Wednesday, 30 October 2013

PWR - Graduates and Club Run

Hello blog lovers.

I know this is a bit late, like almost 24 hours late, but as always there is a perfectly reasonable explanation. It was my clubs 7th anniversary celebrations and also the annual VLM place draw.  For all those who enterered the race but had rejection magazines instead.  That all took place at Heathcliffe and Krook, the local wine bar.

But before the merriment there was the runs to get underway first.  I met the first of the graduates at the park gates, and she walked with me while I chained my bike up, and then the others called from across the park as I was chaining it to the bike stands.

They had begun the warm exercises as I was walking back, the air was a bit chilly and the all wanted to keep warm. There were a couple of new faces I my group today, both family members! It seems this group grows with members of my own family!  I would be so good if all of the them would join! the group would be huge! Mind you I suspect the babies and youngsters wouldn't keep up!

The warm up done, and a very quick assessment done on my nieces we took to the road.  As Tracy was coming back from a slight knee pain I was just going to do a very conversational paced run around our route.  It would also give me a chance to see with my two nieces would slot into to.  It's only a tad over 2 miles, so I felt assured that they could do it.  As my Nagging Sister had taken them out earlier in the day on a mile run just to make sure that they could run for a mile at least.

As for N.S. and Ashleigh, they were to run at their pace, but to make it a bit more harder for them they were to loop back to me, so that I can keep an eye on all and also to give them a good work out. 

This was working well, although my older niece Ashleigh decided that she wasn't going to be doing the loop back each time, and just waited.  The other two younger nieces were a tad faster paced that Tracy and Lorraine. They are young! That's all I can say about that! And Molls has these long legs!

I had remembered to bring a decent light with me, to shine up on all of those tree roots that were lifting the pavements. As we were running along to the last turning Tracy tripped up! But she didn't trip up on the tree roots, it was the pavement!  She came down flat on her chest, almost landing on her face!  It was quite a shock for her, as well as all who were with her.  She sat up and she was laughing about it, I checked that she was hurting anywhere, but I kept her sat for a while until she felt ready to stand up.

But as she started to walk I think the shock of the fall started and she began to feel a little light headed.  So I sat her back down and sent the rest of the group back to get N.S. to come back with the car. 

I have spoken to her today, (Wednesday) and she said she is fine, "So embarrassing" she said.  But, I think 99% of runners have had at lease 1 or more falls!  Tracy did suffer a bit of grazed hands and knees, but also her knee is very swollen as well.  So another week off for Tracy!  But she said she will see us all next week.  Now we know that the running bug has really started to take a hold of her!

Geeky stats, with all the concern over Tracy I had forgotten to turn of the Garmin, but you can see how far they had gone before she fell.

Group 1 Run.

Illustrious Leader was leading group 1 run today, and I did offer to be sweep today as well.  I was still feeling a bit sore from Sundays training sessions and from Mondays bike ride up the hill in West Wickham.  I knew I would be at the back anyway.

It was nice to see Wendi back into the fold as well.  She has been off for a few weeks due to injury.  She has been busy running, but just not as far.  Today she wanted to just see how far she can go today.  Group 1 only run about 3 - 3 3/4 miles, and it's good to run with friends. 

I was still warm from my earlier session and still had on my bike jacket!  I was sweating by the time we had done 1 mile.  Wendy didn' think she would be able to do the whole of the route, so I suggested that we go straight up the road, which I.L. took the rest of them on the planned route around Palace estates. At least then we would be meeting them coming back, or they would be catching us up if we were to walk. 

I told I.L. what I suggested to Wendi and another sweeper was going to keep SingstarJo company on the longer route.  I was very impressed with Wendi because she carried on running out for just over a mile and half.  But I suggested to her that we should go back and head off home.  That would be about 3 mile for her then.

She carried on running for another mile before the pain started to tell her to stop! But she was pleased with what she had accomplished!  As for me, well my old muscles were quite pleased for the more relaxed run, and now thoughts were all on getting back and then meeting everyone down the wine bar!

The VLM marathon draw was done and the drinking and celebrations continued.  A nice run day today, well, apart from Tracy falling and Wendi suffering a bit of pain.

Geeky stats.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Learning to Lead

Hello blog lovers.

Leadership in Running Fitness, that is where I have been today! I am on a one day training course to learn how to take out a group of willing runners who want to get fit.  And it really has boosted my confidence, just to know that I have been doing the right thing, and also to know that there is a lot I can do to improve which is why courses are available!!

Being in a 'class room' environment is never my favourite thing to be doing! Especially early on a Sunday morning, with an imminent storm threatening to put a huge dampener on things, and then to blow everything to the four corners of the earth!  I was a tad nervous and anxious, but totally prepared. Pen, paper, packed lunch, money for snacks, change for a coffee machine (if there is one) even a change of clothes for later (I have a family celebration happening later in the day)

It started off with the usual 'Getting to know each other' type of thing.  Writing on 'post it notes' of why you want to become a leader, sticking on to a board and then sitting down. Then we had to choose a post it note, and then go and find the person who wrote it! Of course that got everyone chatting, and we had to find out one interesting fact about that person.

