LETJOG14 – Week 11

It’s good to talk

Another week with only one run - my current mileage so far in the LETJOG14 challenge hasn’t even touched 150 miles. I should be way way past that by now.

I’ve got lots of catching up to do.

My only run this week was with Crispy. I asked him if he fancied a run Tuesday evening, we agreed a steady pace (around 8:30 I think is what he said….), and I thought I suggested a 5 miler, apparently not.

This Week’s Runs!

Tuesday - 7.4 miles (click here) - Crispy and I headed out into the fresh evening air, I had the head torch, while he had the red light on his back.

We settled into a good pace and chatted about things in general, he is running the Colchester half marathon next weekend, so a steady run was needed.

I don’t think I have ever talked so much whilst running. OK, so the odd hello how are you doing to fellow racers maybe – being polite like, but not a full blown conversation.

And it was quite comfortable too, I wasn’t gasping. Which was odd considering we were getting faster and faster. Each mile quicker than the one before.

7 miles later and just over an hour and we were done. I’d really enjoyed it, it had been one of those runs that flew past and didn’t take much effort, yet I felt like I’d had a good run – if that makes sense.

Weekly total = 7.4 miles

Total covered this year = 132.87 miles

Distance left to cover = 738.13 miles.

Next target – 150 miles (I can almost smell it)

 

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LETJOG14 – Week 10

Out came the sunshine….

Runners. Everywhere. It’s amazing.

I walk to work from Liverpool St station every morning, and when it has been wintery and dark I may have passed 1 maybe 2 joggers / runners – which, considering it’s 7:15am, is pretty fair.

Since the rain has gone a bit, and it’s getting a little lighter of a morning, there are runners everywhere – it’s encouraging, it’s motivating – it makes me smile.

I wonder how many of them are doing the LETJOG14 challenge?

This Week’s Runs!

Tuesday - 4.1 miles (click here) - This was my one and only run of the week. Considering the change in weather I should have got out more often, but it wasn’t to be. A poor effort.

But what I lacked in volume I made up for in pace. This is a cracking route, picking up the thames pathway at the Millenium bridge and running along the Embankment to Westminster Bridge and back.

There were hods of runners, it was like being in a race. And you know what I like about it? There are runners of all different shapes, sizes, abilities, colours, but they’re all out there enjoying themselves and keeping fit and healthy (well most of them were, there were a couple of women I past that looked like they wanted the world to end there and then).

A sprightly 4.1 miles with a 7:28 average pace was good enough for me. That includes dodging around the tourists, especially at Westminster Brigde and just before where they stop and gawp across the river to the Millenium Wheel….

I managed to get myself into at least 5 tourist’s photos on this run hahaha

Weekly total = 4.1 miles

Total covered this year = 125.47 miles

Distance left to cover = 745.53 miles.

Next target – 150 miles (almost there)

 

LETJOG14 – Week 9

 Focus. I need to focus.

Again, I was determined to get some decent mileage under my belt this week, I haven’t run as far as I thought I would have done in this LETJOG14 challenge. I was desperate to do a 10+ miler!

I didn’t manage to get out on Sunday, nor Tuesday and Wednesday, but it still turned out to be a bit of a mixed bag this week, one disasterous run and one cracker!!

This Week’s Runs!

Thursday 3.2 miles – I had been looking forward to a long run after work, I had the route planned in my head, I knew what pace I wanted to do, I’d had a decent lunch…..by the time I got home I was ready to rock n roll. I got changed, kissed the clan and headed out.

First issue was waiting for the GPS Garmin watch type thing to connect to a satellite, that took about 10 minutes, it was ok though, I was still motivated dispite the cold, I pressed start on the watch and start on the Map my Run iphone app thing, and headed off. It wasn’t until I’d gone about a mile and a half when I realised that I hadn’t heard the app lady shouting out my splits / distance at a mile…I look at my phone which is strapped to my arm, and it hadn’t started. I was sure I had heard her say ‘begin workout’. Bloody wench!! Apparently not.

