Cobbles & Red Wine - Sarah’s Paris Marathon Plan: Sub 3:35



  • RunningForChocolate!

    ... So BOTH of the Garmins broke? How incovenient for you to be able to prove that you ran the way you said rather than the direct route ...  Lucky that it spontaneously fixed itself the next day though. Must have been providence ...

    I’d like to be able to trust your word on this, Little Sis, but unfortunately I don’t even Leave-My-Chocolate-In-The-Same-Room-As-You kind of trust you ... So you can see my quandary ...

    How about a retrial? With one of YOUR Easter Eggs as the stake? image

  • Afternoon Steve Marathon Coach,

    Feeling a lot better today, thanks! Nope, luckily the pub run didn’t exhaust. In fact I found it quite a good training session and would like to have this included in the schedule in future, please ...image


    Hi Runny

    Glad to hear you are well again. It has been really bad luck for you to come down with two horrid lurgies during training. I have been ill in both of my tapers for my last two marathons, and last year I wasn't sure I'd make it to the start. I think I'm just going to go to bed at 9pm every eveing and wear a surgical mask when out of doors this time...

    The intervals sounded fun (I think) - I've never done 200m before! Did you pelt them flat out?


  • Malcs - i heard what you said!

    RRR - star pupil for being organised!!!!
  • Afraid I ate all my easter eggs, the last one went today between patients at work!

    Not all of us have 17 creme eggs in the freezer......image

  • Hi Sarah...I think your right about your dad....and you know what he will need, he will need a training parter who will be able to test him on the way home when he is struggling!

    I like the sound of your session what you had planned for today...I hope Minni suggests something similar for me too. Hope it went ok and your all packed and ready to go.
  • MalcsMalcs ✭✭✭
    RUTH MCKEAN wrote (see)
    Malcs - i heard what you said!

    Damn, rumbled.

    RRR - 17 creme eggs! Hmm, that comes to about 2500 calories, not far off the marathon calorie burn. Post race calorie deficit sorted! Just have a bucket nearbyimage

  • Hi RRR,

    Best of luck in Paris on Sunday!!!  You're gonna do great!  Just think of Boston next year- its a fun city- you can go to the Sam Adams brewery after the marathonimage

    I wanted to say thanks so much for all your support and encouragement during your spring marathon training thread.  You are an inspiration, and both you and Steve Marathon Coach have helped me turn my pipedream of qualifying for Boston into an actual goal that I've written down...  This is exciting to me, as this is usually how I make things happen, even though I am so far away from that goal now.

    A year ago I never would have dreamt of doing a XC race (at all) 6 days after a half marathon, and whilst its probably on the edge of what I should be doing training wise, I'm really glad I am spending my free time doing what I love, and picking up some crazy experiences along the way!

    I've got my first 20 miler this Sunday, so I'll be thinking of you in Paris when I'm doing it... 

    Lots of luck! and enjoy the wine AFTER the race image 

  • Afternoon Buffy!

    I like your plan ... I’ve just suggested to management at work that a haz-mat suit be provided as general office wear. Think how much less time we’d all have off if we were saved from coughs, sneezes and yucky door handles! Ick!

    Eeek!! That sounds a bit worrying ... glad you made it to the start last time!! Are you managing the early nights? I’m going to be packing tonight so have a horrible feeling I’ll be dashing around at midnight throwing things at my suitcase ... which is going to be ENORMOUS to cover every eventuality and will probably contain everything including a spare pair of trainers!!

    The intervals were fun! Not too tough either as I had such a long recovery in between! Did them on the treadmill (to test knee ... which didn’t even twinge!) and did the 45 seconds at 5:59 min/miles ish and the recovery jogs at 10:45 min/miles. But ... did get a BIT carried away on the last one. Of course image

  • Afternoon Ruth McKean!

     ‘Star Pupil’?! Hooray!! ... bet you never thought you’d say that to ME! image (Does a happy dance!)

