Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Club Night Running!

Hello Blog lovers.

Group 0

I love club nights, the friends and chat and banter, just love it!  So, the heroes group.  Brilliant bunch of peoples, all working hard to get build up fitness, come back from injuries, testing to see if injuries are getting better.  You can only tell by actually going out running, and when you're in a club with people helping you along that is all you need!

There were nine members this evening.  I was a little late turning up as work didn't finish on time this evening, yet when I got there it was good to see that the ones that were there earlier than me were busy doing the warm up drills!  Brilliant!

A fairly easy route this evening, flat mostly with the incline at the beginning of the run.  I was conscious this evening of making sure I had everyone in my sights, no one was behind me.  Mind you trying to keep an eye on the front runners was going to be a challenge now, but I had no need to worry as Nicola took on the role of front Leader.  She encouraged those that wanted to do loop backs to run back and even to loop around the Daylight Inn when we had done 2 miles.

As this is a 'Getting in/back to Group 1' session, I am trying to keep all the distances at about 2.5 miles, and to get around these routes at group 1 pace.  I knew the route I had planned for tonight would only be about 2 miles, so I had to tack on another half mile somewhere.  So I decided that we would run down Woodside to Manor Way and then run up there.  That should do it!  I was thinking on my feet, which is never a good idea, I'm not very good at multi-tasking!

But I surprised myself, it worked out fine, we had about 10 minutes left when we got into the rec to do some warm downs!  Perfect timing, even if I do say so myself.  And Nicola was very good as Group 0 Front Runner, much appreciated!

Geeky stats, and you will probably notice that the beginning of this run on the map says we started in Poverest!  Well, I think my Garmin had a hissy fit, or my Garmin and the Satellites had an argument and refused to talk to each other, but we did actually start our run from the Rec!

Group 1

So now my run with group 1!   I was still feeling achy from yesterdays cross training, which now I can say I absolutely loved! Tough, yes, but wow!  I so want to do better next time! Anyway, I digress.  Illustrious Leader is leading the group today and the route is just perfect!  It is uphill, kind of, but it's disguised well with the twists and turns as we run up to Crofton Road going through Palace estates!  I like this route.  Nice quite roads as you run up to the half way point, and then the long uninterrupted road for the run back.  Something I have come to like on my long runs.  

I was sweeping again,
"Was you?" Old Girl
"Yes, I was, I always do"
"Oh really, I would never have guessed"

I though I would get that out of the way!  Yes, I was sweeping, I like it, I can sneakily get in a little walking break if I need it, after all, I had just done 2.5 miles, that is how I justify it.  I like my excuses list!  Group 1 today seemed to be even bigger than usual!  There must have been about 20 people, snaking our way out of the rec.  We are usually the last group to leave, well, we wouldn't want to get mixed up with any of the faster groups! Especially group 8, Hannah said they were doing something like 8 miles, ish, with some hills and hill reps, up and down Summer Hill a couple of times!  Can you imagine it!  All within an hour!

So, where was I?, My thoughts keep running away with me today! Just wished the legs would run as well!  So the first half of the run is going well, there are those at the front who are going really well, then we have some middlers and then there are some at the back.  DiscoRich was sweeping the middlers, it all worked out perfectly.  This route has a couple of places to do loops for those at the back to catch up but still keep the front runners warm and not stand as wait too long.

When we was at the half way point, I really started feeling it the legs, but I was determined to keep going and only walk if any one else did! There was one young lady, and for the life of me I can't remember her name! You know when you can see the persons face, know the sound of their voice, yet the name is just a blank space in your head, well that's what I am like at the moment!  Even going through the alphabet hasn't helped!

Anyway, (the brain is running away again), this Young lady was suffering with pains in her legs.  She is also doing the marathon and got her place through the ballot, so her miles have been going up in the last few weeks.  Well we ran along at the back just pacing but keeping the group with in calling distance if there was any problems at all.

We chatted and ran back all the way to the off license.  When we got there and had a catchup we could see some runners coming over the bridge.  We made a 'tunnel of people and clapped and cheered as what I think was group 5, came running through.  Illustrious Leader then continued with her chat, explaining where we were to run too, and to run as fast as we want, but not to go any other way other than the planned route.  Just there another group of runners came over the bridge.  Again we made a tunnel and clapped and cheered.....and this time it was our friendly rivals 'The Orpies' coming over the bridge!  There was just one more mile to do before we got back to the rec.  The faster ones went off with DiscoRich and then the middlers went off with Illustrious leader, me and this young lady ran along together chatting until we got to Tudor way.  We then had a walk up to Crossways.  Her legs were really sore.  Illustrious Leader wanted to know if I will be running on ahead doing my sprinting bit, but I just that wasn't going to happen, there was nothing left in my legs today.   A rest day tomorrow, yup, that is what is going to happen tomorrow!

A great run, ok so I did some walking, but we still got in to the rec within the hour, which is perfect timing!  Natalie!.....I think that's her name!

Geeky stats

Monday, 26 January 2015

Cross Training

Hello blog lovers.

My first cross training day!  I can't believe it's taken me this long to get some other form of exercise in, I've not even been on my bike, but then, I have become 'soft' of late, not wanting to go riding in the cold! Anyway, the cross training!

Me and Bims had booked ourselves into a couple of classes.  I suggested spin, and then said ok just book something and I shall go along with it.  So it was totally left to Bims to decide.  She did indeed choose a spin class followed by a body balance class, neither which I have ever done!  It should be interesting!

I drove to Bims house first thing this morning, parked up at hers and then, when she was ready, we jogged along to the pavilion, about half a mile or so from her house.  We found our class, it was a spin class first, and set about getting the bikes ready for us to 'spin' on.  I had no idea what was in store, no idea what the red lever was in front of me (I thought it was to alter the handle bars angle!), that was until Bims told me.  (I think maybe the instructor really should have taken a moment to explain it to any newbies like myself, but hey ho!)

And then the class began.  Forty five minutes of gentle peddling! Yeah.....I don't think so!  At first it was ok, but then it was time to get up off the seat and peddle, and then squat down and peddle! Wow! I don't even do that on my bike!  The legs just burned!  I couldn't, couldn't do it all.  I turned to Bims and I asked her "How long was this class" It was then that she told me it was for 45 mins!  I turned around to look at the clock!  We've only been doing it for ten minutes and already I was ready to go home!!  The sweat was pouring out of me!  Everybody else seemed to be doing just fine, with maybe the one lady of my right, who I found out had been doing this for some time!  And she was still struggling!

It was an experience to say the least, one that maybe I could repeat again some time, even though I struggled big time!! I knew I had done a big work out after the 45 minutes session.  A good session, good music!

After that we walked to our next class, we had about 10 minutes or so to relax, cool down a bit and get the heart put back in place!  I sure mine was half way through my chest!  I again chose a place at the back along with Bims,  I think it must go back to school days, 'get at the back of the class and the teacher can't see you'.  And also I didn't want the other people taking the class to see what I can't do either.  They all looked super skinny and bendy!

I can't get seem to get rid of the feeling that maybe I shouldn't be doing stuff like this now, not at my age, not now, after doing nothing for most of my life!  I mean I could seriously do damage! Even if its damage to my ego!  The instructor here started off by asking if there was anyone with any injuries, I like that, that's important to know!  And at the moment I am suffering with this weird back pain.  I say weird because it isn't there when I am standing, walking running, doing stuff.  It is only there when sit!  I can actually feel it 'crackle' when I am just sitting and not even moving!  And then when I try to get up of my chair, in fact any chair, I have to be really careful, do it slowly and gently.  Weird!

The class began.  She said it is like Ti chi, Pilate's and yoga all in one class.  I was imagining some nice gentle slow movements.  And that's what we did.  We stretched and twisted and bent our bodies to lovely soothing music, we had 'centering' and sun salutations, warrior ones and two, not to mention going to the dogs and alligators!

It just proved to me that my body is in no way supple or bendy in any way, whatsoever.  Even the bits that supposed to bend don't want to bend.  Me and Bims just looked at each other on some of the bendy bits, and just thought "I don't think so"

But it was good, and I am sure that doing that class after the manic spin class certainly helped with muscle soreness because I really expected to be totally paralysed after but, at the moment, I seem to be walking around ok! But then that could be because of what we done after that class had finished.

By this time, after the perfect relaxation that we had done during the Body Balance class (we got to lay flat and almost fall asleep!) I was in no way looking forward to the jog home!  I don't think I could do it!  But Bims did her nagging bit, and we jogged, albeit very very slowly, back to hers.  I even walked a couple of bits too, just half a mile to do and I walked some!

Bims had be dying to get me to use her hot tub.  It's something that I just don't get.  Taking a bath with your family or friends or strangers, if it's in a club.  Not only that it's outside in the garden, and, AND its almost the end of January!  But my resolve had taken a pounding too, I had no fight left in me to give her a good reason why I can't get into her bath!

I did try the "I've got fake tan on, oh sorry, I can't get in" (that's a no-no when it comes to getting in her out door bath) but, as anyone who knows me I barely put on lip salve let alone fake tan, and the fact that at the moment I look like Caspers' mother!  And so there it was, me loaning one of Bims bathing suits (which by the way I was pleased to see that the bikini top was too big for me!)  and then creeping along to the hot tub.

