I need incouragment

I feel a bit crap! Over the past week or so (xmas), I haven't ran at all. B4 xmas the longest run i have done is 6.5 miles. I went running on a running machine today and struggled to do 40 mins!!!!!! I felt really crap because I wanted to do 1.5 hrs on it.

I know that treadmills are harder anyway becasue of the boredom factor etc, but now I am worried incase I have to build myself up again. I am training for the marathon, so obviously want to start building up lots of milage. I am going outside for a long run on tuesday, and thursday and then on I am really going to train extra hard.

Am I worring unecesarily (crap spelling), or is this something lots of people feel.

Please help me.

Sara Grynberg.


  • Looking round the forums (fora?) there's a lot of people in the same boat. Quite a few have missed out on running due to colds and Xmas the last few weeks, myself included.

    If you're already doing over six miles you should be fine - I assume you're talking about the London Marathon in April, but as you suggest you need to build up the miles. Do you have a plan/programme to do this - there' quite a nice one on the .com (as opposed to .co.uk) version of this website, which as well as other stuff basically adds a mile a week to the long run, so you'd be up to around 20 by April, which is fine (although if you can get there slightly earlier and do a few that's all to the good). Don't build up too fast though!

    I remember when I was training for the marathon for the first time - it did feel like a huge obstacle. Now I've done it several times (the training, not the marathon, I've had to pull out before), it doesn't hold the same - well, fear isn't the right word, but it's not an unknown. I found that the first time I did any new distance it seemed immense, but a few weeks later it was just an ordinary run.

    Not sure what speed you're running at, but even at 10 minute miles, 90 minutes is nine miles, which is quite a step up from 6.5, and of course even more if you're faster.

    It sounds though that you're pretty well placed - you know you've got training to do, but you're ready to put in the work.

    Hope that helps, Iain
  • Hi Sara,
    Iain's advice is sound for your training. The key for me, and it sounds for you, is keeping the motivation.
    Keep focussed on the endgame, but take lots of short acheivable steps to get there.
    Look in the race programme and plan about 3 races for you to do before the marathon - and put them in your diary. Decide what you want (and have the time) to do each week. Stick to the programme, but make it flexible enough to change if you need to. You may feel c**p one day and it is OK to swap it for another - don't beat yourself up over it - it is supposed to be fun, remember!!
    When you have a bad day (and we all have them - I have just had to drop out of Disney in 2 weeks)just visualise (sounds corny, but it works) what it will look sound and feel like when you are getting to the end of that marathon and what will it mean to you.
    Good luck, John

  • Good points JD, and hi again Sara.

    The races will give you intermediate goals, so you can pat yourself on the back as you achieve them, rather than just having one big goal right at the end. This should help with motivation. Okay - you could do the same with target distances, but a race makes it seem a bit more serious, plus it will help you get an idea of how you're doing, plus help you get used to running as part of a crowd.

    I'm not sure whereabouts you're based, so I can't suggest any races, but distance wise maybe a ten miler (probably fairly soon if you can do 6.5 okay, but maybe do a couple of eights or so before trying it). Half marathons are common in the spring, which is a good barrier - you're half way there and if you're like me you'll start thinking of the distance left as it comes down, rather than counting up! I also started thinking "I can't possibly run the same distance again", but trust me, your body gets used to it. As a final race, maybe an 18 or 20, but not too close to April 13th as you need time to recover. At least three (four is better) weeks beforehand. Worthing has a twenty mile race if you're in the south of England that is around the right time, and I think there's one at Southend too.

    Agree about the visualisation too - remember your final goal, and keep reminding yourself about it, and thinking what it will feel like. It's an awesome experience runing it, and finishing was one of the most amazing moments of my life.

    All the best, Iain
  • Sara,
    A week off will mean you've lost a bit of fitness - but as long as you haven't picked up a bug you shouldn't be back to square one.
    Just try to pick things up from where you were shortly before your break - don't try to play "catch-up" with your schedule as you risk injury or running yourself down. April 13 is still 15 weeks away - plenty of time.

    Btw 1½ hours on a treadmill is a phenomenal time to spend on one. 40 mins would be about as much as I could manage before I lost the will to live.
  • Sara, you're not alone in having had an easy week. Don't let it get you down - if you can run approx 6 miles now you've plenty of time to build up the distance. Don't be tempted, as Iain says, to make it up by training extra hard - there's a fine line between pushing yourself and overdoing it.
    I'm sure you'll be back to regular running in no time, and if you haven't had a week of due to illness or injury you won't have lost much fitness.
    If you think making a public commitment to your training plans will help motivate you, why not log onto the dailyTraining thread where we all post our plans and whether we follow up or not, and any pathetic excuses we can come up with!

    Best of luck with your training.

    PS A friend of mine rang yesterday for marathon advice - she is 60 and can only jog/walk for 20 mins at present. Her marathon is in June but as you see people have very different start points.
  • You will be fine.

    Cheers, Jon.

    PS I think I have talent with this motivation stuff!
  • Sara...well done! You want to achieve something new in your life and you've done something about it (as appose to the majority who would like to do something new "but never get round to it!")...completing the FLM application form.

    ...well done again! You've been accepted.

    I too have had a week off (sore foot & food poisoning didn't help)but went for a run last night and felt really good...not the quickest but I enjoyed it!

