Friday, 25 April 2008


I've had a relatively easy week running with my 2 scheduled quality (speed) sessions cancelled.

On Monday morning I went for my usual 8.6 mile base run and towards the end of it felt a pain developing in my left IT band which got noticeably sore over the last 100m. I had assumed that I was developing ITBS which could take at least 3 weeks to recover from. I was hoping that I had diagnosed it early and that a few days rest would see me good (eternal optimist). With this in mind I skipped my mixed interval session on the track on Tuesday and did not run on Wednesday either.

I did run on Thursday morning but not my scheduled 2 x 4 miles @ HM pace but instead opted for an easy run over 8.6 miles to test the water. As the symptoms of ITBS do not necessarily present themselves straight away and usually take a while to appear I was cautious during the early miles. I did feel the onset of some pain after 5 miles but thankfully it appeared to subside after mile 6. I did a similar run on Friday morning at a slightly faster pace (still within base pace range) and completed the run without feeling any aches and hopefully thought I had avoided any serious disruption. However my scheduled 22 mile run on Saturday morning was the acid test.

I headed out the door shortly after 6 (Ani is making her first communion today so I had to get out early) with only 5.5 hours sleep in the bag. I maintained a reasonable effort which felt tougher over the first few miles but settled down after a while. I ran into Cork along the Model Farm Road, past the College, along the south quays, crossed the river at City Hall and back along the north quays - feeling pretty good. Up Sundays Well (tough 0.25 mile hill) and shortly after the nine mile mark the pain came on my left knee and I stopped and walked for a few minutes and started up again only to feel the pain again after 0.3 miles so I called it a day. I was a tad pissed off to say the least as I had been looking forward to seeing how long I could have maintained the pace. As I was 6 miles from home I called Abina who called a cab for me as she was heading to the hairdresser with Ani.

This is certainly a disappointing development and puts next weeks half marathon in Bantry in jeopardy. I haven't yet signed up for the Cork Marathon (9th of May is the closing date) - so how I get on over the next week to 10 days will tell me whether I should enter on not. On a plus side Ani had a great day and the sun came out to shine after a wet start to the day.

Mon 21st Apr
8.58 Miles in 01:05:30 (07:38 pace @ 128 HR)

Thur 24th Apr
8.58 Miles in 01:08:02 (07:56 pace @ 128 HR)

Fri 25th Apr
8.58 Miles in 01:03:36 (07:25 @ 134 HR)

Sat 26th Apr
9.08 Miles in 01:07:04 (07:23 pace @ 145 HR)

I don't know whether to take complete rest or do short runs below the threshold for the onset of ITBS - time to see a physio I think.

Marathon Training week 19/24 - 35 Miles!


  1. That's a bit worrying, but you're doing the right thing. Cork is still 5 weeks off, and I think you'll be ok.

    I'll proclaim victory if you don't turn up in Bantry though.

  2. As Thomas said, you're doing the right thing (although I imagine it's rough). I find stretch and self-massage works well. If not try a massage therapist, they always seem to discover that it's not the IT band but a tight calf, glut, etc. All the best with that recovery.

    For what it's worth, I didn't run for three weeks prior to a marathon and still ran well.

    Cute photo.

    Oh and Thomas, take your wins when you can get them:)

  3. Great picture!

    I agree - you should be fine for Cork. I'd give the win to Thomas in Bantry.

  4. What an angel! Stretch, ice, sooner rather than later. You've got a great base and don't want to lose it now.

  5. I'd go with Michael's recommendation - a massage therapist rather than the physio. Keep doing the shorter easier runs if they're without pain.

    Despite what Thomas says, all bets are off if you don't run Bantry. Save the 3-minute thrashing for another half marathon ;)