It was all a good icebreaker!  We also learnt the importance of warm ups and warm downs. How to keep a session fresh and fun! And how to be all inclusive!  It really did instill a lot of confidence in myself!  although I had been doing most of the things that was discussed today, it also showed me tons of things that I can improve on.  Things that I can do differently, and things that I can include to help the two groups that I help out on to improve their fitness and stamina.

If you can get onto a leadership course or a coaching course then I would advise it! The confidence it has given me is well worth the time and effort, (during the session we had to do no less than four mini sessions, including warm up/down and main session!)  Now just to send off all the paper work and then I will be

Moosh 007 - licensed to lead!


Saturday, 26 October 2013

Park Run

Hello blog lovers.

I am writing this up late as I have had a busy day today, what with, trips to Borough Market, and then hospital visits, at least I am finally putting pen to wait........fingertips on to the keyboard!

I set my alam so that I would be up in plenty of time, after indulging in a couple of pints of lager and a kebab, it was quite easy to turn over and not bother.  But this is the last park run I can do to try and help with my Grand Prix standing in my running club!

I headed out to my car, looked up to the sky and said "REALLY?" The rain had started again! I have just about had enough of the rain, it is keeping me from going out on my bike,  the darker nights colder are going to be another battle to deal with, but right now, this rain is really cheesing me off!

When I got to the car and started to walk to the pavilion I was chatting to another PWR runner, Johnny, and he said he was one of my blog readers! It's always good to know that there are still people out there that read my ramblings!  We headed off to the beginning, but Johnny's warm up jog to the start is my all out sprint to the finish! So I caught up with him after I meandered over.

Nagging Sister, Ashleigh, SingstarJo, and Disco Rich were just a few of our PWR's that were there.  Some of the were chasing a PB on a park run and had headed out to a more faster route, so no muddy shoes for them as they went to Dulwich which is run on tarmac I believe!

We were soon off, and I jogged along with NS and Ashleigh, they did a pretty good time last week, so I shall try and stay with them this week.  But that didn't happen! Oh well, I shall just do my own thing, get back to running for fun, and maybe just see if I can get around without stopping.

"Come on Old Girl" I head as I ran around the stream, it was physioMike, he was just dog walking today, and encouraging all us park runners around. Then I head him say, "Go on Mrs T" as he called out to a lady behind him!  Well I am assuming that this Mrs T is actually married to TyphoonTurner, so I thought I would say hi.  As it turned out it was, and TyphonTurner was in fact looking for me to introduce his wife to me, as we both run about the same pace! 

We ended up running along together, a good start for the two of us.  We chatted and kept the rain and the running out of mind, sort of, as we both encouraged each other to keep on going.  We ran non stop for the first 23 minutes!  Mrs.T said that this was the most she had run non stop for.  I must admit, I was the first to just go into walk mode! And then we found out that we both kept going until one of us started to walk first! Next time I shall just slow the pace down instead of walking!  Some pacer I turned out to be!

We soon got going again, and just chatted and encouraged each other.  The last bit was particularly hard, the wind was blowing, the rain was falling, the ground was slippy! Nothing was going for us.  Mrs.T got a stitch, and was stretching it out as we jogged along. I did feel a twinge in my back as well, as up at the other end of the park I just twisted a bit awkwardly on the slippy muddy field.  But it wasn't hurting, I just become a bit more careful on the wet bits of the grass!

The last bit of straight, and Mrs.T and I were running along side by side, then she started to over take me encouraging other runners as she passed them "Come on love" she said as she passed one particular lady. I rose to the challenge to catch her up, I passed her and then I head her say "No, that's it, I've peaked" she said. I carried on running, I could get in a tiny tad quicker if push it, but, faster is not always the aim, just to finish is enough. So I turned round and encourage Mrs.T to keep going, finish the parkrun running! She sucked in a big gulp of air, and then started running again, she ran, and ran and ran. She got faster and faster. She had caught up the lady she passed just a few minutes ago and called out again "Come on love" and the sped towards me, flew past and became like a speeding bullet!  I tried to catch up! Where on earth did that come from!

I saw her run through the tunnel and collect her token and collected mine. But then Mrs.T stood at the exit for a few minutes, gasping for breath. She really did give it her all! It took a few good minutes before she could move from that spot! Blimey!  I think I am going to have to change my encouraging speeches and start saying, "Give it all you got, but please just leave a little bit so that you can breath after!"  It's amazing what a goal can do for you!

Oh and Garmin and ParkRun times tally up exactly!

So here is Geeky stats,

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Pavement Pounding!

Hello blog lovers.

My Thursday group was a bit small this morning, having suggested to Tracy that she rest up and make sure her knee gets better and stops hurting.  There are some runners who would just run through pain, 'Just ignore it and it will go!' Well, I am sure I have said this before, but there is the good pain and the bad pain.  The good pain is one where your muscles are crying out to stop flexing and squishing, exactly what happens when you run.  That is good pain, it means that you are working your muscles, getting them stronger. But then there is the pain that is sharp, and hurts even when you are not doing anything.  A pain that makes you cry out suddenly and stop what you are doing. Pain that doesn't feel like muscles complaining.  That is not good pain, that is something that you shouldn't be running through!

Mind you, I stop running at both types of pain! But then I am a whimp!

