A step away from London

After a cracking weekend, and a fantastic ride on Saturday to celebrate my son’s 21st birthday (with lots of attacking and no hip pain whatsoever) -( – tonight was all about a trial run test my hip.

I am sorry to say it was not great. After a 5 minute warm-up (which is included in the strava profile), I gently started running- and it hurt straight away.

It was nice to be running again after nearly 3 weeks, and I am pleased to say that I am noticeably stronger in my stance, with little scuffing of my foot. I kept going, and the pain never got any worse- nor did it get any better. After 30 minutes I cooled down (again, included in the strava).

Back to the Physio tomorrow night, for a decision. But right now, it is not looking good for a run around London in 3 weeks time. (Cue sad music and montage of me running for the last few months, with perhaps some puppies in the back ground).


More miles

Back on it today. I am pleased to say that I feel fine after Sunday’s run and pottered my way around these miles easily.

Looking back, I can see why I struggled on Sunday. I have been training to run at 12-minute miles, so the fact I made it to mile nine before blowing up is actually progress!

With 45 days to go now, it will be a case of teaching my body to tick off miles at my steady pace. If I can stick with the 5-hour pacer then this will mean average 11 minutes 27 sec miles- which feels achievable right now.

And if I can’t? Then never mind. It’s London- the grandest of them all- and I will be running there. That is in itself amazing- especially from where I have come from.

4 miles? Done.

50 days to go

With just 50 days to go- where did that time go?- today was a stiff couple miles to turn legs over ahead of Sunday’s Bideford Half Marathon.

Pleased to say that I am carrying no tiredness. Felt a little clumpy, but a decent first mile (once my heart rate monitor caught up and started to shout at me, it was too late to ease off so I just kept it up until the end of the mile) helps me to see that I have progressed.

Once again, today was about my newer way of tapering- still running hard but with shorter distances, instead of doing nothing for the week.

Feel ready for Sunday- I wish it was tomorrow to be honest, in case I go off the boil by Sunday.

Back again

An interesting one tonight.

After the failure of Saturday’s run, I have taken a break. A few days away from running, without thinking about it once. It has been nice, and I feel all the more fresh for it.

Tonight I wanted to try something. Tonight I ran- I ignored my alarm, and just ran. I wanted to see if I enjoyed it or not; is it something I am just doing, or is it something I like doing? Dare I say it- do I love doing it?

The answer is yes, I do like it. Really like it. I enjoyed tonight, and felt no tiredness at all, both whilst running, and in the 2 hours since.It was nice to be out in the wind, pacing away. There is something about harder exercise- where you are breathing hard and in some type of rhythm- which is therapeutic and relaxing, despite it clearly being anything but relaxing.

2 miles became 3, which became 5km.  I even snuck a cheeky PB on a Strava section in there, and I got home with a sweat on and a smile.

It’s the second of my tester events on Sunday- The Bideford Half marathon. I am aiming for sub 2 hours 20 minutes; feeling slightly uncomfortable with this- which is good.

Just Ugly

I can think of little to be positive of about today’s run.

Ian and I set out to run 14 miles, but my own gastric problems within the first mile saw a restart.

From here, it went downhill (both literally and figuratively). We both found it hard- although Storm Doris has gone, today was windier than Thursday by a fair way. We set out towards Braunton to mix it up but the headwind hit us straight away.

Frequent walking sections, accompanied by even more frequent swearing followed. We turned at Braunton (the Salt rock roundabout) and found it easier but by then the damage was done.

Further gastric problems, the wind, the cold, the rough surface… the run had it all. My nice Saloman rain coat I have now found out is not breathable, meaning that by 10 miles the sweat was running out the ends of my sleeves. My Camelbak felt like a small child on my back. What else…mmm….. Donald Trump. Let’s blame him a bit.

Put simply, it was not our day. I have taken consolation in that Ian was struggling today (although not as much as me). I know Ian wanted to keep going but by 11 miles I was freezing and the amount of walking we were doing meant that really we were just wasting our time, so I called it.

14 miles in all (including the restart), and strangely, not much slower than last week, considering. The 17 miler will have to wait- today running was the victor.

Blowing up a Doris

(Actually- I did think of a much worse title, so think yourself lucky).

I was planning to go out Tuesday but on the walk back to my car after work, I found my legs were still sore and tired from Saturday. I guess this is something I have not factored in yet- longer runs require more rest, as I just don’t have the scope to carry over too much tiredness from run to run.

It was nice to be back out again, no matter how nervous I was beforehand. I ran smoothly and lightly, and managed to mix the route up from an ‘out-and-back’ to ‘I-fancy-going-around-this-way’. This made it interesting.

I soon found a rhythm. After the first always erratic mile, I settled in with rough 10min 53 miles. This felt comfortable and relaxed, and I could have done a few more miles at this pace.

A 17 miler on Saturday is planned- so very excited by this- can’t wait not only to do it but also to know that I have done it. The confidence it will give me will be needed.

Long and Steady

Today was my long and steady, and sharing it with me was Ian. We set out for a half marathon, but my retention for round figures meant that if we did 14 miles, I would have run 40 miles for my week off.

I think we got it right today. Because of the company, the miles came and went, and the plan of running about 1.5-2 minutes slower than normal training was easily achieved. In fact, we even managed a couple sprints in the last half a mile, which showed that we were within ourselves.

This whole week has been an immense confidence booster, and I can honestly say that I am a far better runner than when I came into it. Although I was scuffing a bit towards the end, my position was upright and confident. I am learning to let go of timings and speeds, and to enjoy the distance and the minutes and the achievements. My next big challenge is Bideford half marathon in 2 weeks time, where I would love to break 2 hours 15 minutes, but 2 hours 30 minutes should be a bit more realistic.

With eyes to London, I feel like I am reading a book, where the pages are slowly turning and showing me the way ahead. I do not know what the next page will tell me, but right now, it is feeling like 5 hours is a new target.

Bring on the mall!


My Week Long Marathon

This morning saw the end of my week-long marathon, with the last 2.2 miles. Interestingly enough, my form was dire until about the last 300 meters when I finally relaxed into it.

I am so chuffed with this week- to run 6 days on the trot has taught me a lot, about running and myself. I am now looking to top this all off with a gentle half marathon on Sunday to consolidate everything.

A feel so much more ready for London than I did a week ago! I am beginning- slowly- to believe I can actually make it.

Longer Day

I managed to wake up tired this morning and was very nervous about today’s’ planned 6 miler. I always get a bit worked up before a run, but today was extra nerve-racking for no reason at all.

In the end, it was good- great even. I carried my bottle vest and switched my heart rate alarm up a zone (the vest normally adds about 10 bpm). I settled in right from the word go and felt comfortable all the way along. In fact, in places- I actually felt like a runner. At 5 miles when I got to Sticklepath Hill I dug in and can now see a PB up there by over a minute. That’s mad!

So that’s another 6.3 miles done. Tomorrow requires me to do 2.1 miles, and then I have done a marathon this week- and ran 6 days on the trot (something which I have never done). I feel stronger and happier for it, and it will all be helpful in 2 months time when I do all of this week- in one day.

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