So, I had to pause the watch, knob around with the app – which didn’t want to play – and then start off again. I’d lost all motivation, especially when the app started telling me random times and distances. I hadn’t even gone two miles yet, and had no desire to continue. Messing around with the app had pissed me off, so I trotted back home.

Hence no ‘click here’ option for this run. I was gutted, but no point in continueing – I’d lost focus.

Saturday – 11.54 miles (click here) - After the app meltdown on Thursday, I needed to get out for a long run, so I tried again on the Sunday.

The route back in my head, a pace somewhere between 7:50 and 8:20 per mile was the target. I was in the zone and ready to run.

Straight down through the village to Boreham Interchange, over the A12, up past the BMW garage, then Sainsbury onwards towards BnQ, over the roundabout (mistake: this took me onto the dual carraigeway / bypass type road, luckily there was a small path), down to the roundabout with the dodgy carvery on, chuck a left, a little bit down hill towards the retail park, right at the round about, then right again, uphill now, left at the lights, follow it all to the Young Offenders prison, right at the lights, more up hill all the way to Aldi, left over the railway bridge, towards the second round about, swing a right, uphill again towards Beaulieu Park, just over two miles of uphill running I was fudged but my pace was pretty constant.

I plodded around Beaulieu Park, back around to Sainsbury, left past the BMW garage, up and over the A12 and headed back home on the 2 mile straight.

And yes it has occured to me that I may describe the route, but you guys probably haven’t got a clue where I am describing….hahaha

1h 34 mins. 11.54 miles. Av pace 8:12. I was well happy.

Weekly total = 14.72 miles

Total covered this year = 121.37 miles

Distance left to cover = 749.63 miles.

Next target – 150 miles (not far now)

LETJOG14 – Week 7

Arrghh I still cant get motivated!

Still not feeling the running love.

Not sure what’s been going on with my head for the past few weeks, ok, so I was a bit sick last week, but even before that I wasn’t motivated. Running bored me.

A good couple of runs this week put my total into double figures.

Tuesday night’s run was all thanks to my mate Crispy. We’ve run together before a couple fo years ago, and we’ve done the Southend Half Marathon together on a scorching hot Sunday….He stopped running after that, and credit where it’s due has got himself back into it, and from the way he ran tuesday night, storming up a bastard of a hill like it was flat was impressive!! It’s good to see him back!

This Week’s Runs!

Tuesday - 6.3 miles (click here) – An invite from Crispy to see if I fancied a 5 miler was a blessing in disguise, the spark I needed to get my arse outside and the chance to run a new route. Crispy, back into running with much motivation and drive was an inspiration, and I reckon I could of beaten him over the 5 miles if it wasn’t for 2 ruddy great hills that I haven’t ran before (he has run them frequently), the first was ridiculous and he pounded up it like a feather weight gazelle – the git!

Thursday - 5.4 miles (click here) - Another crack at the new lunchtime route, I really enjoy this and hope to do it at least once a week. One day I will get used to the tourists, apparently dodging in and out of them and cyclists helps to build your core muscles….at least that’s what I am telling myself!

Weekly total = 11.7 miles

Total covered this year = 89.15 miles

Distance left to cover = 781.85 miles.

Feeling better!

LETJOG14 – Week 6

Struggling to run

There were things running this week, but it wasn’t me…OK, it was two parts of me, and it wasn’t a pretty sight. A sickness bug has left me feeling shite for the best part of the week.

After last week’s poor showing I was desperate to get out for 4-5 runs this week, but seemed to be hitting the karsi 4-5 times per day instead! I didn’t fancy going out to run, my body was aching and the thought of getting ‘caught short’ was not helping.

The problem is when I don’t run I get agitated and moody, and that’s not good.

