Monthly Archives: March 2012

Stat Attack!

Thanks to a fellow blogger catslondonmarathon I learnt something new tonight. You can get Garmin overall stats so I can see how many miles I’ve run in total this year. And, well, I was pretty surprised to see that I’ve run 228 miles since the start of 2012. Not bad for a bird with PF three weeks sidelined with Man Flu (bit of a cold!).

I’m quite impressed with that to be honest, there’s also a couple more miles more than that where I’ve forgotten to wear my Garmin – I do still have a soft spot for my Timex Ironman, we’ve been together a long while….but can’t fault the Garmin, not sure how I actually used to run without it.

Well, short but sweet post – I’ll try to get some proper stats up this week.

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The last long one

This Sunday is the Oakley 20 road race. For many this is the last stop before the taper starts for a spring marathon. This is the last proper chance to test out your food, your kit and even your pace (to some extent) before the big day dawns – a dress rehearsal I suppose. For me, it will be the first time I’ve got to twenty miles and I’m going to run in the kit I will wear for London. So the SANDS vest will get its second airing and hopefully we’ll have some better weather than the last time I wore it – it snowed! Although, having said that, as pleasant as the recent warm spell has been, not on Sunday morning eh – after 1pm should be OK as I’ll be running my last few miles 🙂

I’m looking forward to it as it will be nice to get some long running in, in a race situation, but there lies the problem – it’s a race, except I’m pretty sure it shouldn’t be run as a race, more like the long runs I’ve been doing over the last few months. But I’m not sure what sort of pace to run. So for all you more seasoned marathon runners – what sort of pace should the last long run be run at?

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Review of Week 12

Things are now starting to fall into place. What I previously would have considered as ‘long runs’ are now midweek ‘quick runs’ and any run that lasts less than an hour – well that’s just a sprint isn’t it?

It’s been a pretty good solid week of training, a good run on Tuesday with some hard reps just to check the legs can still move quickly if they need to. A slight twinge in my troublesome quad on the last rep meant I slowed it right down at the end but the hard work was already done by that point. I had a slow 8 miles planned for Wednesday but my quad was still a bit sore and after 3 miles decided to call it a day. Note to self, I need to have a days rest if it’s sore, otherwise it just gets worse.

I gave myself Thursday off and did that session on Friday lunchtime – I didn’t push the ‘brisk’ bits as quick as I could have but no pain from the quad so pretty pleased with that.

That just left the long run on Sunday with DLRR. After enjoying the run so much last week I decided to join DLRR as I really do want to be part of a club again and it can only help my running, plus it’s also a great way to meet some new people. The plan was 15 miles, but with loop backs (where quicker runners loop back to the slowest runner to keep the group together) I came in at over 17 miles. Much of the run was spent chatting to fellow runners which was really nice and made the miles pass by so quickly. This distance didn’t feel too bad at all and we had a quick last couple of miles which wasn’t a problem in the slightest. So with the 18 miles last week, plus the 17+ this week and with the Oakley 20 will make three long runs in three weeks and the first two have been completed without too much bother at all – roll on Oakley!

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Training for Week 13

This is the last full week of training before the taper starts so going to get some miles in. I’m due to race twice over the next week, but the Run for Nothing 5km will probably be the only one I actually race. The Oakley 20 will be more of a training run with a much bigger group than normal. Can’t risk getting too worn out at this stage. I might try to put 4-5 miles at race pace in to the last quarter just to stretch the legs out.

Monday – rest

Tuesday – 1m jog, 10 x 2 min uphill, jog back recovery, 1 m jog

Wednesday – Run for Nothing 5km

Thursday  – 6 mile (1m jog, 4m brisk, 1m jog)

Friday – stretching

Saturday – rest

Sunday –  Oakley 20

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Time is ticking…and we lose an hour!

The countdown widget says it all, 29 days to go….less than a month, just over four weeks left. The panic hasn’t quite set in yet – despite the extended downtime with various coughs and colds I think I’ve just about got enough miles in the tank to get round in one piece!

If you had asked me at the end of December if I would be happy to be at this point in this state, I’d have bitten your hand off as I never thought I’d still be walking let alone running and running quite well (for me anyway!). I was still receiving treatment for plantar fasciitis and had really accepted that a get you round result was the best outcome I could hope for. But I think the mixture of injury and illness early on has actually helped me out as it’s forced me to keep the mileage low in the first few weeks and enforced rest. I’m a bit old school when it comes to training. If you’re not on your knees at the end of a session you’ve not got anything out of it but I’m now firmly in the ‘less is more’ camp.

