Saturday, 31 May 2014

Runstreak Day #182 - 6 months of running... and a 5k PB! YAY!

My runstreak hit 6 months old today!!!  Half a year of running every single day.  Jeepers creepers!  :o

Also managed parkrun this morning... and... BOASTY MOMENT WARNING!!!... got a new parkrun PB of 24:03 (which according to my Garmin was my best 5k at 23:45 which is ace!).  9th female, 1st in my age group!  WOOOO HOOOOO!!!

At the start of my runstreak I'd never run with anyone else.  I could manage 5k in 30 minutes-ish.  I'd never run further than about 7k.  I wouldn't have described myself as a runner.  I'd never run more than two days in a row.

All of those things I've either now done or no longer feel about myself.  It's amazing what running every day can do for your self-confidence.  No matter what else happens in any given day, I know that I'll have done at least one thing that's worthwhile because I'll have been for a run.  I know as a mum you do lots of things that are worthwhile... but doing something just for yourself can be a scarce beastie!!

I wonder if people look at me and think 'she's a serious runner'?  I wonder if other women who are starting out running, just as I was just over a year ago, think 'I could never be *that* runner?  But they don't know where I've come from with this.  How many miles I've run to get even to this point with my running.  They didn't see the obese woman starting to run in January last year.  They don't know I'm not a serious runner... I'm as surprised as anyone to discover that I love running.  I'm improving.  I get some space and a dose of freedom every day.  I get to run and have no-one need me for just a short while each day.  Even if it is hard work!!

Anyone fancy joining me with a celebratory cuppa?  :D

*happy dances to the kettle*

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.15 mi
Time:24:03
Moving Time:24:03
Elapsed Time:24:03
Avg Pace:7:39 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:7:39 min/mi
Best Pace:5:42 min/mi

Friday, 30 May 2014

Runstreak Day #181 - a run to keep the streak going

The thing I've learned about run streaking is that not every day is going to be a 'woooo hooo that was AWESOME!!!' day.  Some days you run because you know that the next day will be easier, not because today's run is going to be anything particularly special.  And that's okay.  You get over those days, you take what you can from them... and you let them go.  Yes, you could just say 'today is the day that I stop', but I don't want it to be like that.  I want to make a decision that it's the right day to stop rather than I just felt a bit tired and couldn't be bothered!

So.. this evening's run was a bit like that.  I'd planned to go for a run when I got home from work - but forgot that my husband was off out which meant I was on kiddie duty.  Which is absolutely fine, it just makes everything that bit more of a juggle.  Which it was!  I persuaded them to get on their bikes and come with me.  But my run involved a fair bit of waiting around... either for my daughter to catch up... or for me to try to explain where we were going to my son who just wanted to vanish off into the distance!

It was also a lot hillier than I'd intended as I didn't have the car which could fit the kids' bikes in the back.  So my 'I'll go for an easy flat run after work' turned into 'I'll go for a stop starty quicker than I'd like hilly run' run instead!

Until tomorrow...

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:2.15 mi
Time:17:34
Moving Time:17:36
Elapsed Time:27:36
Avg Pace:8:10 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:11 min/mi
Best Pace:5:56 min/mi

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Runstreak Day #180 - hills again...

*darts commentator voice*
One hundred and eighty!!!!!! 
Dooo be doooooo... 20 runs until I make it to 200 days straight! And in just a few days I'll have been doing this crazy runstreak thing for a whole half a year. Sheer madness. Also crackers is the fact that I'm not bored of running and I love it more than when I started. 
Doesn't mean I always make sensible decisions when it comes to picking a route. Today's run was going to be a flat one after yesterday's hillier than a hilly thing run. But when I came to it, I was too lazy to get in the car to drive somewhere flatter so ended up with another hilly run. Which is both lazy AND stupid. And requires a whole heap of effort to get up the hills.
Fortunately, Nottingham always has a way of motivating you to get your legs moving up a hill. Whether that's because someone has stopped their car to watch you run up a hill. Or you've had someone heckle you as you run past a bus stop. Or, as in tonight, you have to run past a gang of dope smoking idiots halfway up the hill... and you mildly cack yourself as you realise you're going to have to run through the middle of them and hope against hope that your legs don't conk out. It really is the city that likes to give a runner motivation to keep on running. 
3 hilly miles. I have tea. All is well.
*happy dances off to bed*

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.03 mi
Time:24:56
Moving Time:24:57
Elapsed Time:29:37
Avg Pace:8:13 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:13 min/mi
Best Pace:6:22 min/mi

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Runstreak Day #179 - the day of the 500th mile run...