The weather has been awful of late, there was more rain in the past couple of days, so I decided todays run (as promised on a FaceBook post) would be the one that we did on Tuesday.  The non-flat flat route that SingstarJo took us on.  There were only three of us today, Illustrious Leader, PinkLadyJo and myself.  We all run about the same pace, so I am going to have to be a good leader and keep the pace going! 

Maybe the hills will be a good thing after all, to keep us all a tad slower!  As I mentioned earlier, we have had a fair share of rain this past fortnight, but today the sun was at its best, showing up the glorious colour of the sky, the browns and reds of the fallen leaves, and the grass looked beautiful, lush, the rain has done its job. I said "I love being outside running, so much better than being indoors watching dismal daytime t.v." I just love being outside enjoying His creation. 

I kept the same patten as SingStarJo, and that was to have our first stop at the off license. We didn't stop long, and crossed over the road to continue to the next incline.  All three of us seemed to be doing well, still all running at the same pace as each other.  It was a good run, and up to the triangle at Southborough Lane we all had ran non stop, well, apart from the off license that is.  It wasn't any particular speedy session, even though secretly I was thinking it might quicker that some of the Thursdays we have been on,  as we didn't have muddy puddles to deal with.

So you can image my surprise when I compared some of our Thursday runs to todays and found out that this was the fastest paced run of them all.  And.....we ran this route faster than we did it on Tuesday! So yes, I think I am pretty pleased with that! Not that I was actually planning on going any faster than usual!

Here is geeky stats from todays run

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

The Hare and the Foxy Ladies!

Hello blog lovers.

It's Tuesday, and the graduates from the beginners class have obviously forgiven me for the hill reps we did last week, as here they are, back for some more hard work and total nagging from me.

I thought I would set them a goal this evening, an achievable goal, and that is to get a PB on the route that we have been doing for our training.  It's only 2 and a quarter miles, but there is some delightful undulations, at the beginning of the run.  I felt that that would be a good time to really use all of the nagging skills that Nagging Sister taught me just a few short years ago!

In todays run there was Lorraine, Tracy and Nagging Sister.  As N.S. is a faster paced runner I said that she will be the 'Hare' and Lorraine and Tracy will be the foxes after her. Foxy ladies, that's what we are aiming for, 'Fit Foxy Ladies'! And the harder we work, the foxier we will be, 'Fit, fast and foxy' It's achievable!

We all started off, and N.S. was in the front setting a pace. I looked at my Garmin, we were all just about at the right pace, but we need to stay that way, all the way round, and we hadn't got the hill yet! "Come on foxy ladies, there's your dinner getting away from you, go chase that hare" I said to them, to try and get them in the zone! They did well to keep the pace.  The hill did take it out of them, but they were soon back on form when then reached the flatter ground.

The 'Hare' aka Nagging Sister kept teasing them, she ran out of sight and then ran back again. "Come on girls, are you going to let her tease you like that, that's your dinner, you're the foxes, come on, catch her" I encouraged all the way round.  I was so impressed with them, they kept going.  Tracy had a very determined look on her face, either that or she was just glaring at me the way I used to glare at Nagging Sister.

Either way, it's a good look! It means there is determination there, it means she is working really hard, it means "I am here and I am a runner"  Lorraine had the same look as she pounded up the hill. And when I nagged some more, there was also a smile too! Or maybe that was a 'You just wait till I get my hands on you" type of grimace!

All through the high street I kept up my motivational nagging! And we even had a nice little walking break! I am not completely cruel! That will come later......ha ha ha ha  (*evil laugh*). From the 'Daylight Inn' we had just about 7 minutes to get back to the rec to be able to achieve our goal today.

I urged them both on, Nagging Sister urged them both on, N.S. ran along side Tracy and kept her going, I ran along with Lorraine encouraging her to use that last bit of energy that everyone always saves 'just in case' but we were nearly at the end of our run, no need to energy to save now, it's time to use that last bit to get to the end.

Well, what can I say! Looking at the last geeky stats for this particular course and today I should say that it worked! I shall put both up for viewing, and you can see just how well they have done!

Group 1

SingstarJo was leading today, and as she was feeling a little fatigued, she decided that a nice flat route would be the order of the day.  SingstarJo had competed in the KFL cross country race just this past Sunday, so she was taking it easy on us, because we needed to go easy on her!  But I think she must have a mental block when it comes to hills.  In my case, I know where every hill is, I know every little incline that the leaders have dragged my backside up and down! But dear SingstarJo blots them out.

After running down 'Cardiac Hill' of course there is a run to get back up the other side. But we all kept together.  Our first 're-grouping' was at the 'off license' well over a mile after we first set off.  There we a couple of cries, from the ranks, of  "When are we stopping?" but when I pointed out that we hadn't yet ran a mile, there was a sharp gasp and a 'Oh really?"  But still, we all kept up. S.J. must be in the zone, as there was no evidence of the tiredness and aching muscles that she spoke of earlier.  Us runners, ......we are made of great stuff!

After that it was a run towards my home, if only I hadn't bought my car with me, I could have made my excuses and jogged off home!  But I continued 'UP' the hill! Yes that's right, we had still not finished with the hills on this 'flat' route!  I dropped back a bit and even ran along with Illustrious Leader who was in sweeper mode today.

