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November Training Update

November 16, 2011

I’ve waited a little while to post a training update because (in the spirit of strict honesty) I’m a bit vain and I didn’t get off to a very good start.

I’m a minimalist runner. I’d be a barefoot runner except that London streets have a bit too much grit and broken glass for my liking, so I run in aqua shoes to protect my soles. It may sound crazy to you but I love it – I feel much lighter without shoes. Minimalist running needs a totally different running style to the one most people use. Instead of putting your foot down heel first, as you would when walking, you land on the ball of your foot. It’s quite good for people with funky joints because it spreads the impact of running right the way from your foot to your thighs rather than absorbing most of it with your knees. It also teaches you not to stomp your foot down. Believe me, you learn that very quickly.

As I’ve recently discovered minimalist running also uses all the muscles in your feet. In retrospect this should have been obvious but what can I say, it’s never come up before. My first long run went really well. I flew through the miles. Afterwards my feet ached a bit but nothing too awful considering what I’d been up to. Feeling like I deserved a rest I planted myself on the sofa for the afternoon. All was fine until I tried to get up again. It was agony! I’d completely overworked the muscles in my feet and ended up hobbling around like a little old woman for a week.

Needless to say that put my training back a bit. Still, I’m back on track now. Training proper starts in the New Year so right now (well not right now, I’m typing this, you know what I mean) I’m making sure I’m fit and healthy enough so that when the really tough stuff kicks in it doesn’t kill me. That means running three times a week, including a 10 mile run at the weekend, and doing two sessions of circuit training to build up my strength. I’m down to 9 minutes 14 seconds a mile for the long runs. My eventual aim for the marathon itself is 10 minutes per mile on average, which is well within reach right now.

The next big challenge is going to be the weather. Staying motivated once the weather turns cold will be really hard. Watch this space to see how I get on.


E xx


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