To be honest apart from the PF the only issue I’ve had so far is a sore quad muscle and that only started once the miles started to rack up. Bit of ice and ibuprofen gel and think that’s just about licked!

Official logo

Official logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

With just 8 days of hard training left, long run tomorrow (must remember to get up an hour earlier else I’m miss it!) and the Oakley 20 next Sunday it’s then time to taper.

But to more pressing things – tomorrow many will be running the Sport Relief mile throughout the UK and a fellow blogger Jules who will be competing in her first ever event. So good luck Jules – you’ll breeze through it! May it be the first of many!

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Oh, to be Kreativ…

I’m quite new to all this blogging malarkey so was shocked over the weekend when I received notification that I had been nominated for a Kreativ Blogger award – which I am very honoured to accept. So, first of all special thanks go to JogOnJules for the nomination – please do check out her blog and what inspired her journey to complete in her first 5k later this year.

To receive the award you must…

  • Thank the person who has given you the award. (tick)
  • Copy the logo and place it on your blog. (tick)
  • Link the person who has nominated you for the award. (tick)
  • Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting. (tick)
  • Nominate 7 other Kreativ Bloggers. (tick)
  • Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate. (tick)
  • Leave a comment on each of the blogs to let them know they have been nominated. (doing it now!)

While pondering about who to nominate and why it got me thinking a bit more about how we find blogs and decide whether they’re something we want to follow – it’s all about the followers in this game you know!

So I went through the list of blogs I follow to see what was it in them that made me go the step beyond just reading them, to clicking that ‘follow’ button. And bar one or two exceptions it was really quite obvious – they all have a link to running in some shape or form which made me think (I did a lot of thinking today!) that running is pretty central to my life and I can’t really remember a time without it. Even in the wilderness years (between Uni and first few years in my job) I was still a ‘resting’ runner. I ran through most of my pregnancy and restarted as soon as I could, even managed a triathlon within 6 months.

Anyway, here’s seven things about me you might find interesting.

  1. My favourite book is Pride and Prejudice – this stems from school – but I like it – and this was pre-Colin Firth.
  2. One day I will do an Ironman – I started small after inspiration from my sister who completed the London Triathlon about six years ago and have completed sprint and Olympic triathlons. Depending upon the state of my legs (and mind) after London I might give the Cowman a cheeky go in July and well, there’s only one option after that….
  3. I can play the clarinet and actually reached Grade 4 level before I decided I’d got better things to do – shame as it would have been a good skill to keep up.
  4. I actually started my sporting life as a swimmer – 6am starts in the pool before school and then played anything going from netball, to hockey, to tennis, to badminton, to volleyball, to 5-a-side, to – even kabaddi (although a dislocated shoulder ensured I have never returned to that particular sport!)
  5. I was County 800m champion when I was 13 – it’s been a steady slide to obscurity ever since! These days anything shorter than 5km is a sprint to me so don’t think I’ll be defending that title anytime soon!
  6. I love House music – spent many an evening in dingy nightclubs dancing the night away, but at the other extreme I’m also a fan of Ludovico Einaudi.
  7. I love lists! I write lists for everything and love scrubbing out an item when it’s done – the requirements for this award are great – it’s a list!

So who to nominate…so many to choose from but in no particular order

Warriorwoman Running  – this was the blog that got me started when I stumbled across it while surfing for plantar fasciitis info.

bearunner – the journey to Ironman – one day this will be me so I’m picking up tips!

jacksmumontherun – witty and real breath of fresh air  – busy mum and still manages to fit a run a day in! One day…

Cotton T Runners – a great running blog

Plus my fellow marathon bloggers – we’re all on the same journey and it’s quite comforting to know there’s a few of us out there all working hard!

Reliable Plodder – off to London

RunHelenRun – off to Manchester

Helen runs– off to Brighton

For those who I have nominted, here’s a reminder of the rules:

  • Thank the person who has given you the award.
  • Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
  • Link the person who has nominated you for the award.
  • Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting.
  • Nominate 7 other Kreativ Bloggers.
  • Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
  • Leave a comment on each of the blogs to let them know they have been nominated.

So that’s me done, please do check out the blogs above – I love ’em!

Final word goes to JogOnJules who nominated me – without realising it she’s inspired me to join a running club again – my form’s in the post Jules – see you at a club social soon. 🙂

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Training for Week 12

After a relativity high mileage week last week, will try to do something similar this week. Only this week and next week or hard training before the taper so want to get as much in as I can.

