Training: Weekend Running – 10k + 5k

Friday first! I fully intended on going for a run on Friday however the weather was lovely , I’d been in an office all day and I live 30 minutes from the beach…you do the math!

A Saturday 10k

I have two races this week, one on Tues and on Friday, so although I haven’t done a long (70mins+) run for a while, I opted for a 10k yesterday (Sat) and 5k today. The 10k was really warm and humid, sapping all the energy from my legs. I planned to do about 15k but couldn’t go on! Also watched my wife run a Parkrun PB in 21:14 – very proud!

Fast-ish 5k on Sunday

Today I ran 5k in a fairly pacey 19:53. I intentionally pushed myself as there is a 5k race on Tuesday, so needed a bit of tuning up. I ran today in my Newton MV3′s which, I’m pleased to say my calves have finally got used to! They really do throw you forward, but with zero drop I’d still be wary about wearing them even for a 10k.

I liked this photo of me and my wife walking toward the start line for a race last week!

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Next Training
A race on Tuesday – The Corfe Mullen 5k followed by a race on Friday – the Purbeck 10k.

Summer Evening Runs

Surely what we in more temperate climes dream of through the cold winter months. A day spent inside at work, legs jigging underneath the desk and full of twitching energy. Evenings warm, bright and with sounds of lawnmowers and kids playing in the street.

Unfortunately I’ve had a bit of a virus this week, nothing too bad but just generally feeling tired and rubbish. So after a 10k race in the heat on Sunday, I took two days rest before heading out last night for a 10k in which I felt terrible. I swear I felt like I hadn’t been running for a month! My legs felt heavy and my breathing was laboured after just five minutes of running. Did 10k in 45minutes and definitely feeling a bit off.

Tonight I headed out for an easy 5k in 20:28 which didn’t feel too bad.

Next Training
Try and fit in a run tomorrow night but the beach beckons in this nice warm weather! Definitely get some miles in over the weekend.

Race: Kingston Lacy 10k

This race was a first for me, set in the grounds of 17th Century Kingston Lacy house.

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Every race these days seems to be a ‘festival of running’ rather than just a plain old group of races! So today there was a family fun run, a half marathon, a 10k and a 5k – probably more, but those were the ones I counted… And of course a stall selling running shoes – it wouldn’t be a running festival without that ; )

Me and the wife walking down to the start!

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I’m always very positive about running events as they are usually put on by clubs or charities, with volunteers giving up their time to marshal. This ‘festival’ however is run by professional sports events company VoTwo as a money making enterprise so I feel justified in pointing out a few areas for improvement. I welcome their response in the comments…

1) The race is advertised as chip timed. It’s not.

2) The man organising the start was pretty loud, abrupt and verging on rude. Everyone lined up at a flag saying start (as you would do?!) but apparently this WASN’T the start.

3) The kilometre markers were way off. I’ve corroborated this with a couple of other runners. At the 4k mark, my Garmin said 4.2k – quite a difference.

4) A lot of people’s official times were 20-30 seconds slower than their watches.

5) The ‘live results’ was actually a TV screen that you had to queue up to see for 15mins, at a time. It didn’t even tell you your race position. I’ve known races to have initial results printed out on to paper and stuck up on a board for all to see, whilst the race is still finishing

6) The results site didn’t work on my mobile.

Other than those points, the setting was beautiful, weather pristine (if a little hot), atmosphere really nice, great crowd lining the finish and the announcer lady talking all through the event was actually really entertaining and engaging!

The race itself was tough as it was very hot, even at 9:30am when it started. It meandered through a bit of grass, some gravel paths and then country lanes and was very scenic.

All was fine until a massive hill at 4k which, in the heat, seemed to suck the life out of my legs. I finished the race in 7th place and in a time of, ha! 40:43 on my Garmin and 41:01 in the official results. Think I’ll go with the Garmin!

Race: Upton Summer Series 2014 2/6

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Last night was the second of six Upton Summer Time Trials. I’ve explained the route in a previous post however it’s largely off road and set in the grounds of Upton House.

This second race was fairly quiet compared to the last! I don’t know why as the weather was perfect and the course beautiful. Perhaps because it’s a Friday – not your typical Friday night out!

It’s nice at these runs as the kids race is at 7pm, 30 minutes before the adults one, so I ran round the 1 mile children’s course with my son – a nice warm up.

The adults race itself was pretty uneventful. I felt like I was pushing it to the limit and surely I must be on for a fast time… But no, when I crossed the line my watch said 21:43 which was only about 10 seconds quicker than last time! Still waiting for the official results!

