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)

 

FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share

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 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.

No Excuses.

Let The Running Commence….

…well maybe not today, but possibly tomorrow. Or perhaps the day after?

I want to run but….

…I’ve got an excuse. I had a really bad car accident at the beginning of October and have been unable to run or train properly or go to the gym. I have been out for the odd run here or there, just to de-stress and unwind. Or to run with Wifey; who ironically picked up her running enthusiasm just as mine was lost in a 70mph wrestle with bloody great lorry.

To be fair, as good as an excuse as that is, it still doesn’t and hasn’t really stopped me from running or curbed my enthusiasm for running; far from it. Not being able to get out on a regular basis has been bloody frustrating, but I have enjoyed watching Wifey go from strength to strength as she trains for her first half marathon in June.

Something to aim for.

Her aim is to conquer the Southend Half Marathon, and whilst she only manages to get out once or twice a week she is already hitting 8-10 mile runs at a steady pace, it’ good training for a half marathon, 13 miles at the beginning of June should be a walk in the park for her.

I have entered this race too, and aim to cross the line with Wifey. I have ran it twice before, it’s a fairly easy course, simple route, and has lots of support from the crowds, especially when it’s hot and they hose you down!

For me, the race is 6 months away, by then I should have finished my physio, and be nearing the pace and good physique I was in back in October. But it gives me something positive to aim for, and in training I should eat away into the 800 plus miles that forms this LETJOG14 challenge.

But for now…

… I am going to break off another strip of this massive dairy milk bar of chocolate and pour myself another glass of port and lemonade…perhaps I will get my running kit ready for the morning and go out before work….?

Tenner says I don’t though!

Monday 7th May 2012 – Silence is golden

A gentle run

I had the whole day to myself today, initially I had planned to go out and run. To run wherever my legs took me and for as long as I could, perhaps I could of completed between 18 and 20 miles today. This was not going to happen.

My aim was to eke out a gentle 5k. I probably should have rested totally today but I had to run. If I don’t get out for run I feel agitated and narky, I get the same feeling when I’m hungry lol.

I’d ran over 20 miles the past two days, so over doing it today wouldn’t be a great idea. Plus my Virtual Running Partner, Rob Cameron (my mate and trainer / adviser who I am running the 2012 Amsterdam Marathon with) advised me not to run at all considering the last two days running distances.

He’s the boss!!

Silence is golden

Sometimes I am such an idiot.

I should of covered the blisters with some form of protection. I clean forgot. By the time I was half a mile up the road my right foot was throbbing, I should of stopped and turned around and walked the half mile back home, but no, clever me kept on going.

The numbness kicked in after a mile or so.

And besides I had other things to distract me, like my breathing and my footsteps. I could hear them clear as a bell. This may not sound odd to you, but it was quite new to me. I was out running without music. Without my iPhone. The iPhone was being repaired (cracked casing – common fault apparently).

This was probably a good thing, as the forth coming 10 mile race in 2 weeks in Great Baddow was a street race, and due to health and safety rules, iPods or other forms of music players with ear phones were not allowed. So to get out and run a few miles without music was all good preparation for that.

It was a little odd at first without the music, but what I really missed was not hearing the running app announce my pace and distance at each mile interval. I had to manually update my workout on the laptop when I got back, thankfully I’d worn a stopwatch to record my time.

A good time

I completed the 3.5 miles in about half an hour, my blisters were a mess again. I’m not going to run for a couple of days now. They need to heal a bit before I try to wreck them again.

Here’s the run.

Tuesday 24th April 2012 – Running to perfection

In the mood

I didn’t manage to get out and go for my run this morning, as I have done most Tuesday’s.

It had rained today, like it had most days for the past week. That was up until mid to late afternoon, when the clouds parted and the sun began to shine through. The wind died down and things started to dry up. I sat at work and contemplated getting out for a few miles this evening.

I was still annoyed and frustrated from Saturday’s bad run and was keen to get out again. I needed to get my mojo back – and quickly.

This evening’s conditions were almost perfect. I put my kit on, said good night to the boys, kissed Wifey and headed out. My aim for this evening’s run was 3 – 5 miles, I settled into a good early stride and a pace of about 8m 40 ish, things were looking good.

Running to perfection.

At 3 miles I was feeling really good, this was such a contrast to Saturday’s run, I recalculated the route for a definite 5 miler, and at the turn around point I thought ‘just one more’ and kept going. This led to ‘just one more’ and another, before I knew it I was on mile 7 and not even out of breath, my legs felt fine, no twinges, no aches…I felt as if I could of run all night.

Heading through Springfield, I came to a roundabout, which on my normal long runs I normally turn back on myself and head home – but for some odd reason I turned left at the roundabout and followed the path into the darkness. The path soon came to an end, but I kept running.

I certainly shouldn’t have turned left at the roundabout, the ground was undulated, too close to the main road and no street lighting. I was guessing where my feet were landing, I couldn’t see a bloody thing!

