Recovery Run

28 11 2009

Must have been trying pretty hard last Sunday, as it’s taken all week to recover. Didn’t bother with the mid-week run as I was still pretty sore in the calves and ankles, particularly my right calf which was still a bit tender this morning.

Decided to go for a short run anyway over my normal ‘short’ training run course. Quickly remembered why I decided to take a different route over the winter months as it was a bit of a mudfest. Reduced to walking round the worst bits at least three times. (That’s each bit once, not the same bit three times . . . ) Even with the enforced breaks, still found it hard work. Temperature was about 8 degrees C, but felt a lot less when I turned into the wind. I think when it gets below 5 degrees I’ll ditch the shorts and go with the Ronhill Tracksters that I picked up on Ebay.

In an effort to get really fit over the winter, decided to take on the one hundred push-ups challenge. Day one was last Monday, but after doing the initial test and just squeaking into the top set of three for Day 1, I completed the task but strained everything to the point of not being able to do push-ups again until today! So I’m going to re-start next Monday with the medium level set. At some point hope to do the sit-ups and squats challenges too.

Meanwhile, the official Boscombe 10k results are out and I came 247th out of 436. Dang, still below halfway.


Boscombe 10k

22 11 2009

Have you ever watched those wildlife programs shot in Antarctica? You know, the one’s where there’s this huge flock of penguins all huddled together against the freezing blizzard? Well that’s exactly what it was like at the start of the Boscombe 10k this morning.

Half an hour before the start, the rain stopped and it started getting brighter. This is good, I thought, just like Ilminster where it all blew over just in time for the race. No such luck.

The race started at King’s Park athletic track. There is one large stand with changing facilities and cafe on the home straight, the rest is all completely open to the elements. With ten minutes to go I joined the rest of the field out on the windswept track, one eye on the starter, the other on a huge black cloud that was approaching with ominous intent. The cloud won. With about two minutes to go before the start, the wind cranked up and the rain came down. Cue penguin imitations. Everyone trying to keep moving on the spot to keep warm, but also trying to bunch up against the driving rain. The droplets were hitting my legs with such force they felt like hailstones. The race started on time, but the damage had been done. I was soaked to the skin before I even left the stadium.

Because of the weather and the bunching, I didn’t have chance to work my way up the field a bit before the start, so as usual I got a bit held up in the first 1k which clocked in at 5:22 vs my target of 5:10 per k. I think the rain eased off after about 15 minutes or so, but there were huge puddles everywhere and you can never miss them all. Got back on track a bit with 5:06, 5:09, 5:05,and 4:55, then 5:26 on the only hilly bit. Then on the run back managed a really consistent 5:01, 5:01, 5:03. The final k was hard work, slightly uphill, bit muddy back across the park and into the wind, but picking the pace up when I got back to the track still managed 5:15 (in glorious sunshine I have to say). So overall time of 51m 29s when you add all the decimals back in. Very pleased with that, and looking forward to Southborne in the Spring when I’ll be targeting my old PB and trying to get under 50 mins.

Finally, thank you to all the organisers and marshalls. It can’t be much fun standing around in the rain holding up impatient car drivers whilst we runners lollop across the junctions.

Statistic geeks can click here for the Garmin data.

Stop Press News

19 11 2009

Ok, ten minutes after that last blog entry the post arrives. They left it a bit late, but I’ve got my number and it’s 368.

Langdon Hill

19 11 2009

The gales are back, so as I was looking for a short run today I decided to do a couple of laps around the woods on Langdon Hill. On the plus side, the trees provided some shelter from the wind. On the downside, all the trees meant that my Garmin lost satellite reception halfway round the first lap. That was a shame as I was keen to monitor my pace today and try and get used to the pace I need to run on Sunday.

I want to beat 53m for the Boscombe 10k, so my plan is to try and run at about 5m 10s per kilometer pace. That’s pretty fast for me, and I’m not sure if I can sustain it. The course looks fairly flat, just one hill after about 6k with an ascent around 30m or so. Shouldn’t make too much difference to me after all my hill work. Even my normal short run contains over 250m of climb. More worried about the conditions. Looks like the forecast is wet and windy again. Need it to blow through quicker than forecast, just like Ilminster.

