Monday, 29 November 2010

The brussel sprouts of training...

...hills! Maybe its just because it's coming up to Christmas, coupled with the fact that I always have food on my mind, but as I was running up (and down) the (enormous) hill (2 1/2 times) this evening at training, I began comparing running hills to brussel sprouts. I found many surprising comparisons and not just that they're green... 'cos actually this hill wasn't, it was very frosty white! Anyway, I'm becoming distracted from the main point of my metaphor.

In order to connect with this, you really have to have an indisposition to brussel sprouts - not hate them, or indeed love them - but simply find them a little bit offensive; the trespasser of vegetables on your plate.  When I was younger, my dad would always place two brussel sprouts on my plate at Christmas and tell me to eat them; they were good for me. I knew they were good for me and consequently would dutifully eat the two sprouts every Christmas. Even today, I don't hate them. I know they're good for me but there's something about that bitter taste which means I just can't ever enjoy them; yet, whenever I eat them a strange sense of pride will wash over me - another brussel sprout challenge accomplished!

In short, whilst I was running... and I might suggest here that yes, the cold had entered my brain and brought on a strange sort of madness, but... I was thinking that hills and brussel sprouts are, therefore, not so dissimilar: bitter, but good for you; someone else has to put them on my plate, I'd never choose them myself; but each hill session finished is another challenge accomplished.

... and sometimes they're both green!

Distance: 5.47 miles
Time: 55.47
Elevation: too high, too many times!
Weather: blooming freezing
Feeling: achieved!

Sunday, 28 November 2010

The Best 5k... but not a personal best!

Cold, cold, cold, cold... did I mention it was cold today? On leaving the house to join the car pool to Preston, my car thermometer kindly informed me it was -4 degrees! In November?! That's surely not right... the government need to make some kind of law against that.  Anyway, I'm not winging, I'm just getting my excuses in early(!), as I did run better than last week... Pete (our club coach) has an app on his i-phone which calculates your age related percentage and according to that my near death achievement was an improvement on last week's Abbey Dash travesty accomplishment... but still not the PB I was hoping for on a near complete flat course!

However... I sound like I'm not proud of my achievement... and I am! Look... photographic evidence of all of us, who ran from club, looking proud (quite rightly) with our medals!

I should also congratulate Lee, Eloise and Jason at this point who all got Pb's (I count Jason's even though it was his first run)... and especially Pete who also won first place in his vets category! Mind you... he treated us to a laugh interesting selection of pictures in the car on the way down of his earlier 80's running days. The go-faster moustache, as you can see, is no longer sported but the ability to 'go-faster', so to speak, is certainly still there! Well done Pete.

So, as far as I'm concerned this is a good start to my training. This race gave me my second best time in a 5k and a few 'to-do' points for my training: I am going to pick-up my training this week, making sure I get to club and run in between; and I'm going to get rid of the 5 little fat lbs that have been hanging around with me of late. Of course, this is something I can start on straight away... which is why I promptly returned home from Preston, ate 2 peanut butter smothered rice cakes, followed by a full Sunday dinner (yum, yum) and a cherry pie with ice cream! hmmmm... I'll start tomorrow then!

To finish here is a picture of me looking (overly) chuffed... still sporting my medal... at Preston North End FC which is opposite the park we ran in.

Race: The Best 5k, Preston
Time: 25.17
Weather: below freezing
Feeling: good... but cold!

Saturday, 27 November 2010

1st post... 20 weeks to go...

What?!!! 20 weeks! Aggghhhh! Okay, I'm taking a deep breath and putting that into proportion; there are only 52 weeks in the year, so if I look at it that way, there's loads of time!

I have realised this week though that I need to get started on some kind of proper training! I go to running club twice a week, but haven't done much more than that lately so this is the first of the good intentions!

As a lover of list-making... it's a great avoidance strategy... I have decided to start by making a list of things to do prior to beginning marathon training! They are:

1. start running more!
2. run the Best Preston 5k tomorrow and get a new PB... that would need to be faster than 24:54 (there... I've said it, it's out there... no going back now!)
3. run further than 6 miles before the Stockport 10... which is 10 miles of course... should really do that at least once before then!
4. run more often than twice a week at club!
5. create a training plan... ooooh, that's a good idea... more lists!
6. Sign up to all the races I want to do (as part of my training and more motivation after Christmas).

Right! That's me planned... I'm going to go and eat some pasta!