running blog


Another parkrun fix

I’m sure it must have been Abradypus who first put the idea into my head that if you spend Friday night within 30 mins travelling distance (probably more like 60 for her these days) from a parkrun you’ve not run, it is quite rude not to make it there the next morning.  So I checked with our family we were staying with who confirmed that Braunstone pakrun was in fact about 30 mins drive away.

I made it there this morning with 2 mins to spare, perfect timing for a cold drizzly day as I ran from the car to catch the end of the welcome and announcements. No getting cold or give away tell-tale sign of being a tourist or first timer by turning up 20 minutes early for me! Turns out my hubby doesn’t know Leicester quite as well as he claims, or they’ve added a few dual carriage ways and cinema complexes since he were a lad.

Anyway it was a very well attended parkrun over 2 laps of a not too unattractive urban park. A bit busy at the start, but just enough to temper idiots (who me?) who go off too fast and then die round the first corner and then take the next 2 miles recovering. But it soon spread out and I had a good run and managed to knock a few more seconds off my average pace. Not flat but nothing too bad for the first 3 miles until the finish straight up a hill for the final 0.1 of a mile! Sprint finish effort at snail pace. Thank god it was only 0.1.

Janathon day 3, parkrun number 27, 14th venue.


New Years Day

Thanks to my family for getting out the house an hour earlier (and for sitting around in the car for half an hour or so) and to Gladstone parkrun for holding a New Years day event at the right time which enabled me to run a parkrun this morning and make it up the M1 in time for New Years day in Leicestershire with family.

Parkrun event number 26 at my 13th venue done and my first for 2015. 24 to go and it would be nice to get another 12 venues along the way.

I started off regretting only short sleeves as I shivered at the start, I chatted to a few others but as they were new park runners I was non the wiser on the course details. We started and I followed along and soon stopped worrying about what the course was. I was feeling good after lots of running at BMF yesterday so went with my initial pace towards the front and tried to stick at it. The undulating (bloody big hills) course was a little leg sapping and my hamstrings were shouting after yesterdays efforts but some long downs helped me along a bit. At least it was mostly tarmac so apart from one very big puddle my new running shoes were saved the worst of the mud.

5K run for Janathon day 1.

The rest of my Janathon efforts of the day involved a breif lap of a dark field with a Black Lab (the dog ran (we assume) we trudged) or were wine bottle related…

Happy New Year.


Starting Over

Dusting down my long neglected blog for Janathon.

I lost my way with running after the London Marathon this year. To be honest I found I didn’t enjoy my runs anymore so didn’t want to get out there. I didn’t turn up for my favourite 10K race, I half heartedly participated in Juneathon trying to find my mojo and walked myself round the Ealing Half Marathon in record slow time because I just didn’t have the motivation for mind over matter to keep running when my legs ached a little. And not feeling like running meant not feeling like blogging or particularly having anything worthwhile to say.

But deep down I missed running.  And missed it not only because of the green eyed envy reading others’ success and joy with running but for something else. Something that’s hard to describe. I was cycling loads and getting my fix of fresh air and of course still going to British Military Fitness ((where a fair bit of running happens) albeit many times hiding in the slower group) but every so often at a good session where I was on form, did lots of running or had a really good hard sprint I got a bit of that old feeling back and thought about running some more.

So in November I quietly decided to start again from the beginning. I thought about the sort of runs that I had enjoyed before and decided to concentrate on those. I would start with shorter distances and ignite my love of a bit of speed, I would dust off my barcode and get back to parkrun, get social, meet a few buddies and chase a few PBs. I would concentrate first on just adding 5K a week to my BMF classes and cycling by going to parkrun every Saturday that month.

That’s where I’m at. I ran 5 parkruns in November (and one in Dec) to reach 25 at 12 venues. My goal is to earn my 50 shirt, get around more venues in 2015 and maybe grab a 5K PB. Slowly I will add an occasional 10K race and get myself back to running club. I might even get out on my own for a Long Slow Run one day. But one day at a time.

So Janathon is the start of my journey to get back my love of running in 2015.


Just another day…

Yesterday was the last day of Janathon.

Time to round up my running mileage from 99 to 100? Or  110 as suggested by @abradypus!  And what do I round up my 61 miles cycled to?

But this isn’t the end for me. Far from it. I’ve got 2 more months of marathon training so will be carrying on exactly the same.  Plus some, as I get into the peak of my training and on to very long runs .

I will still blog on a regular basis but won’t be blogging everyday, which is the hardest bit of Janathon.   It will actually be good to spend less time trying to think of something to write, getting it down on screen, corrected, re written and have more time to read other people’s blogs.  I have a big backlog of Janathon blogs to start with.

So yesterday, it not really being the end,  but just another Friday I did the same as I usually do on Fridays.  I pedalled to Hyde Park where I did a BMF class.  It was a normal BMF class (as far as any BMF class can be normal)  with rather too many burpees, a lot of squats and many laps running around a triangle (a big one, it was about 400m,), all finished off with a couple of sprint races  My team won both,  I’m good a chosing fast team mates! Then I cycled home with a very cold wet bottom (blooming V sits) and freezing hands (press-ups and planks in a puddle which soaked my gloves).

