Monday, 13 November 2017

Great Scottish Run 10km Road Race, 1st October 2017 (Including Preparation)

Due to work commitments, I decided to write off September in terms of races. I was far from idle however. After the Scottish 5000m, I had an easy 6 mile recovery run on the Monday then took a rest for the remainder of the week to let my lingering aches and pains clear up, particularly in my calves. Two high calibre races in a week had taken their toll. I'm getting old! I don't recover the same in my mid 30s as I did in my late 20s.

Thereafter I worked towards the Great Scottish Run 10km, a race where I had finished 4th in 31:11 in 2016. What follows is my training leading up to the race with some comments.

Week Commencing Sunday 3rd September
Sunday: 9 miles easy (57:19) in East Kilbride.
Monday: 9 miles easy (59:24) in Paisley.
Tuesday: Reps, 1 mile, 2 miles, 1 mile with 90 secs recoveries, 8 miles including warm up and warm down, rep times- 5:13, 10:35, 5:12.
Wednesday: 10 miles easy (1:06:00) in Paisley
Thursday: 5 x hill reps (800m approx per rep) with jog back recoveries, 5 miles in 30:28, 9 miles including warm up and warm down.
Friday: Rest.
Saturday: Longer run, 15 miles (1:38:25).
Mileage: 60

Week Commencing Sunday 10th September
Sunday: 8  miles approx easy (52:00) at Strathclyde Park- ran with a stopwatch, 8 miles minimum covered.
Monday: 9 miles easy (58:04) in Paisley.
Tuesday: Reps, 1 mile, 2 miles, 1 mile with 90 secs recoveries, 8 miles including warm up and warm down, rep times- 5:23, 10:51, 5:16- wet night and feeling off colour.
Wednesday: 8.5 miles easy (55:00 approx) in Paisley- ran with a stopwatch, feeling tired.
Thursday: Rest- working until 7pm to get up to date.
Friday: Rest- enforced. Day off work for my birthday. Intended to do a hill session but felt weak from a vomiting bug the night before.
Saturday: 10.6 miles easy (1:08:56)- feeling better, shortened run to ease back in.
Mileage: 44

Week Commencing Sunday 17th September
Sunday: 12 miles easy (1:19:42)- bowel trouble after 9 miles, nursed myself through the remainder.
Monday: Reps, 5 x 1 mile with 1 min-1:10 recoveries, 10 miles including warm up and warm down, rep times- 5:29, 5:24, 5:23, no time for 4th rep (watch didn't start), 5:25- poor session, feeling run down and bowel trouble during warm down. Felt need to regroup.
Tuesday: Rest.
Wednesday: 12 miles easy (1:16:55) in Paisley- pouring rain but a much better run.
Thursday: 5 x hill reps (800m approx per rep) with jog back recoveries, 5 miles in 30:30, 10 miles including warm up and warm down.
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Longer run, 16 miles (1:42:30)- felt very strong.
Mileage: 60

Week Commencing Sunday 24th September
Sunday: 8 miles easy (52:16) in Fort William- early morning run, away for the weekend.
Monday: Reps, 2 miles easy, 10 x 1 min with 1 min jog recoveries, remainder of the run easy, 8 miles in 47:35.
Tuesday: 8 miles easy (52:06) in East Kilbride.
Wednesday: Track, 5 sets of 400m, 200m with 200m jogs between reps, 5000m in 18:26, 6.1 miles including warm up and warm down, 400m rep times- 71, 73, 72, 71, 73, 200m rep times- all 35-36.
Thursday: 15 mins easy then 3 sets of 3 x 30 secs strides with 5 mins easy between sets and 30 secs easy between reps, 6 miles in 37:06 (in Paisley).
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 4 miles very easy (36:09) in Motherwell.
Mileage: 40

Sunday 1st October
Race- Great Scottish Run 10km, 1st in 31:37, first race since 27th August.

One key difference in my training in 2017 has been increased mileage. At the time of writing, 45 weeks into the year, I've manged 60 miles or more in 17 of those weeks with a high of 63 so far. I aim to have clocked 20 such weeks by the end of the year. For a lot of runners, 60 miles per week is not a huge amount but, for someone who was used to 40-50 then 50-55, it is. I have noticed a great benefit, particularly feeling stronger in the later stages of races, even when it's not been going as well as I want. The Scottish 5000m at Grangemouth is a case in point.

The planned preparation for Glasgow had been 3 weeks of 60 plus then taper off. I managed 2 out of the 3 60 milers, the only exception being a vomiting bug seeing me miss a session then shorten a run to give a total of 44. As for the race, I was delighted with how it went. Yes, my time was slower than 12 months previously but conditions were far less favourable. Running in a group until 3km, I made a burst for glory uphill onto the Kingston Bridge and pretty much held on from there. I couldn't relax because my gap in the end to runner up Alasdair McLeod (Shettleston) was only 18 seconds with my clubmate Douglas Roberts (sadly disqualified due to an admin mix up) another 11 seconds adrift. People can often assume that because you're clear in a race it's easy. Rest assured it isn't. I always run on the assumption there's someone on my shoulder. I would also add that you've not won until you've crossed the finish line, no matter how big your lead. Celebrate after you're safely over the finish line.

The day wasn't only about me as my buddy from Inverness, Jenny Bannerman, took runner up spot in the ladies race in 35:50. In addition, my brother Robert, running the race for the second time, clocked a personal best of 51:28, a 6 minute improvement in a year. 

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