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  • Writer's pictureTom

Training for the Valencia Marathon - Week 1

Updated: Dec 7, 2023

And we're off! I've been tempted by Valencia for a while. Everyone these days seems to have their marathon PB from this course (it's like the 5/10k equivalent of Battersea Park). But perhaps more importantly it seems to fall at just the right time. Taking place at the start of December means it doesn't require heavy training through the summer, which suits me as I tend to prefer to ease back a bit during this time, especially in terms of longer runs which become a bit of a struggle if there's any period of prolonged heat. There's not a lot of other stuff on race-wise, so you don't feel like by marathon training you're missing out. And then you can sign off for the year in early December, hopefully with a job well done.

I averaged 43 miles a week for the 10 weeks leading up to this week. A few bugs and one bout of acute lower back pain curtailed a few days here and there, but overall it felt like I have been ticking over pretty well, enough to feel fresh and confident going into this training block. Much of my training has been done in above average temperatures, so I'm hoping that as things start to cool down a bit I'll immediately notice the impact of this (see my post on running in the heat). Here's how the first week of training for the Valencia marathon went:


Heatwave is coming. 400m x 10, mostly around 1:23

Strength session at home in the evening


Heatwave is here. 1000 x 6, average 3:50 (target marathon pace is 3:47/km)


Took two girls I coach out for our weekly run, including prepping them for their school cross country trial! We went and checked out the course and then practiced some downhill running as it included quite a bit of that. Included 2 sets of 200 x 5 (one set before picking them up and one after dropping them off)


Back to Dulwich Park for 1000 x 6, this time a bit quicker at 3:46

Strength session at home in the evening, a bit lighter than Monday


Easy pace run for just under an hour with 200m surges up to around marathon pace every mile or so.


Aiming to take Saturdays off for the time being, meaning that if I run early on Friday, I get 48 full hours rest before my Sunday long run. Instead I stood on the sidelines at Dulwich parkrun with my son and watched my wife and some friends run in the heat.


Sunday long run with the club, 14.6 miles run at a fairly gentle pace (7:54/mile) which by the end was quite hard work in the heat. Thankfully I never felt like I needed to drop back, a good sign as to where my endurance currently is.

Week summary

50 miles

6 sessions (4 EIM)

18000m intervals

Longest run 14.6 miles

2 strength workouts

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