My long training runs

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I am preparing the Paris Marathon using the 6 month Jeff Galloway training plan, with an objective of 4:40.

With this training plan there are 2 important elements. Firstly, the Jeff Galloway training plan takes you to (and beyond for certain plans) marathon distance, the long run being at the core of the training. Secondly, the method is based on a alternating between a run and a walk, the ratio depends on your time goal.

Here are some of the elements that resonated with me and cause me to choose this plan:

”…The long run is what builds up your endurance… as you push a mile or 3 further on your LR, you increase the limits of your endurance.

…walk breaks allow your running muscles to recover before they are injured and conserve your energy so you can exercise for longer periods, which builds the endurance you need.

…by walking often and early you vary the use of the muscle and reduce the intensity of its work. Because you are not using the muscle in the same way continuously you can significantly increase the distance you can cover before fatigue sets in.

…most runners will record significantly faster times when they take walk breaks because they do not slow down at the end of a LR.

…you get the same endurance from the long run if you run slowly as you will if you run fast. However you will recover much faster from a slow long run. ”

 

I just finished week 14 of my training, with this weekend’s long run of 20 miles. Two weeks ago I did 17 miles. Based on my very limited experience, so far I agree 100% with what he has said. For the moment, I am trusting the plan.

More specifically…I start  off with a 1:1 run/walk ratio for about 25 minutes, then go to a 2:1 ratio for another 25 minutes before moving to a 3:1 or a 4:1 ratio. On my 17 mile run I used a 4:1 ratio but was exhausted and it took me 3 days to recover. This weekend I tried 3:1 and so far, I feel much better.

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I like to run by myself but of course boredom can seep in, so I have been doing my long runs in Paris, forging my way to the Eiffel Tower and back.

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So here are a few scenes from my run :

I ran by the street where my husband and I had our first apartment. Such great memories.

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Our place was in the 12th district and Paris built a “Green Path” (La Coulee Verte) of 4,5 km that goes from the Vincennes Forest, through the 12th,  to the Bastille. This was my old stomping ground for 10 years, so it was fun to run it.

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I ran to the Hotel de Ville (Mayor’s office) because I knew they had public water fountains which are a major scarcity in this city. I have a handheld water bottle and have found only 2 places on my run where I can fill it up.20160109_102239

I ran all the way to the Eiffel Tower, and saw someone I knew along the way, out running ! Crazy.

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Then the sun started to come out. I took a short break as I had done 10 miles… to refuel, adjust my socks (my toenails hurt after my long runs and I think is because my socks are tight), tie my sneakers, and take a couple pictures. Not sure what happened with this one, I have no idea why I wasn’t looking at the camera.

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On the way back I came across a great view of the ferris wheel at Place de la Concorde, and a bridge with lover’s locks. There are so many of these bridges in Paris. The mayor (I thought) was taking them down because they weigh a ton and some have fallen into the river.

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Stopped by my hairdresser’s on the way back to use his toilet (NONE of the public toilets I came across were in working condition). Turned on my music for about the last 3 or 4 miles but I was feeling great. Not lagging at all, like I was during my last long run.

However, it was the first Saturday of winter sales and there were a ton of people out. Not sure I will run again a Saturday morning through Paris (or at least I will pick a different route) as I really had to weave for some of it.

When I got home I was so happy my husband had not made lunch because I was craving eggs. Eggs with chorizo and sweet potato. It was so.damn.good.

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I stretched, foam rolled, and spent the rest of the day in my recent investment, my first pair of compression socks. OMG. These have done wonders for me.

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Next weekend, it is speed work with mile repeats, and in 2 weeks 23 miles.

I am linking up with Holly and Tricia at Hoho runs and Misssippipiddlin for their Weekly Wrap. They are both running the WDW Marathon this weekend, how exciting !

Be sure to see what is new with them and the other bloggers of the link up.

WeeklyWrap

 

Did you run this weekend ? See anything fun ?

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Comments: 33

  1. Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner January 10, 2016 at 10:07 pm Reply

    It is really great to hear that the Galloway method is working so well for you! I am really impressed with how far you have come and that you do all of your long runs alone. Have a great week 🙂
    Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner recently posted…Burpees For Breakfast Boot Camp ReviewMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 10, 2016 at 10:11 pm Reply

      Thanks Deborah for the encouragement !

  2. Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home January 10, 2016 at 10:39 pm Reply

    I always crave eggs after a long run or workout with my coach. Isn’t that crazy? It’s got to be the protein. Congrats on your 20 miler! What a great place to train!
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…Loving/Not Loving/WinningMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 11, 2016 at 7:39 am Reply

      ha ! I craved eggs all weekend. Had a repeat of my meal Sunday evening.

