18 December 2006

Run with Maryann: Week 11

How did Maryann's last week of training go? In this article, she shares her final thoughts before Race Day.

Week 11 looked like this:
9,5km forest run with hills
5km time trial
7,5km road run

This was the last full week of training on the Optifit programme. Next Saturday we will be doing the 10km race! I feel so ready for it, as this week we did nearly ten kilometres and it included really tough forest hills, and the race we are doing in Gugulethu is completely flat.

I love the forest runs. We started at Constantia Nek (you will run past here if you do the Old Mutual Two Oceans half marathon with me in April next year!). It was so much easier than when we last did it, and we went a lot further with much less stopping. We all seemed to be in great spirits as a group, as we are reaping the benefits of the consistent training – in over thirty training sessions, I have missed only three.

The time trial was not around Rondebosch common this time, but a route in the region of the fields where we meet. I did it in 29 minutes and 37 seconds, so I was happy to do it in under 30 minutes. It was a very hot day, and Gloria and I pushed each other a bit to make sure we made it in under 30 minutes.

Thursday we did what I call the Boschoff route, as the long, gradual hill on this 7,5km run is in Boschoff Avenue, lined with beautiful old Oak trees providing a bit of shade (it was another hot day). I found a good pace, which seemed to be just a few paces slower than the front group, and I enjoyed the support of running in a group, but having a sense of running on my own and having some “alone time” on the road.

The group has naturally divided into a faster and a slower group, and our coach is allowing us to split up. In previous sessions, the emphasis was on group training and sticking together, which meant the faster runners had to stop and wait quite a bit.

What was great for me about being a bit behind the front group, was that they had just made the traffic lights turn red by the time I caught up with them, so I had a continuous run. This made me feel quite good in the sense that we have had very few runs where we do not stop, and I was glad to find out that I did not need those stops.

We did the run in roughly 47 minutes, which got me scheming and thinking I could do the 10km race in an hour. I want to have a goal for race day, but I want it to be realistic. Juliet (our coach) told me it was realistic to try for 60 minutes, so I was encouraged and started psyching myself up. We have trained for 11 weeks and this race has become such a big deal for me.

On Monday we will re-do the fitness test we did in week 1. It will be interesting to see how I have improved.

Follow our online programme to run 10km in 11 weeks. Here is week 11.

Don't forget to stretch. Here are the 12 best stretches.




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