Friday, 27 March 2015

Nothing ever goes according to plan .......

Today was scheduled as the 40 minute run involving strides as detailed in my previous post.

This meant that I had to find somewhere flat ......... Tamar Lakes then!

Ahhh but apparently they have a 3 day fishing competition going on .......

Mmmmmmm I understand that fishermen don't like being disturbed ........ could mean that we seriously piss them off with the OBOAB blowing a whistle every 30 seconds and what with my involuntary heavy breathing and tourettes, perhaps not a good idea!

Plan B then.

The fruit bowl was empty and the only veg in the fridge was a leek and a third of a celariac so a trip to the fruit and veg shop in Torrington was on the cards.

Yes, I know you think I've lost the plot discussing my shopping requirements but actually the route to Torrington involves passing the Tarka trail so we'd put the OBOAB bike in the back and on our return stop off and do the training. Simples!

Ha ha, not so!

It was chuffing it down with rain when we left so plan B was abandoned, well its pointless both of us getting soaked!

When we got home it had stopped raining so I donned my running gear and set off alone ....... the OBOAB bunked off training to drink beer!!

I chose a route that I thought would be around 40 minutes and have a suitable flat section for the strides (even if the first mile involved two hills and the last mile and a half home involved the usual hill all the way back).

It all went according to plan and I started my strides on the flat ........

.............. however I hadn't banked on the potholes or the mud plastered across the road made more slippery by the recent rain!

After a quick risk assessment I decided that it would be stupid to train on this surface (I don't want any more injuries) so just took it steady and increased my pace when I could.

Oh and the cars ........ six no less who made me leap onto the verge....

Anyway I didn't quite get the strides done but ran 3.61 in 38.43 minutes.

Sadly no Parkrun for me tomorrow but this week has been a good running week!

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

I felt like I was a proper runner .......

On Monday morning still feeling buoyed by my PB on Saturday at Tamar Lakes Parkrun I looked at this weeks menu.

5 mile easy run

35 minutes run .... 10 min easy warm up ..... 10 min hard/race pace..... 10 min steady ..... 5 min cool down

40 minute run ..... 10 min easy ..... 5 strides at 30 seconds harder pace with good form ...... 30 seconds easy .... 5 x 2 mins at easy pace with 2 mins easy after each.

Oh and this is a recovery/adaptation week!!!!!

So which one to do?

 Well it was 12.30pm by the time I'd done the day job and other tasks, the OBOAB wanted to come too and the dogs needed a run. My initial thoughts were to go with the 5 mile easy run but it was nearly lunchtime and I was already feeling hungry plus last week taking the easy option proved to be the wrong one! If I did the 40 minute run it would mean leaving the woofers behind so this left the 35 minute one.

Not wishing for the neighbours at the other end of the lane to miss out on the vision that is old bird in pink lycra and OBOAB wobbling along In front of her we went up the lane before turning round and then doing one of the usual routes. This actually helped because the 10 min hard/race pace then didn't involve running up hill ........ result!
Unfortunately the 10 min steady pace on the way back did.

I tried to put into practise things that Hayley had mentioned on Saturday like a more upright posture and moving my arms backwards and forwards more. Despite having to stop for a car and retie my shoe lace my second mile came in at 8.45 ....... woohoo!!!!!!

If you're a Podiatrist then look away now ...........

I also ran without the orthotics again. Sssshhhh

Yes, yes I know, they have helped the plantar fasciitis no end but I've also come to the conclusion that they are hindering my performance too.

Now, don't tell Coach Steph but yesterday I did actually have a little trot out (on my rest day) with the orthotics and found that I definitely don't move so freely,  they feel very hard on my feet and slow me down.

Sooooooooo I'll continue to wear them in all my other footwear but will be selective as to when I run in them.

Today we had a day off from Cheesemaking so I decided to do the 5 mile easy run. I also decided that I needed to do a circular route of around 5 miles as I'm bored of repeating the same two routes or part thereof to make up more than 3 miles. The OBOAB said he'd come too but no dogs though.

Before setting off I put my Children's Hospice South West vest on as they need a photo of moi in it for publicity purposes. Luckily Chris managed to take one without turning off my phone/turning off the camera/ turning on the video etc ...... you get the picture, he's not very good with smart phones!

We set off ...... and I immediately realised that I was still wearing the vest, oh well too late to take it off and really it wasn't going to make too much difference was it?

