Archives for August, 2012

5k Tempo Run – 27:39

Posted on Aug 30, 2012 under 5-10k, 5k, Tempo Runs | No Comment

With the City of Salford 10k less than 2 weeks away, my plan is to do a small taper, and cut back on mileage while still doing some speed workouts, so by the time I get to race day, the base miles will be doing me good but not still in my legs, and my body will be used to going out of the blocks quickly!

Had to have 3 days off as after the long run at the weekend I was still getting the intermittent sharp pains in my left leg. My theory is it might be some residual referred pain from my back from when I fell, and may have a bit of a pinched nerve back there, or it could be any number of things, but rest seemed to benefit it!

I set off gingerly at first, but there was no immediate reaction from my leg, and after a very short warmup of slowish running, I started to pick th pace up bit by bit, testing my legs out. There was a bit of a calf twinge before 1k was up, but nothing major and it didn’t recur. I clocked the first km in just over 6 minutes, and then I was hitting 5:15 pace and quicker for most of the rest of the run. I was breathing hard and noticed the Garmin going under 5 mins per km at times, even though I wasn’t going flat out (comfortably hard, but not race pace). I struggled a bit on the last km, and the last few 100 metres was uphill, which slowed me down but I managed 5:37 for the last km when I felt I had slowed to a crawl.

Am not sure on this evidence I could get near running 10 sub 5 minute kms, but you never know on race day, I will do a few more fast runs to keep my legs ticking over and see what happens! There was no recurrance of the sharp wobbly pain in my legs, my right ankle felt mildly niggly, but OK, so not sure what it was all about really!

10 Miles Long Run – Niggly to Start with but settled down – 1 hr 51 minutes

Posted on Aug 26, 2012 under 10 Miles, Long Runs, Milestones | No Comment

Having run a bit less this week, I wanted to get a long run in, which will probably be the last run of substance length-wise before the City of Salford 10k, as I guess I will be in cutback mode for a little while now, especially having done a 22 and an 18 mile week back to back now.

Set off at a slow pace and felt fine, could feel my body adjusting to the jogging, but it wasn’t a painful process, more like, “Oh, this again, ok, can do…” However at about 3k I felt a weird pain in my right lower leg, and it felt like the leg would give out. I slowed, it was Ok, and then the same thing started happening with my left leg. I was ok when I slowed, then when I sped up a little to take advantage of a green man on a crossing (and I don’t mean molesting aliens, ha ha!), the pain intensified, my leg felt like it would give way, and I had to stop to give it a little massage.

I carried on, wondering whether I should turn back, and abort the planned 10 miles, but it seemed to be Ok if I kept to a pace just slightly quicker than walking. CV wise I felt great, barely broke into a sweat and wasn’t breathing much harder than if I had been sitting down.

I plodded on, and at some point the nagging pain disappeared and I felt myself speed up, instead of doing 7 mins per km I was doing 6:30 and going quite comfortably. The pains didn’t come back, but I could feel my toes blistering a little! I took the hill on the motorway bridge without a second thought, although by that point I could sense my glycogen stores were depleting, but I had managed the distance without a drink or any other sustenance, which is a first for me on anything over 10k!

Slowed towards the end and had been running for just short of 2 hours, but it didn’t really seem all that far, so my fitness must have really improved lately. Not sure what the niggles were but might have been to do with the time trial the other day, so I will probably give the reps at the running club a miss, as after 2 high mileage weeks I think I need some lower mileage and lower intensity, so that my body can reap the rewards of the last month or 2, and the last thing I want to do at this stage is risk an injury before one of the few races I have been able to enter this year!

5k Time Trial – 26:05

Posted on Aug 23, 2012 under 5-10k, Season's Best, Time Trials | No Comment

Been a while since my last time trial, and wanted to see where I was at after all the hard running and work at the Sweatshop running club, etc.

Had been an exhausting day mentally so really needed to get a run, set off gently for a 2.5k warmup and was surprised that my legs felt a little niggly as they had felt so strong yesterday! Felt ok but warm at a gentle pace, then walked around for a bit to psyche myself up for the time trial, as I know 5k time trials often mean one thing – PAIN!

Set off on the usual route so it could compare to the last outing. Glanced at the Garmin and was doing about 4:40 to start off with, and the first km ticked over in 4:53 – so far so good! But I was starting to breathe hard and wondered how long I could maintain that kind of pace! The inclines hit my pace slightly to bring in a 5:09 second km, and then the third ticked over in 5:01. I was feeling very puffy by then and working hard to try to maintain that pace, but once the inclines took their toll I ended up with a 5:18 4th km. As I took the slope down Town Lane towards St Anne’s Road, I felt a little stab of pain in my right calf, and not wanting to risk an injury, I had to slow a little, and as much as I tried to increase cadence with shorter strides, I felt pretty done in by that point, knew I wasn’t going to get near sub 25, and ended up with a pretty slow last km.

