Sunday, 29 November 2009

I thought the Grim Challenge was meant to be next weekend??

What I wasn't expecting on my little route today, was to be half way round, with socks that could be wrung out, trainers that would have been drier in a washing machine on full cycle and mud splattered up the backs of my legs!! However,  with the rain hammering down all night yesterday and still going when I stepped out this morning, what I should have been expecting was to be half way round, with socks that could be wrung out, trainers that would have been drier in a washing machine on full cycle and mud splattered up the backs of my legs. Add the water running/dripping off my cap, the long sleeve top and a bright yellow gilet, it really did look like I'd got dressed in the dark and then fallen in the Thames!!

However, since the only point that I'm not a heavy breathing, red faced miserable looking get is at the point I step out of the flat, looks really aren't top of my priority list! I spent 1:05:31 doing an impression of a drowned rat for 7.2 miles which again is another step up in distance at an easy pace of 9:06 m/m. An enjoyable run to be honest but would have been quicker had I not run the first 2 miles with LG (at an again improved pace of 9:30 ish) and then because I had to at least try and avoid the mud puddles for about a mile and a half, that slowed me down too.

Today's run was never about speed though, I needed to know that I could get close to next week's Grim Challenge distance of 8+ miles again and I did so without any really worries which is nice even if the weather was not!

LG ran her own route which she made up as she went along and once mapped upon returning, she'd smashed her previous best non-stop run by 1.35 miles to complete 4.2 miles in 42:21 (10:06 pace) which is a massive achievement!!

Exciting news.... (ish) Through the power of technology, and me learning how to use my phone, providing I can teach LG to do the same thing, pictures of myself and eatingtrees trying to run round an army vehicle testing course, will be on here during our actual run next Saturday morning so while you sit there with your coffee and bacon sandwich you can look at 2 idiots pretending to have fun while covered in mud. Now there's something you don't see on the internet everyday.... oh, hang on.... 

Friday, 27 November 2009

I'm told it's curry week

So a chicken, chick pea and spinach curry was made with 2 side of bombay aloo. In case you were wondering, it tasted bloody lovely!

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Stress relief without the wine

My job sucks sometimes. It really, really can suck. It's just too quiet and then there are the internal politics. I know most people have them but with mine yesterday, it really got on my nerves and I reached my limits!

So much so that the planned run with LG nearly didn't happen. I just couldn't be bothered to do it. Then I decided that a bit of stress relief without heading for the rack that sits on top of the fridge was probably a better option so we dressed up in a few layers to fight the wind and drizzle and headed out. I had a 5.04 mile route (44:59) planned that would run the first 1.87 miles (18:37) with LG before she headed for home and I picked up the pace. I did the remaining 3.17 miles in 26:22 giving me an 8.19 pace for that bit which I'm was pretty happy with considering at least half is on a crappy uphill! I also felt a damn sight better than when I started!

Twas the longest I've run since Royal Parks, felt OK (although I had my first stitch on bloody AGES) and finished strongly. With Grim only 10 days away, the rest of my week will consist of a short easy run on Thursday evening followed by an 8 miler of some sort on Saturday to get rid of the cobwebs ready for the mud and water that awaits me.

And what of LG??? Well what can I say. She keeps telling me she can't run but I think stats of 2.87 miles (longest ever) in 28:34 without stopping and recording a 9:57 pace (quickest ever) after running properly for only 2 weeks prove her wrong in a massive way! She certainly can run and seems to be enjoying the accomplishment that comes when you finish!

We have signed up for a Richmond Park 10k at the end of February and I have a feeling, she'll be pretty damn close to going under an hour by then. It's 3 months away so plenty of training time left and for someone that says she likes to run in the rain, pretty perfect weather too!

Final note... Keep your eyes peeled for a redesign coming very soon! I've gone and got all creative on your asses!

Monday, 23 November 2009

This is what a runner is

You go to a brand new city that you've never seen before, eat some wonderful food, drink a little lot more than you should, see the sights and have a thoroughly wonderful time but then upon your return, your thoughts turn to how flat it was and 'I bet I could do a good Half Marathon time round here'. That's what Rotterdam was to me this weekend. A great industrial city which I reckon would be pretty quick if you can avoid the tram tracks! Maybe 2011. I already have Lisbon lined up for next year.