Once out of the lane there was the first hill ....... flipping hills on this route too! It didn't seem too bad to me but I could hear the OBOAB's heavy breathing and cursing behind me. Then the bloody motorists without brakes started to hurtle towards us, aiming first for me and then The OBOAB. I yelled a few obscenities at the first couple of cars and then realised what vest I was wearing. After that I decided to ignore the Highway code and instead of running towards the oncoming traffic I crossed sides. It seemed safer.

Although there were hills to endure it meant that once at the top we had fantastic views!

The instructions from Coach Steph were to enjoy the run, take in the scenery, be able to hold a conversation and not worry about the time.

Tick, tick, tick and tick!

I really enjoyed it, seemed to run a good pace and felt like I was a proper runner (in my dreams I know!)

The fifth mile was a struggle as it involved one of my usual return routes which is ALL up hill however I was amazed to find that my time was faster than usual here. Time wasn't part of this training run today but of course I still had to use the bird on my phone and was chuffed to see what I did. I could almost be a proper runner!!!!

Saturday, 21 March 2015

A bit up and down this week

So here we are again ........

Time is flying and the frightening thought is that before we know it, it'll be the Bideford 10k.
I'm really beginning to wonder what possessed me to sign up for it ...... all this training is making me feel like I'm going backwards and running slower. The only thing for it is to do my usual thing of just getting on with it and pretending it's not happening.

This weeks menu ....

Interval training

30 minutes easy run

35 minutes with fun in the middle working hard

Due to work I couldn't run over the weekend and so Monday was my first training day of the week. Now you would have thought that at the start of the training week I would choose to do one of the harder runs ........ ha ha nope, after a full on eight days of work and copious amounts of wine the night before plus other commitments in the morning the easy run was my choice (when you see what's involved in the hard runs you'll see why) especially as it had to be fitted in before a late lunch.

So the usual OBOAB* attended along with the two dogs. We had to leap into the hedge  three times for Parcelforce  (nice man who often delivers wine!) then the Postman (Muppet)  and then ....... drum roll, the old bill ....... the first time in nearly eighteen years that we have ever seen a police car in the lane ......since found out one of the neighbours had their car nicked the night before.

Anyway despite all this I ran for just over  30 minutes on the steep hill route before lunch.

In the afternoon I planted some seeds and as I bought the propagator into the dining room to plug in I managed to catch my foot on a chair leg and twist my knee ...... yes again!!!!! Ouch, ouch, ouch!

Hindsight is a wonderful thing ....... of course I should have done one of the harder training sessions instead of wimping out because on Wednesday when I should have been doing an Interval pacing session ....... Now get this ........

10 minute warm up
3 min hard, 2 min steady, 2 min hard, 3 min steady, 1 min hard, 4 min steady, 2 min hard, 3 min steady, 3 min hard and 2 min steady before 10 minute cool down.

All I managed was a gentle jog ...... the only time my knee didn't hurt was running up hill....... So basically all the way home!!!

Despite this I found that I had run faster than I have for some weeks and my second mile was only 11 seconds slower than when I had to run like the clappers on the same route a couple of weeks before.

I realised that before all this training started the OBOAB used to cycle ahead of me, however in recent weeks he has been wobbling along beside me and I seem to be pacing myself with him which is maybe why I have got slower. Just a thought!

Thursday was a gentle jog day again as my knee still didn't feel right. OBOAB was given strict instructions to stay infront. Despite having to stop for three vehicles and not being able to pause the bird on my phone in time  I was on a par with the previous day.

So today was Tamar Lakes Parkrun.
My plan was to run without the orthotics, wear the capris I had for my Birthday and ditch the jacket, hat and gloves, oh and to stick with Sarah D like glue!!!

I did all of the above except that during the briefing it was announced that Sarah D was a tail runner. Oh bugger ......

We lined up at the start and then Steph pointed out that Hayley was doing a 30 minute pacing group. On your marks get set go.......

Split decision then........ well no brainer really......

I joined the pacing group!!!!!

I won't bore you but suffice to say it was hard, bloody hard and I still don't know how I managed my previous PB of 30.10 but Hayley was brilliant in her encouragement, advice and cajoling...... especially as towards the end my petulant child surfaced .... 'I'm fucking knackered', 'aaaarrrggghhh' then we started up the bastard hill to the finish with OBOAB (only he wasn't on his bike) cheering me on and then running beside me as I uttered  'I feel sick' , 'I knew we should have bought water' and thinking I can't do it.