When I wake up, well I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the girl who's running straight past you
When I go out, yeah I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the girl who'll run the next day too
If I pass drunks, well I know they'll smell of wee
And they'll probably try to leer at me some too
And if I ever, stay at home instead of running
I'll be out and run before the night is through.

Oh, I would run 500 miles
And I would run 500 more
Just to be the girl who ran a thousand miles
To fall down on the floor

When I'm walking, yeah, I know it's far too slow
I'm gonna be the girl who runs ahead of you
And when the money, comes in for the work I do
I'll enter races and buy kit and running shoes.
When I come home (sweaty come home), oh I know I'm gonna shower
And gasp 'where's my cup of tea?' out loud to you
And if I grow old, well, I may have wrecked my knees
I'm gonna make sure that I wreck my ankles too

Oh, I would run 500 miles
And I would run 500 more
Just to be the girl who ran a thousand miles
To fall down on the floor

When I'm lonely, well I'll find a nice park run
I'm gonna be the girl who'll run with others too
And when I'm steaming, and I'm feeling trapped and angry
I'll just escape and find some hills and run them too.
When I go out (and I go out), well I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be outside and leave the kids with you.
When I come home (yeah, I'll come home), oh I know I'm gonna be
I'm gonna be the girl who's sparkly, fresh and new
I'm gonna be the girl who'll definitely need the loo.

Oh, I would run 500 miles
And I would run 500 more
Just to be the girl who ran a thousand miles
To fall down on the floor.

(this song is in my head... and now it's in yours...)

Today I ran my 500th mile of the year!  179 days into my runstreak... and ran more hills than I'd like to think about.

Get in!

I declare...

TEA!  AND HAPPY DANCING!!  :D

*happy dances*

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.63 mi
Time:30:13
Moving Time:30:15
Elapsed Time:35:47
Avg Pace:8:20 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:20 min/mi
Best Pace:4:59 min/mi

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Runstreak Day #178 - quick tootle to save my stubbed toe from hurting!

Day 178... just a little run this evening... 2.5 mile flat pootle round the nearby country park.  Which I lazily drove to because I couldn't stand the thought of running down a hill towards it and hurting the toe I stubbed yesterday!

It was kinda nice.  Only saw one other person out because it was raining and when it rains, everyone disappears.  Everyone other than me and 'silent dog walking bloke'.  Which suited me fine.  I'm at the point where I can't make any excuse about the weather as a reason not to go running and since I've run in all sorts of weathers, and survived all of them... I kinda don't mind any of them.  Well, apart from the wind.  That sucks badly.  And hail.  That's rubbish.  And snow's crap too.  Sleet's not particularly nice either... not too keen on it being too hot.  Fog's a bit grim.  And sleet's slippy and horrible...

Okay... so basically I can cope with a bit of rain is what I'm saying.

500 calorie fasting day today... 7:55 mins/mile average pace... earned my cuppa...

And a bath to soak my poor stubbed toe!  Someone else will have to do the happy dancing.  My feet are up now!

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:2.42 mi
Time:19:12
Avg Pace:7:55 min/mi
Best Pace:5:48 min/mi

Monday, 26 May 2014

Runstreak Day #177 - stubbed toes and thinking about form

You know you're a runner when...

You stub your toe so badly it bleeds and your very first thought (other than the swearing!) is 'at least I got my run out of the way'.

Which is why I'm sitting, with my feet up, toe throbbing... but glad that I went for a rainy run earlier this evening!  Pretty hilly too and I went with my littlest coming along, riding his bike.  He had energy to burn so needed to be outdoors.  I just fancied running up some hills (I know!  I actually *wanted* to run up hills?!?!  What is *wrong* with me?!?!!!)... so combined 'trying to exhaust an 8 year old' with hills.  Which worked pretty well!

Not an especially long run tonight - just 5k - but sometimes that's all you need, isn't it?  8 minute miles with stupid steep hills is fine by me!

