Back on form

I’m pleased to say that I’m feeling a bit more myself this week 🙂

Last week I did my longest run in quite a while of 10.5 miles – and felt really comfortable doing it.  Was a gorgeous morning and I saw a couple of hares and a stoat, along with the usual birds that I try to spot.  Think I was ready for a head clearing long run – just that time on your own without a child asking you for something, or the phone ringing, or emails pinging…..  This was one of the very few little hills on my route and where I saw the stoat.

hill

So Saturday morning and parkrun.  I’m often not sure how I’m going to run it until I’ve actually set off, and nothing was different this week – not helped by the fact that my earphones fell out before I’d even gone 20 metres (I tried to put them back in then gave up and tucked them in my bra!).  It was a sunny morning, but windy; my least favourite weather condition, particularly when running on a cliff top.  But I seemed to have got a good start so went for it.  I am pleased to report a PB – just 4 seconds quicker, but a PB all the same!

After a really busy weekend I was shattered, so didn’t run yesterday.  I should have done!  Today the rain was heavy, but I set out anyway and did 4.3 miles – at one point the path was like a stream, so I just splashed my way through 🙂

Highs and Lows

How much does what other things are going on in your life affect your running?

I enjoyed my first stint of marhalling at parkrun on Saturday.  I’m not the most confident person when it comes to friendship and new groups, but definitely think that volunteering can help make you feel a little bit more like you ‘belong’ and I’d recommend you give it a go.  Even if you don’t feel that you can run 5k yet, you could always get involved by volunteering first.

Burton Constable Hall Trail 10k – Sunday 19th July 2015

This was the inaugural race and I was impressed!  I know, I haven’t got a lot to compare it to, but it was a very enjoyable day.  There were around 300 running and registration / collecting numbers etc all went very smoothly then a bit of hanging around as we’d arrived nice and early.  The course included a tiny bit of tarmac, some gravel tracks and then mainly grass tracks and across paddocks with sheep adding a bit of interest!  It was two laps, and great for spectators as you looped back to the central point (the Hall) a couple of times each lap.  I really enjoyed the course and will definitely go back another year.  I was 92 secs slower than my road 10k PB – I’m pretty happy with that.

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I have been feeling a bit sad and thoughtful as this week three years ago I moved out of the house I shared with my husband and my step brother passed away (at the age I am now). It was the right decision to make re moving (he was having an affair and refused to move out), but I’m still sad at what we could have had, but conversely still regret not doing it 6 months earlier. I think of my step brother often – and if his death teaches me one thing it is to try and make the most of health and life whilst we have it.

The last three years haven’t been easy (another close family member passed away, child bitten by dog & subsequent surgery, mum diagnosed with lifetime illness, dad diagnosed with cancer, moved house again…..), but I also have lots to be thankful for and those are the things that I am trying to focus on.

Countdown is now on to Escrick 10k on 16th August – another trail race but mainly on gravel tracks and through woods rather than on grass.

My quickest mile!

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So yesterdays run ended up not going to plan – my intended route was cut short due to an unfriendly dog, ended up walking for half a mile with another dog walker and then running again.  So……..  I decided to drop the dogs at home after 3.5 miles running, and go out for another 2 miles.  As I was warmed up I set off and thought I’d see just how fast I could do one mile.  My average pace for my 5k PB is 8:10 mins per mile and I was hoping to come in just under 8 mins.

7:31 min mile !!!!!

It doesn’t seem that long ago that I was struggling to get to a 9 min mile, so this is unbelievable for me – just shows that the training is maybe paying off for me at long last.

Oh, and I found my training plan eventually 😉

I’ve lost it!

I’ve lost my training plan!!  (Which means I’m going to have to root through lots of paperwork to find it)……

I haven’t got round to doing it on the computer yet, it was a good old-fashioned written one, which means I don’t have a copy.  Pretty sure it hasn’t been thrown out and it will have just been collected up with other papers, but it will annoy me until I find it.

Managed some hill training sessions this week;  Wednesday saw a long run of 8.5 miles down an old railway line, with an added loop with a big hill and Friday was a 4 mile run on a short route with a hill up into a village and then down the other side – repeated twice.  Both sessions felt like hard work so I am definitely going to have to do more of these before the half marathon.  You can see some pics of the railway line on this blog, it is a lovely place to run.  I was pleased with my Parkrun time though of just one second slower than my PB when my legs still felt a little achy from Fridays run.   Maybe the gorgeous bowl of pasta I ate at Ask restaurant on Friday night helped with Parkrun!!  Today is very much a rest day following one too many glasses of wine and a late night…..

How do you record your runs?

I tend to use mapmyrun and therunningbug bugmiles feature, but am getting a little bit frustrated that I can’t easily see stats that I want (I like figures!!) – so I think I’m going to put together a spreadsheet to log them myself.

Right….. I will find this training plan…….

I’ve entered!!

I’ve finally bitten the bullet and entered a half marathon.  Logically it seems daft that I’m nervous, scared, terrified of doing this – I’ve run the distance in training.  But I think it is just lack of confidence – and race day is very different to running on my own from home!  But it isn’t till October, so I have plenty of time to train for it – I’m looking at training plans at the moment, probably going for the Lucozade half marathon training plan – but modified slightly to incorporate Parkrun each week and the other two races I’ve entered.

As the half that I’ve entered does have some hills in it, I really need to do some hill training – for the first time ever!  I’ve got a bit of time off from the day job this week so one day I am going to go out and find some hills to run up (and hopefully some downhill too!).  This morning’s easy run of 5 miles felt really hard, the legs were like lead and for some reason I feel like I have bruised ribs…..  Don’t know what the problem was but hopefully it will pass very quickly.  I did stop to say hello to these inquisitive creatures through (pleased to say there was a gate between us!).

cows

All the talk for the last week or so seems to be how to cope running in the heat and what are the best shorts to wear!  I will admit that I don’t mind the heat, so I’m quite enjoying having the sun shining and getting a bit of a tan whilst running.