Training for Roseberry Topping Trail Marathon

Thanks for looking at my blog. My name is Gary Thwaites, I'm 44, I live in the North of England and I love running marathons. I'm a member of Sedgefield Harriers, Run Peterlee and The North East Marathon Club. I'm not sponsored or supported in any way so if I talk positively about a product then I really do like it!

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Well, I suppose I should start training... I did take a full week off after Lakeland 100, but I missed running so I started running again. Nothing fast, no intervals and nothing really long! It's been great just getting out for a run. We spent a week in Northumberland and running new trails is always fun. I did try and run around the whole caravan park one morning, but sacked it off after 7 or so miles... It was massive!!

I entered Roseberry Topping Trail Marathon a while ago and the timing works well so this will be what I train for. A course PB would be a nice end to the year, but I want an enjoyable run more than a PB so I'm not going to stress over it. To be honest you could be in the shape of your life, but a winter trail run could throw all kinds of weather at you so you've just got to go with the flow and keep your fingers crossed.

What does training involve? I keep it very simple and follow a plan from Garmin Connect. It maps out all my runs and I can upload key sessions to my watch. It's a trail run so I'll swap some speed sessions for hilly runs and my long runs will mostly be on the trails too. I live near a superb nature reserve and a lovely bit of coast so running these trails is never a chore. Also, I do a lot of strength & conditioning plus flexibility work too. Do not under estimate how important strength and conditioning is!!

The hardest thing for me is food!! I constantly eat way too much of the wrong food. I don't seem to know when to stop eating!! Before I started running seriously I was 3 stone heavier than I am now. I definitely don't want to put on weight and I need to eat enough carbs to fuel training so I use the My Fitness Pal App to keep a food log. I have to admit I find keeping a food log exhausting. It does work though so i'll keep going with it.

Before the week starts I look at the key sessions and scribble down roughly what my week looks like. This helps plan my running around all the other stuff that's going on. I'm lucky being able to run commute. It's easy to get the miles in without taking lots of time away from the family.

The first week went really well. I got out with Run Peterlee on Monday and Sedgefield on Thursday. I did all my key sessions and all the S&C so I can't complain. Legs do feel a bit tired, but I have no real aches and pains to worry about. I have put on half stone since my last race. It was to be expected I suppose. I just needed to fully relax and eating and drinking what I wanted for 3 weeks was a big part of my recovery. I know with a bit of focus I'll get to my target weight again.

My quads blew up at about 65 miles at Lakeland 100 so I will be doing some fast downhill running. Fingers crossed this helps. I know I won't be running 100 miles at Roseberry, but I'm already thinking about my next 100 mile race and I don't want to suffer that level of pain again. If I can time it right I'd like my 100th marathon to be a 100 mile ultra!

I am going to cut back on buying nutrition for the near future. I do buy mountain fuel, various chia charge products, high 5 gels and some protein powder. I really like all these and I genuinely think they help. The cost can spiral if you are not careful. Anyway as an experiment for my wallet as much as my body I thought I'd see how I get on with eating regular food. I'll need to be more organised and during events I will probably use supplements if I don't think the check points will give me what I need.

I'm doing York marathon as part of my training so I'll try and do another blog after that. Thanks for taking the time to look at my blog and I hope you enjoyed it.



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