This morning I met up with Tom, friend and trainer with whom I ran the Tokyo Marathon. It’s the first time in months that we’ve done a Sunday-morning run, but perfect timing for the start of a 5 month training program leading up to next February’s Marathon (which I hope we’ll get into – the lottery will be held soon).

Returning to the park that had been our start point, Tom introduced me to a new core-body workout [You Tube]. Whilst running of course is an important part of training for a marathon, it doesn’t do much for core body strength.

Q: Why is core body strength important for marathon runners?
The “core body” refers to the muscles of your torso that help you maintain your posture, whether you are running, standing, or sitting. Strong abdominal and lower back muscles will combat fatigue during the marathon and during long training runs.

So there we go. This morning we went through all of the exercises, although skipped the repetitions (which are an important part of the program). Despite having only done 25% of the overall program I found myself totally knackered at the end – I am so unfit!

Still, I’ve committed to doing this routine 3 times a week. The thing is, I don’t want the marathon to be the struggle it was last time. I don’t want to feel so exhausted I just want to give up. I want to be strong enough to, erm, carry a video rig perhaps…

I also have this idea that I’m going to end up running ultramarathons or compete in triathlons, and need to prepare for that. I’d like to do the Oxfam Trailwalker again – running.

Another motivation for doing this is that I tend to spend most of my waking hours sitting down in front of a computer. It’s not healthy, and I need a balance. I’m aware that I have poor posture too. These exercises will help with that, and I hope will also lead to a generally healthier, more energised Joseph.


Today’s run stats

Oh, on a side note, I’m still loving Runkeeper. I feel it really is the best app on the market for tracking your progress – so much so that I’ve just signed up for their Elite program. The key feature of the elite program is the ability to live-stream your run – not in terms of video, but in terms of GPS coordinates (and thus speed etc).

I’ve experimented with the NIKE + GPS app that was recently released, but have been pretty disappointed. The two issues I have with it are a) accuracy – recorded distance seems to differ considerably from actual distance run, which is odd considering it’s using GPS b) the all-flash website it connects to, which I find suffers from slow response times and is lacking in the features I want. Nike have said themselves (in a Twitter reply to a tweet of mine) that it’s very much a ‘work in progress’. Let’s hope the team behind it get the support they need to bring it up to the standard I’d expect.

If there’s anyone else out there on Runkeeper (or Nike running for that matter) feel free to friend me 🙂