It was also another typical Friday because I failed to blog. Last week I was feeling blah and fell asleep.  Yesterday I spent a lovely afternoon visiting a friend in hospital with two other friends but by the time I got home (horrible dark cold wet evening and slooooow tube trains), cooked and ate dinner and sat down with a film and glass of wine it was already late and my mind was even blanker than usual.

Janathon day 31.  5 miles cycled, 1 BMF class (3 miles running)

Janathon 2014.  102 miles run, 67 miles cycled.


Janathon day 30.


30 days of exercise (mostly) and blogging everyday (nearly).
99 miles run, 9 BMF classes, ( I wont count the coffees), 61 miles cycled, a few cakes, several planks, many squats and far too many Burpees.

If you read yesterday you’ll realise that I haven’t added to my running mileage today. I took my second weekly rest day because I had other things on. I did plank for 4 minutes (changing position between front and sides every 30seconds!). Tomorrow, the last day of Janathon some rounding up is required and some last minute catching up with reading other blogs!


Coldest Wettest

Run yet…

Plan A was to run first thing and then get on with work all invigorated and smug having got my run over with.  But it was raining and cold this morning so I moved on to Plan B.  According to my iPhone weather app the rain would clear or ease by mid day so I would work until then and have a lunchtime run.  It continued to rain and I did get some work done but started to get  thoughts about plan C, to run this evening. However the thought of dark and wet run didn’t appeal one bit so I ended up with plan D.  I went out when there was just enough daylight left for my planned 8 miles.

It was raining when I got out the door, it rained all through my run and it was still raining when I got home.  It was cold, the rain stung.  Any target pace or need to do a couple of intervals in the middle of my run fell by the wayside.  I pressed go on my Garmin, put my head down and just got on with it at whatever pace my legs would do (give or take up hills. slow pedestrians and down hills).  It wasn’t one of those nice “I didn’t look at my pace but it turned out pretty good” runs but it wasn’t too shoddy either.

I followed the same route as a previous run (8.21 miles) but must have cut a half mile corner somewhere or other because I got home at 7.73 miles. Today was not a round-up sort day. Once in sight of my door I was heading straight in for a hot drink and to get warm and dry!  Unfortunately that shortcut was at a price –  I assumed today I would reach 100 miles for the month but once logged it for Janathon I have had to settle on a nice round 99!

Janathon day 29   7.73 miles run

Janathon totals; 99 miles run, 61 miles cycled.


Rest day

Today was a rest day from running.

To stop me from hibernating indoors all day trying to work and achieving not much I went out on my bike to break up the day. It was just a few miles to the postoffice and the shops and back but enough to make me feel better for being outside, getting some fresh air, daylight and exercise and for not taking the car.

I always feel good after a bike ride, however short, so its worth the extra exercise of weight lifting my bike up the basement steps.

Janathon day 28. Cycled 3.6 miles (and a bit of weight lifting). Plus a bit of essential foam rolling which I am about to get on with…
Maybe I’ll put the kettle on first.


Not a rest day

After a long run yesterday I, not for the first time, rather madly went to BMF for my recovery work out. I did however take the car because although my legs felt fine they drew the line at cycling in the cold. I thought it would be good to give them a chance of trying BMF without the warm up cycle to see if they fared any better. They didn’t. But I really think that a BMF class after a long run is very good experience of what it feels like to try and run on absolute empty. And when we were having that final sprint to the end I told myself it was like the last 6 miles of a marathon as my eyes went blurred and I came over dizzy. Fortunately today it was only a few hundred yards dash to a lamppost. I did get there first, but then all the faster runners had a handicap of having to do twice as many burpees than me before the dash to the line!

The good bit, as well as the hot chocolate afterwards, is that tomorrow is a rest day (from running) to look forward to.

Janathon day 27. 1 BMF class (3 miles run plus a few other forms of overexertion)


A good long run

I was rather late getting out for my long run today.  It probably had something to do with the box of empties which I put out for recycling this morning!

When I did get out I had a really good enjoyable run and was thankful for many things today…

  • My delayed run meant the rain was easing when I left home
  • The cool light drizzle during the first half hour washed away the last of my thick head
  • A group of youths cycling on the pavement actually apologised that I had to detour to avoid them!
  • The peace and quiet of 4 (more empty than normal) London Parks on a wet Sunday
  • Only being asked directions by 2 sets of tourists
  • The loo attendant letting me in at 2 mins past 4pm when she was about to lock up
  • A good feeling run on what ended up being a beautiful afternoon when the rain cleared.
  • Getting to my door and my Garmin reading 12.01 miles!  Job done.

Janathon day 26.  12 miles run



Those missing 2 days

I haven’t run away or given up, yet! So what happened with Janathon days 24 and 25?

On Friday I did exercise.  I cycled to BMF.  It wasn’t great and I was still absolutely shattered   I got home and only had the energy to do what I really had to do.  I then curled up on the sofa and that was it.

I slept for 12 hours and felt better but the late start to Saturday meant I didn’t have much time to fit it all in.  We had friends coming for Burns Night supper and as well as shopping, cooking and a promised errand out with my son I also had the mad cleaning and tidying dash around the house which is necessary when anyone is coming to visit!  My run didn’t happen but I did Hoover, scrub and run around like a headless chicken.

Janathon day 24.  5 miles cycled, 1 BMF class (3 miles run and too many burpees)

Janathon day 25.  More slacking unless frantic cleaning counts!