  3. Melanie @ HappyBeingHealthy January 11, 2016 at 4:29 am Reply

    As always, your pictures are ahhhhmazing! I’ve heard that the training plan you’re following is a good one. That’s crazy you’re up to 20 miles already!!!
    Melanie @ HappyBeingHealthy recently posted…Soul Searching and Simplifying LifeMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 11, 2016 at 7:39 am Reply

      I think its crazy too but so far, its working !

  4. przemek January 11, 2016 at 11:24 am Reply

    Incredible! Last week i did 20miles too… but on my bike! grrr 😛

  5. Kelli January 11, 2016 at 12:22 pm Reply

    Huh, I thought I heard the locks were being taken off, too. Looks like some great sights for your long run! I am very supportive of run/walk. Hadn’t really considered it up until my current coach started using it as a tool to build my running frequency. Great work!!
    Kelli recently posted…Training Update, Feedly, and Moment LensesMy Profile

  6. Darlene January 11, 2016 at 6:37 pm Reply

    If ever run a marathon, I will come to you for advice. This seems like a smart way to train. It helps that you are in Paris and sites are breath-taking!!
    Darlene recently posted…Monday Running UpdateMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 11, 2016 at 10:16 pm Reply

      I am surprised how much I have enjoyed running through a city. Keeps the run interesting.

  7. Judy @ Chocolaterunsjudy January 11, 2016 at 8:40 pm Reply

    I have found Galloway to be good for me, but I only follow him loosely. I personally wouldn’t go beyond the distance of whatever race I was training for — long runs, even slow long runs (and they should be anyway), are just so hard on the body and the immune system.

    But that’s me. Plenty of people follow him & if it’s working for you, as it seems to be, great!
    Judy @ Chocolaterunsjudy recently posted…And then there were 2: 1/4-1/10 Weekly WrapMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 11, 2016 at 9:29 pm Reply

      I will see how my body feels… normally 3 more long runs before the marathon. But I am amazed how well & fast I recovered after my 20 miler this weekend. Feel great. I take 2 days off. I want to run tomorrow but it is going to be cold and rainy, so if I don’t run it will be because of the rain, not my tired muscles.

  8. Karen January 11, 2016 at 8:55 pm Reply

    The lock bridge is so cool!!! I love seeing all your sights, I have never visited Paris.
    I wondered about playing with the ratio on runs, I met someone who used 3:1 and she seems to feel much better than 4:1 – I have only ever used 4:1, obviously it is going to take me awhile to try again since my foot isn’t cooperating, but hopefully soon.
    Will you ladder the ratio for your marathon? How do you program all that in?
    I do see the value in the plan! I guess eventually I will have to change over my thinking if it will keep me from getting injured. I worked so hard to train to run non-stop, it takes a little to reprogram lol
    Karen recently posted…Some Weeks You have It, Some Weeks You Don’tMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 11, 2016 at 9:27 pm Reply

      Not sure yet what I am going to do for the marathon. As I have gotten older my body really needs time to warm up. So I will probably do a build, but maybe not as long. I have several more long runs… 37, 41 and 45 km ! So we will see.
      I understand what you mean about running constantly, which I do on my shorter runs… just using run/walk on the long ones.

      • Karen January 12, 2016 at 12:39 am Reply

        Oh! That is what I thought I would do also, use it for the longer runs, I wondered if you would feel the same benefit. That’s good 🙂

  9. Karen January 11, 2016 at 8:56 pm Reply

    Oh… Love the socks!!
    I have been living in compression socks for the past year, I am a big fan 🙂
    Karen recently posted…Some Weeks You have It, Some Weeks You Don’tMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 11, 2016 at 9:25 pm Reply

      They have been amazing.

  10. Wendy Hammond January 11, 2016 at 9:54 pm Reply

    SO jealous, running through Paris sounds and looks like so much fun! I love the idea of the Galloway method but haven’t known anyone who uses it. Looking forward to following along virtually.
    Wendy Hammond recently posted…My On Again, Off Again Relationship with FlyLadyMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 11, 2016 at 10:15 pm Reply

      I haven’t found anyone who has faithfully used the method either, but so far I love it. Thanks for following !