Imagine how much fun I was to be around this week, sickness bug and lack of fresh air and running – sorry Wifey :)

Warwick Castle Half Marathon

To make things worse there are but a few weeks left until the Warwick Castle Half at the end of March, and I am putting myself under increasing pressure to ramp the mileage up and start knocking out 10-12 milers, the most I am doing is 5-6 miles – which I don’t think is enough, and certainly not often enough.

Being part of the LETJOG14 challenge does help – but I need to focus a bit more.

This Week’s Runs!

Friday - 5.2 miles (click here) – I have a 3.5 mile route I normally run at work, but today decided to try to add a mile or so. Running from Cannon Street, up towards Aldgate, dropping down to Tower Bridge, past the Tower of London, up onto Tower Bridge, dodging in and out of tourists and pedestrians, photo-bombing loads of photos left right and centre, along the south side now by the river, past Lord Mayor’s office, along to the south side of London Bridge, past Borough Market, along Southdown Road and up to Blackfriar’s Bridge and over the river for the second time. Past Blackfriar’s Station, up towards Farrigdon Road, turn right along the North side of meat market, drop through past St Bart’s, weave through the back streets towards St Paul’s station, down Cheapside, under Poultry and back to the office. Very quick considering I wasn’t quite 100% and could of made a mess at any given moment hahaha.

Saturday – 5.1 miles (click here) - I wanted to get out for a quick 5k while the oldest was at football training, the weather wasn’t looking great, it was blinking windy and rain was iminent, however, run a did, and at a good pace. I know it’s not all about the pace, but I am so bloody competitive I have to beat myself all the time and if I am running quicker I am happy. Although I would be equally as happy to crack out a 12 miler at any pace at the moment.

Weekly total = 10.3 miles

Total covered this year = 77.45 miles

Distance left to cover = 793.55 miles.

Finally less that 800 miles to go…it seems to have taken ages!!

LETJOG14 – Week 4

Picking Up The Pace

This week was a short week for completing much of the LETJOG14 challlenge; there weren’t many chances to run, although it got off to a great start, only a couple more runs.

They may have been short but…they got quick!

This Week’s Runs

Sunday – 8.4 miles (click here). Wifey wanted to go for a 7 miler, so once the boys were packed off to the in-laws we headed out into the chilly night air. I enjoy running with Wifey, it’s nice to share a little hobby / interest. Plus, she is very determined to complete the Southend Half Marathon in June, and full credit to her, she will not stop, she keeps on grinding out run after run, and is happy to be pushed just that little bit more each time.

I have no doubt that she will finish the Southend half Marathon way way quicker and stronger than she thinks she can.

We ran through the village and crossed the A12 into Springfield, round up and through Beaulieu Park, up over the A12 back through the village and home. For me, easy on the legs and at a pace that I’d be happy to do a full marathon at. For Wifey, a great steady pace, and a run that had a little change in scenerey from the normal route(s) she does. I am sure this is one she’d be happy to do on her own.

Wednesday – 3.95 miles (click here). OK, so, cracking over 4 mile mark would have looked better, and psychologically sounded better, but for what was supposed to be a gentle ‘blow the cobwebs out’ kind of a run was just a blat, and by the end of it my legs were heavy, I needed that little bit to warm down sufficiently (honest…)

It’s nice to slowly get the pace back that I had prior to the crash, maybe only over a short distance, and not that much help on the half marathons, but it doesn’t half feel good!

Saturday – 4.7 miles (click here). No bloody armband to carry my iphone. No bloody Garmin watch. No bloody headphones. All in my locker at work. 40 odd miles away, ready for me to go for a luchtime run that I didn’t get around to. So I ran with that odd ‘naked’ feeling that you get when you’ve forgotten a piece ro two of running kit.

I dropped the oldest off at football and went for a quick 5k run. Around the village, up past the station and back, along the A12 and back to the training ground. A nice 4.7 miles all between 7:30 and 7:50 per mile. Cracking.

Weekly total = 17.05 miles

Total covered this year = 63.25 miles

Distance left to cover = 807.75 miles.

Here’s to next week.

