Make the most of your runcommute for spring marathons

With the recent announcement of a stellar field for the London Marathon our thoughts are starting to turn towards spring races. For those lucky enough to have a place the weeks are counting down fast and you may be feeling that you inner Jo Pavey is buried much too far down for you to feel confident tackling the 26.2.
This is a great time to make the most of your runcommute as you prepare for your spring marathon. Throughout January hopefully you’ve been building a routine which has got you used to running regularly. As we move into February you can start thinking about the tips and tricks which Martin Yelling mentioned at the IAMRUNBOX Kickstarter launch before Christmas.Try throwing some increased effort levels into the mix once a week. This will make training more interesting and it’ll get you used to running faster. If you want to keep pushing then you can progress each time you run it. For example:
Week 1: Alternate hard and easy effort between lamp posts. (1-1-1-1)
Week 2: Alternate between hard for 2 lamp posts, easy for 1, hard for 1, easy for 1, hard for 2 etc (2-1-1-2-1-1-2)
Week 3: Run hard for 2 every time and recover for 1 (2-1-2-1-2)
Don’t do this every run though. A qualified coach (not me) will tell you that you need to vary your effort levels. Run the easy runs easy and the hard runs hard. 

Perhaps you can take a break at the end of your run once a week to do some core work. Mountain Climbers , side planks, and walking lunges (done properly with the knee at a right angle) are favourites of qualified coaches. I’m not a trained coach, but from experience I can tell you that these make a huge difference.
Most of all though, keep enjoying those easy runs. This is the beauty of the runcommute - on the days when you’re not thinking about pace you can enjoy the fact that the very act of runcommuting is the ultimate in multitasking. It encompasses training, transport, therapy and sightseeing all in one. On the good days, think about what you love most about running and draw on it when you hit the more drizzly ones.
What races do you have coming up? Let us know  - we’d love to hear.