Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Follow the Yellow Brick Road.....

I do enjoy March, it is such a great month for putting in some good solid miles & normally loaded with races - well this year did not disappoint. It was also time to shift the focus from the trails & unto the roads.

Miles = 188.7 Miles 
Time on Feet = 29 hrs 19 mins 
Elevation = 10,102 ft
Highest Weekly Mileage = 62.2 Miles
Longest Run = 26.9 Miles (Port Of Dover Marathon)
Longest `Time on your feet` run = 4 hrs 23 mins (Port Of Dover Marathon)
Highest `Back to Back Days / Miles` = 6 Days / 62.2 Miles
Races = 6 (Yateley Hockey Club 10Km, Leith Hill Half, Kingston Breakfast Run 16M, Fleet Half, Port Of Dover Marathon & Tempest Ten)   
parkruns = 3

Yoga Sessions & Hours = 6 off & 9 hrs (6 x 90 mins of Bikram Yoga)
PT Sessions = 3
Sports Massages = 3
Swim = 1 km (30 mins)

Highlights =  It`s been a great month, recording my highest monthly mileage ever (closest was 181 M back in Jan 2010). I also managed to tick off a run I thought of years ago but never managed it till this year. The run was a bit of a warm up to a very local half Marathon & complete it in a good time - I ran the 5 miles to Fleet (42mins) & completed the Half in a progressive time of 01:46:06. A fantastic run at Kingston.  

Conclusions =   As Oliver said..."Please Sir, I want some more !"  

Comrades Connection - Yellow Brick Road is Toto & this.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Breakfast at Tiffany`s…………….well Breakfast in Kingston really.

When I put my Comrades training plan together it was always on the `shew-whiff` basis by being hampered by `that` tight  hamstring so no normal speed sessions or tempo runs planned in but the main emphasis being on endurance (miles & miles) & strength-work (hills & hills & PT) and stretching (hours & hours of yoga & massage) & making up the rest was listening to experience – both from self & others, belief in myself, bit of luck and all bounded with a heavy splash of fun.

Well a fun part came this weekend at the Lidl Kingston Breakfast Run There was 3 distances – 8.2M (one lap), 16.2M (two laps) or a new 20M (a two & half lap course) - I opted for the 16.2M run.  When I first saw this it literally screamed progressive run but at what pace? There were pacers there – 6 minute, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 & 12 (the 6 min pacer was apparently on a bike).

It was a nice & early (start time 08:30am) & on the way over I bumped into Matt – good to briefly say hello. I parked up & as I was dropping my bag off I chatted to Mike from the Club (Windle) who had just got back from hols & made our way to the start line – literally all  metres away from each other. The course itself was flat & basically through the start / finish, over a bridge, along the River past Hampton Court , over another bridge, out towards Hinchley Woods and along the river towards Kingston.  I opted to start & cross the line with the 10 min pacer and then catch up the 9 min pacer – chase the pacer - a similar plan when I did the Basingstoke Half last year but not straight away – kind of  a `8, 4 + 4` plan.  I settled nicely into pace with the slowest three miles in the first four miles.  I took two gels – one on each lap but no water during the race. The water stations & the wearing of earphones (narrow footpaths on the inward trip) were to me the only areas of concerns.  As we headed back towards Kingston I could feel the pace increasing.  I turned left past the start and out on my second lap. It was nice to increase the pace – I felt like I was racing again plus you do get a boost from passing other runners.  I totally recommend progressive runs rather flat out runs. With about 4 to go I saw Steve & wished him well. As I past the final water stop (approx. 13M point) I did push the pace to catch the pacer – I hadn`t seen their flag at all & getting a bit concerned !!! With a mile or so to go when I saw the group – a bit narrow for such a large group.  I caught up and thought well I`ve come this far & might as well carry on to the finish and after a while went past.  It is nice to end a solid week training (44 mile week) with a sprint finish & feeling good J

As I made my way through the finish tunnel I was given the largest goodie bag I have ever been given – it was incredible, full of useful stuff too – well done Lidl & well done Human Race Events for putting on this race.  It`s one I`ll do again.

Race splits;

Start – 4M = 00:37:26
4M to 8M = 00:37:09 (halfway turn 01:14:17)
8M to 12M = 00:34:37
12M to 16M = 00:33:06
Finish = 02:21:00

Full Garmin details
Results - HERE

Job done
– had a lot of fun & March`s race number 3 in the bag – only 3 to go (Fleet Half, Dover Marathon & Spitfire 20M).