We had another regroup at the top of the road, the 'triangle' at Southborough Lane, but others even managed to loop the triangle while they waited for us, the back markers, to get there!  On wards and upwards, well there was a slight incline, but we were mainly at the top of this particular hill! We ran through the carpark near the Newsshopper and had another little regroup there just so that S.J. could tell us which way we were going, and for her to say  "For those who want to go faster, you can do".  Also on the other corner of this road, was Group 2!  They were going to be heading in the same direction as us, "Oh Look!" said a rather familiar booming voice from the back of the waiting pack "There's another group, lets go and join them!" It was Mr.S. he was running with Group 2 today, and they were also having their last regroup before the last push home.

We all merged together forming one long, big running pack, not quite as big as the Pettswood 10k was 2 weeks ago, but we still made a formidable sight!  All, pinks and yellows brightening any ones evening, running along and chatting away!

I really had a great run today! Even with those hills!  I even nagged myself to keep going, after all, if I am nagging Lorraine and Tracy then I must certainly be seen to be pushing myself just as hard!

Geeky stats

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Park Run

Hello blog readers.

Saturday, and I woke up with no fuzzy head, and raring to go.  After having no beer last night, I was hoping I was going to be in great shape for gaining a PB in Normans Park park run.  Of course I did have a curry, but nothing particularly heavy going!  But when I looked out and saw the weather, I remembered that the ground will still probably be soft going! Oh well, I shall work on my other goal, run it non stop! (but no pressure if I don't) So much for the iron fist when it comes to my own training!

Anyway, it seemed quite bright out by the time I got out of the house, and I was expecting the sun to come out, but instead it hid behind the grey clouds again. Oh well, at least at the moment it's not raining! Reminiscence of last Sunday came flooding back, I am sure it cant get as wet as that!

I arrived early, and made my way over to the start point.  There was no one at the start!  I was caught up with a young lady from my running club and a chap who has never heard of ParkRun before, and was doing his first one today.

We got to the start point and chatted, and then we turned around and looked towards the middle of the park and saw hordes of people heading our way!  The start was full! The messages was given and the count down began! 1....2....3.....GO!  I Stayed at the back so I wouldn't get scooped up in the fast lane! And just wanted to plod along at my own speed, next to SingstarJo, Janet, Nagging Sister and Ashleigh!  So I was in excellent company.

The ground was soft and as soon a we got to the first corner the rain started to come down! Just a sprinkling of rain, but the wet stuff none the less!  Just in case we needed reminding of last weeks torrential rain!  But at least it will keep us all cool.  I kept my jacket in the car! I always see people at park run and even my club run in short sleeves and short jog pants, so I decided to do the same, although the short jog pants I shall leave those to the more leggy and thinner runners!

I managed to run the first lap non stop, and I felt pleased with that, the second lap was well under way before I started to feel a bit fatigued.  I tried to keep up with N.S. and Ashleigh, but they was on their own agenda.  SingstarJo and Janet were behind me, and I just kept plodding away.

I think I did about 3 to 4 walking stops! I was a bit annoyed with myself, but then I remembered my rant at myself last week, and remembered that I am at least out running! It's doesn't matter haw fast I get there, as long as I finish!  Well, there is no doubt that I am going to finish. 

Brian caught me up on the second long stretch, and probably just as well!  If he wasn't running along chatting to me I think I would have had another walking stop, so I just kept going.  As soon as I saw they tunnels then I picked up the pace, knocked it up a gear and pelted along to the tunnel!  It felt good, but it also felt slow! I knew I hadn't got a pb, but I felt very happy to be outside running!

And I have just received my email with my official Park Run time and it is 35:09, so a whole 17 seconds quicker than my Garmin Stats!

Geeky stats

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Iron Fist In a Velvet Glove?

Hello blog lovers.

The rain was with us this morning, first off, but then stopped just in time to get the kids to school.  Then I drove to the rec to wait for the brave souls who would venture into the woods with me!  After 670 pairs of feet had churned up the muddy puddles to a lovely thick sticky consistency I was expecting cries of "No, let hit the pavements, or hill training, or run the London Marathon route, anything but the mud" But no, every one seemed up for it!

There was only 5 of us today, so our route was through "Dog sh.......Poo ally" and up the middle of the woods to the top.  Only last Sunday was Ade and Tracy running down here, in the torrential rain.  I am still very proud of the them, and I am sure they are very proud of themselves too.  The path wasn't as bad as I had expected.  It is good to run just some of the route all those runners did.  I don't want anyone to think that we wouldn't do what they had done!  PWR's are not afraid of a bit of mud!

It was a bit of a slippy up hill slog, bug just being out in the now perfect sunshine made it all the more pleasant.  I kept Tracy on her toes, on Sunday she had jogged the whole way, with maybe just a minuscule amount of walking! Today we only doing just over half that distance! We got to the top of the hill and waited.  "As soon as Tracy is at the top we shall go again" That's when I.L. said "And I thought you were soft, you have an Iron fist in a velvet glove" she said.  But I know Tracy can do it.  When you see her do some speed work on the pavements, with a determined look on her face, you will know she can do it.

