Saturday, 26 April 2014

First Naas Parkrun - Race report

Today I finally got around to running the Naas Parkrun and what a day I picked!  Considering that the weather has been glorious the last while it was just typical that it was cold, really windy and a bit showery this morning when I arrived at Naas racecourse.  Personally I'd much rather run in these conditions than the heat but I don't like to stand around in it so that bit was a bit miserable.

Physically I have been feeling much better the last couple of days so was ready to give the legs a bit of a test drive at speed (relatively speaking) so a timed 5k was perfect.  Just a few minutes after 9:30 and after a brief warm-up we were off.  I started fairly conservatively and let most of the field sprint off in front of me......if there is one running flaw I rarely suffer from it's the fast start!  

Had settled in nicely just before the 1k mark when misfortune struck slightly.  I spotted my untied (previously double knotted) left shoelace flapping about in the breeze.  Noooo!  I gave serious though to just leaving it but within a few steps the shoe was starting to loosen noticeably on my foot.  This was not good!  So what's a girl to do?  Well what I did was swear a bit and complain to a nearby fellow runner, jump off the edge of the path onto the grass and fumble with the laces until my sweaty paws managed to tie and then double knot (again!) the bloody things and then sprint like an eejit to try to make up for lost time.  Newsflash and spoiler alert...this was a terrible idea! 

So the next bit up to the halfway point was okay as adrenaline got me over it mostly but the last couple of kilometers were painful and I'd be lying if I didn't consider walking/having a lie down/crying for my mammy at least once.  In retrospect I'm very thankful that I knew a few people due to volunteering previously so the others shouting for me shamed me into not doing any of those things.  There may have been some foaming at the mouth and an attractively runny nose though!  
Finished in 24:01 which isn't a PB but I'll take that with the wind and my little shoe debacle.  Better to come I hope!
Me looking suspiciously happy.  Must have been the first lap!

Wednesday, 23 April 2014


I have a cold.  Boo!  Well I have in fact had it since last Friday but been in denial.  This is quite self defeating in that I usually get over a sniffle like this quite quickly, but because I've been a stubborn ass and run Saturday, Sunday, Monday and today while feeling a bit shite then it's hung around a bit longer.
Just did slow laps at the track tonight instead of the pyramid session the others were doing.  Will run easy tomorrow and take Friday off.  If it's not gone by Friday I'm resting until it is.  It is now written on the internet so I must obey!  Not long now til Limerick HM so need to get myself in order to at least be at the start line in one piece.

An outsider reading this could conclude that I behave in this idiotic way because I'm not lazy.  In fact I think the reason I'm afraid to take an extra day off is because I'm so terrified of my own innate laziness that I don't trust myself to stop! This despite years of consistent exercise.  Maybe I need to work on that anxiety a bit?

Saturday, 19 April 2014

4am update

So it's 4 am and I can't get back to sleep just now.  Might as well summarise the rest of the weeks running! 

Thursday was yet another easy run fail courtesy of yours truly. I was chatting to A who is quite a bit faster than me and decided to head off with her. Over 9k later, most of it under 8 min/mile pace on the curraghs rolling hills, I was toast!

At least I know all the consistent training is starting to show in my pace at shorter distances. I have no idea how that will tell in Limerick a few weeks from now. Do I go with a pace group? If so which one? 

My training for this half has been really non specific.  My long run today was all over the place and my stomach was iffy so was glad just to get back. Hope that doesn't happen on the day!  Didn't fuel on the run so it wasn't anything I ate out there.

The weather was glorious here today so we decided to go for a "spin" in the car with my parents. Headed for Cong but took a scenic route to get there so we could take in more lake views. It was gorgeous and a great way to get the teens outside before they become shut ins!

Also had a very delicious baked berry cheesecake at The Hungry Monk café in Cong.  Yum!

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Missing something

It's funny but I really really wanted a cigarette today.  Proper, mouthwatering, deep-breathing, fantasy type craving.  There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to how or when these feelings hit me.  It's been almost two and a half years now so you think it should have left me by now?

Oh well! At least I'm only craving smokes and not the ex!

Nice six miler on the Curragh sorted me out either way.

Heading west of the Shannon to visit the parents for the weekend so no running tomorrow.   My plan is a few easy miles on Saturday and hopefully a fourteen miler on Sunday. Kind of looking forward to it!

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Recovery run? Ha! Who needs 'em!

Me.  I need them!  Could have really done with an easy run on Monday after bargaining like mad with my body the day before to force it over the finish line.  I sort of feel like I shortchanged it with the last few days shenanigans.

I should have known when I heard a group from the club were meeting to run the new course of the planned Carers 10k on Monday evening that they weren't going to run it at 10min/mile pace.  Not going to happen!

I think a lot of the faster runners probably ran it in about 47 minutes while chatting and talking throughout. Meanwhile myself and T are at a similar level (depending on the day!) and dragged each other through for a 51 minute hilly 10k which I'm pretty sure is a couple of minutes under what my 10k PB was last year.  My legs feeling very heavy by the end.

Well at least tomorrow is a rest day I said to myself on Monday evening........

But then I woke up early and the sun was shining and the forecast was good for the rest of the day.  Plans to do a spring clean of the apartment were shelved and I decided to take advantage of the glorious weather and the kiddos Easter break.
Before they knew they were awake I had them in the car and off to Glendalough for a lovely three hour plus ramble.  Lets just say it was a bit hilly.

My eldest came home and proceeded to sleep for fourteen hours so it may have been a bit more physically arduous than I had planned for a rest day!

