This week has been mainly about my Round the clock challenge - each hour dictates how far you run - 1pm=1km, 2pm=2km well you get the idea.
It has been interesting working out which order to do the runs in, and as I write this I still have 4k, 10k and 12k to do.
On Thursday night I arrange to run with two friends and we actually ran the official Cardiff 10K route. As we all have a connection with the organising of the race it seemed appropriate.
To fit in with Round the clock, we set off at 6pm so I could measure the 6km time, and then complete the rest of the 10k course.
Whilst I was setting the pace, the others (more experienced runners) were making sure I was being challenged. I normally run around 11:45/mile but it was clear the pace was quicker.
At the 5K split I had already taken 2 minutes off my 5K PB running at 10.04/mile. The second 5K was quicker, a negative split and a pace of 9.43/mile.
Whats more I had taken 8 minutes off my 10K PB. I had my MoRun T shirt on - clearly it is good for faster running.
I could hardly walk but what a feeling. A big thank you to Danielle and david for getting me around the course and helping to push me.
With the extra running also means extra miles and I have now recieved my 200 Mile postcard from the WCP Challenge.
The week ahead gives me 3 more runs to do - I am aiming for Run around the Clock to be finished in July. I have already done over 100 miles running and walking this month and will be close 100 miles of running only which would be a massive achievement.
To aid me I have been trainer shopping, I spent a happy hour with people from MOTI and have some new Brooks Ghost 12 for the next part of my journey.
Look what arrived today, no excuse now but to get out and do some more miles as part of my Wales Coastal Path Virtual Challenge.
4 more miles so far and I conquered my first 'real' hill - I can now run up Rhydypenau.
I spoke with the MoRunning people and they are helping me with my challenge and I have linked with their virtual run for fundraising.
If you can make a donation please visit - www.justgiving.com/fundraising/870miles
Today was not about time, but it was about how far I can go at my ploddy pace.
I made the decision to warm up with a walk down the hill, and then run on as much flat as I could.
The weather was pretty warm again, which was nice and being the start of the week the streets were quieter again.
Having done 6.5 on Saturday, I though 7k would be a good goal, and I thought the route I chose would be around that distance turned out I was a bit short, but more of that in a bit
The Walkers and other runners were on the whole good with their social distancing, bar one lot who insisted on walking and filling up the pavement - what is wrong with people!!
I spotted by Roath Park lake a fantastic Runner, at present a lot of the road is coned off to allow for social distancing, and many of the cones had been knocked over. This amazing guy was walking and putting each of them back correctly - hero. I made sure to thank him for his work.
I took some water with me today, partly as it was warm and also so I could have some water when I finished - However, carrying the water battle really annoyed me - so I will need to look at other options.
I have taken a photo each time I get to the furthest point away from my house - just as a record of where I have been. Todays photo wasn't quite as picturesque as I intended (lamp lamppost) but I was also trying to do it without stopping.
As I was nearing my target finish spot I noticed I was under 7k - well nothing for it I would just need to keep going. The only issue being we now need to go up hill.......
So off I set, and sailed passed the 7k - in fact I think had it been a little earlier in the run I probably would have gone all the way up the hill.
Today I tried out a new route, anything to stay away from the hill at the end of my route in the hope of saving my knees.
Linking up part 1
I remembered my friend telling me about a route he used and as he lives quite close I thought I'd reach out and ask him about it.
It was nice to have a quick catch up and touch base, turns out he hasn't been running for a while so maybe my efforts will encourage him as well.
New route stored off I went, with Cap on, and today with a training buddy, my wife, who is also trying Couch to 5K.
The new route is definitely less hilly and whilst we only walked at pace, I still managed 45.21 plus we talked as we walked and it was nice to have some company.
Linking up part 2
I have been making a note of my training using Apple products, and I remembered that back last year it was a case of choosing either the Apple workout or Strava to record things.
However, in the time of my injury it looks like Strava and Apple are now friends so when you record your workout via Apple, it automatically lets Strava know....
There is a few settings to do but a very helpful YouTube man sorted that for me.
So I am back in the world of Strava as well.
Physical Health and Mental health are important at the best of times but even more so as we all deal with whatever level of isolation/lockdown we are living with. Being able to get out of the house and walk/jog/run even for 45 minutes helps me to feel better.
Also taking time to talk to other or be together, even if it is virtually, can help people to feel connected
It really is more important than ever to check in with friends and family. You can make a real difference to peoples lives.
There is still time to be part of Movembers Miles for Mates - here is the link
Three Walk/Runs in and the time is coming down. today we knocked a further 2 minutes off so down to 40:51 now for 5K.
I spoke to Kerrie Aldridge, Marathon Runner, the other day and she gave me some great advice. To build up slowly, only go out every third day, I am watching my knees and noticing every ache in them.
I am making sure I keep to Kerrie's advice and not over doing things. I am finding I am able to run for a bit longer than walk which is good.
One thing I will need to do is look at my route, At present the main part of my last kilometre is up hill. this isn't great for my head, or legs at that point, so I will have a look on Strava to see what other routes are around.
The other rookie mistake today was what I was wearing. For the past few months the only walking I have done has been in normal shorts, so this morning I put on my running one, I felt it was important to be committed with my kit as well.
