With 11 weeks to London Marathon, I’m doing something a little different to avoid my endless rounds of injuries. I’m taking on the advice that seems sensible – exercises that your physio and all the running magazines tell you to do and you tend to ignore it because to be honest, it’s pretty bloody boring.
Yes, I’m talking about core, rolling and general strengthening. I’m never going to be a fast runner but I am working on being a less injury prone one.
So with exercises from my physio, a few pilates moves I’ve learned this year and my trusty foam roller, after a month of doing this stuff pretty much daily, I’m on my way to being a stronger runner. I had twinges in my hip flexors at about 10 miles into my 12 miler this week so there’s still work to do but I’m pleased to say there’s been significant progress. Late last year, I was getting twinges pretty much from the outset of a run.
And the best bit of advice from the web I’ve come across is from Dr Jordan Metzl from Runner’s World – ‘a strong butt is the key to a happy life’. This will become essential as the miles build.
Training Recap – 11 weeks to London Marathon
Saturday – 12.3 mile run. A leisurely and pleasurable run – I took my time, stopped and took photos. The weather shifted from grim to spectacular.
I did manage to freak myself out a little as I went past Tower Bridge which is on the route of the London Marathon. At Embankment, another part of the route, I met with running buddy, Mary, for the last 4 miles or so. Meeting for the final few miles is a routine we’ve gotten into before and it really helps when I’m starting to flag.
At mile 10, I could feel my hip flexors starting to twinge a little but not enough to have to change my running gait so I kept going. While tiring, I was relaxed and feeling so much stronger albeit my pace was slow. Followed by very quick core and rolling.
Great run rounded off by a mocha for me and hot chocolate for Mary – good times!
Sunday – core and rolling with a focus on hip flexors.
Monday – 5.1 miles. I was feeling good so I did the bulk of the run about 30 seconds faster than my training pace. Core and rolling.
Tuesday – pilates – this session was hard work with a real focus on my weak spot – hip flexors! I was so pleased when the teacher said at the end of the session that they weren’t beginner moves. Core and rolling.
Wednesday – 5.3 miles, slow and steady. After pilates the night before, I was expecting tired legs and sore hip flexors but there was nothing of the sort. The run was slow, so roughly 11 min miles, and felt good! Core and rolling.
Thursday – 3.6 miles. I warmed up with a slow mile and a half or so followed by hill repeats to establish a baseline for strength. I felt f***ing amazing running down the hill after the last repeat. The tune to the classic Rocky montage, ‘Getting stronger’, started running through my head. About ¼ mile later I could feel those hills coming back to bite me but good times! It’s strange what runs through my head when not listening to tunes.
Friday – another pilates class, this time with more stretching thrown in. Rolling and core at home and a wander about the place.
Total – 26.3 miles, most miles done slow and steady and kicking off a little speed work.
Are there any exercises you do to prevent injury as a runner?