I was surprised at just how hot it was!  It really was like a bath!  I sat in the spot with the jets of bubbles coming out and it massaged my back.  Ok, I here. Now what!  "Um, nice weather!"  Well what else do you talk about while in the bath with your sister!  But I soon started to relax, and even to forget about the builders that were working next door.

It was at that point Bims decided to take a picture of me!  When I looked at it I looked so white!  It was like I was 'haunting' her hot tub!  No, no, don't you post that one.  But of course I think she was getting me back for all those picture nasties of her I put in my blog!  I made her take another, with some filters going on, just to see if it could at least make me look like I wasn't her 'chicken dinner' boiling in a pot!

Here, this is the result! Like a rare white rhino wallowing in a 'kini'  But boy was it ......ok!

The bubbles went off after 15 minutes and then she put it on again for another 15 minutes.  Well, with about 5 minutes left to go I was really looking forward to getting out!  I slid around to where the steps was and I thought I might just be able to slither out, just like the crocodile that I had done in Body Balance, but I just didn't have any energy left!

Eventually I managed to 'haul ass' out of there and just staggered to the sitting room, and then after getting out of the swimsuit I sat, wrapped in the towel to 'recover' from the hot top!

A very good day for activities, me thinks!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Fourth Long Run!

Hello blog lovers,

Second time of trying for the first 10 mile of the year!  Lets see how this goes.  Bims has chickened out of the whole 10k......well, to be fair she has only just started back with her running, and last weeks 8.5 miles was a tough one for her!  So today she was going to meet me at Normans Park, along with WendiMoo.

As for me and Mariana, we are ready to take on the big double number route!  When I saw Mariana outside in her car I went outside ready to do battle with the elements!  Ok, so it was quite a nice afternoon, for a January, considering 3 years ago there was snow on the ground!

The satellites found our watches and we were off.  Down the ally to Turn-around-lamppost!  WendiMoo had text me before we left that she was feeling energetic and would run from hers down the A21 to meet us as we ran up to her.  Then we were continue to run to Normans Park where hopefully Bims would be just arriving.

It all went really well, when I say 'well' I mean, ok ish.  Bims wasn't at the park, we had got there before her.  I stood for just a couple of minutes, but then suggested we run towards Bromley and meet up with her, and then we can run back to the park.

Eventually all together, she was just a couple of minutes behind schedule, we ran through the park, and then up Hayes lane towards Bromley.  I was feeling it this afternoon, the coughing malarkey had started to affect my chest, but only just a little bit, not enough that would keep me from running.  I am beginning to think.......no.....I am confirming the fact that I am totally crazy!  Who, at my age, after only 4 years running experience would again put their name down for the London Marathon! ME! Thanks who!

But after four years being in a fantastic running club then I know that runners, marathon runners, ultra marathon runners and triathletes are really very special people indeed!  To keep just getting up and out, every morning or evening, come rain or shine, or warm or cold, we do it.  We complain about it, but we keep coming back.  We complain about those hills, I tend to turn the air blue when running up hills, but secretly feeling bloody pleased that you got up a particular hill in one go!  Yes, a peculiar breed of humanity, that's what a runner is!

Talking of hills, there is a slight incline going back up to the A21, and I was not liking it!  WendiMoo amazes me, she chats away as she runs along...even up hills "Aaaa, stop moaning and get on with it" she says to me.  It made me smile and help me on the way up that blooming incline!

Just at the top of the road a motor bike came around the corner spewing its exhaust out just as WendiMoo took a deep breath in, I also was breathing pretty heavily coming up the incline and took a lungfull of the shit down too!

I pretty much jogged, nice and easy from this point. I could see that WendiMoo and Mariana had pretty strong legs, and I think if I kept side by side to either one, at this point, then they would be going just a tad faster than I could manage!  We ran along, away from Bromley, and then turned left into Addison Road.  I was looking forward to the next park.  Fresh clean air, no exhaust fumes to suck up.

Once we got through the park we headed up towards Bickley.  Bims will be going her own from here and the rest of us will be going over the road and up Oldfield road.  I was really feeling it now and we still were only half way through.  WendiMoo and Marianna looked as fresh as daisies!  How? I don't get it!

Now is when I start beating myself up! "Why can't I look as fresh as these, why can't I at least have a pretence of looking like I am a 'proper' athlete?"  The answers come back, 'They're younger' Well WendiMoo is my age, that isn't it.  'They're fitter than you' It could be, but again, I don't think so.  So they only answer that made me feel good is 'They're taller than you, they have long legs"  Now that one fits well!  My legs are going ten to the dozen just plodding along keeping up with them while they just 'gazelled' along.  Yup, that did it, that helped me not to beat me up!

We soon got to Jubilee Park, with the run/walk method, because that is how I planned my run again, run for a mile and then walk for 1 minute.  Although by this stage the minute seemed to go on for just a tad further.  Also I seemed to be looking at my Garmin every half mile now, just like last week.  My legs just know when I have ran for half a mile now!

From this point I ran for as much as I can until the 1 mile mark, if I walked within that mile then that was ok, but I still took that walking break when the mile came up!  It's a tough thing to run for 10 miles, It's a tough thing to run for half a marathon, and as for running a marathon well, it's idiotic! But, I am really looking forward to it!  Strange, strange lady that I am!

When we got through Jubilee park I was really tempted to go home via Tent Pent Lane.  But a plan is a plan.  And my plan is to go over the bridge and then onto Willet Rec.  That was tough, it just looked so tempting, so tempting.  But on the marathon, there is no short cuts!  On wards and upwards, well downwards really, as we turned left down Great Thrift.

This is the moment that I think nutrition and hydration needs to come into play.  Next week I will be running with my belt and water, and dextrose.  That is what I shall be running the race!  I may even by jelly babies, I love jelly babies!  Yes, sweeties, that's going to the the answer.

It was good going through the rec because now I can finally visualise getting home.  Just down Southborough Lane, that's all there is left to do, Southborough to the Havester and then back through the park!  Simples.  We seemed to have picked up a bit of 'running zone' as we ran down there, I guess the down helped quite a bit.

Wendimoo left us at the Harvester to continue her run home to Bromley Common.  Me and Mariana turned left to go through the park.  I looked at my Garmin, there is no way we are going to make 10 miles, there was only about half a mile to go.  "Do you want to cut it short and go straight back to mine, or do you want to go the longer way?" I asked Mariana.  Well, as I said she was totally looking relaxed, it seemed to be very easy for her, and I think she will very well be signing up for a half!  Mariana chose the long way!

We turned left when we got onto Whitebeam!  Heading away from my home!  Secretly I was pleased.  I know if I was by myself I would have gone the shorter way, but here I was going away from my home again! Not sticking to the planned route, yet sticking to the planned distance!  I can work with that.  It was tough running away from the end, but I just thought "Every step from now is a step closer to home"

Finally on to Faringdon avenue, just a little further down the 9 mile bleeped.  I took my walk, I don't usually walk on this road, but I wanted to walk now.  The minute had gone and we started running again, all the way now, there is no more stopping.

We got onto my road and there was still another half mile to do to make the 10 miles.  I just couldn't do it, I couldn't go right past my house.  Mariana still had some more in her legs!  She carried on, I went into my house and grabbed a drink and a banana!  I sat down after my stretches and then said "Darn it, I should have done the extra half mile"  Oh well, there is always next week!

Picture with kind permission from the Runningbug!

Geeky stats.

Friday, 23 January 2015

Two Runs Are Better than None!

Hello blog lovers.

I am a tad late writing about my run yesterday morning with the girls, but here it is!

Thursday morning, on a chilly rec, Michelle and Nicola were waiting along with DiscoRich and Marianna to go for a lovely run.  Neither DiscoRich not nor my group was aiming to go through the wood, after last Sunday's experience of Hayes Common I didn't think our woods would be any different.  Even D.R. himself said that was really very wet and horrible in there, and he loves mud more than me!

So my route was the same as last Thursday, but going the other way around, well, it's kind of different.  I know last week I really struggled to keep up with the others, and I didn't expect anything different from this run, mainly because I have silly cold virus again!......By the way, anyone out there know of how to keep cold virus attacking, whether it be more exercise, or wearing double socks or even eating raisins, I would appreciate it!

I was feeling ok, just snotty and that darn cough, but energy levels feel ok, must have been the pasta that I had for lunch!  We ran out of the gate hot on the heels of D.R. and his gang, but of course that didn't last long, their lead stretched out and out.  We were going the same way, but then I think once they got onto Shepperton they went left and we turned right.

I seemed to be keeping up with the other two quite well,  I am not sure if in fact it is easier running in the opposite direction as last Thursday but I seemed to be doing quite well.  I did get behind a couple of times and walked a bit as well.  But then we got to Blackbrook Lane and the girls just flew up to Thornet Wood lane!  I kept up as best as I could.  My excuse, is that they are younger than me!  Its a good excuse and one that comes in very handy on a Thursday morning run.

They waited till I got to them and then we went through Jubilee Park together, and then back out over the bridge and out on to Great Thrift!  It was a good run, and I was fairly pleased, considering the cold virus (can I use that excuse, I think I can!) At least we still got in with the hour and got back before DiscoRich!  I had decided after this run though that track at 8 was a no go!