However, these shorts , whilst they have pockets, don't work for your phone. I tried holding the phone in my hand and nearly dropped it a few times. I improvised, pushed yup the sleeve on my long sleeve top and slid the phone in trapping it near my elbow.
Only issue then was half way around my long-sleeve top was making me way too warm
Note to self - phone holder - which was in the cupboard back at home.
MILES FOR MATES
Don't forget there is still time to be part of the Movember Miles for Mates - sign up here - thefixevents.com/movembers-miles-for-mates
Being physically distanced is the best weapon against COVID-19 for now but that doesn’t mean you have to disconnect socially. Physical activity is one of the best things you can do for your mental health
Be kind to your knees, you'll miss them when they're gone
So its not been the best of weeks, as I mentioned when I wrote last week, my knee wasn't feeling too great. Whats more the pain didn't happen when I was running, but when I stood up after writing my blog.
The pain was sharp and mainly on the inside of my right knee. I did all the things I know to do, rest, ice, elevate.
By Friday there was no improvement, then on Saturday I was really having difficulty walking.
I was looking forward to seeing Paul Weller on Sunday evening and saw that it was not a seated gig. I knew I would need some support if I was standing for a few hours so went and got some help from the pharmacy and ended up with a knee brace. Following some friendly medical advice, on Monday I made an appointment to get the knee looked at.
Swelling had gone down a bit but still sharp pain - just to remind me, every now and then.
Today the doctor had a good look, manipulated my knee in a variety of directions and then announced - 'It looks like you have sheared your cartilage!'
We talked about how it could have happened and how as you get older your cartilage becomes more brittle.
The up shot of all of this is - 2 weeks of rest, definitely no running, to see if the pain improves and the swelling goes down. If no improvement then an MRI and maybe a knee washout.....
So this clearly will put training back a bit.
On a plus side I can recommend the Boots own brand knee brace. Very comfortable.
Look what arrived today (thanks Ben), I'm thinking of getting this added to my training top.
It has given me a bit of a boost today as I have been in pain since yesterday.
Surprisingly the pain in my knee didn't happen when I was running, but I think it did happen when I stood up after writing my blog!
I know the irony is not lost on me.
Anyway it has put pay to me doing any more running for a few days, which judging by the weather forecast may not be a bad thing. Running in the dry weather is one thing but running in the heat.
I know I can do a 5k without stopping which was my goal by the end of June, next main goal is to complete 10K.
Once the knee is feeling better I will be looking for some training partners, I am looking at parkrun as an option but would also like to have some friends who just want a plod around the park to join me. I'll keep you posted on some dates.
In a week where parts of the country appear to have had more than a months rain in 24 hours, and some people seem to be collecting wood to build a boat and animals (2 of each) to go on board with them, it seems strange that most of this week I have been speaking to people about Hydration.
The question has been - How much water do you drink in a day?
It seems there is a lot of information in general health about what to eat, how much to exercise, but very little about hydration.
Now I appreciate that it can be different for an individual, and will also depend on how much exercise you do, and if you have any medical conditions....but then the amount you eat can also change due to personal factors.
Guidelines of 6 to 8 glasses a day is talked about, most of the people I spoke to said around 2 litres a day, I know for me I am supposed to drink 3.
This then got me thinking about what hydration do people have when running, and how do you get your hydration? I am finding that I am feeling thirsty whilst running, but I know the distance I am currently doing I should be able to do without the need to carry fluids.
But as the distance increases what do people advise?
Seems like an obvious thing to say, but you do need to be able to see when running or walking for that matter. So when running yesterday it was fun to guess where I was as my glasses bounced up and down in front of my eyes.
At first it was amusing but as time went on and a little bit of perspiration gathered on my nose, the bouncing glasses were also slipping down.
I have often wondered about people who have 'glasses bands', often seen on rather trendy surfer types, I am neither of these. But I can now see the practicality of them.
Being able to anchor glasses to my head and not have to battle with an ever moving world will be a bonus.
Good news the online price of a band was under £5 including delivery....I am hopeful that despite the very reasonable price it will still do the job - report to follow.
On a separate note, I have heard, on the grapevine, that entry for next years VLM closed with 457, 861 entries and as they only allow around 40,000 runners my odds of a place are still slim.
This journey is not all about VLM, which is very daunting, I will continue now to just take each day as it comes and 1small-step forward.
First trip out with the new shoes and happy to report no issues - wish I could say the same for technology which failed to publish today’s blog, so here we go again.
Decided to try out the new shoes in the same 2 mile course as earlier in the week, and also added in a walk then jog element. I have heard that running a lamp post then walking a lamp post is a good place to start so off I set.
Note To Self - check where the next lamp post is before you head off, not all lamp post are equally spaced.
Despite the random spacing, managed to knock a further 5 minutes off my 2 mile time, I believe this is a new PB (I’m all over this running jargon).
Discussion in the office today was about my new shoes and how best to lace them up. Secretly I think my colleagues want to be part of the blog, but I told them they would need blog names- Sam2.0 (double marathon runner) and Angel, discussed using the extra holes on the shoes for better grip around the foot. This is definitely a game changer.
Have decided that some sort of running top will be my next investment, running in a hoody was too warm tonight.
After 24 years of helping others to achieve their running goals - it is now my time.