fairweatherrunner

running blog


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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

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A duathlon of sorts

 

I was up and out early again this morning (wah! I want my lie in!) to cycle to Hyde Park to meet Alma (@plustenner)  (but unfortunately not Carla (@-fit-flo), we missed you!) for the Hyde Park 10K.

 

HP10K

 

With no train or parking issues (which we had at Regents Park last month), we collected our race numbers and negotiated the loo queue well before the start.  A two lapped course on very familiar paths around the Serpentine.  I started well on target pace but struggled to get into it today and enjoy it.  There was a cold wind and I’d taken off my second layer to avoid over heating so I felt the cold for the first mile or so. I warmed up, but was then wishing it was only a 5K because my stomach was growling with hunger, bits of my legs ached and my mind was weakening.

My marathon plan gives me targets for each 4 week period.  This month it was to complete a sub 54 minute 10K.  No problem I thought, I ran 52.49 at Regents Park in December.  But finding it tough going between 4 and 6K today I was doubting being able to run under 55 minutes and had to grit my teeth and battle on.

I was eventually very happy to cross the line in 53.00. Job done, target achieved. It obviously wasn’t so bad a run as it felt at the time!

Alma and I were then met my Louise (@abradypus), after another long run for her, and we all went off for an essential part of marathon/ultra training…  Brunch.  Eggs, coffee etc and a catch up before I cycled home.  In fact as brunch was such an important part of the morning I think it should be seen as a training discipline in its own right and therefore my Janathon effort today was probably a triathlon not a duathlon!

Janathon day 19.   3.25 miles cycled, 10K run,  Brunch eaten, 3 miles cycled.


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New shoes

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The nice thing about marathon training is ‘having’ to get another pair of shoes so that I have two pairs to alternate and don’t get to marathon day and find my only wearable pair of running shoes are worn out.  When I noticed one of my current pairs, which I rotate for road running, was falling apart I took the opportunity of the Sales to get some new ones. (Yes, I know I’ve got many other pairs in the hallway – but only this model is right at the moment. As many of you will understand!)

I’ve worn them for short walks and cycling to wear them in this week but needed a suitable opportunity to run in them for the first time.  My midweek runs are beginning to increase in distance to make sure I get the miles in because I’m using BMF classes for 2 or 3 of my ‘runs’ each week. BMF is great for leg  strength (with all those squats lunges and burpees etc)  and for getting in some  flat-out sprints and fast paced short runs but the overall miles covered (about 3 miles a class on average) doesn’t give me excessive time on my feet in the marathon bank.

So today I bravely  went for an 8 mile run in my new shoes,  They were absolutely fine. They just felt a bit more cushioned and springy (can’t be a bad thing) but otherwise similar to my old pair which are pretty much the same model.

What I was worried about was forgetting to pick up my water bottle on the way out.  I needn’t have worried because plenty fell from the sky! (and the water fountains worked.)  At least running in the rain made me run at a good constant pace without really noticing.  I am now asking very nicely of the weather gods,  if they have any significant weather in mind for marathon day please can it be rain and not a heat wave!

Janathon day 16  8.21 miles run.


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Death by Burpees

And recovery by Latte!

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I don’t know why I felt that BMF would be a good recovery session after yesterday’s long run. But Monday BMF (and coffee afterwards) is a habit, which I like.

I woke up and my legs felt fine, (I think keeping moving yesterday afternoon and eating straight after the run helped.)  Anyway, I put on my compression tights, as a precaution, and got on my bike. Cycling was fine too, legs didn’t complain and I’m finding I’m doing the journey in a quicker time. (Might be more to do with taking a direct route and not getting off to walk across parks to avoid busy roads than increased speed!)

BMF however was the real test. Legs were knackered! High knees, squats, lunges, lots of stopping and starting and changing direction and bending down. Oh help! Ouch. My pace became a shuffle. An Instructor pointed out that I was wearing a red bib and there were blues in front of me! Couldn’t do anything about it, poor little legs were moving as fast as they could, other than offering to swap bibs!

I improved as the class went on and I warmed up but although I could move better I still felt rather lacking in energy.

The bit that finally finished me off was the Burpees. While my partner did 10,  I held the plank then we swapped and continued doing so until the Blues had reduced their number of burpees to zero. The first 10 pulled at my  hamstrings , after 20 I was struggling to hold the plank for the rest phase and after 30 I found lying face down, flat in the mud the preferable position!

