I am writing this blog from sunny Murcia, a southeastern city in Spain. Whilst for some this might be the perfect holiday destination, with wall to wall sunshine and with so much going on including the stunning old town featuring Plaza Cardenal Belluga, the reality is quite different!
Murcia is a location I first visited in 2017 for warm weather training and I’ve been back numerous times since at various times of the year. Whilst it’s also a perfect escape from Winter in the UK, the heat at this time of the year is perfect for warm weather training. It’s also a short drive from Alicante Airport meaning cheap flights from the UK!
Having been selected for the Commonwealth Games later this Summer, we wanted to prepare for every eventuality, including the potential of it being a hot day in Birmingham at the end of July. Training in the heat has many benefits including increased plasma volume and enhanced ability to run in hot conditions, so even if it’s not as hot in Birmingham the training stimulus will also help move me on fitness wise.
It can take up to 7-days to adapt to running in the heat, so the optimal time to be out here is around 14-days. Being at sea level rather than altitude means we can still run sessions at a similar pace to back home, but occasionally have to be smart and adjust paces if it’s particularly hot.
There’s a network of local trails to explore and a tarmac cycle path stretching for around 8-miles so perfect for marathon training. It even has markers every half km along the route!
Post Manchester Marathon I took a short break to recover both physically and mentally before starting to build back up. Unfortunately I managed to pick up COVID, which put me back a couple of weeks but thankfully I’m back into the full swing of things now and getting into full marathon mode again.
A typical training week out here looks like the following;
Monday – Easy run 10-miles
Tuesday – AM – Track – e.g. 12x1km off 90secs easy jog recovery. PM – 5-miles easy run
Wednesday – AM – Easy run 10-miles plus gym. PM – 5-miles easy run
Thursday – Easy run -14-miles
Friday – AM – Tempo – e.g. 8-mile tempo run. PM – 5-miles easy run
Saturday – AM – Easy run 10-miles plus gym. PM – 5-miles easy run
Sunday – 20-miles long run
Last week I ran 114-miles in total, which is also great for topping the tan up! ☀️ Especially considering the reports of bad weather back home! 🌧
I’m heading back this week and looking forward to seeing Buncus 🐶 and Sophie of course and continuing the next block of training, starting with a long run around my favourite spot, Derwent and Ladybower Reservoir.