Saturday, 29 November 2014

Garmin Free Parkrun

From time to time it is probably a good idea to throw off the shackles of modern technology and just run to how you feel, not worrying about pace or time. Well today was one of those days but more because I wasn't sure where my Garmin is currently residing and I didn't have enough time to look before I left for Orpington Parkrun.

So with a slight cold, a naked wrist and the right amount of layers (lessons learned from Wednesday night) I lined up at the start with the other Saturday morning parkrunners ready to see what happened. It would appear that my pacing was pretty similar with or without the watch as I noticed the same runners around me as I had on previous visits to Orpington.

My cold took its toll just after half way round and I decided to walk for a short time whilst blowing my nose and spluttering along. I started to question if this was a good idea but I kept going and started to trot along again trying to make up some time. On the third and final lap I was just needing things to be over, I had no idea of time except a father and son combo who usually came in about 1-2 minutes ahead of me had already overtaken so I suspected I was heading for a little over 30 minutes.... a way off my PB but at least I am getting out on a semi regular basis if not every week.

At the finish I was delighted to grab a cuppa and a small piece of some very delicious bread pudding... yum diddle and made up for my lack of breakfast this morning!

My results text message came through later with a time of 31:30 and 3rd in my age category, okay still nowhere near a bronze in real terms but for now I will take it.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Hypothetical Hills

Time to belt up!
Despite contracting a mild version of the man flu currently circulating my home it seemed like a good idea to text our hill training guru Emma just hypothetically to see what time she would arrive at ‘the hill’ for tonight’s session. She advised, hypothetically of courses, that it would be around 8pm.

So, sitting on my sofa I decided I must get off my bottom and “stop watching crappy TV” (another Emma quote). Into my kit I got, with one too many layers – the downside of not running outside for a while was that I forgot how hot I get when layered up.
I drove part way and then got out to run, timing it just perfectly to meet with the 14 other hill runners approaching from Summer Hill (the fools!).
It turns out, the session was having a bit of a shake up this week and we were taking on Kenyan style hill reps which includes running up and down hard for an extended period (6 minutes) before a break rather than run up and back then alternating with a partner.
I am happy to say I managed to keep moving but my mental enthusiasm was sadly not matched by but ability and endurance which has sadly lessened since being injured. A huge plus though was how great it was to be out with old friends from the running club, encouraging each other and just to see some of my lycra-clad buddies!
Glad I made the effort, now to keep it up….. Hypothetically Emma I will be there next week x

Saturday, 1 November 2014

Contains Glass

Determined that as part of my running rehabilitation programme I would go to ParkRun at least once a month I was headed back to orpington again this Saturday morning. 

In the car park I spotted some fellow PWRs - Bromley was not on this week die to the fireworks which meant there were greater numbers this morning. I palled up with Julia (Glass) as we headed over to the start point. I was momentarily disarmed when we introduced ourselves when she asked my surname and then said oh yes with a knowing lilt!! But as I said I am quite prevalent on social media so despite not being at the club for a while I am 'known'!!!

We set off together, just short of a beautiful Border Collie running with his owner. We settled into a comfortable pace with a little chat. I realised how much I missed the Tuesday night group runs, perhaps I will brave it soon despite the dark evenings. Meeting new people, sharing stories, tips and advice, this is what I loved about the club most.

Back to the race.... First my shoelace came undone, annoying, so I had to pause momentarily to toe it back up.... Not an issue for the winner when he lapped up, laces flapping in the wind. If only I lifted my knees that high I might never need worry about a lace based self tripping incident again. I caught back up with Julia and we trotted along happily for a while at a fairly even pace. As I entered lap three I had pulled ahead but felt I was running through treacle, my watch was of no use as I had managed to stop it a mere 3 minutes in so had no idea how I was doing and if I could keep under 30 minutes. 

As I approached the end I stepped it up, focussing on the next runner and catching up with her, I thought I may catch her but she saw me coming and as we sprinted neck and neck to the finish she just pipped me, I still had no idea of the time. We shook hands and headed to the refreshments. About a minute behind was Julia so we enjoyed some delicious bread pudding (only a little slice Monika!!!) and a cuppa before heading home.

The cheater! A note on the teenage lad who has clearly been dragged along by pushy parents, he walks a lot, cuts corners off the course, mopes around. I think he needs to just say no!! If he is not going to do it right then don't do it. You can't go through life cutting corners, you will get caught!! He cheats but not so he is noticed.... It's just a bit odd or teenage laziness!! 

By the time I had returned home and run my bath there was a text message on my phone, I completed in 29:59 lucky I had that sprint finish to help me scrape under the 30 minute mark!!