Tuesday, 31 May 2011

London Bupa 10000

Well, yesterday I ran the Bupa London 10000. I think it was fair to say it was quite hot.

It wasn't hot when I left home that morning, it was overcast, drizzle and the forecast was rain and thunder, so, I decided not to wear shorts and wear my half length trousers instead. In future I will remember to ignore weather forecasts and in May wear shorts, it is unlikely I will get cold whilst running !

Anyway, what can I say ! the race organisation was superb. Everything was very well sign posted. Plenty of toilets, a secure well managed baggage area and a staggered start. There was free water and lucozade handed out before the start and two water stops on the route. The support from the crowds was amazing and the live bands on the way round were great.

This is the largest race I have ever taken part in with over ten thousands starters. Each wave started at three minute intervals so no part of the course was ever that congested.

I finished in 55:44 a bit outside my target of 55 mins but still a PB. I made a few mistakes in this race that I will learn from and hopefully not repeat too often. The first was that I started off too fast at a pace I knew I wouldn't be able to maintain. I was running this race with my son and made the mistake of running at his pace for the first 3km, after that he went on ahead and I ran at a more realistic pace but I do think if I had run slower in the first two miles I would most probably have been able to maintain that pace and possibly finish slightly faster.

The second mistake was carrying a bottle of lucozade and not my normal water belt. I had left my water belt at home because the weather didn't look that brilliant and normally for 6 miles in coolish weather I wouldn't bother with the water. In the sun in London I realised I would need something so took a bottle of lucozade round with me. The good thing was that it was a sports bottle so I could actually drink from it but I found the actual drink too sweet and sickly and it had a "claggy" feel in my mouth rather than refreshing like water is.

I dumped the bottle at about 5km and tried picking up water from a water stop, no problem in getting the water but I found that I can't drink ut of a normal screw top bottle whilst running without half choking myself.... I do wonder if it would be worth carrying a straw to drink through whilst running.... and suggestions gratefully received !

Not long after the 5km mark I started feeling very light headed and giddy and took the decision to walk for a short while to get my breathing back to a more normal pace, I think I walked for about 15 - 20 secs. Overall I don't think that this made a vast difference to my finish time, if I hadn't done this then I don't think I would have been able to run at the pace that I did for the rest of the race.

I also ended up with fairly raw patches on my arms where my sleeves rubbed. This was quite a surprise to me because I have run and raced wearing this top many times before without a problem. All I can think of is that I held my arms quite differently because I was holding a bottle.....

But, and a big but.... no blisters ! This is the first race I have completed without getting blisters so it looks like the new trainers really do the trick :)

Anyway, after my son leaving me at 3km I caught up with him at 7km. We ran more of less together for the following 2km with him working quite hard to stay in front of me.... eventually at 9km I pulled ahead of him and finished nearly a minute faster. Considering this was his first ever race on the back of very little training he did really quite well (but I'm still glad I beat him !)

Would I do it again ? Yes, and next year I have a new target to aim for......

So, this is a photo of me after the finish (when I looked a fairly normal colour again)

Monday, 23 May 2011

What a week !

Well, it was quite a busy week last week. I managed to fit in a few runs as well as hill training with the club.

Now those are two words that install fear in to me.... Hill Training...... with some of the hills around here it just feels like sheer torture. I know it will get better with time but at the moment it really does feel as though it is killing me... at times we were running (well I was trying to run) up slopes that previously I wouldn't have tried walking up yet alone running. I really wasn't sure what was going to give way first, my lungs or my legs ! But that was last Thursday. Today is Monday and today is the first day that the muscles in my bum have stopped aching. I really have discovered muscles in all sorts of places that I never knew existed. I tell myself that this is a Good Thing. That these muscles will help me through the next year and around the marathon.... another part of me really isn't convinced and thinks that a return to my old sedentary lifestyle including alcohol and chocolate would be a Good Thing.... but I will do this. I know if I keep at it I will get better at it... and as time goes on I miss the old lifestyle less and less...

After a very disturbed night Saturday I was feeling tired before I started my long run on Sunday as well as still aching from the hill session Thursday night so it was quite nice to complete the 16.3 mile route that I had planned... I'm still sticking to the HR training and tried to keep my HR below the 70% threshold, I could see when I was starting to get tired because I was running slower on flat ground and my HR was still near its limit. I think it is using my HR like this that really is helping me to extend the distances I am running.

Last week I ran a total of 32.76 miles... this week will be an awful lot less... today is a rest day, then with a mix of work commitments and the fact that I'm running in the BUPA London 10K on Monday means that I will get less runs in and will be making sure I'm fully rested. I'm hoping to get my 10k time to as close as 55 mins as I can, Monday will also be the largest race I have taken part in so far... about the same number of runners as the marathon next year....

