Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Last gasp

Felt a bit crap, sore throat, but figured it was just from teaching all afternoon, so I went for a little run with Hannah. Little did I know it was a cold coming on. Bah. No more running for me for the moment.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Plan for the week

Somehow, writing it down makes me stick to it...

Monday - meal out (eve), so try to get a short run in during the day
Tuesday - club run
Wednesday - swim
Thursday - WYC meeting in the evening; try to get some lunchtime speedwork in
Friday - swim on campus early
Saturday - run on coast path
Sunday - run on coast path

Some catching up to do...

Not such a great week, this week... having a visitor at work has meant I've been a bit less flexible during the day.

Monday - beer fest.
Tuesday - wussed out of running as it was bloody freezing and I didn't have winter kit (that's what you get for being organised and bringing your kit in a day early).
Wednesday - had an OK swim but had the new experience of cramp in both legs at the same time and nearly sank without trace.
Thursday - missed efforts due to a meal out, but did a decent short run via Eaton Park and Greenways with Lorraine; 4.3 miles in 39 mins, i.e. 9 min miling (but it felt tougher than that!).
Friday - nothing.
Saturday - tank driving all day.
Sunday - biked to Whitlingham for a 10k and waited at the wrong place for the start (d'oh), so gave up on that and just hung out waiting for them to finish, then while Kraig kindy took my bike home, I ran around the lake and home - 5.6miles in just under 50 mins, i.e. 8:50 per mile on average. (The same pace would have given me just under 54 mins for the 10k.) Given that I'd been standing around at the outdoor centre for ages and wasn't warmed up, that was OK. The fact that it was raining too, and there was a headwind, was about all I deserved for my own stupidity!

Sunday, October 21, 2007


Clare, Marie and Kate have been going out on a Sunday with VC Norwich for the past couple of weeks, so I joined them this week. Yet another glorious autumn day, cold and clear, and a route out to Larling and back totalling 53 miles - plus the 3 to get to the start point in Norwich. The main route took 3:11, plus a stop for tea and cake at the garden centre in Larling (next to the new distillery!) - average 16.6mph. Riding in a large group was definitely very different, with the spacing a bit hair-raising at times, but there's no doubt you can go faster with more people around you. Great fun - I'll miss the next couple but will definitely try and get out again if the weather holds.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Saturday long run

Just short of 10 miles, out to Whitlingham and back (but not around the Broad). Marie had to walk back from the edge of Lakenham, but told me to go on; I "added on" Long John Hill and the ring road instead of Mansfield and Sandy Lane, but there's not really much in it. Running time was 1:31, giving 9:17/mile. It took me until Trowse to really feel warmed up and into the rhythm of it, but after that it was fine. Another lovely morning to be out, too.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Speed session in the pool

A bit of a mixed, slightly directionless (but fun!) pool session, incorporating bits from this week's Wednesday set, but also a set of single 25m lengths at "full speed". I found I suddenly "had hold of" the water, and could just get my head down and go. Timing wasn't very scientific, as I had to pop my head out and look at the clock after I finished each length, but I was consistent at about 26-27 seconds for several lengths (30 secs rest in between though). Now I just need to harness that strength and technique in a longer set!

Thursday, October 18, 2007


This was actually my first winter speed session - a 5-mile loop around Bowthorpe (delightful) with 6 mixed length efforts between lamp posts, and a warm up / cool down. 48 minutes for the lot!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Excellent swim

No cramp tonight! OK, so maybe that's the main reason it was excellent, but it also just felt very good. I did one set of 150m with the pull buoy, which might have helped avert calf cramp by reducing kicking, and also had a damn good stretch at the start and in the rests.

Was good to do a few drills - nothing like trying to swim with one arm to make your next length of full-stroke feel like flying :)

300m warm up
6 x 150m, 30 secs rest
3 x (50m kick, 25m f/c, 50m drill, 25m f/c) - drills of side kick, one arm, and 3/4 catchup

then supposed to be 3 x 200m and cool down but I didn't get that far!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Wet, wet, wetter...

Absolutely soaked tonight. Seven and a half miles of puddle-strewn pavements and splashing traffic. Felt kinda good though :) Time of 1:12 = 9:36/mile. A good easy run.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Stuck on a train

No beginners tonight for me as I was heading back from London... Mark went though!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

To Thetford, at last!

Sunday dawned a bit misty, and, as far as I was concerned, a bit late. Stupidly I had thought I would set off at 7am to give me 2-2.5 hrs to make it to Effie and Karl's, however sunrise being about 7:30 meant I was either (a) unavoidably delayed or (b) able to enjoy half an hour's lie in, depending on your point of view.

Anyway, I was on the road at 7:31, saw the sun rise as a watery orange sphere while I was crossing Roundhouse Way, and then it largely disappeared behind some cloudy misty stuff for the next ten miles or so, except to send rays through the woods at Hargham Heath, picking out the deer and squirrels. By Quidenham there was a break in the clouds and from then on it was really rather nice.

Quidenham saw a sudden glut of old cars - must have been a rally somewhere - and my highest speed on the trip, 29.8mph (so close!!) on a good downhill. That made up for being stopped by a train at the only level crossing on the route (Eccles Road)... The only other notable things were that Brettenham was a bit stinky (thanks to a huge manure heap, which also meant there were plenty of flies pinging off my glasses) and Kilverstone also smelled, but of fresh coriander.

I drew up at Effie and Karl's, after 30.9 miles, in 1:53, average 16.2mph. Not bad - certainly tiring and not quite as flowing as other rides, but it's the first serious bike ride in over a month, and with having run yesterday I think that's OK.