Geeky Stats

Run 2

This run was today, and it was a nice solo run.  An, almost gadget free run!  I used my Ipod.  I didn't want to be 'weighed down' with getting a good time, a good pace, or anything like that.  I just wanted to go out a run.  But the thing is I was really feeling like crap!  Head aches, sniffles, coughing!  Plus I just got back from shopping and I was feeling like I just want to sit down.

But, I had a word with myself, like I do quite often, to get my fat carcass out there, even if it was just for a short 1 miler!  Turn around lamppost even.  I quite liked that idea and I dragged my ass upstairs to get changed.  

Once I had all my gear on I decided, yes, it will be a short run, but a bit longer than to TAL and back.  I was going to go up to the Harvester, then through the park and back home.  Usually about 1.75 miles in distance!  I still wasn't going to use my Garmin though, I would be to tempted to look at the pace I was going at, and feel I should go faster....or slower!

But, just for 'shits and giggles' I decided to use the Nike thingy on my Ipod. Set up the distance which I think it is and then see what happens.  What I couldn't quite grasp was how my iPod was going to track me?  My Garmin connects to satelites, my phone has the gps thingy, but my iPod, well I just didn't get it.

So you can imagine my surprise when my iPod started talking to me saying that I was halfway.  I was just coming up to the Harvester at the time.  I was running pretty well, and turned left to head towards the park.  I took a little short walk half way down there and then I started to run again.

I was feeling pretty good, strangely, I was feeling pretty strong, strangely.  I must be exercises the cold virus and they are getting stronger instead, because the cough was annoying me, and my nose was just running away with me!  My headache seemed to have gone though.

Just as I got through the park the countdown started, "400 meters to go" says Miss iPod, and so on "300 meters to go, 200 meters to go"  I seemed to have found a little bit of extra with those countdowns and I started to run just a little faster, "!00 meters to go"  I was finding myself getting quite competitive now, even though it's only me running!  And then there it was "You have reached your goal" or what ever it said, but I still had just a little further to go, I had just started to run along on my road, I ran faster as my iPod told me to push pause to stop.  But I didn't I kept it going until I got up to my house.  The actual distance recorded was 1.85 miles but I was quite impressed with the time, it was 20.08, and according to Miss Ipod I was running an average of 10.55 mi/mil!  

Yeah, not too bad for someone who is suffering from a cold!  I was pleased I went out, even though just for that short little jog!

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Club Nights - you Gotta Love 'Em

Hello blog lovers.

It's my double groups today!  Love doing this, I love encouraging others along, and it's brilliant when I go on to the next group and see some of the Heroes back into group 1!

Group 0

We have quite a few members today, 8 of us all ready to hit the hill this evening.  Birchwood!  It's has to be done.  After our usual warm ups, some dynamic skips, lunges, jogging and stuff, we were all warm enough to get going.  The hill or the incline as I try to think of them is at the beginning of our run, when we have tons of energy.  Where it may hurt is when we hit Woodside, and Great Thrift, those little undulations can be quite tough little blighters!

Everyone did the hill really well, up and up. We turned the corner and then took a little break just at the top.  Then it was down and down and down.  The best bit of the run, you can relax your legs and arms and just let the momentum of the down hill do all the work!  I could see all the runners up in front as I led from the back. And a pink jacket, who I thought was Tracey, as I didn't see her fall behind me up the hill!  All the down to Crossways we ran and then took another little break before going straight up to the memorial hall. 

 It was then that Tracey came from behind me,  I had been looking at the front of the pack thinking that everyone was there, but Tracey was still behind me. She was keeping up with us but was just a tad behind the rest of us.  She said that it was fine, she was keeping up, and to carry on.  But I don't like to have anyone behind me, I prefer to be able to see all!  I can't wait for the summer days!  It just reminded me of what an important job a sweeper does when you're out running in groups in the dark!  

Now with Tracey by my side we stared up the little incline together!  Right to the top near the hall.  Everybody did well and waited for me and Tracey.  Now it's just this long road back to the Crossways and the rec.

The speedier members of the group got into their groove and started on along the road, then there were the middle runners, chatting away and running along behind them and then us lot at the back, sweeping along making sure no one gets behind us.

back at the rec and we all did our cool down stretches. A good run.  Heres the geeky stats.

Group 1

I waited around for the next run.  I didn't get as cold as I did last week and I thought I would be mixing up with the pack this evening.  Just goes to show though, things don't always go how you think it would go.  

I was feeling really up for group 1 running, and was looking forward to SingstarJo's route, especially when she said that we would be going down Cardiac hill!  But for some reason I just couldn't keep up with the pack!  Of course I said it was because SingstarJo is totally on fire with her running lately, totally annihilating her 10k pb!  But she was totally on pace with the run, (when we eventually caught up with her at the first scheduled stop)  "It's 11:30 mi/m pace" she said!  So, what excuse could I use for not keeping up!  

I think sometimes it's just one of the things.  You think you can do really well because you 'feel' it and then load on tons of minutes to you pace so that it looks like the pace you are doing is like you're  pushing a car up hill with the brakes on!  And the other times you do a run that you thinks is so unbelievable slow that the time keep has given up and gone home, and you come romping home smashing a pb!

Well, that's how I am going to look at it anyway.  SingstarJo did say that she planned another little stop just at the top of the road by the 'Off license'.  I will be needing it by then as this road we are about to run on is another little undulating road.  But when we got over the little bridge and saw the shop the group seemed to disappear down the side of it, there was no little gathering waiting for the back markers.  SingstarJo didn't stop there!  

We carried on down the road towards Petts Wood, we were going to go down Shepperton, which, if she goes the usual way, is another undulating road!  Imagine the relief on my face when she didn't turn left when we got to the cross roads but instead we ran straight on, over the road.  Straight on to finish running along Shepperton and then turn right. It's the shorter way to the little green on Southborough Lane.

After a little break there it was all go, non stop to the rec.  Just as we were running up towards the high street someone noticed a glove on the floor,  I bent down and picked it up.  "That's what sweepers are for" said Illustrious Leader who was sweeping with me at the back!  Two very good reasons to have sweepers I say!

Geeky stats.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

So, Things Don't Go To Plan!

Hello blog lovers.

After church I got things ready for later, chopped some salad, tidied up, you know stuff that you are not wanting to do after a a planned long run. So, when all was ready, and Bims was here, we set off for our planned  10 miler!  Lets see how we fair.

So before we even got out of the door, the Old Boy said that the road I was going to take, Barnet Wood Lane, was a bit dangerous, one thing is that is doesn't have any pavements!  Which is true, but even the grass verges are non existent.  That wasn't really any problem, because we can cut across the field, it may be a tad sticky with all the rain that we've had!  But at least it will be a most welcome break from traffic fumes! I had put the map on FaceBook, to show anyone that may want to drop in and out of our run, but I feel sure that Barnet Wood Lane wouldn't be needed anyway!

We were going to get a couple of 'hitch hikers' on route WendiMoo, but unfortunately she couldn't make it, and ZippySherry was going to try and meet us en-route too, but I think that she got bogged down with those things that just need doing!  It's so annoying when 'things and life' get in the way of your running!

My plan, for my long runs, is to do what I will be doing on marathon day.  It was something that quite a few people have said to me, DiscoRich, SingstarJo and NaggyNeighbour, and that is to build in walks, plan the walks.  I've tried the timing walks, where you run for so long the walk for so long. NaggyNeighbour suggested run for a mile and then walk for a minute!  When If you think about it, that works out only 25 minutes of walking over a marathon distance!  And those mile breaks can come along quite quickly!  So today, me and Bims will be doing that.

We set off nice and steady, there is no need to speed along, this is for endurance!  I had already told her not to look at her watch, just go for it.  she didn't even want to know where we were going either!  She will know soon enough though.  The first mile got us to the Havester, and we had our first 1 minute walk.  Even though we could have gone on further (Bims ran for 3.3 miles yesterday non stop!) But a plan is a plan, and it's best to stick to it.

It went really well actually.  All the way up to the Crown, Toby Inn, and then we crossed the road and went through the Park.  Just knowing that there is a planned walk after a certain distance was very good for the psyche!  Our second mile was just as we were entering Normans Park.  It was there that Bims realised where we were going "You're going to take me up Hayes, aren't you?" I smiled!  "There may be a bit more walking than running" she said.

As it happened, we ran up and up and got to The George, where we did take an unscheduled stop just so that she can point out her neighbours Cafe!  Marco's!  I must pop in one day and say hi!  This is where our route went slightly array from the map.  Because I wanted to keep us safe from traffic I was taking the detour through the common!  It will be fine....or so I thought.  I have my new trainers on!  The ones that my Big Son bought me for Christmas!  They were never made to go off road!  I should have changed them before I left the house!

It's too late now, I shall just have to do what some of the other ladies manage to do when we go through woods and that's to hover!  Impossible I know!  I am way to heavy......but let me tell you that I have actually lost weight!  The needle pointing to the stones has now left the starting figure and is now on it's way to saying 'Hi' to the lower number!!! Was I pleased to see that this morning!  Anyway, I digress.  This way was pretty muddy!  Ok very muddy. Ok, Ok, it was a lake! With some raised muddy bits to walk on!