Next Training
I have a 10k race tomorrow at Kingston Lacy

Training: A Wet Recovery Run!

After a fast 10k in the heat on Sunday, followed by a strenuous track session last night, an nice easy run was on the cards.

As I pulled on my running gear I heard that well known sound of any English summer – the pitter patter of rain outside. I don’t often do slow or recovery runs very well, as I always speed up! This evening though, it was nice to slip out into the summer rain and run 7.5k at a relaxed pace. In the wet, the lanes were empty of the usual dog walkers and evening walkers and I had the full 35 minutes all to myself : ) A tonic after a busy day at work and one of the reasons I love running.

Next Run
A rest tomorrow night before the next Upton race (3.5 miles)

Training: Track Speed Session

Pain (the good type

“Ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch…” Was what I said as I got in the door from tonight’s speed session on the track at Ashdown!

Getting Used To Zero Drop Newton MV3 Racing Flats

My legs are still getting used to running on my zero drop Newton MV3s. This was the first time I’d worn them for a proper speed session and they didn’t disappoint speed-wise! I’ve read reviews of these shoes where the writer talks of them begging you to run faster and I can attest that they really do! I went in to it in more detail in a post specifically about the Newtons. This zero drop thing is taking a while for my calfs to adjust to (I’ve only worn them three times in two weeks) but I’m confident we’ll get there in a few weeks!

Enough about Newton trainers and my legs (ouch, ouch!)

The Speed Session Itself

Tonight’s speed session was a three lap warm up (1200m), followed by the following sets of repeats; 2x400m + 5x800m + 2x400m. The 400′s had approx 1m30s rests between them and the 800′s about 2m30s. I ran the first 400′s slow (1:20), as my dodgy ankle was complaining. I then ran each of the 800′s, increasing the pace with each one finishing on a 2:45. Then in the final 400m I went all out (as much as you can at the end of a speed session!) in 1:02.

I often say that I’m not satisfied with a training session unless I feel like I couldn’t run another step… Well tonight it was all I could do to force myself to run a warm down lap at the end, before sliding exhausted into my car! Maximum satisfaction!

Total distance run was 7.5k including warmup/down, on my feet for about an hour.

Next Training
I shall see how my calfs feel when I wake up tomorrow! If not too bad then an easy 7-8k.

Race: Poole Festival of Running – 10k

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Two or three years ago I did this race in 28ish degree heat. It was horrendous and it was all I could do to struggle home in around 50 minutes. So for the last week I was tentatively checking the weather for signs of another heatwave…

Well it wasn’t as bad as a few years ago and residents of hotter climes may thing nothing of it, but my car thermometer hit 25 degrees (77f) on the way to the race. I ran alongside my son in the 400 metre minithon earlier in the day and it was hot!

A Festival of Running

The 10k is the main event in the day long ‘Poole Festival of Running’, with capacity for 1200 entrants. There are various children’s races in the morning, plus a 5k for those preferring a shorter distance. Add all the rides and expos and it was a very nice day!

This is the only race that I know of that begins at 2pm in the afternoon. I always find this a bit annoying as a) if it’s a hot day like this was, it’s hottest at 2pm in the afternoon and b) it’s hard to know what/when to eat at that time! (I opted for a bowl of porridge and banana at 12pm, but was STARVING by the end of the race.)

The Route

The route takes you around the beautiful scenery of Poole Park and the Whitecliff area of Poole. Half of the run is around a lake and through the park, and the other half takes you out on to a path running directly alongside the gently lapping sea.

At first glance this is a flat course however, as anyone that did it today will tell you, there are some innocuous looking but potentially tricky hills along the way!

The Race

I started in the 34-37min section and so got swept along at quite a fast pace (3:35 min per k) for the first couple of kilometres. In fact, I looked at my watch at 5k and realised I’d done it in 19:08 – a time I frequently do a full on 5k in!

It was at around 7-7.5k that the heat really started to get to me – praying for the next water stop, before realising that the next one was post-finish line! Crossed the line in 39.53, frustratingly 1 second slower than my PB.

A very enjoyable day – with my son, my wife, mum and dad all racing throughout the day, lots of entertainment for the kids and a nice ice cream van ready and waiting near to the finish line. A very organised day and race.

Next Training
Day off tomorrow, followed by getting back to the speed sessions with Poole A.C. at Ashdown on Tues evening.