Into week one of marathon training and so far so good... I've decided on Hal Higdon's intermediate II schedule which has 3 20mile runs instead of the two I've done for Chicago and New York and a slightly higher weekly mileage. In addition, I've made a pact with Maddy to take cross training seriously and do it this time (last year I tended to skip the cross training in favour of rest - the couch potato is never far away). So Monday I threw myself into the swimming pool and managed 15 minutes of breast stroke before contemplating sinking to the bottom - I was so bored! However, I didn't want to pull out on my first day of training so I leapt onto my elliptical and did a 20 minute program on that. So, while not entirely succesful, all was not lost. Yesterday's 3 miler was nice and gentle and so in today's 5 miler after 4 leisurely miles (mile 1 10:44, mile 2 9:58, mile 3 10:22, mile 4 9:57) I kicked it in the last mile - 8:17! True, I looked like a beetroot when I was done but it felt great!
There's a new motivational tool on the web now for all of us autumn runners, some of whom are Phedippidations World Wide Half runners and it's called - drumroll - What's a few miles between friends? A whole bunch of us are linking our training logs to this site and motivating each other in our individual training programs for autumn races. Speaking for myself it has already worked - I just don't feel I can let my new friends down!
Finally - as per Irish Blue's latest post on that blog, I'm going to try to lose a few pounds in the course of this training schedule as well and have some ideas about this - I will let you know in the new few days! Till then, happy running and stick to your schedules (hear me Maddy? Don't do much more..)