Bims was not pleased at all!  I could feel the daggers coming at me.  I think she would have preferred to to have dodged the cars, if they came down that road (it's not a very busy road, but it is a winding one!).  Here, I took a picture of her face, and just one of the sections we negotiated!

Just look at the Boat race!

Just a little bit sticky!

We ran along Oakly road now, towards the A21.  I was starting to feel it.  We both were.  From here to the end we kept going as best we could. We had only done 5 miles and we still had 5 more to do!  Our feet were covered up to the ankle in mud!  But still, she is doing 'Tough Mudder' it's good for her to experience a tiny bit of mud!

We ran along to the Crown again and turned right to go back down Southborough Lane.  My legs were feeling so heavy!  yet when we stopped running, the rest of me felt like it was floating!  So maybe I have got the magic after all for hovering over the mud!  Maybe we should try it again!  Maybe I was becoming delirious!

When we reached Blackbrook Lane we turned left to run along it as far as Thornet Wood Road. Then some more traffic free running, through Jubilee park.  We decided at the moment from when we turned on to Thornet Wood Road that we would not do the extra couple of miles, through Petts Wood high street, but go instead directly to Southborough Lane via Crest View.

For the last couple of miles I seemed to have walked after just half a mile, but I still took the minute (or more!) when we reached another mile!  It was ok, I was pleased with that.  Both me and Bims were tired but still smiling, and happy to be running, and that's what it's all about!

So geeky stats for you, and as you can see not quite the 10 miler but its not too bad.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Extra Extra! The Old Girl Runs An Extra Day!

Hello blog lovers

Earlier today the Old Girl was seen running along the streets of her home town on what was reported to be her rest day. I caught up with her as she ran through Petts Wood high street.

When asked why she was running she replied "because I like running". She didn't seem to care that people saw her out running. Even when The Old girl took a couple of walking breaks.

It was suggested to her that maybe she should have stayed at home as she is now walking. But in her words " Its an extra run, no matter how fast or slow I go today it doesn't matter, just being out side is a huge bonus"

I then noticed the Garmin on her wrist and asked her how far she intended on running. "Just  to the Harvesters and then I shall go home. Only going to do about 3 miles, its just a little extra run for fun"

I really didn't expect her to have a come back when I pointed out that if it was just for fun then why the need for the Garmin? Her reply "Just to show everybody that This Girl Can!"

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Thursday, 15 January 2015

Threatening Thursday!

Hello blog lovers.

Threatening Thursday eh?!  Well, 'they' threatened high winds, 'they' threatened rain and 'they' even threatened snow!  Well this morning couldn't have been more perfect for a run......well, I guess the woods could be dry and 'runable' which would have made a lovely run today, but instead I had a two park route planned instead!

The rain did come down quite a lot last night, and so the woods would have been very muddy!  I knew Nicola was coming along and she is just getting over a dodgy ankle, so I decided that paths and roads would be much safer for her.  And besides, it will be good for me too, no excuses to 'slow down' or walk.....only the one excuse will be needed.....lazy!!

So there were were, three in my group and three in DiscoRich group, and we all ran out of the gate and headed up Hazelmere.  Richards group was braving the woods, and the mud and the puddles and the fresh air, and the peace and quite...... and we we braving the paths and pavements.  Hard work, great running, hopefully great pacing! But some serious running going on.

I chose this way because we do get to run through the parks.  First off it was Jubilee Country Park.  It's only for a short while, but any traffic free running is just too good to pass up.  The two ladies were running brilliantly, Nicola normally runs with DiscoRich, and Michelle just loves this running stuff, and has come on leaps and bounds.  Me, I am still struggling, still trying to maintain a pace.  But my excuse, as I watched them running along chatting, they are younger, they are fitter and they are way lighter than me!

We soon got through the park and headed towards Blackbrook Lane. Those darn walking stops still getting me to beat myself up, but I keep reminded myself, that, actually I am out here running, I could be sat at home, becoming brain dead watching Jerry Karl! *oooo shiver!* perish the thought!  Running down Blackbrook I was looking forward to going through the park again, even though this route will take me right past my house!  Now that is psychologically hard to do!

When we were running through the estate, I thought I would just share with the gang where my family lived, running past the flats, "My daughter and grandson live there" I said and then we got on to my road, "My mother in law lives there" as I pointed out her house.  And then we ran on a little further "And that's my house" I said.  "Wow, talk about close" said Michelle!  I quite like having my family close by!

Now it's the way back.  Every meter now is getting us closer to the rec. I was feeling a bit tired, but I think I am going to have to try and rethink my diet.  Things that will help with energy, but also stuff that makes less fat.  Is there such a beast.  I was reading something earlier about cereals not being the right thing, because of carbs or something, making you burn up carbs which may make you more hungry a bit later on down the line.  But something like greek yogurt and fruit burns up fat.....well I am not sure of the total science bit, but I am going to give it a try.  I think a bit a weight off this old body is going to help immensely!

We do have some great conversations as we run up the road, and we were talking about food, and stuff, like you do when you're running, and we shared things about eating, and ways to 'trick' our brain about with ways to eat.  I still can't eat with a teaspoon, but my hubby can.  It tricks your brain into thinking you are eating loads, but I always eat slowly anyway.   I think I just have to  cut down on food and eat the right things! Simple!

So geeky stats, and not to brag here but, we did over 4 and half miles!

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Track Session

O.M.G.  Another threatening moment, I opened the door this evening, felt the bitter cold and the wet stuff hit my face, (it had cleared really, but the wind blew some of the rain on the front door onto my face) and I closed the door again and declared that I am not going, it's way too cold! The Old Boy gave me a look, you know the one, "You call yourself and athlete," type of look.  Which helped to make my mind up. Whether he was thinking that or not, I just didn't give him a chance, but when I changed my mind he said, "There you go, well done!"

So there I was, freezing my ass off driving to the track, talking to my self "Why on earth are you doing this?" Scarily an answer came.
"Cos someone decided to enter into the marathon draw. No thoughts about the couch potato waiting to emerge after all this nonsense of running has finished! nNo regards to this tired, old, slightly bloated body, that you have to be fling around a track, oh no!  You had to go and do it, didn't you"
I had no reply, to myself, which is quite sad really.  It's bad enough talking to yourself in the car, its bad enough beating yourself up but  having a go at yourself and not being able to have a good comeback, well, thats just no on!  But on to the track I went.

I saw the S.L.G.R. group as I entered the track. Brian and Dawn, the run leaders, and quite a few of their group. It's their monthly meet with us PWR's.  This is why I love the running community, everyone is just friends with everyone.  There is competition when it's needed, but most time everyone encourages everyone.

As it was cold this evening, we had a warm up with PhysioMike and then straight into the session.  The session this evening was 1 and half times around the track, leaving the track and head towards Hayes.  Somewhere along that road we will hear Mikes whistle (after about 7 and half minutes) and then to turn around and go back, and finish the first 15 minutes on the track.  A tempo run. 

I found myself running along side Angie, one of the SLGR's, she says she is normally the last person.  Well, as you all know, dear readers, that place is usually for me!  We were running along and chatting, like you do, and then the whistle blew!  Of course that is no the end of the session, you could see Hels, assistant coach, looking at her papers.  The middle bit of the session.  4 lots of 3 minutes running, with 90 second breaks between. Run at park run pace, or marathon pace, that is what I couldn't remember.  But it didn't matter, my pace seemed to remain the same anyway.

It was tough going, and I didn't stop running on the running bits, totally enjoyed the 90 second break bits, which we could chose to walk, jog or stand still, I chose to walk, as did everyone else.  Those four lots seemed to go for ever!  But it was good.  I kept the same pace!  Well, I hope I did, I was running with out my watch!! So I wasn't entirely sure!  

So after those 4 sets of running we had to do the tempo run again! It was hard, me and Angie, being the last ones on the the half lap, was told to just go straight to the gate and head towards Hayes.  This time we would get further, but it would be interesting to see if we could get further around the track when we come back,

I was kind of struggling when we were out on the road, I was tiring, and those silly thoughts were coming to me, 'Go on have a walk, slow down, it's too hard, is that a torn ligament'  I did actually stop running, but the Angie who was a couple of steps behind me touched me on the shoulder and said "Come on Old Girl, you can do it"  Yes, yes she was right!  Of course I can.  So I got back to running, and by now it was time to turn around and head back to the track.

Tough? Yes! Fun? Yes! Threatening?...No!  How can it be, like I said everyone is encouraging, everyone cheers us on each step of the way!  Huge 'well done' at the end, and "See you all next week/month as well! Love it!

I forgot to bring my Garmin with me, even though I remembered the HRM! Silly mare!

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Club Run - It's Bloomin Cold!

Hello blog lovers,

What a chilly evening!  It was so lovely this morning, well, apart from a rather dark and damp spell about 2 o'clock ish, but now, this evening, it's damp and cold again.  Oh well, this is Britain, we just have to get on with it.

There has been a bus strike on today, so some of my lovely Heroes didn't make it to the rec today. Either they couldn't get there or their husbands couldn't get back home in time from work.  But there were still 6 of us ready to run up the undulating route!  We also welcomed three new heroes into the group. One coming back from injury and the other two getting their running back 'up and running' 'scuse the pun!