  • Afternoon RunningForChocolate,

    You’ve eaten ALL your Easter eggs? In between patients? I hope you washed your hands!

    Your poor patients don’t want chocolatey handprints all over them!

  • Afternoon Sarah O!

    I think that sounds a plan. Now ... when is the best time to tell my Dad? Maybe if I get a pint of cider ready at the pub and get one ready at home to provide the proper incentives ...!

    The session earlier was good. It was nice to have some quick intervals that weren’t too testing. Not packed yet ... almost! Meant to pack last night and have started but ended up trying to get a 3 year old to go to sleep at midnight. Although she’s REALLY looking forward to her holiday at Nana and Daddle’s house when I go to Paris!! image

    So ... you coming to Boston with me next year then? image

  • Afternoon Malcs,

    Actually ... 2,890 calories! image If I add a couple of miles on at the end of the marathon I should be fine image

    I’m not taking them with me. Imagine how GUTTING it would be if they all melted in the hotel room while I was running!! Noooooo!!

  • Afternoon Angela!

    Thank you so much!! The brewery? In Boston ... wow you DO know me, Angela! Knew I could rely on you to provide some proper incentive!!

    Oh Angela – what a lovely post. You’ve also been providing us all with inspiration and your stories of your runs have been great! Sounds as though you did really well in your XC ... but what an introduction to it!! image Great that you’re not thinking small though ... why start with the short cross country races when you can do the brutal, long ones?!! image

    Good luck with your 20 miler ... what time are you doing it? The Paris marathon starts at 8:45 French time so if you fancy running at the same time!! image

  • Week 15, Day 7 (Sunday): Running Turtle, Knee Pain & Rats

    Goal: 13 miles

    Actual: 7 miles

    Drove all the way to Weymouth for this one and had decided on a lovely route from the old Harbour all the way to Portland and back. It should be peaceful and calm, barring incidents with ducks or cyclists.

    It was absolutely freezing. I had appropriated a buff which was hanging around (Thanks RunningForChocolate) and was doing my best impression of a turtle peering out of its shell. The Mr was swathed in running gear with only his eyes showing looking like a chav ninja.  Or someone who had been mummified using only Sports Direct.

    Passed the place where the cyclist had run me off the path last time ... nothing. Had visions of a tearful now-recovered cyclist presenting me with my well-washed buff and apologies for his behaviour last time. Nothing.

    Ran up the first incline ... and up ... and up! Looking down onto the athletics track far below on the right and down onto the roofs of houses and across to the harbour on the left, gleaming blue between the chimneys. Looking up to an old stone railway bridge. Last time I’d done this run I had been listening to Neil Gaiman’s Stardust and running it again between the high overgrown banks and Victorian stonework., the route still seemed slightly magical and enchanted.

    Starting running downhill towards the Old Castle and Portland and a pain started behind my right knee. A new pain. Just what I didn’t want in taper and in the final few days before the marathon ... Ran on for a while to see if it would ease but I could feel it with every step.

    Decision time. I was on a route that didn’t allow cars and if I ran on for the next mile and the pain got worse I would have to hobble the way back I’d come – or hop! - without any hope of a taxi or any other form of transport other than Shanks’ Pony. A one-legged Shanks’ Pony.


    Turned around and headed back. Stopped for a stretch, walked for a few metres and stretched and ran on. It wasn’t a sharp ‘I’ve pulled something’ pain but sharp enough for me not to want to add miles onto this run.

    Ran back around Radipole Lake. The evening was drawing in now but it was peaceful with the occasional bird noise and the rustling noise the reeds made as the wind blew. Then with a clatter a heron rose from its hiding place among the reeds and flapped ponderously away. I’d managed a leap of shock that felt gazelle-like (but which probably looked like a zombie-lurch) but had somehow managed to avoid falling into the lake.

