London Marathon Training Diary: Getting faster at 45
MARATHONER Andrew Heyden has been a big name on the Australian Masters scene and the former Brit is training to run his fastest-ever 26-miler in the London Marathon in April – aged 45.
After introducing CurraNZ into his regime in 2017, this hugely accomplished distance runner has gone on to reset all but one of his PBs in his adopted country using our product – with just the ‘big one’ to go.
Common sense would suggest that after over two decades of running at elite level, he couldn't expect to peak in his mid-40s, but this has become 'the new norm' for Andrew in the last two years. His secret? Our blackcurrant extract, a proven and reliable legal performance enhancer.
An Australian 50km and NSW Masters 5,000m Champion, Andrew has been getting faster at every distance with CurraNZ - in some instances, he's twice broken PBs that have stood for over a decade. There's just his marathon that remains - and Andrew believes it's entirely within reach, declaring he's 'in the form of his life'.
This week he kicks off his monthly marathon diary with great insights and tips in the countdown to the race.
Andy writes: I’m gearing up for the London Marathon in April, I first ran the race in 1995 aged 21 and so this race is very special as it will be the 25th anniversary of my first marathon.
Despite turning 46 shortly, I’ve been in the form of my life, aided by the benefits of CurraNZ.
I’ve run around 50 marathons now and ten times in London, but not since setting my personal best (PB) there of 2:36 in 2006, have I managed to improve that time. However, this year, I’ll have the perfect opportunity to try and break that.
I’ve put in a solid block of training in January and the focus has been on building a strong base with plenty of hills and quality in the long Sunday runs, whilst backing off the pace in the weekly interval sessions and not smashing myself.
Top-end speed is not vital for the marathon so I haven’t run any sessions below 10km pace.
With the focus on London I’ve purposely not allowed myself to enter any other races and just used a few local Parkruns to satisfy that 'race feeling' a bit.
I’ve been averaging 100km per week and am increasing this through February.
After a dry summer that is fueling the devastating bushfires in Australia, it has been great to see a decent few days of rain this month. The air quality around Sydney was terrible during December and into January and some days it was sensible to not run or find a treadmill to train on. I cut a few of my longer runs short due to the air pollution and reduced the intensity of some interval sessions but it was a minor hinderance and hard to complain given the impact the fires had on some people and their homes.
Thankfully the recent rain has helped put a few of the fires out at last and the cooler days are lovely for running.
One change I’ve made is to have a complete rest day. In the past I have run seven days a week, but through January I rested on Fridays to ensure I was fresh for a tempo on Saturday and long run on Sunday.
This Sunday was the first test - I ran 32km but with 6 x 3km efforts in the middle, at just above marathon pace. I managed to nail it, which is a good test of my progress. So, onwards and updwards!