After a few hiccups at the end of last year, updating my website took a bit of a back seat. My first DNF in a race whilst doing the North Downs Way 100mi threw my confidence a bit, even though there was nothing I could do about an Achilles heel strain which appeared out of the blue at the start of the race.
Then there was Berlin Marathon. I had my hopes pinned on hitting a sub-3hr PB, which, as the days closed in, seemed less and less likely to happen, as I was recovering from a severe case of gastrointeritis only two weeks prior to standing on the start line. I’m pretty happy I managed 03:13:18 under the circumstances, as I had a bit of a walk in that time too!
Always being one to look forward and not dwelling on the past, the time had come to mix things up a bit and find a coach and possibly someone to assist me with my nutrition plan. After some research and chatting with Andrew Tew at Asics, I enlisted the services of Ben Barwick at Full Potential.
After completing the initial paperwork and answering several fitness related questions, Ben reset my training program. My initial thought was that the training was pretty light but then I had just completed Snowdonia Marathon in an awesome time of 03:21:38, shaving 20mins off my previous PB.
Looking back, I had probably been overtraining myself running, applying that fatal error of more being good, when less is better. Ben’s coaching has been progressive and he’s managed to keep the plan fresh, so I’ve never felt like I’m stuck in blocks of repetition, throwing me on a trail one day and speedwork on another.
Along with coaching, my nutrition plan has been given a huge shakeup. Even though there isn’t a major difference in the calorific content of what I’m eating, it’s what I’m eating which has changed. I’m now consuming twice the amount of vegetables and hardly any fruit is in sight. I was already following a fresh food approach (I don’t like the “eat clean” term, as it’s overused), so it didn’t come as a shock to the system. Actually, within a week I was feeling much lighter, more alert and even sleeping better. And I’ve been less inclined to raid the fridge post workout now that there’s structure to what I eat and when.
It’s going to be a packed year ahead and I’m truly grateful I made a commitment to being coached at the end of last year, as I don’t know how I’d have approached things this year, other than fumbling along like I have done recently.
I have several races coming up this year; 3 marathons, 4 100mi races, a multi-stage ultra and I’ve decided to dip my toes into the triathlon waters.
If you’re going to be at any of the following events, it would be great to see you, so get in touch!
- 12/04/15 Paris Marathon
- 26/04/15 London Marathon
- 02/05/15 Thames Path 100
- 30/05/15 Vitality World Tri London
- 13/06/15 Petzl South Downs Way 100
- 04/07/15 Al Andalus Ultimate Trail
- 08/08/15 North Downs Way 100
- 27/09/15 Berlin Marathon
- 17/10/15 Autumn 100