I was thinking a bit about runstreaking today.  If nothing else, it sure makes you concentrate on your form.  You don't want to injure yourself so you can't continue... yet you want to carry on improving so you REALLY have to pay attention to what you're doing.  While I'm running, I'm counting to see what my breathing's doing compared to my strides.  When I'm running uphill, I'm making sure I'm up on my toes and using my arms.  Running downhill, I run through the hill rather than coasting downwards.  I'm thinking about feeling light on my feet rather than ploddy.  It's kinda hypnotic!

I would *never* have thought that would be the result of running every day.  Rather than taking it for granted, you have to treat running with even more respect.  Weird, huh?

And then, after all that thought and care... I go and stub my poxy toe en route to sorting my over-excited kids out at bedtime.  Aaaaaaargh!!!

Ah well, Day 178 may involve a bit of hobbling, but it's definitely happening!

Cuppa?

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:2.92 mi
Time:23:27
Avg Pace:8:02 min/mi
Moving Time:23:24
Elapsed Time:36:28
Avg Pace:8:02 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:01 min/mi
Best Pace:5:28 min/mi

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Runstreak Day #176 - long runs, conversational pace and company

So, today was Day 176 of my runstreak and it was bloomin' ace!

Thanks to Facebook, I've got to know a fair few other Notts-based runners and sparked our own Notts Women Runners group on Facebook where we arrange to meet up with others in our area for a run.  Well, today's run was with a brilliant member of the group who was an absolute pleasure to run with.

Yet again, I was reminded of all the lovely things about running.  We'd got a nice flat route (hooray for running near the River Trent!), the weather was sparkly and delicious, the scenery was pretty, it wasn't too muddy... we didn't get attacked by flies.... and we were out there just enjoying the freedom.  Since we both kept an eye our pace we did 7 and a bit relaxed miles, with legs that weren't collapsing with tiredness at the end.  Flippin' lovely!  Even a spot of aeroplane arms-ing too (earning myself a beep from a passing car *chuckle*).  YAY!

I have now earned my roast dinner and I am currently wearing my smug shorts.  My legs may still be pasty white, but for the first time in well over a decade I've been brave enough to brave shorts.  Not even running shorts or nuffink.  Grown up girl 'get yer legs out' shorts!  Running does wonders for toning your legs!!

Hooray for company!  Hooray for lovely runners!  Hooray for lovely weather.  Hooray for everything!!!

Swimming this morning... running this afternoon... and feeling brilliant the rest of the day!!  If anyone's at the start of C25K and wondering if it's worth it... I wish I could bottle days like today and share them with you.  Running's ace!

*happy dances off to make another well-earned cuppa*

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:7.19 mi
Time:1:06:46
Avg Pace:9:17 min/mi


Moving Time:1:06:47
Elapsed Time:1:10:16
Avg Pace:9:17 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:9:17 min/mi
Best Pace:5:09 min/mi

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Runstreak Day #175 - parkrun day

175 days in the bag
175 days...
One hundred and seventy five...
Blimey that's a lot of days!
And today's run reminded me of lots of things I've discovered I love about running over those past 175 days.
1. The 'yay' moment of getting a decent time (24:31 for today's parkrun - at the start of runstreaking it was over 30 mins for a 5k)
2. The sense of community as everyone at Colwick parkrun remembered Nikki Herbison (http://www.parkrun.org.uk/rushcliffe/news/2014/05/20/parkrun-regrets-to-announce-the-death-of-nikki-herbison/) who collapsed at last week's parkrun in nearby Rushcliffe, silently giving a minute's applause in her memory and dedicating the run to her. She was my age. With two children like me. Life can be far too short. She was seizing the moment as is everyone at every parkrun. I felt terribly sad for her family as all the parkrunners held her in their thoughts.
3. The fact that another runner paced me today for no other reason that he wanted to offer some support to another runner
4. Seeing someone I know doing her run director thing and feeling proud to know her - I wouldn't have got to know anyone if I'd just kept running as a completely solitary activity
5. Carrying with me the words someone shared with me the other day about self-belief and no longer being a novice... running helps to remove the limits you impose on yourself when with just a little push, you can do that little bit more
6. That my children see running as a normal thing (when I came home, they just asked how my run was and whether I was going for another run later!) - being active is an everyday activity and that's brilliant for them to know
7. I don't need music to run. I don't feel the need to block out the world when I'm running any more, nor do I need it to set my pace. It's a choice to listen or not, not a necessity to keep me going.
8. It was rainy and windy this morning, but it didn't matter in the slightest. With running you know you'll be warm in a minute or two, so the weather can do whatever it wants.
9. I think I'm starting to get over my fear of running with other people!
10. I wore shorts because they were practical and comfortable... and worrying about what people would think of my legs didn't come into my head.
175 days of getting out there every day. Can't imagine how many celebratory cups of tea I've had. But there's always room for one more! 
*happy dances*
PS Thank you to you all for happy dancing and tea drinking with me over the past 175 days... shall we see if I can eek it out to 200?