LETJOG14 – Week 3

Increase the mileage

After the somewhat slow yet steady start to this year’s running, and to the LETJOG14 challenge, I wanted to increase the mileage this week.

15 miles average per week is the target, I was way down on the first week, just a little over on the second, and needed to catch up a bit this week.

Warwick Castle Half Marathon

Whilst I am clocking up the miles for the LETJOG14 challenge, I am also in training for the Warwick Castle Half Marathon which is at end of March. I got my half marathon PB of 1h 43m 34s there last year; in the rain, wind and snow that battered us around the hilly course. I’m not sure I am going to be able to match it this year, but anywhere around the 1h 50 mark would be good.

Weekly Stats

Sunday – 6.4 miles (click here)  What was initialy going to be a simple 5 miler, ended up being a little extra. I’d wanted to run a bit further past Hatfield Peverel and up towards Witham, but this meant running alongside the A12. Nothing bad about that, except the part I wanted to run along was notorious for accidents. I bit the bullet and went for it. The traffic tearing past me at 70mph was ok once I had got used to it, but a little daunting to start with.

Tuesday – 3.7 miles (click here) A lunchtime run at work, cool and fresh (the weather, not me), and plenty of pedestrians and cyclists to dodge. A pretty quick pace.

Wednesday – 7.2 miles (click here) A steady evening run around the village and out towards Springfield and back. A good route, couple of teasing hills, the only downside is having to cross a couple of roads on busy roundabouts….where drivers feel the need not to indicate (very frustrating).

Thursday – 3.7 miles (click here) Another brisk canter around the streets of London. Beginning to enjoy this route and run pace. Will look to incorporate a few hundred more yards, 4 miles would be nice.

Saturday – 3.8 miles (click here) A quick (well, much quicker than I intended to be) run around the village, all miles coming in under 8 minutes. Happy with that.

Weekly total = 24.8 miles

Total covered this year = 49.2 miles

Distance left to cover = 824.8 miles.

LETJOG14

Time Flies

It’s been well over a year since I last blogged about running, it’s not because I stopped running, far from it, and it’s not that I didn’t want to; I just never got around to it, or forgot or some other lame excuse!

I changed jobs so my running routine and mileage went right out of the window, gone were the early morning 10k runs and weekend long runs, I was just about managing a couple of 5k runs in the evening. I even stopped going to my running club.

The last thing I blogged about was training for the Amsterdam Marathon (which I am happy to report I completed in 4h 15m).

A New Challenge

Now, a mate of mine called Dan Bowsher has completed many runs in 2013 in aid of charity, and has well and truly got the running bug. And fair play to him, he’s done a fantastic job, and the blisters and training have all paid off!

He has now come up with another challenge, and that is to run the distance from Land’s End to John O Groats in a year.

Simple? Well it’s 874 long, chilly, hot, mentally straining, hilly, wet, blister enhancing miles. As he says, it’s only about 15 miles per week, and a good challenge for beginners and seasoned runners alike.

Count Me In

I like a challenge, and reckon that this is something that I could do and fit in around current work hours etc etc yawn…..

The thing is, I had a bit of a bad car crash back in October and am awaiting a 6 month session of physio on my back. I haven’t really ran properly for the last 3 months, I have had to pull out of races and my pace is nowhere near where it was.

But this little challenge has given me something to aim for. It’s given me a reason to blog again. And if this blog helps to encourage 1 other person to do this challenge then that’s a bonus too! 

LETJOG14

Dan has set up a hashtag on twitter to follow #LETJOG14 (Lands End To John O Groats) and is encouraging others to join in and blog about it!

As of Wednesday 1st January 2014 I shall be capturing all my runs no matter how small on Map My Run, and updating my blog at least once a week.

So if you fancy it…..? Either tweet with Dan on his twitter account or Big Running Year twitter account, he would be more than happy to add you to this growing running community. LETJOG14

Marathon Training Plan – Week 9

Crikey, it’s week 9 already, only 6 or 7 weeks to go now until race day. For the past 2-3 weeks I have been a little slack in following the marathon training plan, a bit hit and miss with runs.

