Category Archives: A-Z marathon challenge.

Updates to my A-Z Marathon challenge.

Quebec training week 3.

If you have read my previous post about how I plan my week you will have seen that I plan for the best, accept that shit happens and train the best I can.

This was one of those weeks.  I made the totals for my run though which was the important thing and got my two most important sessions in so, as far as I am concerned it was a successful week.

Run 22 miles, 4 runs with 1112 feet of climb.  Including a speed session and a long run.

Bike 31 miles with 2231 feet of climb.  Two yoga classes 2 core sessions and home weights and stretches.


How do I write my training plan?

Overall youhave a window of training time to take you to your target race.  Say 16 weeks.

You should then break the 16 weeks down to phases- Base, buildup, peaking and race week.

The lengths of each phase will depend on time available till your race and any weakness you have possibly identified from previous performances.

Then its time for the nitty gritty the weekly plan.

I realise the way I do this just wont suit everyone but here is my scheduling routine usually done on a Saturday or Sunday night and remember this comes after you have identified the length of phases so you know what phase you are in!

First off I do it on paper I have a yearly planner spiral bound so I can use the back of the previous weeks plan for notes.

I check the weather forecast for the week and  then lay out my perfect week.

This will generally consist of 3-6 runs depending on race plans and phase.  Three yoga and 1 pilates class.  Three core classes and 2-4 home core/yoga/stretching sessions.  Two resistance sessions and finally 2-4 bike rides.

That’s it my dream week and I manage one of those every 4-6 weeks because people shit happens!  Might not even be your fault one of my local gyms recently had its roof collapse!

Plan your week, execute what you can, don’t cram what you missed into next week!

AND  I always have 1 day off!


Quebec training week 1.

The first week of full marathon training is done and dusted!

I am following a programme of my own designed to fit in with my life and my schedule.  The problem with a lot of web or written schedules is they take no account of “real” life problems and leave the runner stressing out about missed runs or lack of progress.

Tip No 1 include cross training.

Week 1:

Cross training: Hiked up a munro.  Nine miles and 3100 feet great day and good way to relax.  Biked the Applecross circuit 44 miles and 4500 feet of climbing.  One yoga session and one core session.

Running:  Four runs total of 20.3 miles 1,204 feet in 3h 19m.

One interval run one park run(24:16) and 2 easy runs.

I shall be building over 3 weeks and having a shorter week every 4th week.

Pre Quebec training week 4.

The final rev up and get ready to go week for Quebec.

Things didn’t go too well.  I had been taking painkillers for a damaged rotator cuff one of the side effects of which was mouth ulcers and I had  a beauty.  Such a small thing but bloody annoying and sore.


Run 14.3 miles with 1200 feet of climb.

Bike 41 miles with 2400 feet of climb.



Pre Quebec training week 3

Another good week, I even managed to fit in a local short race.  Plan for the week was once more 15 miles running, 50 on the bike, 2 yoga and 1 pilates class.


Actual training was 14.6 miles running with 830 feet of climbing.  The runs included 1 race 1 400m interval sessions and 1 easy run all in great weather.

Cycling total was 51.5 miles with 3100 feet of climb once more in great weather.

The yoga and pilates classes were all good some new poses in the yoga and a stand in tutor in the pilates its good to have a change as all the teachers have different ideas.


Next week is my last week of “prep” training.

Pre Quebec training week 2

Week 2 May 7th to 13th.

Plan for week was 4 runs totalling 15 miles, 2 yoga sessions, 1 pilates session and 50+miles on the bike.

The weather during the week was about the best this year so far which meant that I was out on the bike more than planned.

The runs were 2 easy runs, 1 at Z3-Z5 and hill reps on a long shallow hill.  I normally really like running hills but found the session to be hard work, possibly because I have let this particular session disappear from my schedule.  No more!

Totals for the week:

Runs 15.2 miles 1000 ft of climb.

Bike 126 miles with 4100 ft of climb.

2 yoga and 1 pilates class.


A very good week.

Pre Quebec training week 1.

Welcome to my series of blogs tracking my route to the 2018 Quebec Marathon.

I did Paris in April and with Quebec in October found my self with a large gap to fill.  This turned out to be quite fortuitous as I caught some dastardly French lurgy and was side lined for two weeks doing very little training.

I decided that I would go back to basics for a few weeks to try and build up my fitness again before piling some miles in for the marathon.

The week 30th April to 6th May was my first week back.  Target was 3 runs with a total of 10 miles, 1 yoga session 1 pilates session and a long bike ride.

Happily, despite still having an irritating cough I managed all the planned sessions.

Total for the week:

Run 10.1 miles 377 feet climb.

Bike 85.6 miles 5839 feet climb.

One each yoga, pilates and weights.