Okay, so I’m halfway (in fact a little over) into my year-long training plan to be ready to run a hundred miles. Things haven’t exactly gone to plan (do they ever?) but I’m feeling good about training overall, so here’s my view of how my training cycle has changed in the past quarter.

Assessment of how well it’s all going: 0 (not well) to 5 (fabulously)

Training

In general I’ve been diligent in my (cardio) training with a good mix of session types and fitting in longer sessions. But my inability to run for over a month meant that much of this was on a rowing machine.

To get to a “5” I need to be better disciplined in following a structure session plan and weekly plan, and not squeeze in extra sessions unnecessarily. I need more time to rest and to keep mental focus. Key statistics from the past quarter:

  • Finishing my first (indoor) rowing marathon (in under 3 hours)
  • Completed 7 sessions of 2 hours+, mainly on the rowing machine.
  • VO2 max dropped (!) to 56 (from 60 at the end of Q1) according to Garmin watch. I think this is due to focusing on quantity, not quality, of training, and feelings of stress at the moment.

Strength

Given my running injury I’ve needed to focus much more carefully on building my leg strength back up (especially calf muscles). It’s worked well and I’m feeling strong at the moment. Lots of focus on single-leg exercises, core exercises and introducing some good weights. Upper body strength has also notably improved as my workouts involve sets of 7 pull-ups rather than 4 back in May.

I’m grateful to the expertise of Drummond clinic which has been instrumental in my recovery and growing strength.

Active recovery

The big difference this quarter was the lifting of the lockdown restrictions which allowed me to have a couple of deep tissue massages, something I fully intend to keep as a regular treat. I’ve kept a regular rhythm of foam rolling / massage ball work but during busy work periods that has been the first thing to go as I find myself hunched over my desk in the evening rather than being able to roll and stretch in the living room. That accounts for the slight dip in scores.

Nutrition

Overall I’ve been feeling better about my nutrition recently. I’ve not binged so much and have significantly cut down my dairy intake which is helping, I think. I’m struggling with digestive issues on longer runs so I need to work out how to diagnose and solve those. I’ve never had this problem before so can’t tell whether the cause is related to my diet, my biome (gut health), or stress… or a combination.

Race preparation

Nothing to report on this yet.

Kit

Nothing to report on this yet.