Juneathon day 23, Runstreak day 115 and the day in 1314 on which the First War of Scottish Independence: The Battle of Bannockburn (south of Stirling) began.
Today was my final long run before starting to taper for next weekend’s Endure24 event. I forced myself out of bed at 7am, not feeling up for it at all, but the forecast for Sunday was heavy rain and this morning looked reasonable so I refrained from postponing the long effort till tomorrow.
Anyway, I was out the door about 7:20 after a quick energy drink and an Elevensies bar. The first couple of miles didn’t feel good at all, and by the 2 mile point I was really questioning whether I could do another 7 sets of that.
Juneathon Day 16, Runstreak day 108 and the day in 1829 on which Geronimo, the Apache leader was born.
According to Wikipedia, “Geronimo” means “one who yawns”, and that has definitely been me today !!
I was up reasonably early (for a weekend at least) this morning – about 6:45 – and headed out for a easy long run, 15 miles along the canal. My plan for the weekend is back to back long effort. This will be the last big stress on my legs before the Endure24 in 2 weeks. Next weekend I’ll probably do a single long run.
Anyway, that early start and log effort had me yawning away, then I decided to double up today with another short effort while the kids were swimming, so I managed another 3.1 miles at 5pm.
Juneathon day 10, Runstreak day 102 and the day on which Alexander the Great died (in 323BC).
It’s just after lunch on Sunday, and it looks as though I managed to salvage something of the week. Mileage so far is 36.6, and I might be able to get out for another 3 or 4 miles this evening to try and reach my weekly minimum target of 41m.
After yesterdays speedy effort, my thighs were still aching today. Also, I didn’t get a decent nights sleep, so the 6:30 alarm was immediately switched off and ignored. Mrs H nudged me at 8am and asked if I was planning on running, so I dragged myself out of bed and got my kit on and headed out the door, after taking the obligatory cup of tea up to Mrs H.
I had planned on 11 or 12 miles this morning, but the late start put paid to that – I only had till 9:30 and by now it was 8:20, so I decided on an easy effort on my usual 8 miler out and back along the canal.
Felt like I had heavy legs to start with but after a couple of miles I got into the zone and the miles passed quickly. If I start thinking about something (interesting) and planning then I find it easy to ‘zone out’ and before I know it a few miles have passed and I have no recollection of them – which really helps…
Anyway, 8.25 miles at 9 minute miles. Perfect temperature for running this morning and everyone else must have thought the same as I passed a ton of other runners, cyclists and walkers. Really enjoyable running.
Juneathon day 9, Runstreak day 101…
This week was in danger of being a washout, by Friday I had notched up a pretty feeble 20 miles, then a late night on Friday and a warm, cosy bed on Saturday morning conspired against me and my plan for a morning 8 miler.
It’s funny how quickly your perspective can change – fortunately I found some time in the afternoon and thought I would try a bit of a fast effort. I had, in my mind, a target of 8 miles in under an hour. When I’d tried this a couple of months back, I was just outside the hour, averaging 7:35 per mile.
This mornings run was a steady 11 mile effort along the Kennet and Avon Canal.
It felt a lot harder than it should have, but then again I have had a few hill and speed sessions recently, including a fast 5 miler late yesterday.
Weather wasn’t great – drizzling the whole way, but I try to simply ignore that. Wasn’t like a battle against wind and rain which changes the face of a run, just a minor inconvenience.
Normally I’ll see 8 or 10 other runners on a Sunday morning on this route, but not today, just 2 others spotted. Don’t know if that was down to it being the Jubilee weekend or the weather ?
This 11 miler takes me to a shade over 35 miles for the week – 6 miles below my minimum target, but it has been pretty hectic – spent the week in Boston, and also took a round trip to New Jersey, so a few of the runs were ‘streaksavers’ – just a couple of miles to make sure I got something in for the day, and didn’t break my runstreak. Today is #runstreak day 95, it is also Juneathon (#blogstreak) day 3.
I was reflecting the other day on how my mileage increased over the course of last summer. In May I ran a 16 mile cross country that I had done a couple of times before, then over the summer I ran longer and longer – 19, 24 and in the Autumn a 32 mile race.
Now, I don’t really have a training regime to speak of – I run when I feel I want to, sometimes that could be 8 times a week, sometimes once a week, so the best way I found to extend my long runs (easily) was to force a second run on days when I had done a long morning (before work) effort.
I am lucky enough to live just by a canal which also has train stations every 3 or 4 miles along it – so I’d do a long effort in the morning (8, 12, 16 miles) and then get the train the rest of the way to work. That left me at work needing to get the train home, however the closest station is 2.6 miles from home, so I had to run it…
I do have a desk job, and my legs did get a good 8 hours to recover, but having to churn that 2.6 miles out after a long morning run, on very tired legs really helped me – building the confidence and the self assurance that I could crank out those miles regardless of how bad my legs felt really let me stretch myself on the weekend long runs.
Don’t get me wrong, this was not any form of commitment, effort or schedule on my part – I just forced it by putting myself in a situation where I had no choice but to do the second run. if there had been any other option I would have taken it, but there wasn’t so I just got on with it.
Try it sometime – you might find it helps…
YAY !! I completely nailed this weeks long run.
Left work just before 6pm, home just after 8:30pm. Felt great the whole way – averaging 8:30’s apart from a couple of slower miles (mile 10 and 12) where I was sorting drinks, kit, podcasts.
Not sure why – just felt fast and strong – one of those magic days where it all comes together.
This beats my previous PB on this route by about 10 minutes…
I had a bit of a slapstick comedy moment on this mornings run.
As you can probably appreciate, running along a canal, set in woodland can be idyllic, but on the flip side it can also be incredibly dangerous !
This mornings run turned out to be later. I was set upon by mother nature in a cold calculated, precisely time, two pronged attack. Seriously.
First, she dispatched one of those teensy, but deadly, kamikaze bugs with orders to fly directly into my eyeball (the right one). Then, knowing I’d have my head down dealing with Mr Eyeball Invader (but still be running) she put a partially broken, fallen branch at head height directly across the trail.
Of course, tactically unprepared as I was, and already distracted with Mr Eyeball Invader, I ran face first directly into the said branch ending up with a mouth full of leaves and a bloodied nose.
So… mother nature won this battle, but there will be others, and I will prevail.
Last night I did a long run home, from work. This is the second time I have run this route and, to date, it is the furthest I have ever run – 18.7 miles.
The first time I ran it in 3:18:15, which I wasn’t happy about. I know I had my water / fuelling all wrong. Basically, I only had 500ml of plain water for the run and at 16.5 miles had to take a detour via a Co-op to buy some more drinks. This time around I did a much better job on that side of things, and knocked 26 minutes off my time. Read more
I am fortunate enough to live in a great place for running routes. It is only around 1/2 a mile to get to the beautiful Kennet and Avon Canal from my front door.
Even better than that is that there are train stations at regular intervals alongside the canal – meaning I have a range of distance options for my morning run before boarding the train for the remainder of the way to work.
Home to Thatcham Station is 2.6 miles, Midgeham is 5.7 miles, Aldermaston 7.8 miles and Theale is 11.8 miles. Factor in trains every 30 minutes or less and you can see I have some great opportunities.