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.11 mi
Time:24:34
Avg Pace:7:54 min/mi
Moving Time:24:33
Elapsed Time:24:34
Avg Pace:7:54 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:7:54 min/mi
Best Pace:6:05 min/mi

Friday, 23 May 2014

Runstreak Day #174 - back to the hills

Had a bit of a dither about where I fancied running this evening.  Didn't quite know until I left the house.  It's always a bit dicey running on a Friday night - you have to plan your route to avoid going past pubs and getting heckled!

So... I went outta the door... decided randomly to turn right and run up the hill... because there would be no-one in the park as I cut up and across it.  Then down the stupidly steep other side and along the railway line cycleway... again... because there would be no-one about.  I listened to music this evening but had it turned wa-a-a-a-a-y down and I think my days of running with music are numbered.  Tonight, however, I fancied it because I just wanted to listen to something and not have to think about anything at all.

Well, I did think about something.  I thought about a comment left on one of my blogs by someone yesterday after I'd said I ran like a snail.  They said this:

'All I can say to you is concentrate on your mind. This is your biggest enemy. You keep on telling yourself that you are not good enough! Bollocks! THat is not so! Start believing that you can be as good as everyone else!! In fact, you ARE!!
You are as good, if not better. You are no longer a novice! Did you know that? Just look around - surely there must be new people who only started training after you did! Well, let me tell you, they look at you with admiration and think: if only I could be as good as that lady . . .
I think your last hurdle, and a big one at that, is to conquer your mind, your feelings of ineptness. From my point of view, looking towards you and what you have achieved - I see somebody far superior than most human beings.
 I have had my fair share of struggles, and looking at your determination, willpower and daily dedication to succeed, to overcome . . . wow! for this you have earned a gold medal, even more in what you have achieved. Please, shake off this cloak of ineptitude, unworthiness, you are more than a conqueror, a winner.
I salute you and I hope that you will soon recognize the inner person, the real you, that you are!'

What an amazing, thoughtful comment to have made.  I need to find a way to silence the voice that tells me I'm not good enough.  That I can't do it.  That I'm too slow.  Can't keep going.  Can't keep up.

That voice seriously needs to bog off.  I've managed to run every single day for 174 days.  I'm going to think about how to do that while I'm running.

The answer always comes when I run.

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:2.99 mi
Time:24:51
Avg Pace:8:18 min/mi


Moving Time:24:51
Elapsed Time:26:01
Avg Pace:8:18 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:18 min/mi
Best Pace:6:20 min/mi

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Runstreak Day #173 - running clubs and intervals

Day 173 of my runstreak and today was another first - first time of having a go running with a running club and was very grateful to a running friend for meeting me there.

Not least that knowing we'd arranged to meet meant that I couldn't chicken out even though every single bit of me, from hair to toenails, wanted to! The torrential rain and wind provided me with the perfect excuse not to bother... but curses to the runstreak, because I've run in worse and crap weather has always turned out to be no reason to duck out of running.

So... given that I'm writing this now... I obviously survived!

Hooray!

Am doubting the sanity of having gone along on a 500 calorie fasting day as I was definitely feeling the 'no fuel in the tank' feeling. But, it was important to me not to be a big baby and use that as an excuse. As expected, I ran like a snail, but at least I gave it a go. Sometimes that's the important thing, isn't it? Just making yourself get out there.

I will conquer my fear of running with other people!

Another day done and another cuppa may well be in order. Kettle's on... anyone else want one?

*happy dances into the kitchen*

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:5.74 mi
Time:46:43
Avg Pace:8:08 min/mi
Time:46:43
Moving Time:46:44
Elapsed Time:53:37
Avg Pace:8:08 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:08 min/mi
Best Pace:4:06 min/mi

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Runstreak Day #172 - the stop-starty-fit-it-in-the-gap run...