She caught up with us up at the top, and I said "You ok to go?" She nodded, and we were off.  This bit is not too bad at all, apart from the sticky muddy sections, its flat with a nice little down hill bit, a little undulating before some more flat sections.  We stopped at the other side of the path on Botony Bay Lane, and then it was some more of the lovely down hill of Goss Hill.

The sun was still shining brightly making it look like a perfect autumn day!  Now this is what running is all about. No matter how far you run, whether its just for a mile blast, a leisurely  three and half miler or a long slow run of 15+ plus miles, its just so nice.  I felt like I could do another loop of the woods, but getting back to the rec was our goal. 

After Goss hill it was time to pound pavements.  We had to negotiate a 'traffic jam' to get to Barfields road.  Maybe we should have used the cars and lorries as obstacles and climbed over them!  But it we all squeezed through the gaps.  There seemed an awful lot of hi-viz men about, and a fire going.  I could just imagine the chestnuts cooking on a fire like that!

Just a few more slight inclines to go before we get back.  Through Jubilee park and to the first bridge.  I waited for the I.L. and Tracy to catch up and then said that after we get over the bridge and out on to Little thrift it was as fast as you wanted (or slow) to the rec. Ade seemed to have liked this bit.  He found a little bit left in the tank after we got on to Little Thrift and took off.  He looked like he was on a mission!

Me and Pink LadyJo tried to keep up with him but we didn't quite manage it.  The other two jogged on behind us!

A great run today, and everybody seemed to enjoy it.  You can't beat running the woods, sticky mud or frozen ground, soft going or leafy spread, just perfect!

Geeky stats.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Mojo - Is That You?

Hello Blog lovers.

Well today, the first run for Tracy after the phenomenal successful Pettswood Runners 10k (biased I know) was not quite a run! It was training.  Trying to get their speed up and fitness up, and everything else that happens when you start training hard, I decided to introduce the delights of hill training! I was a bit worried about it, with the darkness but the road I chose was well lit up and not that far from the rec. 
So first I thought a bit of a warm up.  It's chilling down now and we need warm muscles to do what was planned.  So some side strides, and butt kicks, and knees up, and stuff.  And then a short jog around the block and then we should be ready.
I explained what the plan was, that was to get into pairs, so Nagging Sister and Ashleigh, Tracy and Lorraine and then me and Peter, but me and him would be help to keep Tracy and Lorraine going up the hill.  No.1's were to run fast to the first marker, which happened to be a silver taxi, and then run down again, slower, to tag the no.2's. and then they run to the first marker as fast as they can, jog back and then tag no.1. Then no.1 was to run fast up hill to the second mark, a red car, just further up the hill, and then jog back down again.  We were going to do that for 4 or 5 times, depending on time.
Sound simple when I have written, but do you think I could get across to the others what I meant?  So I ran with Lorraine to the first marker, urging her to go as fast as she could, I was going to stop at the top to show the others where I wanted them to stop and then show them the next marker. I looked around and I could see that N.S./Ashleigh tag team hadn't even started!
I will have to try and explain again.  But in the end it all kind of worked out.  Once they were all aware of the markers it was all go.  There is no room for half hearted attempts here! This is for hard work, to get fitter and faster and healthier!  Punishment some call it, torture even, but for us who are putting in the hard work find it fun! That’s right I said fun! Can you believe that I am calling running up hills fun.  Mind you I did not work as hard as the others, as I was in ‘Cheering mode!’ just waiting half way up the hill to cheer them on to the next marker on a couple of the reps I should have been doing! The tag teams were doing brilliantly.  I think we managed to do about 4 and half reps before it was time to go and warm down for the club run.  No geeky stats for this session though.
Group 1 Run
I didn't work myself as hard in the beginners group, and I was looking forward to this evening’s group run.  Illustrious leader was trying very hard to disguise Cardiac hill in her briefing, and it only got a mention after we had come to a stop during the run! Qualities of a good leader I think, only tell 'em the bad news when the need to hear it! 
The run down St Johns road and even on the undulating Lynwood Grove was going really well.  I was chatting to the new lady that joined us.  In fact everybody was chatting away and everything felt perfect!  The weather was even for us! It wasn't too cold, people were stripping down to the sleeveless and racer back running tops!  I took off my top layer, my wind proof freebie jacket I got last year, but was still really warm! I had on a long sleeved top!
It was soon time to face that hill!  "At you own pace, and it's perfectly fine to overtake the leader in this circumstance" said our Illustrious Leader!  I ran as much of it as I could.  I just started to flag a bit as we were getting towards the roundabout, when the first of some runners passed us.  It was the Orpies!  They were running up Cardiac hill too!  "Keep smiling" I said as they passed the others up ahead. 
The Orpies turned left once they got to the roundabout. We, however, carried on running up the other bit of Cardiac hill. But again I walked some of it.  But I didn't beat myself up about it!  I was having a good run tonight, I wasn't struggling (well apart from that hill) I was having a fab time.  My mojo was obviously hiding from me, and just pops out just when it’s needed, to let me know that it’s still there, and to stop taking it for granted!
So a great run, great people, a great club! Mojo is still there, and I am still running! What’s more to be said!
Geeky stats.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Just Do It!

Hello blog lovers.

