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HIGH MILES CLUB

NOW AT THE PEAK OF THEIR MARATHON TRAINING, OUR TEAM HAS BEEN RACING HALF-MARATHONS AND BUILDING UP THEIR LONG RUNS…

BIG MARATHONS CHALLENGE

PHOTOS: EDDIE MACDONALD

It’s hard to believe that weeks have flown by and, as you read this, our team will be almost be ready to hit the start lines of their big races – in Claire’s case, just days away, as she is racing the first of her two 26.2-milers at the ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon on 2 April.

Over the last few weeks, they have been trying out pacing and fuelling strategies at halfmarathon events: Katie and Leah ran the Thorpe Park Half-Marathon on 26 February, while Alice tackled the Bath Half on 12 March. They’ve also hit their longest runs yet, some running for up to three hours. Coach Richard Coates (fullpotential.co.uk) is really pleased with how the team has coped. “It’s been a long haul,” he says. “They’ve been training for 16 weeks. Physically and mentally, they might be alright on the surface but underneath they’re quite tired – it’s quite intense week in and week out. It’s a tough time; March is when you do your longer runs.”

Part of his role as a coach has been keeping the athletes’ confidence on track when they have the odd bad day. “I’m just saying to them all that they should look at all the good runs they’ve done, rather than the occasional bad run, which crops up. All four of them train exceptionally hard and take it exceptionally seriously; they’ve really given it the respect that a marathon deserves. They’ve put everything into it, which I think is highly commendable.”

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About Women’s Running

In the May issue of Women's Running, on sale 30 March, we're getting you ready to run faster this spring! We've got the perfect 10K training plans for you, whether you're a first-timer, a gym bunny or looking to grab an amazing personal best this summer. Racing a spring marathon? Find out the secrets to success from the people working behind the scenes - everyone from first aiders to pacers to race photographers share their tips for staying on target (and grabbing some race pics to be proud of!). In this month's Trail Zone, find out why running in green spaces is so good for your mind and body. And don't miss the first ever Women's Running Nutrition Guide: your complete rundown of what to eat and drink to run faster, recover better and stay strong when you're training hard.