After about 350 yards there was another roundabout, with street lighting! Hooray, I could see again. I threw a left and turned back up the hill, I was still feeling OK.

Heading home

Back up through Beaulieu Park and over the A12, 2 miles to home.

No niggles. No issues. Not even a single ‘white flag’ moment. My mental state was tip top this evening.

I don’t know how I have had two such different runs, what causes it, whether it’s mental, whether it’s the running conditions, it’s odd.

But I know that if it hadn’t been so late and Wifey was expecting me home about 45 minutes before did actually get home I would of kept on going.

I ended up completing 10.3 miles. And smiled all the way through it.

Here’s the route

Amsterdam Marathon 2012

At the beginning

When I first started this running blog, I intended to blog about all of my runs throughout the year no matter how short or far, how important or insignificant, rain or shine…or even snow. I hoped that I would be able to blog about some races I had entered, deep down I wanted to enter a marathon and blog about that. What is a running blog without a marathon?

The Marathon is the race every runner wants to compete in, no matter what country they live in, it’s what we all aspire to.

For some, running it once isn’t enough, some people have run 100′s. Believe it or not there are folk out there who run races upto and over 100 miles per race, these are Ulta-runners.

Dean Karnazes is one of them, he’s become a bit of a hero, I listen to his story of how he ran 50 marathons in 50 US States in 50 days. Some of the crazy stuff he has done, makes my 5k weekly runs seem a little inadequate.

It’s good to talk.

A few days ago I spoke to my good friend Rob Cameron. Rob is a runner. He has ran the London Marathon, competed in a few half marathons and is very focused in his approach to his running.

Rob mentioned that he had applied for, and would be running, the Amsterdam Marathon 2012. This appealed to me. Greatly. TCS Amsterdam Marathon

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to run the London Marathon, but there’s something about it that just seems like a load of commercialised chaos. I would rather run a marathon that has a few less entrants, a little more low key and a bit different.

And the Amsterdam Marathon has just that. As does the New York Marathon, but that’d cost me a fortune; leaving Wifey alone in the Big Apple for 4 hours or so could have a negative effect on our bank balance, and there’s only so many shoes you can get in one suitcase!

Plus the Amsterdam course looks a little more straight forward!!

Training programme

So now I have 6 months to get my self into shape and prepare myself for my biggest challenge as a runner.

Thankfully Rob is as dedicated a person as I have ever met and although he lives 150 miles away he will not allow me to slack on the training.

I think the fact that I am not starting from scratch should help me. I have run 13 miles plus a few times so far, I have run in all weathers, I have run up hills, along rivers and got up at silly o’clock far more frequently than others to go out and run.

All I have to do is sensibly increase my distances, and ensure I do not get injured.

The Amsterdam Marathon 2012

Sunday 1st April 2012 – I only went out for a quick 5K!

April Fool’s Day.

A pinch and a punch, first day of the month.

It’s the 1st of April today, April Fool’s Day. The day of pranks, jokes, jesting and jibes.

For some it is anyway.

Family time.

I spent the day with the family, chilling out, the sun has been shining for the best part of the day, we’d been to feed the carp and the fish at Little Easton Manor, it’s always nice to watch the big carp coming to the surface, basking in the sunshine, walking around the lakes and feeding the ducks.

We ended up driving to Sandford Mill Lock and walking along the river. This was where I had ran yesterday morning, along past the lock and into Chelmsford. It was nice to actually see the things that I missed yesterday whilst concentrating on not tripping over and navigating my way along the narrow tow path.

The best laid plans and all that…

I decided that for my Sunday afternoon run I would come back along the tow path for a short distance and then back up to home, probably about 5- 6 miles. I didn’t want to run too far cos my legs were aching like a bugger from yesterday, to be fair I doubted I would get much further than 3 or 4 miles.

It was mid afternoon, the sun was still out, I headed out, 2 miles down to the river, I aimed for a mile or so along the river then head back home.

Typically, I kept going. I ran along the river for a couple or three miles, I was heading towards Sandford Mill Lock again, a quick sat-nav like route calculation, meant I turned right at the lock, and headed along the country lanes back up to the main road.

The additional distance meant I was heading for a run nearer to 8 than 6 miles. I had passed 3 miles ages ago. My legs were killing me. I was close to ringing Wifey to come and pick me up.

Ah the shame of that thought! I kept on going.

It’s all uphill.

The run from the lock towards the main road was up hill, then there was more uphill running as I headed towards the A12, at the 2 mile from home point I was absolutely knackered. My legs were on auto pilot. I was gasping. Still, 2 miles to home, not that bad.

The dreaded hill, from 1.5 miles to 1 mile is a hill. It gets me every time. I’d forgot about it. How I managed to get up it I don’t know. But get up it I did!

I happily staggered through the door after running over 9 miles. I stretched, got changed and limped to the sofa…

This is the route and the run.