Today's run was a 'not sure if I have time to fit in a run' run... and turned out to be a stop starty affair as I ran with my daughter coming along on her bike.

In between her asking how much further it was to go, which was the shortest route and trying to get her to wear the right number of layers of clothing (not very many being the right answer, not the leggings, long sleeve top, dungaree dress and socks she had on!)... it was pretty pleasant.  Tried a different route.  Didn't get attacked by flies (hooray!).  Sweated up a storm (nice).  And got out there.  Fitting in a run in the sliver of time between getting home from work and going out with friends.

It occurred to me when I was running this evening that I haven't run listening to music for a while.  Not sure what the reason is other than I'm either with one of the kids or I just don't fancy it.  Which is weird because during the winter months I liked feeling cosily contained with my music and my running.  Now, it doesn't seem quite so necessary.

Anyhoo... I did it.  Came home with a sweaty beetroot face.  Showered and changed to go out.  Still with massive red face to compliment my red dress.  Fancy.  ;o)

Haven't even had a celebratory cuppa.  That's what you get with a shoehorn run.  Just no time to do anything very much... but there's always time for a run!

Geeky stats stuff

  • 4.4mi
    Distance
  •  
  • 34:51
     Moving Time
  •  
  • 7:58/mi

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Runstreak Day #171 - FLIES!!!!

The weather was supposed to be all kinds of crazy today. Instead it was okay. A bit of rain overnight then nothing much during the day. In fact, I doubted that it was going to bucket with rain... until I went for a run with my littlest coming along with me on his bike. And *then* it decided to start raining. Well, whatever the meteorological equivalent is of essentially tipping a bucket of water over both of us and drenching us within seconds. Running in the rain is okay... once you're wet, you're wet. And it was fine for the first mile or so.  Fun almost.

What wasn't so okay was that once the rain has stopped the flies were unleashed. LOADS of the damn things. They got in my eyes. I choked on them. My hair. My face. URGH!!!

In fact, by the time it came to running back to the car, my speed had increased to a panicky 'must escape' pace and it was bloomin' hideous!  I hadn't even got my sunglasses on to protect my eyes because it had been raining when I started out.  So I'm there, squinty eyed, breathing in some random nose / almost close-mouthed way... going at full pelt just to get away from the clouds of flies which, by now, seem to be absolutely everywhere.  At one point I think it's started pouring again... but it hasn't.  It's just loads and loads of flies raining down on me.  With relief, I get back to the car, almost snagged in a bramble as I go, but I don't care... I just want it to be over.

Picture the scene.  I've just finished my most fly infested run ever.  I'm waiting for my son... dry retching by the car.  I'm wet.  There are flies in my eyes and my eyes are streaming.  There are flies in my hair.  I'm muddy.  Sweating.  When my son gets back to the car and I'm loading his bike into the back, some how I manage to cut my thumb.

Bleeding.  Eyes red and watering profusely.  Coughing.  Filthy.  Soaked to the skin.  Losing my rag with the damn flies.

Yet at no point does my brain go 'running sucks, let's not do that again'.

Go figure.  :o)

Geeky stats stuff


Monday, 19 May 2014

Runstreak Day #170 - first go at trail running...

Working from home today so, despite my best intentions to go for a run first thing, I ended up going for a run at lunchtime.  Because it's so warm, I had the brilliant idea to try something new and go for a run in Sherwood Forest which is nearby and - theoretically - nice and cool.  It's shady.  It's quiet.  The routes are pretty.  And because I've not been there for a run before, it seemed like a fun 'let's explore' kinda thing to do.

So... things I've learned today...

1.  If you're going to try trail running for the first time, don't do it on the hottest day of the year...
2.  ... during the hottest part of the day...
3.  ... without the right trainers on...
4.  ... or on a 500 calorie fasting day.
5.  Running in woodlands seems like a good idea until you have to keep jumping over tree roots and trying not to fall over.
6.  You will swallow several flies... flies LOVE woodlands.
7.  Running on sandy trails makes your legs ache...
8.  ... as does running through pine needles...
9.  ... and mud.
10. And a sandy trail, covered in pine needs with muddy patches up a hill is enough to make you forget you're a laydee and turn the air blue.  Plus, your legs will ache.
11. Basically, trail running makes your legs ache.  A lot.
12. Running downhill on trails is scary and fun all at the same time
13.  It's not just bears that pee in the woods.  :o)

*whistles innocently at the last point*

Y'know, it was properly lovely in the woods.  Didn't listen to any music, just heard lots of birds singing... and my crazy heavy breathing.  Why the latter bit sounds as if I've got a 60-a-day habit and have just been challenged to run up the Empire State Building, I don't know!

