fairweatherrunner

running blog


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Juneathon days 24 and 25

Were both about BMF classes.

One was at Ravenscourt Park, one at Hyde Park.

One involved logs (the tree type) and bench (box) jumps and the other involved lots of sets (that’s a lot of many) of squats.

I’ve decided I like box jumps but my legs and glutes have decided they are not so keen on squats in large numbers, as I discovered a day or two afterwards.  But that’s another story.

Juneathon day 24, 1  hour BMF class (3 miles run),

Juneathon day 25, 1 hour BMF class (3 miles run) plus 5 miles cycling.


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I ran again!

Go me! I’ve been for a run, again. Yes, second in three days. I might just be getting back into running!

A few weeks ago Sweatshop opened a new store not far from me. Eek lock up my credit cards! They hold weekly running groups, Sweatshop Running community SRC and being less than a mile away I really have no excuse not to join in. I meant to go when they first opened but then got stuck into BMF and didn’t want to miss a Monday there.

But this morning I couldn’t make BMF and with one son away and the other out (no distractions) I grabbed the opportunity to get to SRC. I rocked up to the shop where I got my record card which gives rewards for weeks attended then 5 of us headed out with a member of staff towards hyde park. I expected a 5K loop but was delighted that they now run 7 or 8 km on Mondays because I need to start building my endurance after a long break.

Although we ran a loop I know very well, running in a group and having a bit of a chat makes all the difference. Not only to motivation and enjoyment but in holding a decent pace alongside the others. Definitely good for my running as my red faced melted look proved by the end (it was very warm and muggy tonight!)

Juneathon day 23.
5.5 miles run (4.88 miles with the group). I did run there as well but it took the whole way there for my Garmin to get a signal.


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Adventure to parkrun

I decided to have a bit of a cycle mini adventure on Saturday.

I’d arranged to meet Alma and Giselle at Wimbledon parkrun for a catch up and when working out the route noticed that cycling the 6 – 7 miles there would only be 10 mins slower than driving. It’s on reasonably familiar territory so I decided I could get a longer ride in on Saturday knowing that I wouldn’t be able to cycle on Sunday.

It also gave me the chance to venture further afield than my regular bike routes and take a longer ride on my own which required a bit of navigating. The Citymapper app said the quiet route would take me 44 minutes. I got there in 47 but that included at least 3 complete stops to consult the map closely to find the right roads and a detour back to the road when I realised the Thames Path in Barnes was not suitable for road bike tyres.

It was such a beautiful warm sunny morning to be out on my bike so I didn’t regret getting up early. Wimbledon parkrun benefits from shade under the trees on the common but it was still a warm one. It’s a big parkrun,  the largest parkrun I’ve been to, I’ve certainly never finished in 189th place before! We started from the back so, having not done lots of running recently, I could start slowly and judge how I felt as I went along. It also gave me time to get used to watching my feet as it’s bumpy under the trees with roots, holes and ruts from all the mud on wetter days.

I gradually picked up the pace as the pack of runners thinned out and ran on feel trying to hold a ‘just slower than breathless’ pace and for a first parkrun in 6 months was pleased to finish in about the average time for all my parkruns. I also had nice negative splits!

Wimbledon parkrun is near an excellent café where we sat in the sun with coffee and cake for a catch up. It felt good to be back at parkrun and interesting to run a new venue. I think what makes it worth getting up and out early for (and the only way to get me out of my bed and to parkrun!) is a meet up with friends (and cake) so I am going to do it more often.

Cycling home took a little longer. I detoured off route a bit and followed my nose in the general direction of home. At one point I found myself approaching a busy junction I know but in the wrong place for my turn so I got off and walked to cross the tricky bits. I did end up going along roads I’d tried to avoid on the Thames Path earlier but it was absolutely fine, apart from crossing Hammersmith Bridge, which was horrid.

Juneathon day 21.
First parkrun for 6 months (3.1 miles run) and 14 miles cycled.


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Trip to the park.

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I wanted to test out my new road bike more today, OH has been adjusting the brake tensions for me to try and see if it would give more breaking power. I have small hands and limited reach on the shifters so found I didn’t have quite enough power to brake to a complete stop in traffic fast enough and got tired and aching hands after an hours ride.

My youngest is suddenly keen on cycling (he’s the same height as me at the moment and rather likes my lovely everyday single speed) and wanted to come too. We persuaded Dad to join us and as Ed only fancied a short half hour ride out with his parents I suggested showing him the quiet route to school and back which would take us to Ravenscourt Park where I could take some photos for Shaz who commented on my blog that she used to go there a “few” years ago.