Moving forward my intentions are to stick to the plan (as best I can) do more core strength training and hill work where possible, I have the Robin Hood Half Marathon in 4 weeks time, my long runs are up to 15 miles, so I am kind of on target.

monday 3rd spetember 2012

REST DAY!!

tuesday 4th september 2012

It was dark when the alarm went off this morning at 5:05am. I got my running kit on and headed down stairs for stretches and a warm up. I haven’t headed out into a dark morning for ages, I had forgotten how much more tranquil and exhilerating it is to run on a dark early morning. The air was fresh and crisp - you can’t beat country air! It beats that smog filled town shite!

Anyway, today’s run was 5 miles, and with the help of my shiny new trainers I managed to crack it out in about 42 minutes, quite a quick pace to start with, trying to maintain an 8m10s pace.

The blister I got on Sunday’s long run played up a bit, but the new trainers (Adidas Supernova Sequence 4M) held up well, they felt comfortable and more supportive than the Asics I previously wore. Hopefully they will be fully broken in for the Robin Hood half and definitely broken in for the Amsterdam Marathon.

Here are today’s stats.

wednesday 5th september 2012

I took a bit of a rest day today. Well needed.

thursday 6th september 2012

Running club, and after the last couple of days at work I could do with getting out and letting some steam off!

Quite a warm evening, and we all trundled off. A new route for many of us relative newbies to the club. A 5 mile route in and around Springfield.

I wanted to try to maintain a steady pace under 8 minute per mile, but whether it was because it was a new route, or new trainers my pace was somewhat eratic.

Here is the route and the stats.

friday 7th september 2012

Rest day today.

saturday 8th september 2012

Six miles today. I was going to do a simple 3 miles to stretch my legs a bit before tomorrow’s long run, but turned right instead of left as I came out of our lane, and headed off towards Utling.

I have a six mile route that takes me thorugh the country lanes, up a rather large hill and through Utling and Hatfield Peveral, then back up another big hill towards Boreham and home. It’s a great run, and a good practice run for an ‘undulating’ 10k.

My best time for this route is about 48 minutes, I wasn’t going to beat that this morning though.

Here are the stats.

Sunday 9th september 2012

Today is long run day, and I was hoping to run between 16 and 18 miles.

Unfortunately I only managed 16 miles. I ran a similar route to that of last weeks, I extended it a little here and there and was on target for 16 miles, and it wasn’t until I got to the A12 junction 2 miles from home that my burning feet (blistered due to the new trainers) and lead like thighs brought me to a complete standstill.

I couldn’t go any further. I wasn’t tired. I wasn’t out of breath. I just couldn’t go any further.

The blisters had started at around mile 10, stupidly I ignored the feelings and soldiered on.

I had to ring Wifey, and ask her to come and collect me. I was some what disappointed with myself, and hope that I can run further next week.

Here’s the stats and the route.

Marathon Training Plan – Week 8

Week 8 of the marathon training plan, and I need to pull my finger out. This is the week I need to get back on track and re-focussed. I definitely need to get a good long run under my belt, at least 12 – 14 miles and get back to eating properly – too much cake and other goodies over the last week or so. The marathon training plan does not allow for such treats.

monday 27th august 2012

Bank Holiday Monday. Wifey was at work. The boys were at the in-laws. I had the day to myself. Up and about early, got a few things sorted, and then shopping to be done.

My legs felt a little stiff after yesterday’s run, but seeing as I had time on my hands I wanted to crack out a good 5 miler today. The plan was to drive to Sainsburys, do the shop and leave my car there (being cleaned by the nice Bosovans) while I went for a run.

Shopping done and loaded into the car, I set off and headed down towards the running club. I had a route in my head and guessed it was about 5 miles, it took in the running club, then up through Springfield, along a track towards the farm then cut back through the fields at the back of Newhall School, along the drive of the school, then from the A12 back up to Sainsburys.

