A year to train for a 190 mile, 5 day run?

I completed the last of my 4 marathons about 2 years ago but after a cancer diagnosis, the loss of my mother and a battle with depression I gave up running and piled on a fair bit of weight. I went for my first run last week and was amazed at just how unfit I was (1.7 miles and I’d stopped). So as extra motivation to get my fitness back to where it once was I’ve decided to run to London next April (Sunday-Friday) and then run the London Marathon on the Sunday. Seeing as my fitness has gone back to beginner levels, is a year of training enough for this? I feel like my previous marathon experience will help my training but my wife is worried I’m taking too much on.



  • Just to add, it will be a solo run carrying my own stuff in a rucksack along the canal routes all the way. And it will be a 6 day run, not 5 but I can’t edit the original title.

    Any tips, advice, warnings etc. will be gratefully received.
  • How will you get a place in the Marathon ?  Sounds like you need a charity place so you'll have to fundraise a few thousand for that. That will take up time and effort too. 

    Running with all your kit probably makes it doubly hard.

    I'd not be committing until I had a few months of training and could see it coming together. 
    It sounds like a huge undertaking to me  but good luck with it. 

    I'm not sure your marathon fitness will help you that much if it was last used two years ago - but its better than not ever having done anything ?
  • I’ve ran the LM twice in the past with a charity place from Children With Cancer UK. I’ve already applied for my place with them and see no reason why I wouldn’t be accepted again.

    I won’t fully commit to this until my place is guaranteed though but in the mean time I’m just concentrating on getting my mileage back up.
  • T RexT Rex ✭✭✭
    Hi Slothie.  You'll need to start from scratch with your running and build up endurance very slowly.  You might want to aim for an autumn marathon to give you an interim target, and then it'll be a winter of long slow runs, some on consecutive days, towards the end with your pack as well at its target weight.

    You'll get into London with a charity place - I don't think they'd turn anyone down!  Does the 190 include the marathon?

    With canal running you'll be able to get supplies along the route as you go so your pack needn't be too heavy.  What are you doing for the nights?

    Sounds interesting and do-able as long as you build up slowly enough.
  • T Rex, the 190 miles is just the run to London, not including the And for nights I’ll be prebookong hotels along the route. I have a friend who did a similar trip who’s helped me plan the route and night stops. Also, my backpack won’t be too much of a burden as I only need the minimum stuff for the run to London. My wife and friends will be meeting me in London and she’ll have everything I need for the marathon weekend in the suitcase with her. There’s a localish marathon in October which I may enter if my training goes well enough.
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