September training – 10 weeks to go!

I’m not quite sure how September and October have flown by so quickly, and November is just around the corner. Scarily, this also means my attempt at the Oman Desert Marathon is also just around the corner. On the 7th of November I will join a group of likeminded nutters, and race (ahem… shuffle) 165km through the Wahiba sands over the course of 6 days. The distance gets broken down as so;

  • Stage 1 – 20km
  • Stage 2 – 30km
  • Stage 3 – 21km
  • Stage 4 – 30km
  • Stage 5 – 44km
  • Stage 6 – 20km

The stage distances and generous cut-off times (6, 9 or 12 hrs for the 3 different stage distances) were one of the main reasons that I signed up for this race – they seem fairly do-able as long as I prepare properly…..

August went pretty well in terms of training, and my main goals for September were to maintain 4 runs a week, upping my weekly long run distance and to start running with a weighted pack. We’ve had a fair amount of fieldwork happening now that the weather is a bit cooler, which always causes problems for me with training. I’ve managed better than I thought I would with maintaining running training whilst away on fieldwork, but not as well as I might have hoped for.

September – Week 1:

  • Sunday – 2×14.6 mi road bike commute (45:42, 44:09)
  • Monday – 14.6mi road bike commute (45:24), 4.5mi run (38:09, 8:25/mi)
  • Tuesday – 14.6mi road bike commute (46:31), 6.8mi hill rep run (1:02:17, 9:13/mi)
  • Wednesday – 14.6mi road bike commute (46:35), 3.3mi offroad race (25:53, 7:54/mi)
  • Thursday – Fieldwork – out on the boat all day.
  • Friday – 13.7mi social run with 4kg pack (2:14:38, 9:51.mi), 1.1mi run to catch my lift.
  • Saturday – Snake Gorge trip – Wadi scrambling, abseiling & swimming.
  • Total run mileage: 29.3 miles (47.2km)
  • Total bike mileage: 73 miles (117.5km)

    September week 1 - MRR Summer Series Race, more food, Fieldwork day

    September week 1 – MRR Summer Series Race, more food, Fieldwork day

Week 2:

  • Sunday – 6.63mi treadmill pyramid run (1:00:0, 9:03/mi), kettlebells (fieldwork)
  • Monday – 1mi warmup run, 1km row, weights
  • Tuesday – Fieldwork – out on the boat all day
  • Wednesday – 7.46mi treadmill run – inc 7x1km sprints (1:02:39, 8:24/mi)
  • Thursday – Fieldwork – out on the boat all day
  • Friday – Fieldwork – out on the boat all day
  • Saturday – Fieldwork – out on the boat all day
  • Total run mileage: 15.1 miles (24.3km)
  • Total bike mileage: 0

    September week 2. Treadmill & kettlebells, Happiness at the incompetence of security staff, Treadmill ergo & weights. Gym living!

    September week 2. Treadmill & kettlebells, Happiness at the incompetence of security staff, Treadmill ergo & weights. Gym living!

The fieldwork this week was a major pain. It was in Fujairah, so about a 5 hour drive from our offices in Muscat. The day we arrived (Sunday) we had plenty of time in the afternoon to ourselves. On the subsequent days, we had a lot of standby time that would keep increasing incrementally by about 20 minutes at a time. This meant we actually ended up with a lot of spare time, but none of it useable for me to get to the hotel gym and get some decent training in. Add to that the fact that Thursday – Saturday we were out on the boat for the entire day (7am leave the hotel, arrive back at the hotel at about 7pm) in 40 degree heat, and you will understand why I get frustrated about not being able to train properly whilst on fieldwork. It didn’t help that there was a monumental amount of faffery and time-wasting by the people in charge of where we were working with regards to security clearances, berthing the boat etc. etc. It’s a wonder they manage to get anything done!

Week 3:

  • Sunday – 2×14.6mi road bike commute (50:46, 40:07) – windy day!
  • Monday – 14.6mi road bike commute (46:23), bike to evening run (5.2mi (22:03), 4.7mi run (40:17, 8:30/mi)
  • Tuesday – 14.6mi road bike commute (46:16), 6.3mi steady evening run with 5kg pack (27:51, 9:15/mi)
  • Wednesday – 14.6mi road bike commute (50:12), 12.3mi road bike commute (37:29)
  • Thursday – 14.6mi road bike commute (50:12), 7.3mi bike to run (29:15), 13.1mi hilly run with 3.5kg pack (Heat Equator Time Trial).
  • Friday – 3.2mi bike to run (12:15), 10.0mi run (1:47:57, 10:49/mi), 3.2mi bike home from run.
  • Saturday – Rest day!!
  • Total run mileage: 34.1 miles (54.9km)
  • Total bike mileage: 118.8 miles (191.19km)

    September week 3. HETT half marathon, daily dose of sweat rash, post 1/2 marathon 10mile shuffle. Testing the legs!

    September week 3. HETT half marathon, daily dose of sweat rash, post 1/2 marathon 10mile shuffle. Testing the legs!

A combination of a 12-day working week, plus a very heavy week of training meant I was absolutely shattered by the end of this week. As we get lieu days when we work weekends/holidays etc, I decided that I needed a lie-in, and an extra long weekend, so I took the following Sunday off work. Had a lie-in, ate a lot, and then went out for a gentle run in the evening. Perfect.

Week 4:

  • Sunday – 4.4mi run (38:30, 8:49/mi) (day off), yoga
  • Monday – 14.6mi road bike commute (45:53), sports massage
  • Tuesday – 14.6mi road bike commute (44:07), 3.4mi bike to run (14:10), 7.0mi run (55:12, 7:56/mi)
  • Wednesday – 14.6mi road bike commute (44:02), 3.0mi bike to run (12:20), 3.4mi offroad race (25:19, 7:26/mi)
  • Thursday – 2×14.6mi road bike commute (47:43, 45:18), 3.8mi run (34:38, 9:13/mi)
  • Friday – 15.6mi run with 7kg pack (2:46:15, 10:39/mi)
  • Saturday – Rest day
  • Total run mileage: 34.2 miles (55.0km)
  • Total bike mileage: 79.4 miles (127.8km)

    September week 4. Finally having some success with arm balances, Friday morning long run on the beach, MRR Summer Series offroad race

    September week 4. Finally having some success with arm balances, Friday morning long run on the beach, MRR Summer Series offroad race

I’m generally tending to have Saturdays as a rest day now, more by accident than on purpose! I use it as a chance to catch up on sleep (and snuggles!), and whilst the weather has been super hot, also as an additional day for my body to heal, particularly from the chafing caused by sweaty exercise kit, and running with a weighted pack (more on that another time!).

Week 5:

  • Sunday – 2×14.6mi road bike commute (44:35, 45:52)
  • Monday – 2×14.6mi road bike commute (41:43, 46:42)
  • Tuesday – 14.6mi road bike commute (46:09), 3.4mi bike to run, 7.9mi hill rep run (1:17:35, 9:51/mi)

And that (terrifyingly) takes me to the beginning of October training, which I shall post later this week!

  • Total run mileage for September: 120.6 miles (194.1km)
  • Total bike mileage for September: 318.4 miles (512.4km)

 

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