    The guys are right about focussing on the end goal but motivation is a really personal thing...you should work out what motivates you...rasing money?Personal challenge?Helping others? Seeking new experience? Better level of fitness?

    Once you understand that, there is a purpose to putting in hours of training.

    For me its about a range of things dependent on how I'm feeling...e.g.rivalry (not racing).
    One of the thoughts (amongst 100's!) I have in my mind (especially on cold, wet, dark nights)is of my friends sitting at home in the warm, tucking into a take-away curry and a bottle of wine agruing about which soap to watch ...getting heavier and less healthy...whilst every step forward I take is a step further away from them towards a better level of fitness! The best thing is they have no idea how much they are helping me train!! How smug do I feel when I've finished my run and I'm tucking into a well earned pasta dish? The glow is not just from a hot shower but from an element of self-satisfaction!

    Remember, when you cross the finishing line on 13th April...you haven't just finished a 26 mile race, but proved to yourself that with discipline and hard work anything is achievable..."just do it!"

    Here endeth todays lesson!
  • Short and sweet Sara- chill out and ENJOY!!!!
  • Good advice Mr C
  • Good to hear its not just me ! I tried to do a 5m jog last night but gave up after THIRTY mins and walked the last bit (the shame...)

    This followed many months building up the mileage for my first FLM, a few recent races, plus an epic (for me) 14 mile run just before Christmas - but then a week's "running holiday" over the festive period..

    Misc excuses for the latter ; recovering from a niggle, re-aquanting myself with the wife and kids, me convinced I was 'coming down with something' (failed to appear) - plus of course the need to catch up on my average 2002 'glass a day' alcohol health intake required to ensure I live to be 100+ (so I'm told..)

    Most important thing is you are not injured and still have 15 weeks to go

    The advice from others more experienced on this thread sounds, as always on the forum, excellent - especially interim races as a motivator.

    This is probably unoriginal, but I mapped out a string of these a couple of months ago - and think of them as 'basecamps' that must be reached in order to summit on April the 13th.

    Like on all climbs though, things don't always go to plan !

  • running on a treadmill will make you loose motivation, especially if you do 1.5 hours on the beast! as mike says he would loose, as well as myself, the will to live after 40 minutes.

    my advice is still get the miles in, but vary your location and terrain, not only does it help prevenmt injury, but it also makes you stronger. varying your location means you never get bored with the view, for this same reaone, try and run to a destination and maybe get the bus back(like the next village 10 miles away), and don't map out a single 1 mjile route around the block and repeat it 15 or 16 times to create a long run, you will drown in the monotomy of the scenery.

    have fun most of all, and remember to reward yourself for your hard work and dedication after completing the training and the mara itself!

  • I tend to do a bit of my training on treadmills because of my work, offshore there is a distinct lack of roads and forest trails, and whilst it is boring running on them for that long if you can manage 1 1/2 hrs on a treadmill then the same time, or longer on the road will be easy, just start running and relax.

    Good luck with the training, don't worry too much about missed sessions now and again and enjoy the marathon when it comes.
  • You should break the period between now and the marathon up into phases and then finish each phase of with a race of fifferent lengths. For example, call the first phase your base mileage phase and use it to build up your mileage. End this with a race of your choice, more than likely a 10 miler. This phase should last about 6 to 7 weeks considering the the marathon you are aiming at is in 15 weeks. After the race you can note down your progress and then start of the next phase. At this stage you should try and bring in some element of endurance type speedwork while at the same time maintaining and increasing the mileage. Let this period last for four weeks and finish it off with another race. Compare your progress between the two races, which should give you an idea about which areas you need to improve in. This leaves you with four weeks, two of which you can use for more mileage and speedwork, two of which you can use for tapering down.
    By using this phases approach it will make your training feel more worthwhile and interesting. The time will fly by. You shouldd also have a goal in mind of what you want to acheive before every run/session. It is very easy to loose interest if you are just going out on a run just for the sake of it.
    Best of luck with the training and with the marathon!
  • Using phases like this is a great idea, I'd only really disagree with the detail - if you're already comfortable at 6 I wouldn't expect you'd need 6 or 7 weeks to get up to 10. I'd probably be aiming for a half by that time, but you need to listen to your body. You could be doing further than that in training but just race a ten though.

    Can't remember if I've said this before, but the FLM bods recommend that you're comfortable with 15 (i.e. have run it several times - not struggling to make it) by mid March - now about 11 weeks away, which would again suggest that a in seven weeks you should be around a half marathon.
  • Forget where you were and get out there and work hard and you'll be on top again before you know it!
  • Hey Sara,

    Don't worry. Everybody seems to have a break over Xmas. I'm sure haveing a spell of not training hasn't done any harm. After all, even Paula Radcliffe has had a break! I'm in a similar situation as yourself, Check "I Hate gyms" thread. If I can remotivate myself with the helpful advice I've been given by other members I'm sure you'll feel the same after reading the comments written for you on this thread. Carry on training to whatever schedule you are using and I'm sure in a short while you'll be happy with what you are achieving with your running. Good luck, my friend!
  • where is this thread?
  • Hi Sara. It's in "Training" on page 2. It's called 'I Hate Gym Sessions." It's the first time I've used the RW website, I was well impressed with the replies.

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