Still, it was 50 seconds off my last time trial, and a season’s best, and I probably still had some of last week’s miles in my legs! At least I know I have the pace to run at sub 50 10k pace, I just need to work on the speed endurance now!

4k Loosener – Not too bad at all!

Posted on Aug 22, 2012 under Easy Runs, Regular Runs | No Comment

Just a quick 4k loosener – set off feeling good and strong, after a couple of km the pace picked up and I was running under 6 mins per km quite comfortably, eased off the pedal then but felt like my high mileage followed by some days of walking to recover, has done me some good!

Longest Run of the Year so far – 12.43 miles in 2 hrs 18 minutes 45 seconds

Posted on Aug 17, 2012 under Above 10 miles, Long Runs, Milestones, Slow Runs | No Comment

Weather was looking bit cloudy so ideal conditions for a long slow run. Wasn’t sure how my legs would be as they had felt a bit achey after the recovery run on Tuesday – still, they’d had 2 days to recover from that!

Unlike my long runs in the past, where I felt good and upped the pace, and eventually ended up with injuries, I was determined to keep the pace nice and slow. For the first 3k felt very good, although there was a moment where I started to breathe hard and wondered if I would get anywhere near my target of 10 ish miles. The plan was to run just over 10 to take me into 20 miles for the week.

There was a bit of a breeze, and a little drizzle helped me keep cool although it was mainly dry and towards the end of the run there was a nice red sky. I ran out through Dane Bank, then Reddish, then all the way to the edge of Stockport until I came to a sort of dead end of dual carriageway, and turned back, opting for the route via Belle Vue and back to base through Gorton. Barely got out of breath although my knees were a bit sore at times, and I was sweating quite a lot – at about 12k I popped into a shop for some energy drink, which only lost me about a minute, but I needed to refuel, and it did me good. Kept plodding along at a nice steady pace, felt I could keep going all night really, and 10 miles ticked over while I was still a ways off the motorway bridge at Denton Rock.

Took it slow over the bridge, and started to calculate what I would end up running, figured I would easily make 11 miles and when that ticked over realised I only needed to run another 1.6km to make it 12. My pace was slowing and feet were a bit sore, but just kept going at an easy pace, and when I got to 19.4k I figure I couldn’t quite trust my own maths, so I thought to make it 19.8k and by then I just decided to jog another 200metres to make it a nice round 20km, or 12.43 miles. I could have carried on and made it a half marathon, but time was getting on, and I had already exceeded my planned distance, and was near my front door, so I petered to a stop, took a well deserved slug from what was left of the powerade, and got inside to cool off!

21.8 miles for the week, with a nice mix of runs, have a little time away now so will be having 4 days off running with some hiking instead, but I feel in really good shape. Probably my last really long run before the Salford 10k race in September, hopefully this time I have got the preparation right, and will be able to do myself justice.

Might try a 5k time trial next week, just to see where my pace is at!

3 Mile Recovery Run – deliberately slow paced and hurt like hell!

Posted on Aug 14, 2012 under Recovery Runs | No Comment

After yesterday’s exploits with the Hyde SRC crew, I thought I would try a recovery run. Must say I am in awe of those who went on the runs yesterday having done tough races on Sunday. Personally I think I would have put my feet up 🙂

Anyway, I decided to go out and run a very slow 5k, and it hurt like hell. Was ok to start with, but by 3k I was feeling very hot, very heavy legged, and quite miserable! Had to walk in a few spots, even going at the slowest pace I could muster felt like running through treacle into a brick wall. Hung on for 3 miles and virtually melted in a heap!

I think the recovery run is a bit misnamed, as rather than help recovery, one running coach has the theory that recovery runs are more about a complex set of operations between the brain and muscles. By running in a pre-fatigued state from the workout from the day before, the brain and muscles have to find a way to adapt to run more efficiently, and so a recovery run increases the gains from a harder workout.

This run certainly hurt, but knowing I was in a pre-fatigued state makes me feel much better about it, I will now have a couple of recovery days before attempting a long run on Friday.

Easy ish club run that ended with a bit of Mo Mania! 10.25k

Posted on Aug 14, 2012 under 10-15k, Club Runs, Fartlek, Regular Runs, Trail Running | No Comment

Another Monday, and time to head out to the Sweatshop Running Community again! Was a nice day but threatened rain when I set off, and my plan was to run very easy after struggling last week, since the hard run on Monday.

The best laid plans often change though, I set off slowly and tried to keep my pace down but still ended up near the front, though was mindful not to try to keep up with the very front runners until I had got properly warmed up. Quite a few people had raced at the weekend and were taking it easy, so I just jogged along for a while, and we had fun going the wrong way and then having to catch up, which was fun!

Once we got into the run I started to pick up pace and kept nearer the front, I find these runs are more fartlek than anything for me, as I seem to get a real mix of pace from easy to tempo to sprinting with the odd rest stop and on this route some hills, so I suppose it’s good for going through different heart rate zones, not that I measure such things!