So we had a nice warm up first, get the muscles warmed up.  It is just so painful trying to run with cold legs and it could cause injuries too.  Even if you do a very gentle first half mile run, at a very gently pace, then that's ok, but because I want our group members to run at their best for as long as they can over the 2 miles or so, we do our warm up in the rec.

Out of the gate and turn left then left again, up and up along the undulating road. It was all going really well, everyone chatting to each other, but the hill started and then the faster runners were getting a little ahead.  Chloe, one or our newbies, was wondering if maybe she was a bit eager to join Group 0, but I assured her that in group 0 we run at the slowest person, and if the faster runners are way in front then my whistle comes out and they do loop backs to rejoin us, so that we all finish the run together.  The faster runners can stay warmed up without waiting, and the back runners don't feel they are holding up anyone.

Everyone ran all the way up to the memorial hall non stop.  I was very impressed with everyone!  We had a quick break, except Nicola, who has tons of energy and did a loop back to the walking bridge and back to us.  The nice flat bit now, only thing to concentrate on is keeping going, walk if you feel, but these Heroes today just kept on running!

We had another break at the memorial hall, and then it was running all the way back, down the undulating road.  A great run today, it's a pity that the wet stuff started up again!

Geeky stats.

Group 1

Waiting around for the group 1 to start is possible one of the toughest bits of Tuesdays, ok, I slightly exaggerated, but it is hard.  Especially when its cold and raining.  I was chatting to the girls, J. and JJ, and Wendi-moo (new nickname for ChattyWendi, as this is her nickname on the Garmin site), and I was really planning on going home.  I was just chilling down so much.  Running on cold legs, as I said earlier is bloomin tough!  

But then I head where Illustrious Leader was taking us today.  Down Southborough Lane.  Now this road is long and can be boring, but it is down hill, and it's also spread out in front of you.  You can see where you're going.  And for this evening, that really help to make my mind up to go for it.  I got to keep the miles up, and I was pleased, at the moment at least, that I decided to do it.

Going down Southborough felt good, I was still feeling it though, and even took some walking breaks.  I am pleased I have a rest day tomorrow.  Rest days are good, rest days are essential!  Yes, I am going to enjoy rest day tomorrow.  The 6.80 miles were still in my legs from yesterday (notice the excuses will be making an appearance now) so I was rather slow.  But I know that I am not going to be challenging anyone in the marathon.  My aim is to get around it, and still think it was fun, but tough!  I should be happy with that.

On a lighter note, Big Son came past us as we were about 10 minutes from the finish, and started yelling out of his car "Come on, get a move on!" he said.  I had to explain to the others at the back that he was my son!  They all thought it was rather nice actually, that he acknowledge me,  most sons would get embarrassed at their mums running along in lycra and bright luminous pink jackets!

I didn't have the energy to do the usual sprint down Crossways, I just ran along next to Illustrious Leader until we got to the rec.  A great run, I am glad that I decided to do it and no woose out of it!

Geeky stats.

Geeky stats will have to wait until tomorrow, the garmin web site is down again.!

Monday, 12 January 2015

The Longest Run.....This Year!

Hello blog lovers!

Well, it's deffo started, the old marathon training! Yup, indeed.  I had planned to run 6-7 miles and I did just that, with my sister Bims.  It had to be done.  It is also her longest run for goodness knows how long as well!

When I told her that I was doing this long run, she went all quite over airwaves (we were communicating by text)  But I eventually got her to confirm time and place to meet up today, (and she was late!)  So once we were totally ready to go we stepped out side and waited for our Garmins to find the satellites.

We started running, Bims had no idea of where I was going to take her, she didn't want to know.  However, after I found out the she was coming with, I did actually change my mind about which route we were going to do today, but it's in the same sort of area. Out of the estate and down towards Crown Lane Spur, we are going to run along the A21 towards Bromley.

I am getting to quite like this route.  There is always someone that you have to run around, smile at, unlike running the opposite way, up to Locksbottom.  It's just a long boring road, as I have told you before.  But this way is good and it's even better when you have company!  We are chatting and huffing and puffing together, sharing our pain and our smiles!  Solo runs are good, it helps you with your focus and discipline, but there is something to be said about running in company, even if it is Bims! (Love you really!)

Of course we did have some walking time, even by the time we got to Homesdale Road.  But I know that is how I am going to make it around the marathon, I may even try and plan in my walking breaks, after all, at the moment I seemed to only walk for about 30 to 40 seconds, if I plan on walking 1 minutes after every 10, I am bound to have the energy to keep on running further, hmmmm, something to think about there me thinks.

Running down towards Tescos I had already planned a little walk, just before we get to the little hill!  Preserve a little so that we run all the way up to the top.  I think even Bims was happy with that idea.  But we did it.  We ran from the bottom to the top, But then the hill going to the top of the next road got me.  I started to beat myself up, "Why, why?" I tried to figure out what was hurting, nothing.  I tried to figure out what was aching, was my lungs giving up, can I breathe, again all was ok!  So I was just be lazy!  Bims was saying that she was glad of the walking stops, but I think she was just being nice!

Running along the top now, towards Blackbrook Lane, and again I stop running. "ARGHHH"  Why I don't know, I slap my thighs in perfect pantomime style! And then Bims calms me down, "Don't beat yourself up, we're out here running, doing it, no need to beat yourself up" And with that moment I had that scene from Liar Liar in my head, you know the one, "I'm kicking my ass!" It did make me feel better actually as I smiled as I thought about that film.

We were going past the road that I had originally planned to go, if I was on a solo run, Summer Hill!  And I am blooming glad I decided to change plans!  There is no way I am ready for that particular nasty little blighter of a hill....yet!  So the revised plan is down Blackbrook Lane, and turn left onto Thornet Wood Road, we have to have a bit of park to run in!  It felt good running through there, and it seemed finally that the wind was in our favour!  Not only was it a little down hill as we neared the railway lines but the wind seemed to push us along as well, perfect!

Not ready to go home just yet, I took Bims through Petts Wood, on the other side of the railway lines, run past the Daylight Inn and then down Tudor way.  I said to her that we were going to run down Shepperton road, and when we ran past the first road that would take us on it she said "But I thought you said....."

"I know I said it, but we are going from the top end first"

"Oh, ok, but we could just...."

"Nope, got a plan and this is it" I told her.  And again, with just that thought that I had a planned and I stuck to it and didn't change my mind, taking a shortcut, or quit (which is what Bims said too) made me feel good too.  So with just a few short roads until we got back, and I was feeling good.....knackered....but good!  Cheers Bims!

Geeky stats.

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Sunday, 11 January 2015

Solo Sunday!

Hello blog lovers.

Unfortunately I missed the train run today with my fellow PWR's due to family stuff.  I was sooo looking forward to it, but there will be plenty of other times to run with my buddies.

So today's run. I think I shall write about it in a slightly different way, just for a change.  I also decided to use the Nike thingy on the Ipod, I set it up to do a timed run.  I want to be back home within 38 minutes!  I wonder If I can do it?

Things I thought about while out running today.

      It's bloomin cold.
      Why these satellites taking soooo long?, I wonder what time dinner will be today.
       Oh good, satellites, lets go! Usual route, me thinks.
      *Pressing start on Garmin and Ipod*, I wonder if they will match up?
      I wonder how many were running from Knockholt today, I bet it  would have been fun.
      I wonder how Jean is today, must do her washing later.
       Oooo love this song  *sings along with song*
      Oh, Nike is talking to me, 5 mins gone already!
      *Singing along to more tunes.*
      Oh wow, love love love running to this one.
      *Singing AND dancing along to Nutbush City Limits*
      I wonder if I look as daft as I think I look, maybe nobody noticed!
      Wow ten minutes gone! No need to look at Garmin, Old Girl You're on track.
      How come I'm feeling strong at moment? Well stop thinking about it, you know what happens.
      Oooo there's the pub, don't forget Old Girl, keep running past it!
      Oh what is this dirgey tune, swap swap!
      Oh darn it, whats this one now? swap!  Gotta get some Jogging Tunes sorted out!
      I do like that house, (passing the house behind the wall)  Is that where the doberman dogs, Brinks           and Mat lived?
      Still on track, should be home with my estimated time
      Ooo, half way Miss Nike said, 19 minus to get back home!
      Blast, I forgot my HRM, and I think I have worked blooming hard!
      I wonder if the dinner is on yet.
      Bins, gotta do the bins, must remember to do Jeans as well.
      I wonder if I could have kept up with PWR's after only 4 and half hours sleep? Hmmmn maybe not.
      I should have gone earlier, maybe could have met up at Costa's instead.
      Where shall I run tomorrow? Long one tomorrow.
      Flipping nora Old girl, move it! Whats with the walking again! Tut
      Gotta to get to the end of this road, now move it Old Girl!
      Oh yes, love this tune, take it easy though, don't blast through it!
      Walking again! Come on, move! No stopping, unless there is cars on the road, Ok?
      I wonder if actually, people do hear me, I don't talk that loud, do I!
      Come on cars, come on!  I could have kept going!
      Tired now,  sigh, come on, don't think about it.
      Dinner should be on now.  Get home, a quick shower then I can lay the table.
      I might do my hair as well, might as well.
      Where shall I run tomorrow?
      Nearly on the road that I dare not stop.
      Come on car, shift car! I'm wanna get going!
      That's it, don't stop now, don't stop.
      What did she just say?
      Nearly there, come on?
      Flipping heck, Don't you dare stop!
      Oh no, look, you been spotted!  Did they just see, did they see you stop, it was only just for a
       second, but still.
      "Hi guys" Ohh, I shall miss Sherry (It was Maxine and Martin that I saw! btw)
      Go on, you can do this, 30 seconds, 30 seconds, go on.
      Where's my music, when did that turn off!
       That's it, faster you can do it,
      What's the Garmin say?
      Oh, 12 second over.  Still, not a bad guess!
      Blast, why is it not recorded on my IPod!

