Susan and Chris prepare for the London Marathon, supporting and encouraging one another through the highs and lows of their tough training

Over the past three weeks we’ve been on several training runs together with Hyde Striders as we continue to follow our marathon training plan. On Mondays we do five-mile recovery runs, which are slower than normal to help legs recover from our usual long Sunday runs. This sounds easy, but with aching legs from the day before, these are often the hardest. Last week was especially tough as we’d done a 10 mile run on Wednesday followed by 18 miles on Sunday!

On February 20th we both ran the 5k Glossop Park Run, which was my first time. It has lots of muddy off-road sections as well as nice tarmac paths and we completed it easily. We then went off to do part of a race course Chris was planning on doing as I wanted to try the route. The race is called the ‘South Pennine 24’, and, as you may guess, it’s a 24 mile fell run. We completed half the course.

A few days later we did a two hour run around the local trails of Daisy Nook. It was really cold and wet that evening and we had to use headlights to see the path. It took a lot of motivating each other to get round as we both felt tired after work. It was a great feeling to finish it.marathon training
The following Saturday Chris came to my local gym and we did some miles on the treadmill. Chris completed 24 miles and said it was one of the hardest things he’s done…only two miles away from a marathon! I don’t think he likes treadmills as much as running outside.

However, last week snow had covered everything outside but we still had a two hour run to do on Friday evening. It was tough as we had to run on and off roads to get round. When there’s snow and ice you have to take extra care as it’s so easy to slip and injure yourself, which neither of us can afford at this point. I wanted to go on the treadmill but Chris convinced me to go out in the snow, even though it’s extra draining as you have to concentrate more. I’m glad he did as, like any run, once you’ve done it the feeling of pride and of how fit your body feels makes it all worthwhile.

The training is coming to the peak now before we start to taper (wind down) ahead of the main event, the London Marathon! We both agree the training is demanding but we feel it’s going well… although we’ll see for sure on our last long run at the end of this month. Running is not easy, so it’s good to run with a friend as they can really boost your confidence.

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