When we got to Mill Lane we were given a choice of going through the woods or the quicker route back to base, I elected to go the longer way, aware that this involved the steps and a fair few big hills at the climax! As I had been running quicker in bursts, I started to feel this extra distance and fell back a little at times, conserving my energy, but maintaining form, and gritting my teeth!

The last 3 hills up to Church Street (I think it’s called, there always seem to be church bells ringing when I run up those three big slopes, or maybe it’s just my heart hammering in my ears!) were very tough, and a few people pulled away from me, I felt I had nothing left and was really gasping, my legs turning to rubber, and I honestly felt I might die any second. Then as we crested the hill and reached flat ground, I had my moment of what must have been Mo Mania, as I just couldn’t resist accelerating and sprinting the last 2 or 3 hundred yards and seemed to find this burst of energy out of nowhere! One of the top runners came pelting past me and I worked really hard to stay in touch, even though the pain was excruciating by this point, real oxygen debt spreading through my body. Got a tap on the arm from the coach and a well done, which was nice, and I think those sorts of finishes on runs are really going to pay dividends in the last stages of the City of Salford 10k, I could perhaps knock half a minute off going at that pace, which might make all the difference to a PB one day!

Need an easy run and a longer run this week. The good news is the niggles that I felt at last Monday’s run and the day after have disappeared, so the few days off seem to have had the desired effect!

Thanks again to everyone at SRC, is really fun running with you all 🙂

Bad Run – 3 miles in 34 minutes

Posted on Aug 10, 2012 under Easy Runs, Jogs | No Comment

First run since the club run on Monday, didn’t seem to benefit much from 3 rest days! Set off and felt OK, could feel my back twinge now and then but more an awareness of pain than agony. Took it very, very easy, but by 2k was pouring with sweat and feeling sapped of energy. Stopped a few times and had to force myself to make up 3 miles, which I stopped near Morrisons and went inside to cool off near the fish counter. Felt very warm!

Still, probably a bit warmer than usual, and today is the 5 year anniversary of my dad dying, so it’s all relative, will probably bounce back next run! 🙂

Flattish 7 Miles-ish with Sweat Shop Running Community

Posted on Aug 06, 2012 under 10-15k, Club Runs, Regular Runs | No Comment

Another Monday and time to head off to the Sweatshop in Hyde for the running group.

When I got there the shutters were down, turned out the owner had gone out with the 5k group, but they opened it up again when the 5k group got back, was a bit of hanging around while some new people sorted out there cards and others got their new t-shirts. There were quite a lot of new people.

Set off at the front at a very easy pace, and got a bit confused at first when we ended up along the canal, stopped, and people started running back, so then I ended up near the back, and there wasn’t much room to overtake without danger of a swim in the canal! Got back to the front, feeling comfortable, then went the wrong way and had to backtrack so ended up at the back again.

Started to work a bit harder midway through the run, attacking hills and putting in some bursts of speed, then taking advantage of leads I developed to take a rest while waiting for the rest of the group. About 5k in I started feeling a twinge in my left leg so slowed a bit, which seemed to ease it, and also felt my back hurt going up a hill, so just took it easy for a while.

At one of the rest points one of the ladies asked for a drink of my water to help her swallow a fly which had only got half way, lol… pesky insects!

At the last stage we went the long way back, including the steps and the hills up from the canal. I attacked the hills and maintained my pace, then started to struggle a bit up the last hill. Then when I came off the top of it I found another gear and sprinted the last 400 metres to the shop.

Think 2-3 rest days are in order, especially as I was feeling a bit niggly in the run and don’t want to overdo it with only a month to go till the City of Salford 10k!

Easy 5k Run on bit of a Muggy sunny evening to end a cutback week – 33:23

Posted on Aug 04, 2012 under 5k, Easy Runs, Jogs | No Comment

I like the term muggy sunny, from the poem Corson’s Inlet by A.R.Ammons, so thought I would borrow if for today’s running blog post title!

Not a huge amount to report. This was first run back since my adventures on Wednesday, I had been a little apprehensive about how my back would respond to me pounding pavements without the mid-run endorphins and adrenaline that had been in my system when I fell on my arse that day… It had been a bit tender the day after but otherwise seemed ok, just the odd mild jolt jumping off buses.

I started a bit gingerly but it wasn’t really any trouble, was going pretty slowly anyway. Started to get quite warm and puffy towards the end of the run despite taking it very easy, and at one point there was a bit of a twinge on my left knee, but all in all felt Ok and back was no trouble.

After 3 or so weeks of increasing mileage I’ve cut back by about 5 miles this week, with just a couple of easy runs and the hard club run in the middle. Hope to go to the club on Monday but will see how I feel. I need to let my body reap the benefits of recent hard running and mileage before I pile more demands on it!