Yep, that is about what I thought about on this run.  There were other things as well, other thoughts, other feelings.  But that is a condensed version.  I took my time in the shower, just letting the hot water rain over me.  I still wondered if I could made it on the train run today, but I really would have hated to be lagging behind everyone, making everyone wait around for me because I was just too tired.

Geeky stats.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

Back To The Old Routine!

Hello Blog Lovers

Marathon Training Day 3

It's Thursday, kids at school, back to my Thursday morning PWR meets.  Love these sessions, it's a chance to get out into the woods, but alas, not this morning.  It was just too wet.  The rain was absolutely teeming down!  For me it was just as well that I have these sessions planned because I knew I would have just rolled over and gone back to bed to wait for it to stop!

MichelleC text me this morning, just to check that it was all still going ahead, and I told it was.  When I got there, DiscoRich was there, all alone, standing in the rain.  We waited for an extra minuted, it was just gone 9:30, we didn't want to wait around too long as we will all get way to cold, and that's not good, not with this rain.

As DiscoRich was by himself we teamed up, but of course he will be running at my pace, and my route!  We started off and DiscoRich was in the front.  You could see that he was desperately struggling with the pace!  I shall just have to ask him to do loop backs!  I did try to keep up with him, but eventually he got there.  

Because we left the rec at the other exit I thought that I might have to add an extra little road in somewhere to make the whole 3.5 miles that I usually do on a Thursday morning.  I shall think about that when we are running down the cinder path.  

I was quite glad I changed out of my next running shoes actually, as the cinder path was quite muddy with some huge puddles in there.. All three of us tried to step around most of them, but in the end I just went straight through them.  I was trying to 'impress' our coach (DiscoRich) but I failed!  I had already had one walking stop already.  

There's this particular point along this path that always gets me, I think "Just here, stop here, then all the way to end"  But for ages now I keep missing that point, and thinking it is further along the path.  I do the walking bit and then start running, and then I see the traffic up ahead.  Another beating up for not getting to the end of the path.

From there though, DiscoRich took over the route, showing us a new path.  I had not been this way with my groups before, but I have been on the paths, coming back from the train runs.  It's good to throw in some new stuff, it keeps it interesting.

By now though, Michelle and DiscoRich were in the stride, I was tagging on behind, quietly telling myself off to keep up with them.  And thoughts came into my head, like "Don't show yourself up in front of the coach!"  As if DiscoRich would even think that.  I think it's because sometimes I find it amazing that I have a LiRF card.  But as all the coaches and leaders say to me, there are many ways to lead!  So those thoughts lasted for just a few moments more before I found something else to blame on my slowness!

Which was blooming hard.  Their younger than me!  Nope, only one of them is.  Well, DiscoRich is a bloke, they are always stronger, and besides these two been running for years.  Again, nope, well, Michelle hasn't!  She only joined about a year ago!  So there was only one thing left to blame!  It's raining!  It's pouring!  And I was bloody soaked to the skin! That'll be the reason! But as DiscoRich said to Michelle, "You will feel good that you did this later"  I am sure we will all be pleased, and very very smug about it, too!  After all, there are not that many crazy people that go out in the pouring rain for fun!

The new route seemed quite a long way!  But it's all good, it will be coming out by Allington road, one of the routes that group 1 use, but we go in the opposite direction.  In my mind I had said several times, "You go on guys, I know where I am now"  But I again gave myself a stern talking to during those silly walking stops.

It was good though.  Back at the rec and I felt pleased that I had conquered the rain, the pouring, really wet to the bones type rain!  But there was that "Yeah, look at me, soaked to the skin and just ran 4 miles!"  Smug or what!

Geeky stats.

Second session.

Track for me is back.  16 times around the track, with 90 seconds between every second lap. It was going to be tough.  I was determined to do as many as I can.  The faster groups would be doing 20 laps with the 90 seconds recovery.  

I think my challenge was to make sure I remembered how many laps I had done before I took my 90 sec rest.  After the warm up drills we went straight into it.  Running, running, running.  That is the plan.  I think one of the challenges for me is to mentally keep note of how many laps I had done before I took my 90 sec rest.

Again, as like this morning trying to show off in front of the coach, I thought I could run along with the 'big boys and and girls'.  Trying to keep up with them was ridiculous,  just that first half lap had me puffing out my ass, another quite word to myself from myself to 'SLOW THE HECK DOWN'

Once I got into my stride I could think about how many laps I had done.  I was doing well remembering how many laps, and also my maths brain was also working, as I had to time the 90 seconds.  It was then that I noticed that some of the other runners were stopping their watches.  They must have these super duper watches that they can stop the lap but time 90 seconds! Unless they two watches of course!

I had noticed that each lap was getting slightly longer, and each the last few 90 seconds was no long 90 seconds but a few added extra seconds!  But, no more beatings up!  Done that. On one of my 90 seconds stops Hels  asked my what time I had done, and I had told her that I didn't stop it, and I would try and figure it out when I got back.  When I ran past her doing the second lap of the 800's she called out "5:47"  I think that's what she said.  

Now I took that as if I continued at this pace and completed 26.2 miles then I would finish it in 5 hours and 5.47 minuets!  Either that or I was running at 5.47 min mile!

It was good session, I did as much as I could, as hard as I could today.  I think I should feel pleased with myself for both sessions today!  Not to shoddy really.  after all, it is still the week 1 training!

Geeky stats.  (and I don't think I can work out the timing thing that Hels and PhysioMike said) but it don't matter, I ran, I ran hard!

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Marathon Training Day 2

Hello Blog lovers.

Day 2 Training, of course its Tuesday night and I am back running in my fantastic club.  Group 0 today saw a big number.  There were 8 of us today, all ready to kick the Christmas pudding bellys to the kerb and get back to getting fitter!

But I am still using this as part of my training.  Only going to walk if any of the other runners walk, or if I can see them struggle.  I had planned I nice easy route, just over 2 and quarter miles, just to ease back in to the routine again.

With just the hill at the beginning, which we should all fly up as we should all be totally loaded with energy!  A big smile was on my face as I watched the group run up the hill a head of me!  I have so missed running with PWR's, it was only just over 3 weeks that I ran with any Petts Wood runners.  But since then I met up with some PWR's at Parkrun and then today, first with group 0!  It's great to be back.

It was a nice gentle route, and everyone did brilliantly.  You can tell that we all had a great time over Chirstmas! At least a nice relaxing time, but now it's time to get back to getting fit, and having fun, and meeting up with all our buddies.

I think that is got to be a huge part of my training.  All though I need to put in some hard work, I also need to keep my running fun, and social and friendly.  Now that is one huge benefit of being in one of the best clubs around!

We finished our run and we are all ready for next week!

Geeky stats!

Group 1

Group 1 seems even bigger.  Its great to see, and to meet up again with all my running pals too!  And its good to see new people coming along.  Anyway, back to my journal.  Illustrious Leader had planned a route!  It was a .....nice route.  When she thought of it she had thoughts of another run in mind, one that we are doing on Sunday and that's the Train Run.  

The train run is a cross country, paths and roads from Knockholt station to Petts Wood station.  And it's undulating!  So to practise for that I.L. had this lovely little route with delightful little undulations!  Do I not like hills!  Of course to get to the start of these hills it's all down hill!  The longer we went down hill you just knew the run back is going to be tough!  Still, it's all good training!  So just get on with it Old Girl!

I was sweeping, along with ChattyWendi (she had done group 0 too), enjoying the chat, enjoying being out.  The weather wasn't too bad, at least it's not raining.  I am going to find that tough to do, run group 0 in the cold and rain and then run group 1 after.  But no matter what I am going to do it.  Have to keep the miles up, and work hard, keep the muscles working hard.

And besides, group 1 chats and camaraderie at the best bar none!  I am so going to need these guys to help me stay focused and on track, and by that I mean on track with keeping my running fun!  All the hard work is going to be done on the other days, Sundays, Mondays, and Thursday evening track days!  

So, those hills!  Well, I was quite pleased with some of them, annoyed on some of them, and 'meh' on some of them.  Which too me means 'Could do better Old Girl'  But no beating up!  After all, it is really on day 2, plenty of time, as long as I stick at it, don't do anything silly, and listen to and take advice as well.  

