out at the half way water stop due to the heat I managed to get round and my perseverance paid off as I bagged 2nd lady overall in the race series! 
This week I also switched up my long Sunday miles for a Friday morning, running an 11 mile loop along the Thames Path to Chiswick Bridge and back before work. I was testing my schedule’s flexibility here as Nige was visiting at the weekend and I wanted to make the most of our time together and not have to worry about a long run interrupting things. It worked out well and I still felt I had energy in my legs for Saturday, running a 5 mile leg of Windsor relays (more about that coming on the blog later this week).
Month 1 Summary
Weekly endurance focused runs increased from 9 to 11 miles with total weekly mileage increased from 14 to 32 miles(!)
Weekly speed sessions maintained through track/interval sessions
Three races completed: Edinburgh Seven Hills, Wimbledon Trails Race 3, Windsor Relays

Month 2 Goals
Gradually increase endurance runs to 14 miles
Complete Northumberland Coastal Run race, 19th July
Incorporate more hill training into runs
Stay injury-free through cross-training


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