170 days of happy.  I have earned my lovely big cuppa cha... and will feel virtuous when I go for a walk and a bike ride later.

Smug pants... on!

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.00 mi
Time:28:05
Avg Pace:9:21 min/mi
Time:28:05
Moving Time:28:04
Elapsed Time:35:05
Avg Pace:9:21 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:9:20 min/mi

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Runstreak Day #169 - random thoughts...

You know you're a female runner when...

1.  Someone mentions pelvic floors and running and you nod sympathetically
2.  You've envied male runners, not because of their pace, but because they can quickly go pee behind the nearest bush
3.  You know you should be concentrating on your breathing, but your mind is wandering to wonder about your wibbly bits instead
4.  You have dead flies in your cleavage
5.  You forget to take off your make-up before running and end up looking like a sweating gothic panda
6.  Part of you knows that it shouldn't matter that your trainers don't match your top / shorts... BUT IT DOES
7.  You don't need yoga to improve your flexibility because you can get a sports bra on without breaking a sweat / any bones
8.  Your legs look fab but your feet look wrecked
9.  Hills are male when you run up them (the bastards) and female when you run down (yeah baby!)
10. Sometimes you're not running to keep fit, but because it's the only way your kids won't find you for a bit.

These and other random thoughts crossed my mind while I was doing a short relaxed little run with my youngest accompanying me on his bike.  Was supposed to be doing a long run today, but didn't because a) I didn't, b) I swam 2km at the pool instead and c) it was too hot and sweaty for me out there!
I am a wimp!

Tomorrow I may try to do my longer run, but I may not.  I'm good at planning like that.

And Day 169 bites the dust... woooo hooooo!!!

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:2.38 mi
Time:20:22
Avg Pace:8:34 min/mi

ime:20:22
Moving Time:20:22
Elapsed Time:20:22
Avg Pace:8:34 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:34 min/mi
Best Pace:6:31 min/mi

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Runstreak Day #168 - Beeston parkrun, a PB and some sunshine!

Yay!  Got a PB at parkrun this morning!!

Mind you, I will never understand the difference between the times that they record and the time on your watch though.  Mine said 24:19 and theirs said 24:31 - which is weird because I definitely didn't wait for over 10 seconds to start my watch or stop it 10 seconds ahead of the finish funnel.  Anyhoo... who cares?  It still goes down as a PB for parkrun which, given that I wasn't going for one today (due to being knackered after yesterday's crazy busy day), is worthy of a happy dance or two!

It was gorgeous out this morning though.  Blue skies, zingy greenery, sunshine pinging off the water... yeah... nice.  Bit hot, but still one of those mornings where you catch yourself thinking 'yeah, I LOVE running and I LOVE that I get to run when it's like this'.  It makes all those winter months of running in hail, sleet, wind (oh, the endless bloody wind!), rain, dark and grot worthwhile.  Plus, I got to meet up with a couple of others which calmed me down at the start, and ended up run-walking with one of them at the end to help her to complete... and it wasn't a chore in the slightest, it was so lovely I could have carried on for ages.

So... Beeston parkrun.  There are an awful lot of REALLY quick people there - quicker than Colwick parkrun (first finisher in sub-15 mins!!), the route is nice, the way it doubles back on itself at the end is evil, there are oodles of people, the pace at the start is off-puttingly quick, but the lovely grass bank to collapse on at the end is dandy!

Other than the panic at the start... I think I might just have enjoyed another parkrun!!

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.17 mi
Time:24:20
Avg Pace:7:41 min/mi

Time:24:20
Moving Time:24:19
Elapsed Time:24:20
Avg Pace:7:41 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:7:41 min/mi
Best Pace:5:48 min/mi

Friday, 16 May 2014

Runstreak Day #167 - I've earned a weekend!

