This week was my penultimate week of training before next weekend's Berlin Marathon and was pretty much exclusively recovery and MAF runs, with a few exceptions.
Monday I started off with the usual recovery run and felt pretty good.
Tuesday I headed out for a MAF test but soon canned that idea as it was a little breezy but more importantly very very warm. I actually started the test but by the time I reached the end of my warmup I realised it was not a good day for a MAF test.
I ran the route just to see and I'm glad I knocked this test on the head early as it was pretty hard to keep my HR within range and I really wasn't getting into a groove.
Wednesday morning I headed out a little earlier than usual and did the MAF test I'd planned, and whilst not ideal temperature, it was a lot better than Tuesday. I think the high temperature became evident towards the end of the test as the last two km's were the only two that were slower than the last test in July. The rest were all quicker with the first two k's (the most important) being significantly quicker: 4:28 and 4:33 today vs 4:35 and 4:40 in July. A 5s per km improvement is pretty impressive and I'm chuffed with this.
Thursday was my last session involving 3x 1600m intervals with approximately 800m recovery. I hit each interval at desired pace and found it quite easy. I ended up picking up the pace a bit in each and doing them slightly quicker to right at the faster edge of the planned range. I felt like I was flying!! It was fantastic. And I was recovering very quickly between each interval too.
Friday and Saturday were recovery runs, though I had considered doing parkrun on Saturday morning. This idea was quickly quashed when my morning readiness HRV reading came out low for the first time in the week. Given the proximity to Berlin, I didn't want to tempt fate and ignore it so switched to a recovery run.
This morning I headed out for my last "long run" before Berlin. A very nice gentle medium long run around Reading to keep the legs ticking over. This was very enjoyable and I felt light and pretty quick on my feet and, without paying too much attention, ended up running towards the bottom end of my MAF range.
Only a week to go and I'm getting so excited. I was having the usual pre-race doubts about my training - what haven't I done? What could I have done more of? What have I done too much of? - but Wednesday's MAF test and Thursday's flying interval session soon put my mind to rest. It's also too late now to do anything more than recover anyway.
Taper week next week. I'm also going to have to try really hard to be a good boy with my diet and drinking, especially beer.