Firstly, thanks to Eric, Rich and Robert for answering my previous query about the Hardest Workout. Having just completed Phase 2 Week 5, Day 3 had a slightly easier workout SPZ 6 instead of SPZ 7, and I managed to hit 4 out of the 6 sets with my target average pace (First set was a bit sluggish, even after the warm up, and the last set I had to go down and then up a dirty big hill as I got close to home. I would have hit my mark for sure on the flat) So it looks like out of the 17 week program so far, I've only had one workout that I was disappointed with the result. I'd have to say that I'm pretty happy with that outcome:)
Secondly, I experimented with gels on yesterdays long run, and I have to say what a difference they made. My total run time was 2 hrs and 6 minutes, and I felt extremely strong at 2 hours & 1 minute as I started my 5 minute cool down. I used 2 gels, one at 45 mins and the other at 80 mins, and managed a 7:27min/mile pace (4:38min/km) in rolling hills for 40 mins on part of the run. My longest run for the program, Week 11's long run, where I had no gels or water, had me starting at a 7:55min/mile (4:55min/km) pace, but fading by the end of the 32km's to a 10:30min/mile (6:32min/km). The fade was gradual but noticeable to me while running as well. I still need to refine my fueling race strategy, but I will definitely be using SIS gels (no water needed when squeezing these down).
Lastly, it looks like it, although I just wanted to check, but is the taper built into the program? My race day (Hobart Cadbury Marathon) is on Phase 2 Week 8 Day 7. I take it I just forgo the Saturday run (P2W8D6) and have my race on Sunday? It looks like there are sufficient rest days and easy runs in the remaining 3 weeks of the program to be called a taper, but I just wanted to make sure. I few running friends have asked "Have I started to taper", and I'm like "I'm just following the program".
Any comments, queries and questions are welcome.