Paul Walters runs the London Marathon

Report from Tuesday 6th April 2004

How much am I damaged?

Last Sunday I planned to try to complete my last long run. I thought that I'd run 20 miles or more, even though really I ought to have already have completed my last long run. I thought I'd do two 10 mile laps of my usual course, followed by another odd mile or two if I felt up to it.

In the first two miles I felt very tired, although I often feel tired at the start of a run, so I thought that I'd just run it off. I tried to stay on pace to complete 20 miles in under 3 hours. However, after 5 miles, I realised that I was very fatigued, and I basically just jogged home to complete the ten miles distance in 1 hour 35 minutes, and I ran no further. I also felt a little tightness in my left hip just before I finished. Once I'd finished the run, I went straight to bed because I felt just so tired.

It's now a week and a half until the marathon day. I've decided that rest is the main thing, so I've decided to do no more long distance or fast runs. I suspect that I found last Sunday's ten mile run so hard is because I'm not over the eighteen mile run the week before, so I must make sure that I'm as fresh as possible on the day.

I'll probably run a gentle eight or ten miles this coming Sunday, and apart from that I'll be running a couple of gentle miles each day followed by a twenty minute stretching session.

We went walking around Arundle Castle today for a few hours, and the muscles in my left hip felt very tired after all we did. I hope that I have not damaged my upper hamstring or piriformis again. I'm not sure when it would have happened, but I had to stop in my long run ten days ago because of problems in this area, and as already mentioned, I felt tightness last Sunday in the same area. I'm wondering whether to take it easy in the marathon, just to preserve my hip, and thereby giving me the best chance to run all of the way. It's very difficult to judge. Ideally I could do with a long run to assess damage, but of course this will not happen now.

I am a little concerned about the problems that I have had with my right achilles tendon, but to be honest I have had this problem for a long time, it does not seem as bad as it has been, and it won't stop me getting to the start, so I think that the main concern are my hip muscles as these are more likely to stop me during the race.

I still have the niggles with foot pains, back pain and neck pain. My knees don't seem so bad these days. Although these are real problems, they are not bad enough to stop me, so I'm not really concerned about them at the moment. May be I'll see how they are once the marathon is over, because I'm hoping that they'll go away once I reduce the distance.

I'll probably be heading up to London on Wednesday 14th April to the London Marathon Exhibition at ExCeL in London, to pick up my number, Champion Chip (for my shoe), etc.

Unless there is good reason to add another report, I won't add anything now until my report from the day. It should hopefully now be all fairly straight forward unless I get a cold or damage myself during stretching.

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