The trip was to celebrate me arriving and surviving into my 30's. Who would have thought! Anyway, myself and LG booked a lovely hotel that had all the good things that makes you enjoy a trip more and also a gym... that we used.... and in LG's case, on 3 consecutive days!!! (I think it was the guilt about the amount of great food and drink consumed). Just 2 days for me though, the final morning hangover told me to stay in bed as I'm not as young as I used to be. Who was I to overturn that decision?

Quick point, is there anything as painfully dull as running on a treadmill??? OK, I assumed it wouldn't be great but it's mind numbing. Your brain doesn't have to work at all! Not to push harder, not to skip the puddles, not to jump the cracks, not to trip on the kerbs. Where's the fun if there's no chance or getting wet, dirty or injured? Fitness??? I think not!!

Anyway, because I have lovely parents who still buy their elderly son presents, I now have a fantastic long sleeve Adidas top plus with some cash, I've been on a bit of a sock spending spree. New running socks ordered today (including a set of compression ones to help the shin splint thing) and now I just have to decide what to spend the rest on and no I don't want/need/desire a Garmin!

So overall a fantastic birthday weekend all round of which there are some photo's on Facebook for anyone who knows me there.

Update on the running club... Not a sausage. 2 weeks, they haven't even managed to tell me if the money has even gone over. I'm hoping this is just a blip and the general organisation is better but the plan is still there. I need all the help I can get after being pulled into doing some training runs with a mate for his marathon. A 12, 15 and 18 miler await next year all pre Lisbon with the possibility I might sign up for the Wokingham Half too slap bang in the middle of it all! Joy.

Only 2 weeks til Grim and the longest I've run his Oct is 4.1 miles. This is going to hurt!!!

Monday, 16 November 2009

Playing in the puddles

The sun was shining and it was lovely and cool so yesterday afternoon, we joined the hoards of mums, dads, children, grandparents and young couples who were dressed in their hats, coats and wellies to go and play in the puddles around Wimbledon Common. Unfortunately, we didn't get the memo and were dressed in shorts, t-shirts and in LG's case, VERY white running trainers. The weren't white for very long. I think you can tell how focussed people are in their running by whether they try and hop, skip and jump over the puddles and therefore are slowing down and risking a slip or if they just aim to miss the majority of them in a rough straight line and if they catch the edge them then it doesn't matter as trainers dry when put on a radiator! We were, as we should be, squarely in the second camp and had the wet socks to prove it.

I ran to the windmill with LG at her pace and completed the 1.32 miles in 13:33 which is a good pace for LG at 10:15 m/m. At that point, LG turned and headed home and I carried on to the golf course at a slightly higher pace. I didn't know that speed I was running at but it felt comfortable and once I'd finished, I felt I could have gone on so I was quite pleased with the final 2.82 miles as it came in at 8:40 pace. Nearly 40 mins of solid running without stopping after a 4 week break is a good thing to know. Most important part of the entire thing though.... I loved being out again so whatever I've lost in stamina in the last 4 weeks, it's good to actually WANT to run again! Next ones are planned for Wednesday and then Saturday while we're in Rotterdam and I can't wait!

Lovely Girlfriend's stats
2.5 miles run in a time of 25:45. That's another half mile added to last week's distance, and at a faster pace than last week's. Signs of improvement already. I'll have her signed up for Lisbon in no time!

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

I did a run and everything!

Yep I know. Strange for someone with a blog about running but one day short of an entire month without a run, I went out last night. Wasn't my idea either! I'd just opened the wine (not one of LG's greatest choices to be honest. Some poor Argentinean organic thing) and LG said she wanted to give her new shoes a test run so I thought it's about time I got out again too. For me, it was a slow, easy building up again couple of miles. Making sure those little niggly injuries I seem to have spent since May dealing with were clearing up. It seems most of them have. The only one I'm unsure about it the 'shin splints' pain I had. Have woken up this morning and I can feel it. I wouldn't say painful though so if I carry on wearing the support, I reckon it'll all be fine in the long run. So 4.5 miles cycling and a 2 mile run. Not too bad for the day.

