It’s only 20 weeks until the Brighton marathon. With my injuries over the last few months I've not run as much as I'd like. I concentrated on recovering rather than a decent mileage, which meant there was no point starting a proper training program. In the last few weeks I've managed 20 miles a week, despite some appalling weather. Which is a good thing since I’m a lot closer to the marathon date than I wanted to be at this stage.

The program I’m following comes from the Runner’s Handbook, which features a useful chapter on marathons. It also includes a quote from Dick Traum, who says, "Anyone who honestly takes the time to train can finish a marathon. You don’t have to be much of an athlete, just patient and disciplined. You have to put in the time". This is the attitude I've been taking - that completing a marathon is not a triumph of physical prowess, but one of scheduling and organising. Running four or five hours a week and meeting all my obligations is going to be interesting.

My running programme covers 16 weeks, which allows me a few spare weeks in case of illness. I matched the schedule to mine over the next few months, then added up the total number of miles. Between now and crossing the finish line at Maderia Drive, some time after 1pm on April 18th, I have to run 633 miles. This is about 100 hours of running, with an average of 4½ miles a day.

633 miles seems like an incredible distance - it would take me from Brighton to Berlin. Actually, that’s not quite true, as I would have to travel is a straight line, including an ocean crossing (although, thanks to twitterers @ehitwmot and @sparksnight I now know that a human can run across water if they reach 65 mph. However, this is faster than Usain Bolt’s top speed of 27 miles an hour, so my attempt at this will have to wait until after the marathon).

I have two more warm-up races this month. Boxing Day sees the Diseworth fun-run and, on the 12th, I will be entering the Santa Dash for the third time. A 5km race doesn’t sound so bad, even dressed as Santa Claus, but the weather at the last two Santa Dashes has been brutal. Last year's event was one of the hardest races I've done. I can't wait.