A post class Latte and catch up restored me enough to enjoy the cycle home where, after eating half the fridge, I felt like sleeping for a week (at least).

Janathon day 13.

1 hour BMF class (3 miles running)  plus about 5 miles cycling.


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Long run

My bike ride yesterday made me realise how fortunate we are to live within cycling or running distance of some great sights in the centre of a wonderful city and that I must break out of my usual routes and run more of London’s streets.

I had to run 10-12 miles today so I followed a similar route to which we cycled. My route took me around 4 Royal Parks, from Kensington Gardens, Hyde Park, Green Park and St James’ Park.  I went through Wellington Arch, down Constitution Hill,  ran down the Mall, around past Horse Guards Parade and looped back to Buckingham Palace.

I was going to take some tourist snaps for this blog but realised when I got there I hadn’t brought my phone or camera (I have a new iPhone which I don’t want to ruin getting it damp in my pocket!)  so you’ll have to put up with my garmin map instead.

4parks

The first 3 miles were hard going (as usual) until the aches and niggles worked their way out and I settled into a good run.  As I ran down towards Buckingham palace and along the Mall it felt fantastic to be running a fresh route.  I was at the finish of the Marathon and where the Bupa London 10,000 is run; it was a mild sunny morning and I could almost feel and smell the start of a spring race.  I really felt the buzz, keen to get to the marathon  and motivated to run and run!

I should have run an extra loop of the Mall to make up the miles instead of my loop of the all too familiar Serpentine on the way back which felt a little less enthusiastic.  But all in all a very good run which I finished on a high with a grin!

Janathon day 12.  11.46 miles run.


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On my bike

I realised I was missing cycling yesterday  when I saw Cathy’s Facebook posts of Janathon bike rides.   I’ve not been out on my bike for a few weeks because It was away in the shed over Christmas to get it out the kitchen!  Fortunately it is now free from its shackels and I whizzed out on it to the shops yesterday.  It wasn’t far but it felt good.

I couldn’t face a run first thing this morning. I couldn’t settle down to do any work or chores either.  Only one thing for it, get out on my bike!

It was a great ride, no rain and the sun was shining making me wish I’d worn my sun glasses.  It was a bit windy (the weather not me) so I had an extra workout on some sides on the park battling into the wind. I cycled to Hyde Park and did 2 laps in the Sunshine with a big grin on my face before heading home full of energy.

I continued to feel good for the rest of the day and was (a bit) more productive.  I was still feeling bouncy this evening and as it was not raining for a change I went out to run my tempo run which I wimped out of yesterday.

Janathon day 9.  1 hour cycling (9.7 miles) and   3.15 miles run.

I cut across Holland Park on my route (where I have to get off and walk).  Holland House was looking good silhouetted against the blue sky so I took a photo just to prove what a lovely day it was!

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Look – Blue sky!


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Engage brain!

I swapped BMF for a mid length run today. I need to build my mileage (at BMF classes we run a total of about 3 miles of short fast efforts between exercises) and get my Jantastic runs in but don’t think 6 runs is such a good idea this week after only 3 last week!

I had planned to run to Hyde Park then do two mile laps at 10K pace and started out feeling fine but it was warm and I soon changed my plan into a steady 6 miler when I began to feel weary as I overheated in long sleeves.

So I plodded round the outside of the park and enjoyed the dry day and the sunshine, watching Winter Wonderland being dismantled (Yay!).  It’s so nice to have the place back to normal, free of crowds and be able to run some parts without running into a wall of people.  I did however do my good deed for the day and stopped for a couple of tourists to show them how to get to the tube. (Anything for a brief rest!)

Plodding on, finding it tough going  I looked at my watch and was totally dismayed to see my pace had dropped so dramatically.  Was I running in treacle?  Suddenly the blog post being written in my head completely changed in mood and my wandering thoughts of marathon pace and time became depressing.  I was sure I felt dizzy and hungry.  I had a drink and a talk to myself, mustered my best efforts and forced myself to push on towards home.

Part of the way home is down hill so feeling better and picking up the pace I glanced back at my Garmin.  Amazingly my pace had dramatically improved in a very short distance!  I normally display my average pace for the whole run but then I engaged brain.  I had changed it that morning to show me average lap pace which explained quite a lot!

Oh well lesson learned and a good exercise in overcoming the doldrums mid-run!

Janathon day 8,   6.5 miles run.