    I do love Weymouth, even in the winter and despite the cold wind, it was a clear evening. However, maybe it was because of the first glimpse of sunshine, or maybe people had been out eating chips but I’d never quite realised just how ratty Weymouth is. Running around Radipole Lake ... saw a rat. Then onto the Rockwell Path ... more rats! I know it’s a port and had been one of the first outbreaks of Black Death ... but running around there I felt like the Pied Pier ... or maybe it was just because my feet just smelled of cheese.

    I had a quick run along the promenade and passed a fun fair set up by the Theatre. A sign propped up outside told revellers that the fun fair would run until 7th April ... a thrill ran through me. This time next week the marathon would be finished. Whatever the outcome, it would have been decided and finished. Unless everything went horribly wrong, I’d probably still be wearing my Paris Marathon Medal and be the proud owner of a new PB ... and a Boston Qualifier.

  • ... still not able to upload the pics I'm afraid ...

  • Hopefully that knee twinge is just in ur headimage we all get these things the week before a race so I wouldn't worry.

    Not sure about when to do my run- y next 20 I'll be on holiday in France so it probably makes sense to do this as a race day practise one? And perhaps I'll even go to Halstead to do it... Joy!

    I think getting paranoid about every twinge and sniffle is part of the taper paranoia experience!

    Seeing rats would make me break into a sprint ...hate them.

  • Afternoon Angela,

    I think it must have been in my hed hasn’t reappeared! Booked in yesterday evening for a sports massage for half an hour to get it checked ... when I get paranoid about a twinge, I get PROPERLY paranoid – especially in a taper! image – and it was fine. And the pain hasn’t come back at all which is fab.

    Ooh exciting! Holiday season already! image It might be exciting to do a part of Halstead – maybe the last 20 then when you race it you know you’ve nearly finished when you pass familiar landmarks!

  • Afternoon Buffy!

    Phew! Not just me then! image I’m sitting in the office with the most enormous jumper on today and a scarf!! And I’m wielding the antibac hand gel like a weapon!! image

  • Week 16 (WEEK SIXTEEN??!! Eeeek), Day 2

    Goal: 16 x 200m in 45 seconds (6:02 min/miles) with 60 seconds jog (4 miles total)

    Actual: 16 x 200m in 45 seconds (6:02 min/miles) with 60 seconds jog (4 miles total)


    This was a nice session as it gave me a chance to have a bit of a run but with a nice long recovery in between. Perfect – almost lazy – intervals.

    I did these on a treadmill as the last time I’d run (Sunday) I’d cut it short as I’d had a bit of pain behind my knee and I wanted to be able to stop if this came back. But there was nothing – no twinge, no ache or anything. In fact I didn’t even think about the knee until I got back to work ... so it was obviously a Taper Paranoia twinge! Appears mysteriously and disappears just the same.

    15 x intervals at 5:56 min/mile (16.2kmph)

    Jog recoveries at 10:43 min/mile (9kmph)

    1 x interval at 5:08 min/mile (19kmph) ... it was my final interval before the Paris marathon! Had to go out with a bang!

  • RunnyRunRun wrote (see)

    Afternoon Angela,

    I think it must have been in my hed hasn’t reappeared! Booked in yesterday evening for a sports massage for half an hour to get it checked ... when I get paranoid about a twinge, I get PROPERLY paranoid – especially in a taper! image – and it was fine. And the pain hasn’t come back at all which is fab.

    Ooh exciting! Holiday season already! image It might be exciting to do a part of Halstead – maybe the last 20 then when you race it you know you’ve nearly finished when you pass familiar landmarks!

    It could be... but halstead is a 2 lap course... so I will have seen the sights the first time aroundimage  still worth checking out what these 'undulations' are really about and whether to put some emergency hill training in...

  • So close now! How excited are you feeling today, knowing there are only two more sleeps until we'll be heading to St Pancras...?

    More importantly, how many cups of coffee do you think you'll get through on the journey over?

    It's going to be great to see the whole team together again and looking forward to cheering you all on image

    I have absolutely no doubt whatsoever that you are going to grab that Boston qualifying time and I actually think you're going to go a fair bit quicker than that! You've trained so hard and so well and, from what I've read over the past sixteen weeks, enjoyed it all so much as well so you really do deserve to run a great race.

