The Road To MK

So I have been putting off doing this blog post simply because it makes it all seem very real. Yes yes I know it’s real any ways and regardless I’m running this marathon but it still seems more real now!

So I started off my plan by going from the start of the year to the Silverstone Half Marathon with the aim to do a 01:40:00 race. My training really started 05/01/2014, I did do a few nice runs in Australia at the end of Nov/start or Dec. On the 5th I started with a 10k run, for the next two weeks I planned to do 5k’s during the week and 10k’s on the weekend.

Then the real longer run’s started and I followed the plan below. As well as the weekend long run’s I planned to do two 5km run’s during the week. I planned to mix these between slow and fast run’s depending on how I felt.

Road To Silverstone Half

Road To Silverstone Half

Week 1: Planned 10kms —– Actual 10kms
Week 2: Planned 20kms —– Actual 20kms
Week 3: Planned 25kms —– Actual 25kms
Week 4: Planned 25kms —– Actual 25kms
Week 5: Planned 25kms —– Actual 27kms
Week 6: Planned 30kms —– Actual 30kms
Week 7: Planned 30kms —– Actual 33kms
Week 8: Planned 20kms —– Actual 22kms
Week 9: Planned 31kms —– Actual 31kms

Road To SilverstoneSo my training worked and I got time I really really wasn’t expecting….. 01:36:35! That is a PB of 06:35 compared to my only other half, Royal Parks Half 2013. Silverstone was great fun even if it was very windy and with the odd bit of rain. People say it’s dull but I don’t tend* to look further than the 20 meters ahead of me which is just always tarmac! *Well unless there is a great bum to look at, lucky for me and Dave there was for the first 4 miles….

Up until now my plan was to “just” finish MK marathon and within 4 hours. I was then planning to set a decent time for the Yorkshire Marathon in October but since the Silverstone Half went so well I have thought about adjusting my plans a little. So on the Monday after Silverstone I decided to look at what runners world race predictor said I should be able to do the marathon in……. turns out its broken and thinks I could so a 03:21:22!!!!! Broken I tell you!!

Broken RW's website!

Broken RW’s website!

So as a result I have decided that I will push myself and train for a 03:30:00 time, I have no idea if this is achievable yet so from here on in my plan is a bit up in the laps of the running gods. But what is fixed is the distances I want to do, as I say the key point is completing the distance first of course! Then I’d like under 4 hours then I’d like 3 hours 30!

The bit I’m really not sure on is if my last long run is too long & too close to the race. For me I will have to do a 40km training run before hand. I don’t want to be finding the extra distance on race day, if anything I want to be finding extra time. I like to know I can do it, it’s how I have worked for both half marathons and I beat my target time for both events so I’m keeping with this philosophy for the marathon.

The Road to MK

The Road to MK

Right lets do this!!

Jay

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Basic But Effective

At work we have a fitness area that has been set up using begged, borrowed and stolen equipment in an old out building.

It’s really nothing special that’s for sure. It’s cold, draughty and a little bleak but its great!

The Fitness Area

The Fitness Area

All we have is;

  • Treadmill x 2
  • Static Bike x 2
  • Cross trainer x 1
  • Punch Bags x 2
  • 5kg Medicine Balls x 5
  • 5kg weights poles x 5
  • Two Benches with a mix of random weights
  • A mix of skipping ropes and sparing pads.

To me its amazing! It’s amazing for a number for reasons really.

Firstly its great that a small team like mine actually wants to try to provide its staff with the benefits that make working their just a little easier.
Secondly it’s great for me because it gives me extra space and equipment to keep my exercise varied and inserting.
But most importantly it keeps reminding me that getting fit doesn’t require all brand new shiny tech and lots of gear!

Basic doesn’t have to mean ineffective! If you want some thing just use what you have got and work hard!

#FitterStrongerFaster

Artwork:
The team was also lucky that one of the race team guys mate is a fantastic street artist, he created this amazing art work on the walls to brighten up the draughty old building!

photo 3

photo 1(I’ll add the artist’s Facebook page tomorrow)

Gotta Start Somewhere……

I would never say I was a sporty kid growing up but I sure wasn’t a lazy kid either. I did do some sports growing up, PE class, basketball with friend, karate (I must have watched the Karate Kid!). I was never into football as a kid so I never really got involved with that. I was just one of them kids that was out at the park, riding my bike or exploring (I probably felt like Ray Mears at the time) my local woods, fields and canals.

