Help - I've been ill & my running schedule is way off course.

I'm due to run my first marathon in April and since Christmas, have been following a schedule for 4.30/5 hours (to finish!).  The weather has played havoc but I kept going (albeit abit behind schedule).  However I went down with the dreaded flue bug and have had to miss 2 weeks of training.  I've tried to get going again but I have lost all momentum and, obviously still not 100% well.  I've got 8 weeks to go til my run but have lost all confidence as my performance even with slow jogs and 'gentle' gym sessions have been really hard work with poor results.  I need advice - do I keep slogging out training under par or leave another week or so before I try again?  Any advice or experienced similar situations.  Do you try your first marathon when obviously your training hasn't gone to plan and you will suffer or leave it for another year?


  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    Hi. I don't think im qualified to comment on when you are ready to get back in your plan but I'm confused as to why you have to wait a whole year before running another marathon. There is one almost every week in the UK so if you don't think you will be fit in time why not sign up for another race a bit later on?
  • And the weather didn't stop me hitting 45 miles weeks.....

    Sounds like you are looking for a cop out
  • No cop out - as a novice running for charity with very little experience, was just looking for some inspiration as to how to get over this hurdle which I am sure many have done before.  Abit of encouragement and words of wisdom from more 'experienced' runners was all I sought to point me in the right direction.

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    What was wrong with my suggestion?
  • Hi Julia,

    It sounds to me that the pressure of it all is starting to catch up with you as it does a lot of people this time of year and missing out whilst ill was probably only adding to the situation.

    Personally if I was in your shoes and I have experienced something similar then I would resume training but go to a level back a couple of weeks before you had to stop. I would stop worrying about times and just get some miles into your legs and focus entirely on getting yourself fit enough to get around. You aren't going to win the thing so why not just enjoy it.

    Hopefully by taking some of the pressure off of yourself you can enjoy it a bit more. Here is a thought, If this is your first marathon and you crawled the entire course on hands and knees you'd still have done a marathon, recorded a PB and got the medal to prove it image

    You may also find that relaxing about the situation and just taking it as it comes may restore a bit of zip into your training and you may find yourself on the start line  in better shape then you can imagine now.  Good luck with it all

  • Agree with the above. You won't have lost much fitness, but have lost a couple of weeks training. Don't try to catch up on the training too quickly - take a step back. Take some pressure off yourself regarding finishing times, and build up the easy running and your long run. Get around the marathon this year, and if you enjoy it, have another go in the autumn or next year and aim for a time.
  • Thanks for your comments - on reflection I have probably been reading too many books on having the 'perfect training plan' - and then panicking when things don't go to plan!  Love the comment about I'll be achieving a PB whatever time I finish in and will take this thought with me!  However long it takes me this spring - it will be a base to improve upon for future runs.  Will step back a little on the training for a while and learn to enjoy again.  Thanks for your comments - feeling a lot more positive now. image

  • Julia - You'll sound learn very few training plans ever go exactly to plan. Be it injury, illness or personal reasons. A couple of weeks out won't be too big a factor, but if you've missed a few long runs be sure to try and get the rest of those in before the race. Finishing that first marathon is an amazing feeling. The first time training for one really is a learning experience.

  • PG3PG3 ✭✭✭

    Agree with Eggy, there will be very few people who have manage a full marathon plan without injury, illness or life getting in the way.  Don't stress but pick yourself up and get going again asap.

  • don't rush to catch up the missing weeks or you can be hading for an injury..........and remember if you are still not fit enough to do it then just carry on training and do a different mnarathon in a few months time

  • this is the reason I DON'T follow a schedule! I try and run 3-4 times a week, I try and increase long runs and do a balance of intervals/ hills/ tempo but if it doesn't happen I don't fret. Schedules are not law, they are recommendations for a specific goal. Ease off your goal and the pressure disappears, look at a schedule for 'just get around' and you should feel reassured. Most people feel tired during marathon training -it doesn't mean you are failing it means you are 'normal'.

    Good luck!
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