After all that negative shit ..... and giving myself a quick talking to I sprinted to the finish!!!

The result ..... a PB of 29.54!!!

Hayley you are a star! Thank you!

*OBOAB = Old bloke on a bike

Sunday, 15 March 2015

A troublesome stopwatch

For those of you who were concerned about Teddy's welfare after last weeks abuse, please let me assure you that he is fine!!!

Now on this weeks menu 

Hill session 

40 minute easy run

30 minute run

So easy peasey then!!

Well as usual if you look at the small print, no it's not!!

Monday was a running day, the doggens needed a trip out and as I've now put my foot down with the old bloke on a bike and stipulated that I need to concentrate on this training and if it means it involves strides, sprints, hills or specific times etc then they can't come ...... yup I've done a risk assessment and the result ...... they are a trip hazard. The rest of the risk assessment involves the old bloke on a bike, white van man and the I can't stop for you but just leap into the hedge out of my way because I'm in a hurry ****s. 

Oh yes those **** people ....... you may think I exaggerate but actually on our country lanes people don't have brakes they just career towards us,  bearing down expecting us and our dog's and old bloke on a bike to get out of the way ...... take it from me it's frightening. I have tried the running past the vehicle whilst OBOAB grabs the dogs but still the drivers seem to think I should be the one to climb into the hedge, of course they choose to ignore my gestipulations and swearing and just accelerate away!!! 

Anyway I digress ...... it was a 40 minute easy run in the rain with an entourage!! Nothing else to report! That is all!!

Now due to having a birthday last week and celebrating for a few days it means that the day job backed up and had to be done this week. 

So two 4 .30am starts with a rude awakening at 1.15 am on Tuesday by the stopwatch alarm. Yes one of my Birthday presents from OBOAB was a stopwatch and whistle (obviously for him to time me and get my attention!) Anyway this bloody stopwatch kept going off during the early evening apparently whilst I was at work. Neither of us thought anymore about it but clearly it has a mind of its own and decided to disturb us in the middle of the night.
 It is now in the car!!

 I also had a total of 16 hours in wellies over 36 hours which didn't bode well but I have to say the orthotics are really helping in the plantar fasciitis department!

I had to fit the hill session in on Wednesday in between cheeses ripening and renneting.......

Sooooooooo (sorry forgot to mention this is a long blog post!!!!)

Set off on a 10 minute warm up with the OBOAB got to a flat bit of lane and did 5 x 25 secs strides with 35 secs recovery backwards and forwards with him on the stopwatch and whistle ......... however on the second set of strides whilst I was dying (already)  there was no whistle or shout. Seems the OBOAB couldn't reset the bloody stopwatch. After I'd pressed the reset button very hard and had an attack of tourettes we resumed the strides!

To do the 5 x 2 min hill reps I had to run a bit further on to start.

Now I thought that all I'd hear was a whistle indicating my 2 minutes was up ....... Please, please tell me 2 minutes is up! ...... and yes for the first one I did. Fab! Great present........  trotted back down the hill, got the start command and did it again however no whistle, assumed the stopwatch was being troublesome, so ran to the holly bush and trotted back down the hill. Got the start command and did it again but also managed to shout 'I hate fucking hill training' the reply came back 'so do I' as the OBOAB pedalled past me. On the next one I really was regretting the cheese and onion crisps I'd had earlier and on the last one was ready to die. Whose idea was it to run up and down hills?  I then ran home ..... just over 10 minutes. 
Once home I asked OBOAB why he was grumpy he had been since the I hate hills episode. 

Seems that as he tried to turn on his bike and look at the stopwatch he came out the side door!!! Bloody silly arse. Luckily no bones broken!!!

I was looking forward to Friday's training  10 mins warm up 10 mins race pace and 10 mins cool down because we were going to Tamar Lakes (home of Parkrun) to do this as its flat (well apart from the bastard hill at the end) me, the old bloke without his bike and the two collies. 
However ...... as usual nothing goes plan ...... and take it from me girls don't marry the Village Hall Chair or anyone who has those tendencies ...... due to their commitments you'll find that you won't be able to fit your training in!!!! 

I ran up the lane (a first) and slightly hilly as part of my warm up then ran like the clappers for 10 minutes back down to Libbear. The worst thing about this is my involuntary heavy breathing and gasping ........ apologies Sue and Mike if you were in your garden!!! 