Monday – rest

Tuesday -7 mile (1m jog, 4 x 1m fast with 200m rec, 1m jog)

Wednesday – 7 mile slow

Thursday  – 5 mile (1m jog, 3m brisk, 1m jog)

Friday – stretching

Saturday – cross training (bike)

Sunday – 15-18 miles slow (with 3-4 miles at race pace in the middle)

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Review of Week 11

Mixed week this week. Started OK with some stretching on Monday but by Tuesday was starting to get a bit worried about a sore thigh I’ve had since the MK Half. It was started during the MK half, but then disappeared and I didn’t notice it again until the 16 miler last weekend, but only after 10 miles or so, so had just put it down to the longer mileage. But during the run on Tuesday it was troubling me from the start and during the fast sections was even worse. I ran again on Wednesday, just very slowly but after 5 and 1/2 miles called it a day.

After some googling, established that I’d probably not done anything too serious, slight tear at worse but most likely a result of overtraining. Although I’ve not trained huge volumes of miles, this last week or so is probably the most volume I’d done after my everlasting cold so I probably had upped the mileage a bit quicker than I should have. Decided to not run Thursday and rest until the long run on Sunday. I was going out on the bike with my father in law and brother in law on Saturday but the weather was awful when I woke up and as someone who tends to take the odd tumble on the bike decided that it was safer to stay at home. With London only five weeks away (is that all?) really can’t afford any broken bones! I went for a short jog instead to see how my leg felt and was pleased to see the rest had worked (that and the ice and ibuprofen gel).

Sunday was due to be an 18 miler – the longest run yet (in my life, not just this training plan) and after some gentle persuasion from a work colleague decided to run with the DLRR group. Their plan was 14 miles which sounded good to me as I could always go for a few more afterwards. I was a bit nervous (for various reasons – see yesterdays post) but needn’t have been. They were all lovely and made me feel very welcome and part of the group. This was a big group of a wide range of abilities, but with loop backs, the group is kept together (the faster runners loop back towards the back of the group). I really enjoyed the run and it was great to be among like-minded souls after weeks of running the streets in isolation. Although it was  14 mile route today, with loop backs I’d actually completed 16.5 miles by the time we finished so afterwards I ran another mile and a half to get to the magic 18. I did run out of path on the way back so ended up running a couple of loops of the (rather small) car park – much to the amusement of several dog walkers returning to their vehicles!

So, bit of a dodgy start to the week but it finished well and I think DLRR will probably be getting a new member very soon…watch this space!


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Something new…

Tomorrow I’m doing a long run, but this time it will be a bit different as I’m actually going to do the run with a group. This is quite a big deal for me as although I was a member of my local running club for many years and loved every minute of it, after I returned from Uni I just couldn’t get the motivation to rejoin. I picked up running again about 10 years ago and although I’ve done the odd run with work colleagues the bulk of my running is done alone, partly through choice (it’s a bit of ‘me’ time in a busy world) and also just because that’s how it turns out trying to fit runs in around family and work and other commitments. I’ve looked into joining local running and tri clubs a few times but never actually gone through with it. But I’m hoping tomorrow will be the start of a new era…

Training for London has reignited the runner in me. It’s not just the last bit of triathlon at the moment, I’m actually enjoying running for the sake of running – albeit with a bit of goal. It’s got me thinking about my time at the club as a youngster. I made some great friends there some of which I still keep in touch with today even tough we’re spread far and wide and a bit of me wants that camaraderie back.

So, tomorrow I’m taking the plunge and will be joining a local club on their long Sunday run. I feel a bit like a kid on their first day at school and am actually a bit nervous. I’m not sure why as I’ve friends who’ll be there who are already members and I’m confident in my own running but I think it’s the fear of the unknown…

Anyway, report to follow tomorrow. Best go and get some shut eye – doesn’t do to be late on your day at school eh?!



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Training for Week 11

Going to try to get some good mileage in this week. Feeling ok after the long 16 miler today so will try some faster stuff earlier in the week building up to 18 miles on Sunday.

Monday – stretching

Tuesday -7 mile (1m jog, 3 x 1.5m fast with 400m rec, 1m jog)

Wednesday – 8 mile slow

Thursday  – 5 mile (1m jog, 3m brisk, 1m jog)

Friday – stretching

Saturday – cross training (bike)

Sunday – 18 miles slow (with 3-4 miles at race pace towards the end)

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