Nought to Marathon: The Final Countdown
With 2 weeks to go until Paris Marathon on 8th April, Lucy and Sam are counting down to race day, and looking back over the past 5 months of going from #NoughtToMarathon!
It's just two weeks to go until we take on Paris, it's come around so fast and I can't quite believe it's tapering period already. My training has once again taken a questionable turn. 2 weeks ago, I took a group of our students out to Barcelona to take on the marathon and I ended up running the course with one of my fab challenge leaders. It wasn't so bad, as Amy had an injury we were taking it at a leisurely run/walk pace. But, the distance and time being on my feet really took its toll on my legs. The day after returning to London, I attempted a Tabata class and it's safe to say I ended up doing a lot of marching on the spot avoiding jumping and basically any other exercise that would cause my legs to shoot with pain! The day after, I attempted a 3 mile run - again an extremely painful experience. So, with that, I decided to take a week off running to let my body fully recover. This wasn't part of my training plan, and it does make me anxious to think I may have dampened my chances of getting my goal time in Paris - but sometimes you just have to listen to your body (especially when it's screaming with pain)!
This week, I'm travelling a lot and finding it tricky to find the time to run but I will, and must! My legs are feeling better, so I'm going to do a couple of easy 5-10kms and most importantly, stretch afterwards. Hopefully that'll set me on track and get me across the line in Paris. Now, is it too early to start carb-loading?
Having come from not running at all, to a marathon in such a short time, I think I can be proud of how far I've come so far. While I can't pretend I stuck to my training plan as well as I should, I'm in better shape than I've been for a long time, and I've learned a huge amount about my body and about running generally. It's currently training workshop season for those of you running our marathon challenges in the Autumn, and at each workshop I'm hosting I am acutely aware that I am not following my own advice as well as I should be, ahead of Paris!
In addition to all of this, I took part in a local 10K in London this weekend - where I actually bumped into an old friend Ola whom I knew from my days as a challenge leader! -which went reasonably comfortably, albeit I badly injured my knees. I think it's fair to say that the nerves are creeping in at this stage.
This all said, I'm achieving the right headspace ahead of the marathon in 2 weeks. I work best when I know what to expect, and having completed competitive distances up to a half-marathon, I now have a good idea of how the marathon distance will feel in my mind, which will help me on race day. I have also found the perfect running soundtrack (it is, without a shadow of a doubt, The Greatest Showman).
All in all, I'm not feeling too bad about Paris. I'm not expecting miracles, but when I started with an aim to simply finish the race, all else is a bonus. Let's do it!