I said somewhere before that I couldn’t remember my 10k PB. Well did some digging and found that at the Heanor 10k Xmas Pud run in 2005 (we all got Xmas puds at the end instead of medals) my official time was 51m 1s. Can’t get close to that at the moment, but we’ll see how it goes in the Spring.

Wish me luck. I’d tell you what number to look out for, but I haven’t received it yet. Hope they’ve got one put by for me on the day.

Sound the All Clear

15 11 2009

After a day of battening hatches and generally lying low, today was remarkably runner friendly. My intention to go for a run yesterday was quickly abandoned, mainly due to storm force winds strong enough to blow a tree down and block the road. I actually went for a walk down to the beach as I had to go to the post office anyway, and the beach car-park was predictably a right mess. Fortunately it was low tide so I didn’t have to run any great risk, but as I was stood there at an angle of 45 degrees into the wind it did occur to me that maybe if I got hit by a bit of flying 2 by 4 hurtling off the beach, then it probably wouldn’t be good for my running plans. Where the car-park meets the beach there’s a line of free-standing concrete blocks, roughly pyramid shaped and about a foot high. Well yesterday they had been blown all over the place by the wind, waves and flying pebbles.

Anyway, that was yesterday and today is just so different it’s hard to believe. Almost no wind, bright sunshine, and according to the car, 17 degrees centigrade. Went for a longish run of just under 10k, in just under 1hr 9m. Average 6m 58s per kilometer. Found a very pleasant path that runs through the woods on Langdon Hill, but also tried a shortcut back which turned out to be an ascent of a grassy hill with an incline of about 45 degrees. Not going that way again. Oh, and as I was running past the farm at Upcot (Upcot Farm?), I saw a field of new-born lambs. Now I know the weather is milder down here and spring comes early, but mid-November??

Short run probably Thursday, then Boscombe 10k Sunday. Haven’t received a number in the post, so guess I collect it on the day.

Wednesday. Run. Tick.

11 11 2009

5.75km, 39m 16s, average 6m 50s per kilometer. Muddy and slippery.

Not much more to say really. Will be varying routes depending on quantity of mud encountered for the next few months, so average time will be a better indication of how things are going. But even that will vary depending on which hills I tackle and how far I run. Maybe I should think about just staying on the lanes in and around Charmouth. Not so scenic, but better conditions.

Quite cold day with strong wind, so put on a second layer for the first time. Seemed to go ok, but probably didn’t put enough effort in as it was a job to push heart rate past 170 bpm.

Plan to get out again Saturday morning, depending on the weather.

Endurancelife hits Charmouth

7 11 2009

So there I was, trotting along minding my own business, enjoying the sunshine and trying to avoid the muddy bits, when a stream of seriously fit blokes came bounding past.  Polite to a man (person?) they all said ‘Good Morning’ or the like. Turns out it’s part of the Endurancelife Coastal Trail Series. I did come across the details a while back when I was looking for local races, but since then it slipped my mind. The reason that I didn’t enter it was that it was £30 to run in the 10k race! There’s also a half-marathon for £40, or the full banana for £50. Not sure what you get for the money apart from mud and sore legs. I mean the glorious scenary is free. When I drove back down into the village I spotted their base. The competitor car park was the field they normally use for the open-air market, and it was full of cars! Must have been 200 to 300 maybe. So that’s 250ish x £40ish which equals £10,000ish. Hmm, maybe I should be looking into this.

Oh well, I managed a decent medium length run of 7.28km in 52m 11s including two decent sized hills. Total ascent 332m. I was looking for a less muddy route (NB. Mud-free is impossible round here), and did ok until the final few hundred yards when it got to that point where you’re creeping along the thin grass verge with one hand clinging onto the barbed-wire fence. Try and cut that bit out next time. If anyone’s interested, I’ve put it on Garmin Connect. Personally I wouldn’t bother.

Boscombe 10k in two weeks, aim to beat the 53m from last week. No more races after that for a while, but in the new year might do the Southbourne 10k on 7th March (described as fast and flat), and the Portland ‘Round the Rock’ 10k on 2nd May. We’ll see.