  11. Michelle January 11, 2016 at 9:59 pm Reply

    I love your socks!! And love all of the lovely photos you captured on your run! I didn’t run last weekend as it was my husband’s last weekend off for the rest of the month so I wanted to spend time with him! Have a great week!
    Michelle recently posted…I. Made. BACON. FOAM.My Profile

  12. Emily @ Out and About January 11, 2016 at 10:21 pm Reply

    I’ve used variations of the Galloway method in the past, and am a huge fan. There’s something so helpful about knowing that at any given point, you only have X amount of time before you get to take a walk break, yes? It really helps, especially mentally. Your pictures are STUNNING!!!
    Emily @ Out and About recently posted…Training week recap: Jan 4-10, 2016, and some fangirlingMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 12, 2016 at 7:03 am Reply

      Good to know it was successful for you ! I haven’t found too many people who use it.

  13. Jennifer @ Run Jenny Run January 12, 2016 at 12:58 am Reply

    Thanks for taking us along on a tour of your long run route! That post run meal looks great! Glad Galloway is working for you.

  14. Kim Hatting January 13, 2016 at 4:50 am Reply

    Wow. Training in Paris would be SOOOO cool! And compression socks, I’m a believer! I prefer the sleeves, but they all do the same thing. My recovery time is much faster (after a long run or race…10-ish miles or more) when I wear compression socks/sleeves afterwards. I love scrambled eggs (with cheddar cheese) after a long run 😉
    Kim Hatting recently posted…Running on Vacay in CaliMy Profile

  15. Nicola @ Running Happy January 13, 2016 at 10:13 pm Reply

    Sounds like a great run.

    I’ve not heard of the Galloway method before. It sounds interesting and seems to be working for you. I think me running trails are an inadvertent Galloway method as I always have to walk some parts, either due to mud, stiles or getting lost!
    Nicola @ Running Happy recently posted…Treadmills and mudMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 14, 2016 at 7:51 am Reply

      It is big in the US but not many people are aware of it in Europe.

  16. Tricia@MissSippipiddlin January 14, 2016 at 1:37 am Reply

    karen I think this is a great plan to follow, I do wish I had used it for mine, truth! I saw so many people using the run/walk it was not even funny! I do agree the reason I recovered so easily after mine was the fact that I was forced to walk so much in the end. It’s good you have found your ratio the 3:1 so I’d stick with that. Tell me about these love locks? What are they for? What’s the meaning behind them? You should have no problem reaching your goal and I can hardly wait to see how it goes for you and your thoughts. Did you ever get an email from me?
    Tricia@MissSippipiddlin recently posted…The Day AfterMy Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 14, 2016 at 7:50 am Reply

      Hi Tricia, Holly said lots of run/walk too in the US but no one uses it here. Anytime I talk about it people look at me like I am crazy. I have even had people ask me if it is allowed. LOL.
      No, I didn’t get your email, but I will check my in box again.

  17. HoHo Runs January 14, 2016 at 1:44 am Reply

    Congrats on the 20 miles Karen! What wonderful scenery to be able to run through too. Tons of people were using a walk run method this weekend. I could hear their beeping watches signaling them to run and walk. I always walk through water stations and continued that tradition at the marathon. Since they have them very often, I took the opportunity to walk probably anywhere from 15-30 seconds each time. You are going to do great at your marathon! Eggs and cheese is my favorite post training run meal. Thanks for linking with us!
    HoHo Runs recently posted…Marathon Week (WW # 23)My Profile

    • Karen - Fit in France January 14, 2016 at 7:47 am Reply

      Run / walk is used a lot in the US… hardly at all in France. I think when I walk people are going to tell me “go go, you can do it”. I am even thinking of wearing a sign that says “I am doing a run/walk method”. LOL
      Looking forward to your recap !

  18. Ashley Collins January 14, 2016 at 4:29 am Reply

    W O W Karen, where were you when I used to run all through Boston (my 45 year old knees can’t do it anymore). I can’t believe you did 20 miles!!! Good for you!! And, I love the slant you took with this posting, showing us all the sites and memories that accompany, throughout your run. Keep writing (and running)! You’re doing fabulous.

    • Karen - Fit in France January 14, 2016 at 7:45 am Reply

      I know, we would have had so much fun running through Boston together….
      Thanks for reading ! miss you !

  19. James Warren April 18, 2016 at 11:46 pm Reply

    Karen,
    I have just moved to Paris (retired) on 02-Apr and have been using the Galloway method for 15 years now. I know how difficult it can be when you need to take a walk break and everyone else is egging you on to keep going. But once you get hooked on run/walk, it is difficult to let go. I am currently running around 10 miles at a 3-1/4-1 interval depending on my mood and finishing in around 2 hours (netting at 11.5 to 12 min/mi pace with running pace at or just under 10 min/mi). Will try to ramp up for 2017 Marathon de Paris. Please keep me in mind if you would like some company using run/walk.

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