I must just say though, that first stinky little hill, it's quite steep at first, frightens you to look at it, or is that just me?  But I know that it flattens out a tad, in just a short while.  So  "You just gotta do it Old Girl" I thought.  Flipping did it! It was tough

There were a few other hills after that, and us ladies at the back were working hard.  And then, well....it was mentioned that we sounded like....well here, have a guess.  But I totally concur,  those bloomin hills do get me puffing out my backside that's for sure, 

And if you could hear us as we puffed and groaned over each undulation then you would, I think understand!  Mind you, I wonder how many 'non' runners would say "I wanna do that" when then see us run by!

Those last hills though, the ones on Lynwood,  I was glaring daggers at each and every one of them.  Imaging getting a jack hammer to them, and the mumblings started, "I hate hills, I hate hills"  and then ChattyWendi said that I sounded like Dick Dastardly's Mutley he he he he (say that bit in his voice!)

It was a good run though. Can't believe I still had some left for that darn sprint thing that I do!  It's become an obsession now!  Just that bit of the run, along Crossways, I just have to focus on the sign that points to the rec, get there, and stop the watch, get there and stop the watch, come on get there and stop the watch!  And thats what I do!  It's not the way to do things, but it's the way I do things!

So geeky stats

Monday, 5 January 2015

First Long(ish) Solo Run

Hello blog lovers.

Training begins today!  My long(ish) run happened sooner than I expected due to change of plans! This was my longest run for simply ages.  I didn't know how I was going to handle it.  My first run of the year was a total disaster, what with the whole puking thing happening!  But I really want to start pushing out now.

So from now on this is going to be like my diary, my training diary.  Every run I do, whether it's with group 0, Thursday morning and evening runs and Parkruns, they are all part of my training.  So I shall be writing about how I think I did, or didn't do. Do I think I could have done better etc.  You know, beat myself up or console myself as I write!

Day 1 Marathon training

Eventually got out of bed, duvet was definitely keeping me hostage!  Dragged on my running gear and got all my gadgets ready, Garmin, brand new Ipod and I even put on my heart rate monitor.  Straight out the door to a quite mild January morning!

It didn't take long for the satellites to find me and then I started running.  I felt good, my back is on the mend.  Cant believe it only hurts if I sit for too long, go figure! The cold virus has also gone, thankfully!  Just left with a slight cough.

The first half mile I popped into the doctors to put in a prescription, stopped my Garmin while I waited and then started it again as soon as I left the surgery.  So continued on down Southborough Lane.  I My planned to run down the A21 towards Locksbottom, is such a demoralising run.  One road, all the way down, boring!  Even with my music blasting in my ears!  Rethink needed.

I got to the end, Crown Lane and turned right, towards Bromley.  There, now I was feeling better with my new plan in action.  It's still on the A21, but not for long.  There will be turns and hills and more turns.  I can do this.  the time that has lasped between my run last year and my first run this year is going to a distant memory!  I can do this.

 Some song come on my Ipod.  I can't remember ever hearing it, (I kind of pinched the Old Boys tunes as we both more or less love the same music) and I really got into the stride.  I started running just a little bit faster, determined to get to the traffic lights on Homesdale before the end of the song!  I did it Pleased with myself about that, and that song is going into my jogging tunes!

Homesdale road next, with that hill at the top.  Right then it was a challenge, one that I had every intent of seeing through.  I took it easier until the bottom of the hill, with some bits of walking of course, I am not superwoman....yet! You will be Old Girl, you can do it!

The hill fecking beat me, I stopped, just for a few seconds, but with a whack on the ass I was getting going again. Next time Old Girl, next time.

Going straight up though, what is the name of that road at the top, but that's where I am going.  Another steady little incline, you're gonna have to do it Old Girl. Walking, walking, telling off, feeling bloody annoyed now, and start telling myself off......out loud!  That poor chap doing his gardening, what on earth did he think as I passed by!

Now it's Blackbrook, still making descions.  Push on through to the end or go through Jubilee.  I decided to push on to the end, then I could have two options, to opportunities to either beat myself up or pat on the back!  Through the local park, which is about 3 quarters of a mile or back down Southborough which is quarter of a mile more!  It's small steps, but they are my small steps!

When I got to the end, I was looking, looking at that lovely shortcut, and I just knew, there is no way I am going that way!  Get yo ass going woman! Training remember!

Pushed on down Southborough, top Oxhawth and then the road I dare not stop!  I was running pretty bloomin well! Yup, I get the pat on the back, but with at 'you could have done better!' Next time! you wait!

Geeky stats!

Saturday, 3 January 2015

My First 2015 ParkRun!

Hello blog lovers.

Mojo is definitely coming out of hiding! Back pain and cold virus is on the way out.  And old couch potato has been kicked to the kerb!  Now lets gets the this marathon training started!

Ok, I'm  only running a 5k, but I told myself on New Years Day, that I am going to do as many Parkruns as I can this year, and yet what did I wake up to? Grey skies and rain!  I was so tempted to just stay in bed, but I had no excuses to keep me there.  Due to my drunken planned two 'dry' months there was no hangover to blame, also due to new diet regime, there was no late night takeaway, so I was feeling as fit as a fiddle for a nice 5k!  Why oh why did it have to rain?  Is this a test to see if I am totally committed to this, has He got a wicked sense of humour?! When will I stop talking to myself!

I had already decided that my new running shoes will not be visiting Normans Park, I just know it is going to be a muddy run.  I am also guessing they may be revising the route, we will be running the winter route, (there is also another name they use for it, but I just can't remember it!)  It's basically the same route, but run backwards, with us just staying off the mud at the top of the park (Hayes end) for just that little bit longer......I think!

Anyway, after being cajoled by the Old Boy, for trying to snuggle back down in the duvet, I had to get up and get myself ready.  Old trainers on, Garmin on, warm coat for drive back home and then I was out of the door!  It wasn't until I got to the car park that I remembered Bims was going to come along as well.  So I gave her a quick call to make sure she was on her way, which she was, by the way.

I sat in the car waiting for her.  The rain was coming down, my car was lovely and warm, there was good music and I started doing the  questioning thing again, "Why, Old Girl, Why? Surely when it's stopped raining would be a better time to go" Then the other voice started, "What if it rains all day, what then eh" This is how my mind goes first thing on a wet morning, while sat in my car in the pouring rain, at ridiculous o'clock in the morning,....waiting for another yet crazier relative of mine to turn up!

"Well it might stop later"
"But it wouldn't be a Parkrn, would it"
"No, but I could make it a longer run, that would be good"
"Could you be trusted to do that"
"I...I...yeah...of course!"
"Yet you can't  even be trusted to run in a tiny bit of rain for a  morning 5k Parkrun!"

And so that's the inner workings on a crazy ladys mind first thing on a Saturday morning.  By then Bims had turned up, and I had 'come back to earth' with a shudder (brrr) as I stepped out of the car to greet her!  We started walking over to the changing rooms until we noticed that everyone else had started to walk towards us!  That's when I realised that they will be using the wet route.  At least we didn't have to walk all the way over to the other side of the park today, and probably not for a couple of weeks by the looks of the field!

It was good seeing some of my running friends, SingstarJo, ChattyWendi, Emma and her daughter, I  can't believe it was last year when I saw them all.....oh, hang about ....it was last year!  Well, the announcements and safety instructions and rules were all done and we were on the starters orders!  And ......Go!  There seemed to be an awful lot of people about, and trying to run through them plus stay upright on the slippy mud was going to be a huge challenge (not that I would be trying to run through anybody on this run!) but we set our pace, me and Bims, and ChattyWendi as well!  She would be running some of the way with us, but she has been on fire lately, and she deffo wouldn't be hanging about chatting to us.  Mind you, we wouldn't be doing too much chatting anyway.  My goal, and Bims, was to run all the way round, regardless of time, as long as we run all of it!  That was our challenge.  It's my challenge!  On every run I am going to do, I will try and run all of it!  I must build up my endurance for the marathon!

But you can tell that both me and Bims were deffo coming back from that dark, dark place where they turn every healthy fit people into couch potatoes with weeks!  The groans coming out of us, you'd have thought we had already done 6 miles instead of 6 meters!  I adjusted my pace, I knew I was running off way to fast, but I was hoping that my body wouldn't realise it until I was at least half way through!  but of course it did, it always does!

The muddy bits were very muddy, sticky and very slippy.  Now normally I tippee toe through the mud, but if I am to run all the way round then tippee toeing is definitely out of the equation!  Straight through it, think road Old girl, think lovely sunny days running through meadows, and for heavens sake keep your flipping head up!

When we were at the top end of the park, running on the pavement, I allowed my thoughts to come back again, "just gotta do this one more time"  Well, let me tell you, it didn't help!  The other end of the park looked so far away!  I decided to keep that thought to myself.  As we were running along to the river, where we usually cut across the grass I looked towards the top of the park again "It looks so far away, don't it" This time I didn't think it I said it out loud, and Bims answered "Yes, and I am not looking!"

Starting on that second lap some how seemed harder. Why is that? I think it's because I knew exactly was was still left to do.  The ground is going to be even more churned up, the mud is going to be totally mocking us, waiting for us to slip so it can cover its self all over us!  The faster runners had already been taken over by the mud monsters, as they were totally covered head to toe in mud.  It was us slower runners that end up the cleanest runners, which is why mud monsters need us to slip!

