A Better running week again

It has been a better running week again. I am really enjoying it now, and I am feeling the benefits in almost everything I do.

Tuesday 25th July

I set off with a determination to tick off 5 miles. I had a day off work, and the wife set off for the gym so I went with her to have a different starting point for the run.

I purposely had no pace when I ran, allowing myself to stop for traffic, texts, podcasts swapping, and general selfie taking. For this run it was just about the distance, and it was better for it. With the brilliant Lance Armstrong Stages podcasts in my ears (I know I am behind everyone on this, but it is a very good podcast), I ran, smiled and ticked the miles off. Only one stumble- over some high cobbles in a local traffic calming. The weather was strange- thick mist at the start, and blue skies and heat at the end. Yes, I was gone long enough for the weather to change. Bite me.

Thursday 27th July

I really did not feel like this, so I got home from work, changed and went straight out with out thinking about it. With just over a mile of warm up, I committed myself to at least 3 hill repeats up my private Strava section.

I am pleased I went out. My running watch does not have Strava live sections on it, so my times remain a mystery until I get home. The first repeat felt solid; the second repeat started too quick and I faded towards the end (a lot), and the third repeat was just weak and tired.

So after the ¾ mile cool down, I uploaded my times. Surprise! My second run- where I started far too fast and faded far too much- actually equalled my PB on the climb. Now, I know that when I set the PB I would have run more calmly and consistently; but hey- I equalled my PB (there other 2 repeats were about 3- 4 seconds slower).

I know his repeats do make a big difference to my speed and strength; it is just that they are so hard and hurt so much. Waw, waw, I am a cry baby. Pain=gain. Simple.

Saturday 29th July- Barnstaple Parkrun

My 20th Parkrun. I was looking at pictures of fixed wheels bikes over breakfast, so I rode my fixie down. I got there nice and loose- unlike last week when I was stiff as a board.

Started calmly- all I could do due to the number of runners today (over 200!!), and then just settled down to it. The first mile came in at 9minutes 14 seconds (which was a welcome surprise) so I kept that pace going. The last sprint for the line was managed through heavy swinging of my arms- a trick I learnt on Thursday’s hill repeats. Across the line in 29 minutes 19 seconds- a whole minute and a half off of last week. Subsequently, there was a big grin on the ride home!!

It is nice to begin to feel like a runner- one who runs and enjoys it. I know my pacing is still slow, and I stomp, but it is also nice to be getting the miles in without dragging my right leg. The stretches that the physiological gave me- in particular, touching the floor and stretching my buttocks (say ‘buttocks’ a Forrest Gump accent) is noticeably making a welcome difference. This is great- there have been a lot of times where I thought I would never run again, such is the severity of the foot dragging and scuffing.


A better week, which puts me back on target for the Barnstaple Half; I know I am getting to the harder stages now. I have had a couple silly days where my cutting back of calories have been too much and I get to tea time faint and dizzy, so I need to balance this out.

Coming week

Another week like this one, please! My plan now- allowing for a trailing wind and all that- is a long steady run of 6 miles Tuesday; some more hill repeats on Thursday, and a long steady run of 6 miles across the weekend. I am working for the next couple Saturdays, so unable to do the Parkrun, so it will be interesting to see what progress I can make to my next one.

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