I am officially trashed.  Such a stupidly long day - up before 5am to walk 3 miles into Nottingham to catch a train to Newcastle... walk to the venue... presenting at a conference... back to the station... then the morning's journey in reverse.  

But... guess what I did this evening?  I RAN!  YAY!!!!  Day 167, you have been run!  :o)

And guess what else I did?  I ran in a cropped running top!!!  The only witness to this was my son, who'd come with me on his bike.  I chose a quiet route as I know it's flat and I was just too tired to do anything more than run on the flat.  Then, I tootled at a nice steady pace, trying to avoid the flies as ever.  Wearing my running shorts and cropped top.  Me.  Nearly 40.  With two children.  And my stomach exposed to the fresh air for the first time since I was a smudge-faced grot-bucket of a kid!

So... things I've learned about running in a cropped top:
1.  It feels soooooo cool and nice
2.  Occasionally it feels almost too cool and nice and you have a minor panic that you're not wearing anything and have woken up in *that* dream where you're running somewhere, naked...
3.  If you bend over or slouch in any way, your stomach looks like it's trying to eat itself
4.  When you get home, you will have flies stuck all over your stomach.  Mmmm... sweaty dead flies... nice...

Three miles.  Done.  And now I've earned going to bed early!

Nightie night!  *happy dances off to bed*

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.01 mi
Time:24:56
Avg Pace:8:17 min/mi

Time:24:56
Moving Time:24:58
Elapsed Time:26:29
Avg Pace:8:17 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:18 min/mi
Best Pace:6:32 min/mi

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Runstreak Day #166 - gentle evening pootle... nice...

Y'know, today was just a good pootling pace after a hectic day.  No embarrassing crises to contend with.  Only ended up with one fly in my mouth, but a bit of fishing and out it popped (nice!).  Didn't get rained on.  Weather was warm enough for shorts, but not hot enough to melt.  Didn't see anyone else while I was out running.  Yeah, nice.

It's weird though.  My most enjoyable runs are the exact opposite of the obnoxious woman who was sitting near me on the train back from London this evening.  She was, as she declared loudly, 'a triathlete' and every day was dedicated to training (she had to say this twice to make sure everyone had heard).  And proffered words of wisdom to her two travelling companions.  'There's no point running unless you're going to push the envelope.  Push beyond your limits', 'I pity people who don't push their lives to the max', 'Yeah, yeah, well, a marathon is a whole different mind set... you wouldn't understand'.

I thought to myself, actually, there is a point to running even if all you're going to do is just going to run and see where it takes you.  There is a point to not always pushing yourself to your limit.  Running isn't a competition.  Racing is the competition.  Running is a conversation with yourself.  Checking how you're doing, what you feel like doing, what feels right.  Just seeing what you're capable of on that day.   The more relaxed I feel when I run, the happier and more peaceful I feel generally.  

Here's to the quiet runners.  Who get out there and run for whatever reason they choose.  Who don't have to rub it in other people's faces, but can feel that glow of happy when they think about what running means to them.

And now... tea.  Obviously.  :o)


Geeky stats stuff

Distance:3.37 mi
Time:27:54
Avg Pace:8:17 min/mi

Time:27:54
Moving Time:27:56
Elapsed Time:33:53
Avg Pace:8:17 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:17 min/mi
Best Pace:6:38 min/mi

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Runstreak Day #165 - the indignity of running...

165 runs on the run...

... and... TMI ALERT!!!... it was nearly runs on the run too!  Oh the indignity!!

There I was... tootling along at a nice relaxed pace after a stressful day thinking to myself 'I'm going to run until I feel like stopping'.  You know the kind of run, where you just need some peace and quiet to sort your thoughts out and get the day in perspective.  In fact, it's my first run like that in a few days as I've been running with my children each day while my husband's been away.  Today he was back, so I got a freedom run.

So... as I say... there I was... running.  Just running.  Rocking my shorts.  Enjoying the warm-but-not-too-warm evening.  Swallowed a fly (naturally), tried not to choke.  Turned off my music and listened to the birdies twittering.  Watched the bunny rabbits boinging off into the undergrowth.  The sun glinting on the lake I was running around.  No-one else out.  Lovely.  Thought to myself, I think I could keep this up for ages... until... an ominous rumble.  Not thunder.  My stomach.  Oh.  Good.  Grief.

