Paul Walters runs the London Marathon

Report from Monday 25th February 2002

Worried about injury and looking towards long distance training

I've been feeling an increasing tightness in both of my achilles tendons since early January, and this on the face of it seems to be the most likely reason why I would not run the London Marathon. I am trying to stretch twice daily on a concrete block which is in my bedroom (best done on a stair, but I live in a bungalow). I'm going to be applying an anti-inflammatory, applying an ice pack and massaging and stretching to try to avoid major injury.

Apart from this, my running has not being going too badly. I have definately not done enough running to run a marathon to the very best of my abilities, but I've recently done two or three runs of up to sixteen or seventeen miles, and on last Sunday I ran a distance of between eighteen and nineteen miles (I think). However, it's all too easy to think that you've run further than you have done. I started my training this year with the emphasis on getting to the start of the marathon uninjured rather than able to run a fantastically fast marathon, basically because I've started the last two marathons with injury.

I've probably been running an average of thirty miles per week recently, but now I want to try to increase the mileage, to put in a couple of runs over twenty miles, and to run a few longer distance races. There is under eight weeks to go now, and bearing in mind I won't put in a long run on the weekend prior to the marathon, there are not too many opportunities left for the longer distance training runs.

I think that I have probably prepared for the marathon in a more effective way than in the last two years. This year, I have been concentrating on training with my running collegues in Reigate Priory AC, and I think that this has paid dividends in terms of being fit, fast and enjoying my running.

In the last month, I have found that sometimes I don't have the mental strength to run as well as I should be doing. It is surprising how much mental strength you need to be able to run to your full abilities. I'll certainly have to try to be strong in the coming weeks, when I will be running for further and longer, as well as spending more time preparing for the marathon in other ways.

I have very little money from sponsorship. The vast majority of the money that I have raised for the NSF has come from selling second hand equipment. I now need to ramp up the effort to obtain sponsorship from friends, family, collegues, etc.

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