It was a really enjoyable run, and a nice little route.

Here are the stats.

tuesday 28th august 2012

Taking a rest day today.

wednesday 29th august 2012

I really wanted to get out and run today, and I was going to go out before work, but overslept, which had me running late for everything today, and I really wasn’t in the right frame of mind for running this evening.

thursday 30th august 2012

Running club day today, feels like ages since I have been.

I got there mega early for some silly reason, I am sure someone told me we were leaving at half 7 from now on…apparently not.

Tonight’s route was ‘Meadows’ not as scenic as you may first think. The route took us through the ‘Meadows’ shopping area, along the river at the back of the Uni, and up through Springfield.

I haven’t run this route before and found it to be quite a good little run. I tried to keep a steady pace running alongside a lady who competes in triathlons, our pace fluctuated a little here and there but overall it was about 8m20s per mile, which, considering we got a bit lost when we came out of the park, and we should of turned right on Lawn Lane and not left….wasn’t too bad!

We completed 5.7 miles in about 47 minutes of darkness – very pleased, great route to run. This may form part of my long run on Sunday.

Here is the route and the stats.

friday 31st august 2012

Rest day. Splendid!

saturday 1st September 2012

This morning’s run was going to be quick. I planned to do the 5k run around the village as quick as I could. I hadn’t done any speed work for a while.

The air was fresh and good for running in, I set off at a pretty good pace of about 7m40s for the first mile, and then got quicker for the second and a little bit quicker for the third.

I finished in 23 minutes 43 seconds which wasn’t too bad, the 22 minute mark still eludes me, but I will have that cracked by Christmas!

Here’s this mornings quick 5K.

sunday 2nd september 2012

Time for a nice long run. According to the marathon training plan it would be 15 miles, and I was quite looking forward to it. I haven’t run this distance for months. It would be a good challenge.

I began by heading out through the village, back lanes over the river and on towards junction 18 on A12, that’s my 4.5 mile point, over the A12 towards Baddow, but turned left and went through Sandon too, trying to get the extra mile or so in, through Baddow and down towards the Army and Navy roundabout, this was about the 8 mile mark.

Calculations in my head were that from juntion 19 on A12 to home is 2 miles, the ‘home stretch’, so I needed to get at least 5 miles in between here and J19.

I ran into town and picked up on part of the ‘meadows’ route from Thursday’s Striders run, this took me along the river, past the back of the University running along the back of the Avenues, then over the bridge under the bypass and then left up a short steep hill into a housing estate, I turned right and then left at the end of the road onto Lawn Lane.

It was at this point the inner arch of my left foot started to feel a little hot, a blister was on it’s way. Not sure why as I hadn’t had a blister for ages. This hampered the final part of the run a little bit, but not enough to stop me.

I ran along Lawn Lane and turned right into Brackenden Drive, left at the top and then right at the roundabout along New Nabbots Way, crossed the road at the top and ran through Beaulieu Park and out again and down towards Sainsburys. At Sainsburys my thighs were aching and the blister was burning hot, I knew I only had 2-3 miles to go, no stopping now.

The ‘home stretch’ was hard. The cool air was warming up, the clouds had disappeared and the sun was shining nicely, getting to the top of the last hill up towards The Lion felt like a major acheivement. I ran as far as the Cock Inn where the Garmin clocked at 15 miles, that was good enough for me, I stopped and walked the last half a mile back home – a good warm down after running non stop for 2 hours and 8 minutes!

Could I have run further? Possibly, maybe a mile or 2. Could I have run further if the course had been a lot flatter? Definitely. And the Amsterdam Marathon is apparently quite flat, so I don’t think getting to 15 miles or even 20 miles will be much of a problem, the last 6 miles however…

Here’s the stats and the route.

The week finished on a real high, very happy with the long 15 mile run, and in a pretty good time. Let’s hope I can continue it moving forward to the next phase of the marathon training plan.