Cocophany Of Voices – The Final Few Steps @trailrunningmag @runnersworld 

There’s 6 weeks left to get everything sorted, to finish physical training and mental training.

It’s getting trickier to balance work time and training time along side publicising BarefootLeJog to make the concept of raising money for Stroke Association and raising awareness of strokes successful, and to top it off, the quite sanctuary that I call the void seems to have gained some new occupants that I don’t remember inviting!

One of these unwanted guests spread a message of doubt whilst the other one briefly acknowledges the progress made in training.  Luckily, the more positive voice tends to win since training gets completed, recovery happens and damage repairs quickly.

So what left to do?

  • Set waypoints on a map and send to the company providing the GPS tracking
  • Sorting out the missing kit that is going to be essential
  • Working with the helpful Bob at Backpacking Lightweight to improve the possibility of corporate type sponsors
  • Mapping the entire route to allow people to organise joining me along the route
  • Potential accommodation for the odd bit of creature comforts and the essential showers or baths
  • Testing kit to make sure that it is 100% useable

Next week starts an easy week, so runs and cross training will be lower mileage or intensity, which I think my body is crying out for and I’d rather not force it towards injury by over training.  

The final piece of this puzzle is preparing mentally for the extreme change in lifestyle and focusing on small steps along the way, acknowledging the inevitable pain and blocking out the optional suffering.  Hopefully, I can evict the negative voice that’s invaded my void and get back to just running because it allows me to return to myself. 

Thanks for everyone’s support so far.  I’ll do everything in the run up to the run, and during the run, that I can to live up to the kind words and acts.


What Does Your Training Look Like?

This question is probably asked most of all questions, considering that the main one is “doesn’t it hurt your feet?”

So, what does it look like?  It does alter but here’s a general run through.

4:30am 5 Days A Week – Core and Strength work

  • 20 single leg squats (10 each leg)
  • 10 weighted squats (10kg)
  • Pressups (normal – 40, wide arm – 26, medicine ball – 24, normal – 14, wide – 16) 
  • Swiss ball plank – 1 minute
  • Side plank (feet on Swiss ball) – 1 minute each side
  • Pull-ups – split into sets of 9, 6, 4, 6

Aerobic Base Runs (heart rate at 145bpm) – this is for the next 6 weeks – any high end workouts are hidden in the middle of the the longer runs keeping to about 80/20 ratio.

  • Tuesday – 8 miles
  • Wednesday – 8 miles
  • Thursday – 8 miles
  • Friday – 6 miles 
  • Saturday – 30
  • Sunday – 15 miles

So far I’ve been averaging around 55-65 miles a week with some hill work.  I live in a hilly place so flat runs involve nearly 1000ft of climb.  

Then there’s the form specific work that I do based on analysis of my form by a specialist physio (Nick Allen of Buxton Physiotherapy Centre).  I also wear a 10kg weighted vest at work 3 times a week.  I look an utter fool, but it serves it’s purpose!

Now, I’m getting mentally ready to get a big mileage week in with a practice run of Plan B (35 miles with camping gear) to make the most of my half term. 

I’m sure other people training is far more hardcore and intense, but so far I feel far lighter on my feet and more confident in my body than I have in 37 years of using it.

Have a good weekend.