I know, I borrowed the slogan (again, I'm sure I've used it before!) from a well known sports outlet! But that is how I felt this morning when I was getting ready to go out for my jog.  After yesterdays very wet, very muddy but totally successful Pettswood Runners 10k, I was really wanting to get out for a jog.  After seeing well over 600 very wet muddy people cross the finishing line, I was feeling a tad 'Jel!  So I decided that while the little fella was at nursery school then I would just pound out a couple of miles, but probably leave the woods to recover from hundreds and hundreds of trainer clad feet that had 'whisked' up the ground. 

But before write about my blog, let me just tell you just a small part of yesterdays event.

I woke up to torrential rain! Totally grey, and it looked as if it was there to stay!  I arrived at Rec at 8:00 in the morning.  I was going to ride my bike but I knew that I would want to get home and dry as soon as everything had been done after the event.

After briefing from my team leader, it was straight to my first post.  Meet and greet at Towncourt entrance.  I was there until 10 am, then on to my next duties.  I popped into the pavilion to fin my team leader chatting away to our special guest who will be starting the race, non other than Running Man, Pettswood very own local legend!  I was introduced to him and then I stayed with him while the Team leader carried on with the things that needed doing.

I was standing with Running Man on the plinth, holding the umbrella over him while he gave his speech, his family looking up at him, very proudly, and once that was done, the race began.  Running man watched everyone start, and then went inside to stay a little be drier.  He wanted to be there to see the first of the runners come back before he took his leave!  It was brilliant that he turned up, and he received a brilliant cheer from the waiting runners! He and his family left after a while, with another cheer from the waiting crowds.

I did a little bit more for the games maker role and was a sweeper (nothing new there then I hear you say) in one of the children's races.  I was thinking this should be a doddle! They are small, and the ground is very sticky! Never under estimate small people and the lure of a chocolate medal! They were off like wippets! I was really trying to keep up with them.  And this is after standing around in the rain, for at least 2 hours, so I was a bit cold (note that I am chucking these excuses in the mighty moosh book of excuses, under a new chapter of Kids races!) the ground was very, very churned over, and I kept my very wet coat on!  But it was still good fun, at least I didn't fall over!

I must say, the whole event was just brilliant, I love being part of it, all our marshals are just so enthusiastic, right up to the finish, and the clearing up, Sian kept the bacon butties going, until the took the marque down around her! Just brilliant! PWR's are simply the best!

I was a bit over indulgent and asked his daughter to take this picture of us in the pavilion! Start struck or what! Well, he is our own local celebrity!

So my run today,  it was only a short one, 3 miles or so, on one of my usual routes, Turpington lane and then back.  I really wanted to try and keep on running for the whole way, that was my goal today, just to see if I can discipline myself to keep going! I failed! But then I started to think. It's not about failure, or coming last! It's not even about winning, (although it would be nice on the odd occasion!) It's about the fact that I love running!  All the while my feet moving in a jogging motion then I am running! NUFF SAID!

After that I started to just enjoy my run again.  I need to do a few more runs like that, and I may, just may leave my Garmin behind, but I do love geeky stats.  But as Mr. S. said to me, via coach Maisy, on one of me blogs,  "The race does not always go to the swift, but to the ones who keep running."  So I just carried on running. If I wanted to take a short walk I did.  Mind you, I still told my self off! I know what I'm like, I would take advantage and the just probably lay down and have a nap before I ran the rest of the way home!

So geeky stats for you.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Blog At Last!

Hello blog lovers.

This is going to have to be two blogs in one, so I will try keep it as short as possible, (mainly cos this Old Girl is getting forgetful these days!)

On Tues it was PWR day.  I went out with the graduates, encouraging them to push a little themselves just a little harder.  Not too much though, as Tracy is doing the PWR's 10k this Sunday.  It's just a little taster of what is required from her, when she decides that she can enter the group 1 of PWR.  She just need to pick up her pace a bit more, and then she'll be there.  And going by her performance as she was running towards Tudor Way, she will get there soon!  Lorraine is working on her speed too.  To help with the motivation, we took it in turns to choose the length of faster running.  I chose the first bit and second bit.  The first faster running was a tad longer than the usual lamppost to lamppost, and also the second was just a tad longer that as well.  But after that the two ladies chose from one lamppost to the next. 

That got us to Pettswod road.  After that it was just a gentle jog down to Crossways and then back to the rec.  We got there earlier than we usually do, and had a 20 minutes wait until club run!

So here is geeky stats for that run.

After that it was club runs.  SingstarJo was leading it.  With Illustrious Leader being the sweeper!  SingstarJo planned on an almost 4 miler!  Now, I'm no whimp, but just lately, my body is refusing to play ball with me! When I want energy and strength and stamina from my body all it says is "You gotta be shitting me" and I just feel like slowing things down!  So the idea of 4 more miles, I could feel my body going into "Oh yeah!" mode again.  But I chose to ignore it, and deliberately kept my hand down for volunteering for sweeper duties.  "Keep up the front" was suggested by SingstarJo.  But I will do my best!

Cardiac hill was mentioned in the group briefings, but it was running down it!  So for that I was quite pleased with!  The pace was perfectly executed, and I kept up well with the front runners.  The weather wasn't too bad, it was quite warm for October but I made sure that I wasn't overly dressed, short sleeved top on but long pants, and I was very comfortable.