I think I only had one slight slip.  Maybe be more confident through the mud, attacking it, and not being afraid of it is somehow better.  I know that a decent pair of trail shoes would help as well, but for us with just the 'retired' road runners just have to be confident and determined!

The second lap was a lot quieter than the first, as both me and Bims struggled through.  "I am going to walk" said Bims, but we were on the pavement, I wasn't going to let her walk while we were on the pavement "Yes, in a minutes, keep going for now" I said to her.  And she did, right up to we started our river pass and then she started to walk.  But it was only for a few seconds!  We kept going all the way round to the other side of the river.  "Oh I can't do it, I can't do it!" Screamed out Bims as she started her second walk.  "Yes you can, come on move it" I said to her and she started to run again.

At the top of the park it was my turn to 'quite' running! "Aghhh!" It was my turn to beat myself up!  We both walked along the path, the flipping easy bit!  "As soon as we get to that line we run again, non stop all the way in!" I said to Bims "Ok" she said.  We got to the mark and we started to run, the long straight towards Hook Farm, running all the way.  Half way down Bims starts talking to herself (It's a family trait) "Get a move on you lazy mare" she was saying.  I just kept focused, side by side with Bims "Come on, you can do it" I said,"Keep it going"  She fell behind slightly but I could still see her hands as she ran but when I couldn't see them I didn't slow down I just told her to "Move your arse"

We both encouraged each other down the long straight.  I noticed that we were gaining on someone.  I my mind I wanted to catch up, to over take her, maybe even beat her into the tunnel.  She began to get closer and closer, Bims and switched sides and was not trying to play catch up with me.  I stayed focused and eventually caught her up just as we started the muddy bit, the last muddy bit of the run!  I do go slower in the muddier bits, I was hoping that she would also go slower too.

I over took her!  I was feeling bloody good, but she must have been thinking the same as she put a bit of a spurt on.  I tried to find some 'dry' mud to run on but I think she had the better line as she over took me.  Maybe I can get her back on the pavement, although there will be very little time left for the chase.

She hit the pavement bit 5 or 6 seconds in front of me and then found some energy as she started running faster.  I hit the pavement and then chased after her, I left Bims to do her own run, now this is my face.  I hadn't planned on 'racing' anyone today, but when the opportunity is given to you, you just got to go with the flow!  I ran and ran and I started to close the gap again, and then she turned to see me over her shoulder.  That must have turned on the turbo blasters because she just took off!  I watched as she ran faster and faster, I tried to close the gap again, a feeling of nausea started to make an appearance, and memories of Thursday was in mind. "Not in front of all these people, oh no!" and I slowed down.

I should have pushed it harder, but there is always next time.  I went through the tunnel and then I realised something.......I had actually beaten Bims!  I can't remember ever beating her!  So at least that was something!

Here is my Garmin geeky stats but my official Parkrun time is 37:53 (three seconds faster, but those 3 seconds can make all the difference in world title runs!)  It's good to be back to running!

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Happy New Year!

Hello blog lovers!!

I was going to start this blog off with a dynamic beginning in the vein of  'I was captured by aliens, so I couldn't run' but my head is way to fuzzy to come up with anything that would sound spectacular, so the truth will have to suffice as to why I have not written about any runs since 11th December!

The truth is, I have only done two runs since then, and both of them were kind of similar, as both of them was ran after great parties!  So both of them were 'Hangover' runs!  The reasons, by the way, for me not running after the first run I will tell you about is, 1) due to back, which I will explain in my recount, and 2) this dreaded lurgy thing that has had tons of people laid up in bed!  So here is my first run, which also was my last run of 2014!

I was with some lovely people, SingstarJo, ZippySherry and Helena!  We met up at the rec, after I  ran there!  I was desperately trying to ignore a niggling back pain that had started up just a couple of days before.  Typical runner, we think we can 'run through' these things!

With just the four of us we set off on a planned route that ZippySherry had thought of.  Heading down Southborough lane, a little 'lollipop ' loop that will take us back up Southborough Lane and then back to the rec.  Well that was the plan anyway, but it didn't quite go to plan,  ZippySherry had developed an injury and was finding it difficult to carry on running just as we reached Blackbrook lane.  We decided to run back with ZippySherry at a slow pace and then we could add on some extra roads once we were back at the rec.

We were half way back up Southborough when ZippySherry insisted that we carried on at our faster pace and she will run/walk back to the rec.  So with the three of us left running we ran along the high street and up to the 'Offlicense' and back down Beaumont road, and then finally running along to the rec.

We said our goodbyes and then I carried on running back to my home!  It was a good run, running in the morning is a great time to run, and it was a bonus to be able to run first thing on Sunday morning as usually I have church to go too, but really, if I get up early enough then I could do both!

Maybe that is something to think about for this year!

Geeky stats

So todays run, New Years Day run, a hangover run! Again!  My first run of the year! For some reason know only to a boozed soaked couple of old girls (i.e. me and Bims) we decided that it would be good to meet up at 12 noon and go for a run.  Of course me being all bravdo said, !yes ok then only if I don't get up for Parkrun then I will meet you both", because it was just only me and Bims,  NaggyNeighbour was going to run as well! Then thing about NaggyNeighbour is that she don't actually drink. Not a drop of alcohol passes her lips, and she will remember what we had spoken of!

Of course Parkrun time came and went and I was still catching some Zzzzzzz's.  The Old Boy called up the stairs to me at sometime, I didn't know what the time was, but I just turned over and went back to sleep. That was until Bims called me, sounding all bright and breezy!  How dare she sound so bright, she had as much to drink as I did! (but later on I found out that she was that bright and breezy as she sounded).

Bims wanted to go through the woods, I wanted to test my new shoes out and Naggy wanted to do some 'running' on the roads.  The thing about running in the woods is of course the mud, and the fact that you may have to slow down and even walk through the muddier bits!  Probably why Bims wanted to do the woods!

But me and Naggy had our way, me with my new shoes and Naggy with some (planned) non-stop running!  We set off, no time to wait for satelites to find me, as Naggy headed off with a "Come on then, get running!"  So I just started up my Garmin and hope satelites would find me en route!  Just that first two minutes of running started me thinking that this was going to end at all well!  My head was thumping, my mouth was as dry as the Sahara and my overstuffed, totally abused, almost welcoming back Mrs Couchpotato body was complaining like anything!

When Naggy started towards Hollingworth road, with that incline I just knew it was going to end very messy!  Naggy was on top form, Bims and me we running after her like baby ducklings trying to catch up with mother duck!  It wasn't going to happen!  We kept running though, even up the hill, not at any great speed, and I doubt if it was the planned 11 mileing that naggy wanted us to do!

It was good to run down hill though, after we got to the top.  Surprisingly the hill didn't seem that bad!  I managed it, and if it wasn't for the fact that I was totally hanging then I could even give myself a pat on the pack for even thinking it was kind of easy!

But then the nausea kicked in, as we started running towards Crofton Lane.  This could be the moment that I totally embarrass my self (as if I didn't do enough of that the night before).  By guts were churning, the tea I had ealier, in way of trying to rehydrate myself, was threatening to spill out at a great speed!  i tried to focus on something else, running, that's what I shall focus on.  But it just wasn't happening.

Running along towards Petts Wood high street now and I was looking for a corner, some nice a discreet place to 'chuck' up in!  But there wasn't any place to be found.  I slowed down to walking pace, and then the nauscea really took over as I started to heave.  Ok, this is it, this is the moment I embarrass myself.  I looked for a drain at least to 'use'.

I stood over it and thought nice thoughts, I really thought I was going to chuck up.  But thankfully it didn't.  Naggy and Bims came over and I said that I think I was a bit ambitious to think I could run after last nights shenanigans and suggested they carry on while I took a short cut home.

I walked along the road and watched them as the ran up the street, doing it, completing their run.  I felt awful, I felt annoyed at myself and I felt a fraud in my new running shoes!  It's my own fault!  Not sympathy, I was just a mess!  After a couple of minutes I started to feel a bit better, so I decided to run for a bit.

I saw them girls as they neared the end of the road,  there was no way I would catch them up, and besides, I didn't want to spoil their run if I had another 'episode' like that.  So I ran to the end and ran down Frankswood Avenue,  I was thinking, "If I feel really bad then I can turn down Oxhawth" at least I had done some running.

As I was running along I actually started to feel a bit better.  "Maybe I shall just stick at this slow pace and run all the way down to the Harvester", I thought to myself.  "I may just be able to meet the girls and we can all finish together"

I waited for just a few seconds after I got to the Harvester to see If I could see them.  I was beginning to think that maybe Naggy had taken Bims on a slight detour before coming down Blackbrook, or maybe it was longer than I thought, going through Jubilee park and they were still a way to go there.  So I carried on running through my local park and then along Whitebeam to my road.

I was sort of pleased that I ran at least 3 miles today, but disappointed that I couldn't have been tougher on myself and stayed with the girls.  But anyway it has prompted me to say that I am having a 'dry' couple of months!  Hopefully I can concentrate more on my running, getting fitter and hopefully losing weight (which I know I have put pounds back on these past couple of weeks!)

So geeky stats.