Runs – 4

Miles run – 31.75

Average pace – 9.09min/mile

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Rest! 3.26 miles 3.48 miles Yoga 5.01 miles Yoga 20 miles
  31:09 30:42 30 mins 42:45 90 mins 3:05:42

This was the big week – the longest training run and the furthest I have ever run.  And it has been a good week!  I snuck in a little extra 3 mile run on Wednesday; between that and my 5 mile run, I recorded some of the quickest miles I’ve done since the early stages of training.  Then, to top it off, I successfully made it the 20 miles from Tower Bridge to Richmond with some of the other Uganda Marathon peeps.  Kudos to the others who also logged their longest ever runs and who will be running their first marathons in Uganda – everyone did so well yesterday!

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The team looking fresh (if somewhat cold) at the start

It wasn’t always pretty – I was really hanging on for the last couple of miles (the furthest I had run before was 17.5 miles) but, for the vast majority of the three hours, I felt strong and calm – and apparently looked quite comfortable.  It was a bit strange running with a group after training on my own throughout and I discovered it’s quite hard to chat and run that kind of distance – everyone was really chatty until about mile 6!

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Still smiling at mile 15

I had so much fun meeting some of the other people who are going to Uganda and having other people around definitely made the run much easier – we ended up quite spread out towards the end so I ran the last couple of miles kind of on my own, watching the two men ahead of me get further and further away!  You can really see it my splits though – I ran significantly faster than I have been on these long runs before.  I really felt the benefits of fuelling properly (thanks, Rowena, for that advice) – carb-loading the day before, eating a couple of hours before the run then gels, bars and the odd jelly baby along the way meant that I was feeling strong right until the end.

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Post-run beer, food and smiles

I was so tired afterwards and had to keep moving to stop my legs seizing up entirely.  I was sore everywhere – when you run shorter distances, you really don’t appreciate the way all of your muscles work to keep you going, as my abs were attesting to!  Today, I’m pleased to report that the penguin shuffle has disappeared and, apart from a slightly tight right calf, I’m feeling really good today.

We are now in major countdown mode – I fly out to Uganda 3 weeks today and in 4 weeks will have run my first marathon in the heat, at altitude, through the hills of Uganda.  My training will start to taper now, although I still have a couple of long-ish runs planned (you know you are in marathon training when you describe running 10 or 15 miles as ‘long-ish’!).  I’m still feeling quite nervous about the race itself; as I finished yesterday, all I could think was “how am I meant to run another 6.2 miles?!” but everyone assures me that adrenaline and the atmosphere on the day will carry me through…either that or crawling!!

Thanks to everyone who has supported me over the last few weeks and especially to those who have already donated.  If you would like to support my fundraising efforts in support of the women of Masaka, please head over to my fundraising page 🙂

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Photo credits to @markc_run and Julia and huge thanks to Mark, Emily, Andy T, Miller, Henry and Julia for organising and keeping us all going.  Can’t wait to see you all in Uganda in 3 weeks!