I sort of knew I had taken the piss out of my poor old legs by yesterday evening and tried to head the muscle aches off at the pass with lots of foam rolling and yoga.  This was moderately successful in that I could walk today.
Strictly speaking I should be at the track by now but I've taken an executive decision to skip this one.  In all fairness if I went tonight I would deserve to be out for a month injured!

Monday, 14 April 2014

Race recap - Kildare Novice Road Race

So I did my first and last county novice road race yesterday.  Last because we got 2nd team overall (Yay!) so will no longer be eligible as a novice at county level (Boo!)

The race was starting in Clongowes and was over 3km which is a distance I've never raced before.  To say I was nervous about pacing was an understatement especially considering that I'm really not speedy over shorter distances and on the track. In fact the other girls on the team consistently kick my ass on the track every single week so my main priority was not to let the team down and come in ages after everyone else. We only had four on the team too so every one of us were going to count for the team total pressure like!!!

I have a really bad habit of getting very worked up before races so luckily I had a few distractions on my way to the race to keep my mind off it.  My plan had been to leave about 9:15 to be there about 9:40 with plenty of time to get warmed up etc before the race.  Shortly before I was going to leave the house a friend M sent a message to ask if I wanted to get a lift down with her and her adorable kiddos.  Why not! Says I....queue ominous music!

Well when baby number 1 projectile vomited half-way there I thought maybe that was why not?  The poor thing was promptly cleaned up and popped back in the car with very little ceremony so M could deposit me at the venue just after 10.
This is when we found out the start line was a good mile down the road.  Eeek! By the time we arrived at the start line I was thoroughly warmed up and within about 5 minutes we were off with no time to get nervous or psyche myself out.

Off I set trying to keep my breathing under control but stay in the top third of the field with the other girls in sight.  I was breathing hard right from the start but tried to relax and not think too far ahead and just concentrate on the person in front of me.  Forget the watch....there was no time to be looking at that in this race.

Before I knew it we were at the 2k mark and that's when things really got tough.  At that point you could see the gates of Clongowes and it felt like you should be almost there but when you get through those gates it's a long long way to the finish line!
I was definitely kept going only by keeping the other green jerseys right in front of me and knowing there weren't that many others ahead of us.  Couldn't let the team down by slowing down although there were definitely a few moments where I thought I might lose my breakfast (TMI?)  Kind of knew how the baby felt at that point!

Finally I crossed the line.  One of the lovely organisers was talking to me trying to get me to unpin my number but my hands weren't really working.  I was a mess!  But so proud because I know I couldn't have run a second faster than I did out there and what else can you ask of yourself really?  I finished in 12:58 which I was really happy with.  I can't see me finishing a 5k at that pace yet but it does give me hope to get down in the 22 somethings sometime this year.  Maybe after the half in Limerick I'll run a Parkrun hard?

The club had a fantastic day with the men's team winning 2nd and 3rd men and 1st team overall and the masters men winning bronze in the All-Ireland road relays in Raheny.  Not bad for a small club.
Adult beverages may have been consumed in celebration but was still home by midnight like the good girl I am!

Man that was a long post on a short race!

Hmmm.....found this post down the back of the couch

* Note to self....make sure to press publish not save.

Lets go back in time to last Monday........

Well I should have known better and got out for a run this morning while the sun shone!
It was lashing this evening as I left the house so I got halfway to the curragh and turned back. Lame I know! In my defense I only had a recovery run on the schedule today as I ended up doing my 12 miler yesterday afternoon.  Consequently I couldn't have been less interested in going out getting frozen and soaked for the sake of a few miles.  I came home, did some dynamic stretches and strengthening exercises for the hips followed by 30 minutes of lunges, squats, planks etc until I had a nice sweat worked up.  I'm so unmotivated to do this stuff normally that I sort of need it to be raining before I'll do it so silver lining right there!!

After my turn helping out at Parkrun on Saturday I was unable to summon up the motivation to do my long run in horrible weather and with visitors expected in a few hours.  So a mildly hungover Sunday long run it was!  Went much better than I deserved considering.

Thursday, 3 April 2014

A good weeks running

I'm definitely feeling back in the swing of things here.  While last week was good in that I was consistently running I was also taking multiple naps per day (when schedule allowed) and was generally wiped by days end.  This week I've had energy to burn, which is great as I feel like that sort of gives me the green light to up my mileage a bit.  Doesn't it?

Also I've felt this week has had more quality miles as well as just quantity.

  • Monday: Tempo run.  8 miles with 5 at threshold pace.  Was hoping that would be about 8:15 but ended up being neared to 8:30.  I thought straight uphill and into a headwind would be fine.  What? Anyway I worked my ass off for every single one of those miles so I don't care what the garmin says. This was followed by a steak dinner with my visiting parents and then a 2.5 mile walk to get rid of the meat sweats.
  • Tuesday: Rest. Or two walks (am and pm) plus some strength work.  It was sunny....definitely a two walk day.
  • Wednesday: Pyramid interval session at the track.  Fun!  No really....I think I'm starting to like the track. 
  • Thursday: 6 miles with the club.  9 minute miles so faster than I would like for a recovery run but comfortable enough.  Will make up for it with extra slow long run miles. 
Pretty good so far!  

The plan is something short tomorrow 5-7 depending on weather and then long Saturday.  Hoping for 12 miles.  I have visitors this weekend so taking Sunday as a rest day which is good as I'm over-scheduled as hell the following weekend....but in a good way.  Time with new friends, time with my kids and a road race with the club.  Eek!