The Marathon de Sables: 1st April 2010. 10 Weeks To Go.

OK, I’ve now decided that this an April fool’s joke. It’s now only a matter of weeks until I leave to do this mad run on Easter Sunday. I was away over the Christmas period and managed to train in the heat and sand. It was excellent. However I did do one speed session of 4 × 800m repeats with 200m recover and I was nearly was sick! The temperature was only 35 degrees.

My weekly mileage is increasing, slightly more than the recommended 10%, but then I only have weeks to complete my peak training. I did about 70km last week and this week I ran 40km on Monday in just over four hours, with my 6kg pack on. Tuesday I ran repeat hills and today my quads have stopped working, so I’m resting! I’m rather stiff to say the least. Friends keep After Monday I felt good and I could have gone on for another 10-15 km. I did eat a pack of jelly babies during the run to give me the 30-60g of carbs that I need every hour.

My training the rest of the week will look like this:

  • Thursday - 10-14km easy pace run.
  • Friday - 10 km run at half marathon pace.
  • Saturday - 30-40 minute tempo run.
  • Sunday - Rest
  • Monday - long run 3-4 hours.
  • Tuesday - speed session 6 × 800m repeats

I’ve nearly collected all my kit. However, I need to get a sleeping bag which is light weight. I’m looking at one called Yeti which is only 295g. Weight is everything here as I’ll be carrying it. I do want to aim to carry about 6-8kg as I think this will be manageable.

I have now found out my race number which is 872 and there are only 29 women from the UK running. It’s getting close, so very close now. I am excited but also very nervous. Nerves are good, and I will try and use these productively. The race is 90 % mental attitude. I know I will need to dig deep, very deep during the double marathon day. I can do 40km so it’s only another 50km! Nearly there… only a few more k’s…

I am raising money for F.R.O.D.O. which is a charity transforming the quality of life and providing hope for disabled children in developing countries. If you would like to sponsor me then please visit Thank you for all you support.

Georgie runs her own training business, providing 1:2:1 training, run together sessions or will happily help you with your training and fitness goals. Visit for more information or call Georgie on 07736 070612.

— from Georgie Islip

21 January 2010 | news


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