A blog I regularly read is Terry Lonergan's Running on Empty (well worth a read). In his recent posts he has been discussing racing as part of a marathon build up and what he has called 'binge racing'. As a fan of racing as part of marathon preparation and as someone who has probably been guilty of binge racing I decided to look back over my old training logs and I spotted the following examples:
In 1987 when I ran my pb for the Marathon (2,25.55) my race build up was:
1 Jan - Morpeth to Newcastle 14.25 miles, 72.11, 31st
18 Jan - Loftus 9 miles , 47.01, 11th
24 Jan - Prudhoe Cross Country approx 6 miles, 38.33
1 Feb - Chester le Street 5, 26.57, 12th
14 Feb - Signal Road Relays, 2.3 mile leg
21 Feb - National Cross Country Champs, Luton, 58.55, 301st
8 March- Tynmouth Boundary 10, 51.47,13th
22 March - York half marathon, 68.50, 11th
5 April - Blaydon cross country approx 6 miles, 34.29, 4th
11 April - Jarrow 10km, 32.02, 14th
17 April - Elswick Road Relays my 2.1 mile leg in 10.48
During that period I also clocked up 1083 Miles, with the biggest week being at 109miles. This was the same week as I raced the Elswick relays.
I remember being disappointed with my marathon time as my target had been 2.23. Looking back perhaps I may have over trained slightly?
I am not sure whether this would fit into Terry's definition of binge running, but flicking through my old training logs show plenty of examples that probably would - one that stood out was in 1990:
April 1 - Wallsend 10km 31.59, 17th
April 8 - D'orssey Ville International half marathon, Paris, 69.13, 22nd
April 10 - Blaydon cross country approx 6 mile, 34.20, 2nd
April 13 - Elswick Road Relays my 2.1 mile leg in 10.43
April 16 - Hartlepool 10 mile, 53.05, 10th
April 25 - 25 x 1 mile relays Newcastle (where 5 in a team ran 5x1 mile alternatively, 5 times) my mile times where 4.44, 4,53, 4.46, 4.53, 4.50 and we finished 1st team.
That is the equivalent to a third of all the races I did for the whole of last year!