It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!
Young Pup, I usually do it in early Feb with the London Marathon being in April. I don't have any recovery after it as it is just part of my training schedule. In fact in 2010 I did it on the Sunday and was at the track doing an efforts session on the Monday. This year it was just part of a 58 mile training week.
They say your longest 5 runs should add up to 100 miles so you seem fine on that score. I always find the taper to be very hard but it is important to stick to it. It is a common feeling as the miles drop off to think that you have forgotten how to run. You may also feel lethargic /out of sorts. Don't worry about this - I always feel like that. The taper is all about getting you ready on the day of the race. Hope this helps and hope you have a good race
GazOC: I too took several weeks to recover after Manchester - I think it was the cold? Anyway, I did manage to get going again and upping my mileage, and I've been training for ultras since then, hitting 83 mpw at peak before my 50M. so I suppose I'm disagreeing with the "two 18 week training programmes a year are too much" (and I'm about to turn 45) - I'm now aiming to keep fitness where I can run a marathon any time (althpugh not necessarily at PB pace). Will shortly be picking up my speed and hill training prior to Beachy Head.
Kestrel: Agreeing with everyone else about the long runs: do more of these, and longer. Don't wait until the start of your 16-week or 18-week programme - start doing some longer runs now. Another great way to build endurance, as I found by ultra-marathon training, is by "back to back" (B2B) long runs. So go for your long run, then go for another run the next day. So if you've reached 10-12 miles on your long run, start with say 10 + 6 , then 12 + 6, then 12 + 8, then 14 + 6, say every other week (go easier on the weeks in between). Top out the second run at say 10-12 miles (or do e.g. 15 + 15, once you've got to 20 for your long run). This is hard when you start, but (in my experience) it really helps. If you can start doing long runs and even B2Bs NOW, say every other week, then your endurance will be much better by the time you hit your 16-week training schedule. And parkruns are great for speed sessions!
Thanks Debra, very helpful advice.