There were a couple of hills on this route, well if you go down one then there is always the up at the other end!  S.J. did mention a little extra bit before we got back to the rec, but I knew even then  I would probably do the shorter route (defeatist attitude, some might say).

We got to Tudor way, and S.J. did the extra bit, through the Highstreet, past the Daylight Inn, but I ran straight up, along with I.L. and another young lady, who has had about 7 or 8 weeks off from running! So she was feeling a bit tired.

A good run, and a good route, (even though S.J. had a slight deviation to her original route, at least I'm not the only one that does that).

Geeky stats.

And last but not least, was todays little jog through the woods.  Tracy and Ade was with us, along with the Pink Lady, who I now know as Jo!  There are quite a lot of Jo's in our running group, I am just glad I have nick names for them all. 

Our route was going to the same as last week, I want to show Ade and Tracy what they will be running through, but of course we are not doing the whole of the 10k!  And just as SingstarJo got slightly muddled with her route, I too was slightly muddled.  After running all the way by the railway lines and turning left to run parallel with the road, I took slightly wrong path with made us pop out of the woods a little early than I anticipated.

This resulted in us running along on the path by the road missing all the lovely woods.  But we were soon back on track and heading in the direction of Botoney Bay Lane.  We took the left hand path, and used the footpath instead of the bridle path and just as well, as there were about 3 horses galloping along there!

We past the pond and headed up towards the path that will take us down to the railway lines.  This week Pink Lady Jo kept her footing! No spills today, no muddy knees! Just shows you its good to get to know where you are running!

We got back to the rec and both Ade and Tracy were feeling a bit down after this run! I think its a bit of pre-run nerves!  DiscoRich gave Tracy some sound advice, build in walk times to her run.  Plan to have them, don't try and run till you cant run no more, after all running is fun! We want her to arrive at the finish line with a smile on her face.  I think Ade will do fine.  Having two weeks away from running, you mojo seems to think it can hide away from you, but on the day, which is on Sunday, I am sure they both going to be wearing their medals with pride!

Geeky stats.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Park WALK!

Hello blog lovers.

Today I got up early enough to get to park run, I had promised Nagging Sister and Brian that I would be there, so I made sure that I didn't over do it the night before. But I think I should have done, as I would have a very good excuse for todays very poor performance.

If there were points for who can go slower each time, but look as if they are trying to go faster, then I would be at the top!  I really thought that today I could do it, I could get my lazy backside around a 5k course, firstly without stopping, and secondly getting a PB! But to no avail!

I was there early enough, I even managed to just meander over to the start, on the other side of the park, and so I was totally relaxed, not flustered, not 'worn out' by having to sprint to the start. So why on earth did I come in at 35 mins I do not know! It seems the older I am getting the slower I am getting. 

I was really telling myself off as I was running around the park today.  I had loaned my Garmin to someone that needed it today, and decided to chase after a pacer to keep me nicely paced.  If I just kept the pacer in sight then I knew I could be in with a good time.  But I just seemed to run out of energy and pace.  I ran along slapping my arse on the way round, telling myself not to be so lazy, but that wasn't doing me any good either.

One chap in red said "Come on you're doing well" but I really didn't feel like it. My legs were feeling heavy at the first mile!  But after a short walking stint I began running again, trying to catch up to the pacer, or at least keep within 'being able to read the number on the bib' distance. Maybe the 'cold virus' thing that is doing the rounds with my family is getting to me, or baby germs trying to bring me down! But I am just not quite myself lately. 

I may even have gotten to the certain, 'put the running shoes away, and pick up the knitting needles' age. The age where I am constantly looking for my fan, counting each new wrinkle and making sure I know where the nearest loo is! But I am sure other women have gone through this stage, and have still kept up their running pace.  So the only thing that I can put it down to is ME!

I think I need to start putting in some hard blooming work, some hill training and some of those speed sessions to help build up my fitness again.  Where its disappeared to I don't know!  Hard work, here I come! Kicking and flipping moaning!

No geeky stats today, but here is a picture of my park run time!

Very slow! Very slog indeed.  Nagging Sister and her first born was home and dry before me! Very despondent at the moment!

Thursday, 3 October 2013

An Nice Gentle One Through The Woods

Hello blog lovers.

I do love the daytime running, it's always good to run through the woods, no matter what time of the year it is.  Ok so if it has been a particularly rainy month, it could get a bit sticky!  But still, its all good fun. 

The route we went for was the one that I ran on Monday, with maybe just a couple of minor differences, (for one, I didn't actually go and look at the Willet Way memorial), which of course made us run on the path that I should have done in the first place.  I did get a bit confused, but I knew that as long as the road is still on the right then we will pop out where I did on Monday.

There was only 3 of us running through the woods today, David, our race director, and another young lady, (whose name has escaped me at the moment, it must be my age!) headed off up the path towards the road.  How comes this always seems so more pleasant than going up the road?  So far so good.  even I couldn't get confused about which way to go on this bit.

As soon as we got to the path near the road we turned left, running along a part of the woods that next week, well over 700 hundred people will be running along! It's part of our 10k route.  This route will also take in another path as well, only we will be running down it, and the participants of the 10k will be running up it!

