Sunday, 17 May 2009


I'm thinking of trying something radical for my marathon taper - little or no running! That's if I want to give myself the best chance of getting round the 26.2 mile course in two weeks time. By way of compensation I intend to keep the heart pumping a little faster by switching to the bike.
I intended completing my last long run today by repeating last weeks 20 mile progression. However 2 miles in the increasing tightness in my left calf was telling me otherwise and sure enough it got more painful as I continued and I pulled the plug shortly after 4.5 miles.
The dull pain was also present during my lunchtime run with Brendan on Friday increasing in intensity towards the end. The signs were already there.
The only run that went according to plan was a 10 mile progression on Wednesday morning with the first 5 @ 07:40 pace and the last 5 at 06:52 pace (slightly ahead of the 07:00 target). This could have been the run that caused the calf pain to flare up again though as I began to feel a bit of tenderness in it during the last mile.
Mon 11th May
5 miles in 41:35 (8:19 pace @ 126 HR) recovery run - uncomfortable run - some niggles.
Wed 13th May
10.51 miles in 1:17:08 (7:20 pace @ 148 HR) with 5/5 miles in 38:19/34:22 (7:40/6:52 pace)
Fri 15th May
5.67 miles in 44:56 (7:56 pace @ No Garmin) Time/Pace courtesy of Brendan.
Sun 17th May
4.78 miles in 37:25 (07:50 pace @ 134HR)
Marathon Peak Week #8 (Run 25.96 miles, Bike 34.8 miles, Swim 250m)


  1. The mile pace splits for Friday were 8:31, 8:10, 8:02, 7:20, 7:37 and 7:57 pace for the last 0.67. So you're right we did pick up the pace but not radically so.

    Good decision on pulling today and moving to the pike for the next couple of weeks - no point in further risking that calf.

  2. My brother swears by ultrasound for healing his calf muscle!
    Have you been getting treatment, ultrasound along with massage should help speed the healing process!

  3. You could buy The Stick and give yourself a massage each day. Not sure if you've heard about that thing before; I brought one back from Boston, and quite like to use it (I also feel compelled to use it after all I paid for it). It seems to work on my calf.

  4. I agree w/ Thomas - the stick works well on the calf - especially the lower calf. (I find the foam roller works much better than the stick on the quad, ITB and hamstring however)

    Fighting through calf issues can certainly be frustrating. The x-training for a while should help, but I agree w/ Rick - you might want to look into getting some treatment if you haven't done so already.

    Good luck!

  5. Massage is worth a try. I know I continue to use my Trigger Point and I have had minimal issues with my calf. And it used to be a problem all the time. Good luck with the taper!

  6. Do what you can - like the others have advised. "Little or no running" is pretty radical, but you need to get yourself to the line.

    I think I need something between what you're doing and what I did for the next taper!

  7. Hi Grellan

    Who knows, it may work. I know as marathoners that all too often we don't taper enough. It is a difficult thing for me personally as I suffer mentally when I don't have that reenforcement of running.

    Best of luck!