Ideally, April should have been our “big month”. Big in the sense that most of us would have done a few long runs on the weekends, pushing our weekly and monthly mileage up to our highest for the year. My 4 weekend long runs were 56, 30, 52 and 40 km, giving me 513 km for the month and 1752 km for the year to date. The only race I put real effort into was Two Oceans, the remainder of the month was geared towards building up the kays with a sprinkling of quality thrown in.
On the 1st May I tested the results of my training efforts out on the Deloittes 21 km from Sibaya Casino into Durban. The hard work paid off and I felt really comfortable with my 81:21, picking up a top 20 finish overall and 1st Master. I had a 9 km “warm down” planned and jogged that in just under 40 minutes, a good day at the office and great confidence booster to kick the month off with.
We are now well into the taper phase and with only two weeks to go till our big day, all the hard work has been done and our thoughts now focus not so much on what we have done, but on what are we going to do for 2 weeks. There are quite a few rest days to enjoy at this stage and with the cutting back in mileage the legs should start feeling a bit of the bounce returning. Don’t get too excited and start turning every session into a time trial, but certainly have a couple of runs during the week where you increase the tempo, being very aware that this is not the point where you would like to deal with an unexpected injury.
Us runners tend to be very unsociable at this stage of the game, very wary that the flu bug is rampant at this time of the year, so lots of invitations get politely turned down!
All our “race gear” should have been tried and tested at this point, if you are unsure about anything, socks, shoes, cap, compression clothing, etc. do it this weekend and then store it all away for the 31st, knowing that it all works and there are no uncertainties that may pop up!
Enjoy the last two weeks, work out your strategy and pace chart and most importantly start preparing yourself mentally for the huge challenge that lays ahead.
Best of running luck, you know you have done the hard work, push your limits and may you achieve the run that you deserve as you tackle the ultimate human race!