We got to the road and crossed over to run on the path on the other side, and then we were going to cross back over and run down towards the Tigers head "It's not open this time of day" says David to me, I looked at the time we had been running for, and had to agree, Oh well, we will just have to carry on running then! Of course we would dream of going to a pub when we are running, no, never, well, except on a mid summers day Tuesday run, and then we wouldn't go to a pub, we have the 'beer' stops on route!

Anyway, I digress! David and The Pink lady (I still can't recall her name, but she was wearing pink) followed me down towards Botony Bay Lane.  I would say that normally people would head on straight down there, towards the railway lines and I think David thought that too, but I told him that we were turning left and running along beside the bridle path.  I thought it would make a nice change to actually see the pond that we run pass quite regularly.

Then it was on to another part of the 10k route. A path that, for us, leads down towards the railway, but for the 10k'ers' they will have to run up it.  I like running along this path, and definitely prefer it to running up towards Botony Bay Lane, but we always fly on pass it.  I have made plans to run this path, from the bottom up, but I always miss it!  But coming from the other way it's easier to find, and its running down hill as well!

Pink Lady had a bit of a fall as we were running down here though, she fell on our last Thursday run as well! But she is made of good PWR stuff and just dusted herself down and carried on!  'Dog Poo Ally' soon came into view and our run was over.  I love running through the woods, and I would run through them everyday if I could.  I know Pink Lady and David enjoyed our gentle plod through the woods.

Geeky stats.  You will notice that I actually started the Garmin as we were running on the first path! I had forgotten to push the button!  But it really is only a few yards that is missing.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Club runs - Chats and Cramps

Hello blog lovers.

There were only a couple of people at the graduates improvers run today, and we were doing the route that we did last week, without the loop around the rec as it really is quite dark now.  There were just Nagging Sister and Lorraine today, and me and Peter to help get them up to Group 1 readiness.  Although N.S. is definitely ready for group 1 and then probably move up to group 2 a few weeks after that!

N.S. and Peter took the lead as they headed up the road, Lorraine and I jogged along, preparing for the hill.  Hills are our friends, hills are our friends, this needs to be our mantra. Hills will help us get stronger, help with the stamina, help when we want to go speedier on the flats and not just running down them.  This is what we should be saying to ourselves.  And I hope to introduce that mantra more and more into our chats as we jog along (and maybe I may even start  believing it myself!)

There was no stopping as we jogged and jogged on, 10 minutes passed 15 minutes passed, we jogged on down the high street, passed the shops, and the garage. We jogged under the bridge, and started headed back. That is when we had our first short walking session. after 22 minutes of jogging, Lorraine had a very short walk.  But then it was "Come on, we can be see to be walking passed all the smokers in the pub, we got to keep going" I said to her. And she started again.  No more walking sessions, just jogged all the way back to the ground.

N.S. and Pete were there, stretching out.  A good run today, and hopefully both of them will be thinking hard about joining our Group 1 very soon.

Here is our geeky stats.

And now for club run no.2, group 1 runs.  Our Illustrious leader was leading today, and Singstar Jo was sweeper. I deliberately kept my hand down today, so as to try and push myself to stay up at the front.  Keep the pace going.  Also joining us for this run was Mr.S. I believe his coach, Coach Maisy, has advised him to have a rest as he had a particularly painful run recently.  And Mr.S's idea of rest is to do a gentle jog of 3 and half miles (where as I would probably pull up a chaise lounge and demand tea all evening!) 

We had the long road down Southborough to jog, and what I loved was that everyone was just chatting away.  Of course our Mr.S is constantly chatting.  And I just loved the way 'recited' one of my blogs! (well kind of!) he made it sound so exciting, so enthralling!  I think I should get him to read one of my blogs while I tape him, I am sure it will sound spectacular, that they will want to make a film of one of them!  Any I digress as usual.  The jog down to the Harvester is where I usually wait with anyone that didn't want to do the little lollipop loop around. But there wasn't anyone waiting today, so I had to go around with them!

Still it was a nice evening, I was totally warmed up, sweating! I even had to take my hat off, which I don't usually do, just to try and cool down a bit!  The jog back was a bit more interesting, as we jogged along familiar streets, my streets, that I used to jog along.  I was thinking that if I didn't have my car parked back at the rec I could go home! 

Just down the road a bit further however, I was really wishing I could have gone home as I developed cramp in my toe, my big toe on the right!  I have had cramp in my foot before, when I have been riding my bike, but out jogging!  I wasn't sure how to deal with it, or why it has occurred!

But of course with Mr. S's advice and with J.J. and Janet saying "Come on Old Girl man up" I decided to do just that, ignore the little niggling achy thing on the end of my foot and just plough on, after all, it's not as if it will fall off!

I even managed to put on a bit of a sprint down crossways, not from the beginning, but most of the way, with Mr.S telling me "That's about 8 and half min pace, that's 8 and quarter, keep going, that's 8 min pace, now keep that all the way to the end"  I did, it think, well to the place I normally end all my sprints and that's the sign post! I think Mr. S wanted to me to keep on going!

Anyway, here is the geeky stats.