Note to the driver of the car who beeped at us to hurry up when we were waiting to cross 4 lanes of traffic from a side road. Yes I meant every bit (and more) of my 4 letter expletive.
– DO NOT EDGE YOUR CAR AGGRESSIVELY FORWARDS AT MY YOUNGEST SON ON MY MOST LOVED BIKE!!- Grrrrrrr!

You’re very lucky my OH was there to stop me getting really mad, and then hold you up some more when he unfortunately “failed” to make it across the road at the same time as us!

Juneathon day 14.
4.8 miles family cycling.


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n plus 1

Wobbling down the Goldhawk Road on a new road bike today I remembered it was Friday 13th! Fortunately I got home in one piece having collected bike number 3.

Number 3 you may ask? Didn’t she only get her first 8 months ago? Yes but according to the ‘rules’ the ideal number of bikes is n+1 with a suggested minimum of 3!

In my defence my first bike, an entry level hybrid, was an underestimation of how much I would cycle and how quickly I would get confident and want to ride further and more importantly faster. Maybe I’m fitter and not so middle aged after all!

My second bike is my beautiful steel framed single speed. A Foffa Bike. It’s simple speedy and very light. There are no gears to mangle and can be carried in and out the house easily. I love it. It’s perfect for pottering about in London and will be the bike I continue to use most on an everyday basis. (My son likes it too!)

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But then I got more into cycling, further afield, even out of London (shock horror) and came across these things called hills which are a bit hard work when you’ve got no gears. So I tried a great big Isle of Wight hill on my hybrid and agreed a few (more the better) gears properly used (there is where the problem lies) will get you to the top of the hill.

I also found that in comparison to my lovely Foffa the hybrid rode like a tank (not that I’ve driven one) and after dropping the chain 3 times going up the bloody hill I announced my hatred of twisty gear things that slip 2 gears each go.

The solution was a road bike. Light weight and skinny tyres like my Foffa, but with gears. Time for bike number 3.

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After riding it home (only one hairy roundabout event), I went on to Hyde park to get used to its handling and test it out. It felt smooth light and responsive and I was very impressed by the easy gear changes.  I changed gear to pass someone going uphill and almost looked like I knew what I was doing!  I did find the brake levers hard to reach because I have small hands. (Bike makers need to think about scaling down more than just the frame for smaller women’s specific bikes.) I may need to get some adjustments made to make sure I have safe breaking power before I take it downhill at full speed!

Juneathon day 13.
13 miles cycling.

. Continue reading


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Another hot one

I could just copy my last blog post because todays exercise was the same as yesterday. A BMF class plus some cycling to get there and back and collect a parcel from the post office.

Except that, apart from the hot weather, it was very different in many ways. For a start the parcel I went to collect was actually there to be collected today!

I only just made it to Ravenscourt Park in time for BMF.  We had gone out early on spec to see if my new bike was ready for collection a day early.  It wasn’t because they are flat-out in the work shop. I reverted to plan a and BMF when I got home and realised that I would be only 10 mins or so later than normal leaving and could still make it.  This  focused my mind so I took the direct route down the bigger road that I normally avoid (and meander round the back streets). I discovered that the direct road route was not any more scary than the back streets and was significantly shorter and quicker!

Ravenscourt Park is much smaller than Hyde but it didn’t stop us running lots!  I suffered in the heat today which really slowed me down.  We did explore new bits of the park, finding logs to lift for Sumo squats and a nature park round a pond for a useful lap or two between sit-ups where it was essential to keep your mouth closed because of all the insects!

Juneathon day 12.

1 hour BMF class (3 miles running) plus 7 miles cycling.


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A hot one.

It was a warm one this morning for BMF. Our instructor acknowledged it and said he’d try and keep us in the shade. Great I thought, more strength work and less running. I can cope with that in the heat.

Alas our instructors idea of keeping in the shade meant all out runs to the next shady spot (less time in the sun) where we bashed out sets of squats, press-ups, squat thrusts and burpees before he was off again at full pelt across the park to another shady spot.  I do like BMF in Hyde Park because there is lots of space for running and variety but I could have done with a smaller park today!  We were getting further and further away from the van which can only mean one thing.  A long hot fast run back at the end of the class

Juneathon day 11.

I hour BMF class (3 miles running) plus just under 6 miles cycling.