What do you do two days after a half marathon with 2000ft of ascent? Whatever the hell you want. This opinion is still controversial, especially among high end and respected trainers and coaches. While I don't want to downplay the need to recover, and I accept there are certainly conditions under which two days off (maybe even more) may make sense, I largely disagree. Here's why; firstly, even with plenty of ascent and descent, a half marathon should not be a huge achievement for the majority of adults, and secondly, with the exception of a few very specific, and ordinarily elite events or competitions, events should enhance your life, not detract from it. I'm VERY aware that it's difficult for me to communicate my beliefs without firstly sounding very arrogant, and secondly, alienating the very people I want to reach. With that in mind, please allow me a moment to clarify my views. I firmly believe that someone who currently sits in the 90th percentile for fitness and health would likely be bang average if everyone ate well, trained 4-6 times per week, slept well and enhanced their other lifestyle factors. Why the 90th percentile? Well, by several objective measurements, that's me. Yet I'm far from above average. In fact a decade ago I failed the Army's fitness test, while in service. So if I can move to the 90th percentile, so can many, many other people. So many people in fact, that I believe I'd end up pretty much in the middle.
Additionally, history is replete with stories of people running not just half marathons, but far greater distances very regularly, carrying supplies, in less than ideal clothing and footwear, over arduous terrain, and not just surviving, but thriving. Part of my argument then, is that once you have increased not only your base fitness, but your tolerance of fatigue, that a well designed training programme will allow you to normalise the abnormal. We're fortunate to live in a time where social media allows us insights into the worlds of people who are living proof of these concepts. The likes of Ross Edgley, Nirmal Purja, Nick Bare and Sabrina Verjee are just a few examples. I could name literally dozens. These people have all done things, regularly and repeatedly, that most people consider insane. But these are regular people. People like you and I. The only difference is they have removed the ceilings that existed in their minds, or at least raised them above the challenge they've been trying to complete.
So my training today? I trained twice, one at 4pm at work, and then on the 6pm class at CrossFit Napalm.
Backwards for 5 minutes
15 Tib Bar 15kg
10 Seated Slant Board Calf Raises 60kg
8 Double Dumbbell Romanian Deadlifts 2x30kg
5 GHD Nordic Curls
Build to 3RM
70kg - A lifetime PR
3 Strict Press, 5 Push Press, 1 Split Jerk 50kg
10 Hollow Rocks
10 Second Hollow Hold
5 Rounds Each For Time:
10 Calorie Row
5 Power Cleans
5 Front Squats
5 Push Jerks 10 Calorie Row
Rest 90 Seconds
Bar at 60kg
This was easy for two rounds, then I felt it a little bit, then rounds 4 and 5 hit like a truck. To me, that means I judged it about right.
Both the Slant Board and Tib Bar got an outing today. These are so versatile, and get used by me or with clients almost daily. Click the image below to grab yours through my link.
At 8am I had 3 rashers of bacon, 3 scrambled eggs and some berries.
At 2:30pm I had mince and cheese.
At 5pm I had a fruit and yoghurt bar.
At 8pm I had a steak and 3 scrambled eggs followed by berries, Greek yoghurt and honey.