This is my race number for Monday, wave if you see me !

Monday, 16 May 2011

A new PB :)

Well, on Saturday I ran the Bedgebury Forest Trailblazer 10k race. This is another event I had entered with Holly but we had agreed beforehand to race at our own speeds. It was a lovely run through the pine forest on some very dusty trails.

The race entry fee was a bit more than some events but I certainly think it was worth it. Registration was very quick and easy with no queues. An event village had been put up including a bouncy castle and climbing wall, these were both free to use. There was also free wine tasting, a beer tent as well as very reasonably priced food. Our registration packs included our race numbers, timing chips and free technical t-shirts ( I wore it yesterday on a training run, it fits well and is certainly one I will wear !)

The race itself started in waves, with 8 waves in total starting half an hour apart. This meant that the course was not congested but you still had quite a large group of people around you. We started in wave 5, a sub 60 min group.

The course was quite hilly but nothing too awful, it just seemed as though you were always going either up or down hill ! The first and last kilometres were all uphill.... The worst bit for me was in the last km when you were running through an uneven field with quite long grass, uphill.... Luckily after that although it was still uphill the ground wasn't as uneven and the uphill wasn't quite as steep !

My official finish time was 58:47 and my chip time was 58:39 beating my previous best time over 10k of 60:15..... It is also worth noting my previous PB was a flat road race rather than a hilly trail race !

I will add some photos later :)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Trainer update.....

Well, after a few weeks with the Asics 2160 trainers they were still creating sore spots and blisters on any run over 6 miles so today I went back to Sweatshop in Brighton to change them.

I have to say I am very impressed with Sweatshop, their staff are very friendly and helpful and spent some time trying to work out why these trainers had been causing me problems before recommending a replacement pair. I took the replacements for a run on the treadmill to make sure they corrected my pronation and double checked for fit etc... these are a bit wider than the Ascis and I really do hope that these cure the blisters.

So, I now have a pair of Brooks Adrenaline GTS 11 trainers. I will be going out later today to start breaking them in.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Heart Rate Zones

This is as much put here to help me remember as much as anything else !

Resting HR - 48
Max HR - 189

60% - 133
70% - 147
75% - 154
80% - 161
85% - 168
90% - 175
95% - 182

The formula I have used is (MHR-RHR)*%+RHR and then rounded to the nearest whole number....

So, for next weeks race I should be looking for a heart rate of 168-175.....

Should be interesting to see how fast that is... And the time I get round in (it is a 10k trail run)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Photo from todays run

One of the photos from todays run... Edited a bit on my iPhone !

Running along the River Adur

Well, todays run was the third that I have tried keeping my HR at 70% of my max... for me this magic number is 146 and I feel that it has been tattooed in to my brain ! I kept looking at my watch to make sure I was below this magic number... I have to say that I am beginning to feel the difference and spot when it is going up too high, a glance at my watch normally confirms it and I slow down a bit..

Todays run was a bit shorter than my normal LSR distance, I'm planning on racing next Saturday and need to feel fresh for it. I'm also planning a few early night this week to make sure I get at least eight hours sleep (I normally have all the good intentions and then it goes out the windows) and apart from anything I drink this evening the rest of the week will be alcohol free.

I have grown to really enjoy running along the river, it is quite different from the Downs but if you run North up the river you are away from roads and there are some wonderful views towards Truleigh Hill. I have taken a few photos on my Iphone so I will post them later...

The route I run is relatively flat with a few minor hills so it is great for me at the moment trying to maintain a constant heart rate. I also just love looking at all the different birds around, I don't know what many of them are but I saw quite a few bird watchers on the river banks today.

After running up the river I pick up the Downs Link, this follows part of the old railway track and again is very scenic. I am planning to walk this route one day with my cameras and do a bit more "serious" photography... I just don't fancy running carrying all the kit I normally work with !

Anyway, this is the route.....

Friday, 6 May 2011

Heart Rate Training

I have just finished reading the boo "Heart Monitor Training for the Compleat Idiot" (yes, the mis-spelling is deliberate !). It makes interesting reading and I have decided to follow his training methods to see if it does work; it makes sense when you read about it....

So, Wednesday I went out for my first run and found it quite hard to keep my heart rate below my magic number of 146.... 70% of my max.... I came back not totally convinced that this is going to work but will persevere for a month to see how it goes.

This evening I went for my second HR run and hit problems early on, my heart rate soon soared to over 220 ! A quick readjustment of the heart rate monitor strap bought it back in to line.... it had slipped and was giving strange readings ! I found a comfortable pace and managed to keep my heart rate fairly constant.

All I can say is watch this space !

This is the data from this evenings run.

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