Friday, 18 December 2015

The end of my failed sub 20 5K training

So here we are after seven weeks of dedicated training, my sub 20 5K attempt will be tomorrow. 

If you have been following my progress you will know that sub 20 ain't going to happen tomorrow, it's just not on the cards.

I've trained hard and really tried to focus on improving my speed but it's just not happened. I'm not putting too much pressure on myself and I'm not going to beat myself up, it's a challenge I have aimed for and not quite achieved and I would much rather try for something and not achieve it than not try at all. 

I am still hopeful of a shiny new PB which would mean breaking the 21 minute barrier which is a great time non the less.

The reasons for me not quite hitting my target are quite clear to me:

  • I have been too busy and not been able to dedicate enough quality time to training, but hey that's life!
  • My diet has not been great, again being busy doesn't help and a few trips away haven't helped either.
  • With my training I know some of my sessions haven't been as tough as they could have been, many of my 200m interval sessions should have been 400s and my 400s 800s.
  • I also feel that my body has not responded to training that well, maybe it's feeling a bit older, poor diet or not enough rest or probably a mixture of the three. 
Since my last training update here's what I have been up to...

On the 6 December I embarked on my longest run since my marathon in October, a 14K new route exploring the local area of Harold Hill and Noak Hill. It was great to get back into the long run mentality and just enjoy running for a long period of time and taking in the scenery of the new route. The highlight of the run was spotting a Buzzard flying above me before perching in a tree just across the road, I was too bust staring I didn't really get a good photo as you will see below. When I was younger I had a keen interest in birds of prey so this was a real highlight of my running career. 

In terms of speed sessions I have tried several different sessions:

  • 400m hard with 200m recoveries
  • 800m sprints with 2 minute recoveries 
  • 1K hard aiming for sub 4.30min/km with a K at easier pace
  • 1K aiming for sub 4 minutes and the continuing into a few more sub 5 minute Ks
I will be honest and say I enjoy the longer tempo type sessions where I running for longer sustained periods of time as opposed to the sprint intervals sessions.

Running in Venice

The real highlight of my running in recent weeks was popping out for a run while on holiday in Venice. Initially I decided I had to run while on holiday as I had decided to do a runstreak through December, although I actually forgot about the trip to Venice when deciding on the runstreak. But then I thought why the hell shouldn't I run on holiday? 

So on a glorious sunny afternoon headed out for a run navigating the waterways, tourists and piazzas of this historic city. I ended up running a 1K hard alternating with a 1K easy session covering 7K. It was a great experience to run in such an iconic place that provided a stunning back drop especially on such a sunny day. 

My run took me over 14 of Venice's famous canals via stepped footbridges many of which still had ramps put in place for the recent Venice Marathon as my route took me along the last mile or two of the marathon course

A great experience to add to my list of running highs as well as a great way to burn off the overindulgence's in pizza, wine and limoncello during the holiday! 


Last weekend I ran a 5K that was definitely a run not a race. I joined 550 other people including a group of family members to run around the annual Dagenham santa run, Essex dressed as Santa for this festive fundraiser for Saint Francis Hospice

As always it was a great atmosphere and a lot of fun raising funds for charity, a great event to remember the joys of running and the great support and camaraderie it can create.

My failed runstreak attempt

At the start of December I did embark on an advent running runstreak but this kind of petered out mainly due to tightness in my calves and knowing I need to listen to my body and take some rest. I still managed 15 days of exercising every day which included 12 days of at least 30minutes running on each day.

Fingers crossed for tomorrow at least the weather is looking good as the weather is still so mild. We will see how it pans out time wise but I am really keen to bag myself a PB! 

Good luck to everyone running this weekend!