As I got older most of this dropped off due to college and work. I never got fat or any thing, I don’t really eat crap and was always on my feet at Starbucks, but I sure wasn’t getting fit! This continued until university, during my time at university I learnt squash, went to the gym on and off and so on.

In my fourth year of university a good friend (Joe) of mine who I worked with at Starbucks got me into cycling. I really enjoyed and sort of got hooked on it during the summer, but when winter/university work came my riding became the odd ride here and there. During my final year of university my one and only focus was my grades so my only fitness was cycling to and from university (5 miles each way) as often as I could. Even this was hit and miss with doing many long long day’s working on the Formula Student Car taking over my life!!

At the start of 2012 I bought myself a new bike on the cycle to work scheme and I love her (yeah yeah to me she’s a girl and I call her Julieta!). I was also back to playing squash weekly in a little round robin with the guys from my new job at Force India F1, this was loads of fun and quite competitive which I liked.

Julieta

Julieta

Buying my bike gave me a lot of focus to get out on the bike and get my ass moving. So off I set doing all my riding on my own and managed to clock up 823 miles over 59 rides.  As I was cycling more I got talking to some of the other cyclists at work more and more. One guy, called Dave, in particular was great to chat to and said about joining him on rides. During the 2012 he also started saying I should do some triathlon’s with him!! Two little issues 1) I couldn’t run and 2) I couldn’t swim!!! So as you can imagine I called him a fool and laughed him off when ever he mentioned.  In August I went to visit Joe in North Carolina, he lives on a beautiful lake out there….. While being in this lake I decided to start improving my swimming (I can only do breast stroke), if I wasn’t going to do it now when would I?!? So every day I was in the lake swimming between the docks in the cove and I really enjoyed it, clearly swimming in warm water on days when the air temp was 35oC was always going to be pleasant.

Joe sat on his dock :)

Joe sat on his dock  🙂

When I got back to the UK, me & Kala joined the local swimming pool and decided to do the Aspire Swim Challenge, this gave me a great target and my swimming improved loads (In summer 1km took me about 40mins and by the end of the challenge I was down to about 25mins). So while doing this challenge Dave was still saying about doing a triathlon, I gave it some more thought and decided that I’d download a couch to 5k app. In November I started running, it was very slow going and I hated every second of every run! By the end of December I had swam 52 miles and ran 77 miles.

At the start of 2013 I took the plunge and said to myself that I would do the Bicester Sprint Tri. Once I had done this it was like a red rag to a bull and I went about setting myself a load of targets to do over the year.

My 2013 Target's

My 2013 Target’s

Doing this sure put a spark into me for my running and other training. I finished off the couch to 5k app and I started do the odd Park Run’s. I  was pushing myself hard, I was out in the snow, wind & rain and I was loving it. My pace was improving and my distance was increasing and I was getting primed for my first Tri. Come the day of the tri it snowed and the event got cancelled 😦

It was at this point I was grateful for setting myself a list of targets to keep me focused and I did the Silverstone 10k. After doing the 10k I was loving running and some how got roped into signing up to a half marathon, this was not in my list of target’s but hey ho! I’ll do a blog post about the half another day, this post is already becoming a novel……. sorry!

So from the photo below you can see how I did, I also did the Strava Festive500!! I am super proud of my efforts I must say.

How I did in 2013 :)

How I did in 2013 🙂

So what the issue you ask? Why aren’t I a happy with my fitness? Well the big issue with my training in 2013 was it was still sporadic or too focused on a single event. Some months I would focus on weight training too much, or I put all my focus into getting ready for the half.

So for 2014 I’m planning to raise my game over 2013 and keep focused. That is where this blog comes in, I’m going to document my training and the events I enter hopefully receive advice from fellow fitness bloggers 🙂

So far my plans for 2014 are to do two marathons (Milton Keynes & Yorkshire Marathon), cycle London to Paris, complete stage 2 of the TdF and many more to come.

I hope not to bore you too much over the year with my posts and I promise that my posts wont be this long!!

Jay

#LetsKickAss