    As you said, you now have an even bigger motivator knowing that if you don't hit that target time there's every chance I will have polished off all the celebratory wine... No pressureimage

    See you Friday!

  • Get some advice from your coaches / physiotherapist. Sure you'll be fine , I went out on bike and did 15 mile , no niggles image , I've got another appointment with my physiotherapist next Thursday and also booked another massage for Friday , well it's been an adventure with you and the asics team , I will miss it loads , I got loads of advice and good positive feedback. Thankyou all and good luck in Paris.
  • mamafoxmamafox ✭✭✭

    Hi RRR!!  Just coming up from my lurk to wish you all the best for Paris. Have loved following your adventures (!) and am sure you will be coming out with an awesome time for your marathon... you deserve it image

  • well done on the last 2 sessions - 7 miles was enough and you should be fine for Sunday and pacework was perfect - weather looks good for Paris  - warmer but hardly warm - bit cold at start maybe. You should be relatively fresh after a light last month but you did enough hard work through January and February and early March to more than compensate.

    You obviously think about food when you are reliving your runs as you mention the pied pier though maybe that was me thinking about a pie when you were thinking about a raised structure, including bridge and building supports and walkways!


  • If you're missing RRR's eventful runs.....

    So I set off on my 8 miler in London tonight, I was a bit cautious given my last few runs, and my bruised knee. Less than half a mile into my run, my phone flys out of my bumbag because I forgot to zip it- now it has a gazillion scratches on the screen. Carried on, and was going at marathon pace, rather than easy, but it felt easy so I didn't mess with it. A few miles in, I started to feel the familiar tightness in my lower legs which was quite worrying. I focused on my form- I've been a bit rigid lately, and so I focused on running, not shuffling, even if it was too fast.

    At about 3.5 miles looking ahead, it looked as if the path was ending, but I figured I could find the extra half mile, then, my toe hit an uneven paving stone and I was mid air. It happened in slow motion and I thought this fall could be the end of my marathon campaign, especially after falling off my bike 2 days ago. I hit the ground, braking my fall with my hands. My water bottle went rolling across the road, and I banged my knees. There were 2 or 3 other runners around me and they just continued on their merry way, as did the cyclists on the cycle super highway. It was like that catwalk show in sex and the city where Carrie falls on the runway and the other models step over her. If that happened around here, someone would have stopped to help, but in London, all out for themselves. I'm glad the warmth of the London marathon redeems them!

    Having banged my knee I was worried to continue, so I waited a few minutes for it to settle. Eventually, it did. This was the turning point in my run, so annoyed that I'd tripped, I concentrated on picking my feet up so I didn't trip again, this seemed to help.

    I hope the rest of my runs this week are completely uneventful...
  • Haha, tempted....will tell you after London....depends on what time I manage to get!!!

    Good luck on Sunday, I hope you have a fabulous run and get to enjoy paris.
  • PC -PC - ✭✭✭

    Hi RRR,

    Is RRR the noise you make when you reve up and zoom off.  I told Shady that I think you're going to beat him, if you don't tell him that your strategie was to run slowly to insure your BQ image.  Whatever happens have fun !

    It's getting exciting. I started carbing up this morning, yes even slow people carb load. I hope to go to the expo tonight.

    Good Luck

  • Hi RRR - just dropping in to say good luck before you set off for Paris. It's been a pleasure to follow your ups and downs and it looks like any problems are behind you in the nick of time.

    I'm sure you are going to smash your target time and Boston will become a reality.

    Have a great time and try to enjoy every minute. I ran my first marathon in Paris in 1986 and I still have the best memories of any marathon I've run anywhere.

    Angela - I trust you are ok? I shall catch up on the Halstead thread later.

    Sarah - into taper!!! Keep safe and smash your time as well. I will be spectating at VLM so I'll look out for you.

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