Eaton - Hethersett - Wymondham - Besthorpe - Attleborough - Hargham - Eccles Road - Quidenham - East Harling - Bridgham - Brettenham - Kilverstone - Thetford

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Going longer

Out with Marie again - after 6.5 miles last week, we upped it to 8 this week, via Intwood, bridlepath and monument, and back via Keswick. We're both aiming for the same goal of 11.6 miles on 25th November, so training together is good. A lovely sunny day to be out today too! The 8 miles felt OK, definitely tired at the end but we'll build up gradually.

Also I started off around the block via Greenways with Mark, on run-2-walk-1 x 5. Walk to the top of the hill, do the session, finish halfway down the lane. Nice warm up :)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Rest day...

Should really have gone swimming, but couldn't time it right with work, lunch etc. so took today as a rest day. Did finally get my replacement watch though!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Short run

Around the block via Intwood Road, with Sophie. Just under 40 mins so not bad pace-wise.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Swimming - coming together again

Apart from another (minor) episode of cramp in that annoying inner thigh muscle, which meant a few mins stretching by the poolside, I had a good session, getting the feel for the water again. On the single fast lengths (e.g. 25m on 45 secs), I really feel I'm going somewhere, but there's no way I could keep that up for 16! Also I can still only do 30 secs at best, so I could never go under 8 mins for 400m at the moment. I don't know what technique point I'm missing. I'm thinking it might be seriously worth saving up for a Total Immersion session or some time in an endless pool like Swimshack.

Can't remember the session last night in great detail, apart from 400m @ effort 7-8 (out of 10), which I forgot to time, and 10 x 25m on 45 secs, which was fine (I should move down to 40 next time). I still love doing pull, which proves to me that my legs are more hindrance than help!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Good long run

A sizeable group for a moderate Tuesday run this week, 6 of us went out for just under 8 miles reaching the dizzy heights of Hellesdon and the Boundary. Made a point of starting slowly, and it made all the difference - comfortable all the way. Still had to stop for the loo though :( Out for 1:17 overall which makes an average of 9:44 per mile.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Getting there...

Beginners (including Mark, yay!) were on (2 + 1) x 5 tonight. OK, they ended up doing 7 and a half reps instead - I guess I won't be asked to choose the route again! Stumped for short routes near UEA I plumped for the one we did last week after beginners - last week it was free of kids hanging about, not so this week but there was no real grief. Obviously a touch long - will have to think for next week, although they will be running more then.

For a short, fast run after the session this week, we did the same route yet again! Time approx 17:30, so 8:45 min miles. Felt fast but just about sustainable for that distance. Not much chatting from me though!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Another week!

Birthday rest today :)

This week's plan:

Monday - beginners, quick run after
Tuesday - club run, 6-7 mi
Wednesday - swimming
Thursday - run during day (effort session cancelled for envelope stuffing, but meeting at lunch)
Friday - swim during day
Saturday - run
Sunday - bike

Saturday, October 6, 2007


Six and a half miles with Marie this morning - around UEA and back. Took 1:05 (including a couple of short stops and one chat with someone for a couple of minutes), so ~10 min miles, but I felt much more tired than I should have! Just need to keep plugging away, and I will get back to where I was... I hope...

Friday, October 5, 2007

Friday afternoon freshener

Any excuse to leave my desk... went out for the usual 4 mile round the block with Lorraine and Anita, back in just under 39 mins so not too slow. Good to get some fresh air - the weekend starts now :)

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Rest day

Two cramp episodes in two days led me to take today off and go for a curry instead. Much better...

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

More cramp!

Having a decent swim session, feeling more like a fish and less like a brick, but the annoying inner-thigh cramp struck, leaving me in agony, thankfully in the shallow end. It took several minutes to ease off, at which point I called it a night, too scared that it might return while I was in deeper water. Still, I was just glad to have got back in the pool.

I had to chuckle when stand-in coach Josh (I think) asked me whether I knew I rolled my hips a lot while swimming. The answer, that I'd been working on doing just that (a la Total Immersion) for a while now, fazed him a bit. Trying to swim dead flat was just weird, so I went back to rolling!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Could be worse

Okay, so my idea of short and slow didn't necessarily tally with everyone else's - had an OK run, marred by some cramp twinges (unusual for running) which meant I finished extremely slowly as every slight pointing of my toes (like springing off a kerb) resulted in a twinge and a stumble. But I was really pleased to cover the distance, and it looks like I might not be in quite as bad shape as I thought.

We did about 7.5 miles, out to Lakenham and back via the city and the Avenues. No idea of the time, being watchless still, but the initial pace was good (someone wondered out loud if we had a Kenyan pacemaker while we were cruising down Marston Lane), only slowed by me later on as I got a bit out of breath and then needed a loo stop (pubs are wonderful things). I started out with the rearmost pack, but lost them around Eaton and ran the rest with Granville and Marie, until the cramps got me on the Avenues.

Next time, more stretching and a gentler start!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Baby steps

A mile with the new beginners (no Mark), on 10 x 1 min run, 1 min walk, although I think my two at the back only did eight reps (struggling a bit). My watch is on its way back to Wiggle for a replacement (light not working) so it was a bit of guesswork towards the end when the others had headed off.

Finished with a quick 2 miles round the block with Sally, Hannah and Richard. Didn't feel as bad as I thought I might (hot, a bit breathless, and I got a stitch, but otherwise fine), so I'm hoping for a slow 6 miles or so tomorrow.