The star of the show though was LG without a doubt. Apart from one abandoned mile at the beginning of August, she hadn't run since 28th June at our Thame 10k so I find it brilliant that she completed the entire 2 miles without stopping once and in a time of 20:39!! That's 10:20m/m with no training and just by putting on a pair of trainers and going. I'll get her into the Lisbon Half yet, you wait and see. Of course, she's continuing with the 'can't and won't' theory at the moment but it can't last!

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Eu estou indo a Lisboa*

This week appears to be 'do something stupid you probably shouldn't week' and I'm doing pretty well so far!

Firstly I've put my application form in and sent the payment over for joining the Wimbledon Windmilers. It's a running club. I'm going to pay someone else an annual fee to do what I've managed to do on my own for about a year and a bit. Why?!? Well in all honesty because:

a)it's something different
b)I think it will improve me as a runner
c)I'll meet/run/race with and against others which will be a bit of extra motivation and
d)It'll help with the whole hills and sprints part of my training that I tend to get a little lazy on. Oh and I'll also get a discount when I sign up for races. OK then, not as stupid as it first seems.

Secondly, I've registered for the Lisbon Half Marathon in March. Because there's a lot of down-hill sections at the start, it's meant to have some serious PB potential which is a good kick up the back side and to be honest, the other option on that weekend was Fleet. Now no disrespect to Fleet but come on. Lisbon or Fleet. What would you decide?? OK, again, not the worst decision.

Thirdly, for this little Lisbon trip, I've booked the hotel. I'm hoping that LG and eatingtrees aren't expecting too much from their £13 a night. I may regret this decision!!

Fourthly, LG who hasn't shown the strongest enthusiasm for running since the summer, yesterday went and spent £80 being kitted out for new trainers especially for her feet and running style. Now £80's not a bad price but I now know she has no excuse not to get running! I suspect she may regret that decision once I start nagging about 10k's and H.M's.

And finally... the person who said this will remain nameless but, yesterday when I was talking about Lisbon this person said 'Is that in Northern or Southern Spain?'. My silence said it all. This person has a vast knowledge of the world so I think I'll have to put that one down to a lapse but if you read this... you know who you are and should be ashamed!

*Babelfish did the translation and I take no responsibility for it! I no speeka portugeeeees.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Hold Up. What's this then??

'Someone appears to have put a post on Hauling My Carcass' blog'
'It can't be him though. He's not been on here for ages'
'No, not since that Royal Parks effort anyway'
'You don't think he's got his lazy arse into gear do you'
'Doubt it'

But alas. It is me. I have returned. Not that I went anywhere and have still been catching up on many other people's musings but when you have a running blog and don't do any running, it limits the subjects you can write about somewhat!

I have run 0.0 miles run since Royal Parks. Zero, Zip, Zilch, Nada. That really is pretty horrendous but it's done me good. Firstly, I want to go out and run again so that's the first step and secondly, I haven't felt many of the twinges for a while now. Obviously I haven't run either but I'm seeing that as a good sign anyway.

My plan was to get a run in on this coming Saturday morning. Maybe start with a Park Run 5k in Wimbledon but I seem to have developed a pretty crappy chest cough this week so may lay off it for another couple of days as I really could do without the first run I do in a month not feeling like it's going to kill me. Then I'm going to get a few 10k training runs done in the next few weeks so I'm a bit more ready for Grim which I have little doubt will be the most horrendous experience of my life!!

Last year, January and Feb were my favourite months for training. I had a real focus and was really enjoying it. I'm hoping for something similar in a couple of months time too but I've also decided that I'm going to join a running club on Jan 1st. (I'd join now but I'd have to repay the subscription again in Jan so seems silly to do it now). I'm particularly interested in the hill, fartlek and speed work they do a couple of evenings a week. I struggle with these bits on my own so doing it in a group will help the motivation and then if I continue to run on my own at the weekends, I should be in pretty good shape come March next year. Speaking of which, I need to sign up for a couple of events I reckon! People have mentioned Fleet, Reading and eatingtrees and I are thinking about a little jaunt to Lisbon but any other recommendations of some good races? Half Marathon distance is the limit I might add!

Right, that's me done, thanks for coming to visit, even if it was by accident. Now go tell your friends that the slightly overweight bloke who hasn't done any running recently has updated his running blog. That should get you a blank look if nothing else!