And then I ran home slowly!

Split pace was 10.57

Oh well see for yourself...

Saturday, 7 March 2015

Serious sense of humour bypass

Whoops! It's nearly two weeks since I last reported in, a bit shoddy I know but I sort of fell out of love with this running lark!

Yes I know, I know it's only 10k but when I signed up for it I didn't realise the training was going to be so hard ........ they didn't mention strides, sprints, running like the clappers until you think you're going to expire in the small print! Bastards!

So last week was a recovery week. Images of lounging around on the sofa eating crisps and mini eggs popped into my head but it seems that, that wasn't what Coach Steph had in mind!!!

On the menu was...........

4 miles easy run

30 minute or 3 mile tempo run

30 minute easy run

By now my feet seemed to have adapted to the orthotics but then my legs and knees decided that it was their turn to ache so I was pleased that it looked like an easy week.

On Monday I did the 30 minute tempo run, well that's what I set out to do however due to my stiff knees it turned into an easy run. Afterwards I realised that because I should have run the day before but wimped out due to the torrential rain and was going to Parkrun on Saturday I was going to have to run two days on the trot, so Tuesday was the 4 miles easy run. It took a mile and a half or so for my legs to loosen up but after that it went well and I did 4.19 miles in 48.49 minutes.

During Tuesday night in bed I managed to twist my left knee, turning over  (No, I have no idea how I managed it either) so not only did I have stiff knees but also other knee pain...... if I was a horse they'd put me down!
Thursday was 30 minute easy run day and it definitely was, not only because of the aches and pains but because I was conserving my energy for a PB at Parkrun.

I was really looking forward to being back at Tamar Lakes Parkrun for the first time in a month and was aiming for a PB!!! Well, if Belinda could get one a day before her fifty second Birthday the week before, then I could get one two days before mine, surely?

God, did I struggle. My legs felt like lead and my knees were so stiff that I very nearly gave up. Sarah D left me in her wake and I couldn't find any energy to stick with her. It was only the little voice in my head saying 'you've done it before, you know you can do it, you're running the 10k for sponsorship, just get on with it' that made me drag myself along. Oh and along with the thought of copious amounts of food and wine during my Birthday week!!!!

33.15 didn't make me very happy though!

For my Birthday we spent a couple of nights away at the lovely Ring of Bells on Dartmoor. On the day itself I went for a run before breakfast, this was just so I got a run in due to a busy week and couldn't remember exactly what was on the running menu for the week but also because I wouldn't feel so bad about eating and drinking too much!!

I thought we had hills here but boy do they have them on Dartmoor!! It was beautiful though and despite intermittent GPS I ran for 30 minutes up and down hills and really enjoyed it.

The menu for the week

35 ish minute run with strides and run a mile as fast as you can

40 minute hilly run

4 mile easy pace

Ok so it was only a 30 minute hilly run but definitely equivalent to a 40 minute one here (honestly Steph)! So thats ticked off.

Now Thursday was the next time I could run and my plan was to go training with the Bradworthy running group in the evening, however Cheesemaking didn't go according to plan and meant I wouldn't be finished in time so I had to nip out late afternoon along with the old bloke on a bike and the dogs.
There was the dilemma though of which run to do ..... 4 miles would probably be a bit tight to fit in and get back to deal with the curds and whey and the 35 ish one wasn't that appealing......... The 35 ish won and was the worst choice everrrrrrr!!

Serious sense of humour bypass coming up ......

The warm up was fine but then the strides were going to be on a hill ....... Ok let's forget them and do the mile as fast as I can ......... it involved hills, it made be feel sick, It made me have a terrible attack of tourettes, it made me shout at the dogs who tried to trip me up and it made shout at the old bloke on a bike ( who didn't deserve it. ) and it made me chuck my teddy in the corner when I saw I only did it in 10.22.

At this point I was ready to kick it all into touch ....... I was so pissed off.

Yes, I know I should know where the hills are on my routes and yes with hind sight I chose the wrong run but in my defence it was all a bit last minute and rushed AND I needed to get a run in!!

Thank goodness for the little support group we've got on Facebook for this 10k training. It helps so much knowing how everyone else is getting on and thank goodness for Tamar Lakes Parkrun ...... no PB again today but the camaraderie is fantastic!

I've retrieved my teddy from the corner!!