At this point, even if I don't do another loop of the lake I've still got another 1.5 miles to go.  And I don't know if I can hold it.  I don't know if what followed was running or some kind of new record breaking attempt for the world's most clenched buttocks.  It was not pretty.  I contemplated my options.  Bush - but might sting bum on nettles.  Ditch - might get wet feet.  Behind a tree - could be seen by random bird spotters.  Plus, what to do for loo roll options?  A dock leaf ain't going to cut it.

In the end, I ran-hobbled back to the car.  Collapsing in a gurgling grateful heap and driving back to home comforts, quick smart!!

Another day of running.  Another day where my dignity exited stage left.

At least I didn't wee myself today though.  Every cloud an' all that.  :o)

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:4.77 mi
Time:41:38
Avg Pace:8:43 min/mi

Time:41:38
Moving Time:41:38
Elapsed Time:41:51
Avg Pace:8:43 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:8:43 min/mi
Best Pace:7:46 min/mi

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Runstreak Day #164 - short, sharp, hilly, chaos.

Today I didn't run.

Until nearly 8pm.  :o)

And then because my son was with me, Day 164's run had to be fairly quick / short... so we did both quick and short.  And mainly hilly.  And the fact that he is super and stupidly competitive meant that I had to get my little legs moving to keep up with him.  He takes no prisoners when he's on his bike!

It is kinda surreal running with your kids coming along.  You can't enter that nice drifty mental space at all like you can when you're on your own.  Nope.  Instead you're trying to keep up with their random conversation and make yourself understood as you're huffing and puffing.  Part of the run involved him saying stuff without moving his mouth and getting me to guess what he was saying.  So he's saying something incoherent... I'm shouting a guess at him... he's yelling 'no'... and I'm yelling another guess while trying to breath and run up a hill... he's continuing to be random about it all... and so it goes on. And then when you get to the top of the hill, he's forgotten the word he was saying in the first place and then yells 'I WIN!!!!' as he gets to the top first.  Aaaargh!!!!

If there's something that's going to get your legs and lungs working it's running with kids.  If there's something that's going to test your parenting skills and patience to the max, it's also running with kids!!!

Mind you, he did make me average a pace of 7:47 mins per mile... which isn't bad.  He broke me in the process... but... you can't have everything, can you?

Cuppa and a happy dance anyone?  Don't mind if I do.

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:2.70 mi
Time:21:00
Avg Pace:7:47 min/mi
Time:21:00
Moving Time:21:02
Elapsed Time:28:01
Avg Pace:7:47 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:7:48 min/mi
Best Pace:6:14 min/mi

Monday, 12 May 2014

Runstreak Day #163 - another stop-starty run with the kids!

Yup, another day, another 'run with the kids coming along on their bikes' run.  Which means it was stop-starty again.  When you run on your own, you can basically - though obviously you shouldn't *whistles innocently* - run like a fool.  Taking chances at junctions - a cursory glance left and right and leg it.  At the lights, if it's red and there's a gap, you're going to just go.  If there are people blocking the pavement, you skippety doo dah into the road a bit.  And so on.  When you're with kids, you have to stop.  And check.  And go.  And stop.  And check.  And behave like the grown up you are in reality.

There are also occasions where you have to stop and discuss with said child whether or not they are prepared to go the route you want.  Foregoing the playground.  Outdoor gym equipment.  Park.  Instead, going up a steep hill because you haven't time for a longer run and the short steep bit will get the pain out of the way and allow you to do a quick loop before shoehorning the children into bed.

Today's run was like that.  Intricate discussions about the route to be had.  A bit of diplomatic negotiation.  But we got there.  It was short.  No-one got run over.  We all returned home in one piece.

When they say 'run at a conversational pace', I'm not entirely sure that they mean you should be talking about Lego, remote control cars, who said what to whom at school or agreeing what snack can be consumed on arriving home.    I really should write a 'parenting while running' manual.  

Or one about drinking tea...  ;o)

Geeky stats stuff

Distance:2.35 mi
Time:18:20
Avg Pace:7:48 min/mi
Time:18:20
Moving Time:18:21
Elapsed Time:26:33
Avg Pace:7:48 min/mi
Avg Moving Pace:7:48 min/mi
Best Pace:5:29 min/mi