Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Week 5 Done!

Apologies for the blog being a little late this week, I have had a busy weekend catching up with family and friends to make up for my absence at Christmas!  

Last weeks short runs went to plan and I even managed a good 80 minute long run around an old favourite route in my home-town which made me realise how much the Devonshire hills have helped my stamina as I managed a long incline that I used to find particularly hard with ease.

The only problem I have this week is that I seem to have returned home with an unwanted late Christmas present in the form of a stinking cold so tonight's run is unfortunately being postponed in the hope that tomorrow i'll have less in the way of snot and shivers going on and I can go run. As for most colds, I know that the general advice for running is using the neck rule. This means that if you only have symptoms above the neck (i.e. runny/blocked nose, headache, sore throat) then get out there and run but if there are any niggles below the neck (i.e cough, muscular pain, fever etc.) then it should be avoided so as not to make things worse. 

Another thing we are being threatened with this week is that good old winter favourite SNOW, which is fine on its own, it's just the days of ice that follow afterwards that are not kind to runners. Call me a wuss, but as someone who falls over on a flat bit of road on a summers day I don't relish the idea of running on ice....that to me spells an unsavoury trip to A&E and that is the last thing I want during this training! 

As ever I need a bit of motivation for next week so I shall remain positive by remembering that....

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Whatever the weather

Well, that's week four done. A little earlier than expected because I sacrificed a training run on Wednesday due to the weather being decidedly crap. Mind you, I cant complain as it IS winter and we have been pretty spoiled with a lot of mildness lately so a bit of freezing rain and gusty winds are to be expected and I should man up a bit more! Anyhoo, this week I ended up doing a 40 minute recovery run on Tuesday, then a 30 minute steady run on Thursday evening (instead of Wednesday) missed out the 50 minute speed run/cross training session on Friday and rescheduled my long run (70 mins) for today instead of Sunday.

It didn't go too badly but I can't recommend going out on a crisp sunny day at midday in a Devon coastal resort as I found myself running up behind people and constantly apologising for making them jump! Didn't think I was that scary or that light footed but it seems I must be... 

A picture of some beach huts at the halfway point today

FOOTWEAR UPDATE: The new shoes are breaking in nicely and still feel really comfy so I don't think I'll have any problems with them along the way, but ask me again after 26.2 miles and the answer may be different!

Still can't believe that's a month of training done already, earlier on this week was exactly 3 months to the race but I can safely say I'm a quarter of the way there and happily running a quarter of the distance so that's all good - just got to keep on keeping on....

Sunday, 11 January 2015

That's more like it!

Week three of training has now come to an end.  It has been the best week so far, a bit more challenging, as it should be, but I'm finally feeling better about training. I have completed all of my training runs despite the wind and rain (plus an extra one last night to try out my new shoes!). That base fitness is finally returning and i'm finding it a lot easier to settle into a comfortable pace on long runs, even though those local hills are still killers!

At the beginning of the week, it all be became a bit more real when I received the T-Shirt from The Urology Foundation that I shall be running in on the big day!

It does fit, but due to all my festive indulgence it IS a little snug so that spurred me on even more to put a whole lot more effort into training! 

Over the coming weeks, i'll be adding links to my fundraising page and doing a lot more posting on Twitter (@carolinegower) and Instagram (@carolinegower) to raise awareness about the charity and my reason for choosing them to raise funds for.  

Yesterday, I made the plunge and splashed out on a new pair of running shoes, as i'm not entirely sure that my current ones will last the training! After a bit of research I went a local running shop and came away with a pair of Asics Nimbus 16, they were a little pricey but oh so comfy, albeit a bit on the heavy side, but that makes absolutely no difference to someone of my portly build - as anyone who knows me will tell you, speed is not my forte, it's about going the distance. However, hey do really live up to their name and the ride is truly cloud-like. Following a little trot last night and a 60 minute training run this morning, they seem to be up to the job of absorbing the shock of me pounding the pavements!

So, I'll go forth to week four with a solid week of training behind me and dare I say i'm looking forward to it, but as always, still need a bit of motivation....

Sunday, 4 January 2015

Excuses, excuses....

Happy New Year!

I'm not going to lie to you, this week I have been bad.  So bad in fact that not only have I not done a single training run (until tonight) I have also been on a mission to demolish ALL of the left over Christmas food to the point that I could now try my hand at a new career as a Jabba the Hut impersonator. I'm ashamed to admit that the lowest point of the week was probably when I used up the remaining double cream in place of milk on bran flakes one morning. *Cringe*

This makes me angry. I have no idea what has driven me to act like this - my motivation just disappeared - maybe it's the festive sugar overload, maybe it's just a bit of SAD creeping in due to lack of daylight.  Whatever it is, it has got to stop.  No more excuses.

So, after missing three 25 minute training runs this week I went out for the 50 minute long run tonight.  Before I set off, I thought, 'ah this will be easy, after all it was only 6 months ago I ran a half marathon so how hard can it be?' I'll tell you how hard it was... it was bloody hard! Following a week of gorging and taking 'carb loading' to the extreme, my body was in protest mode every step of the way, BUT I did complete it and as I limped home, I vowed to get back to the fruit and veg and leave out the fruit and nut from now on.  

Luckily, being so early on in the training I should have time to redeem myself, basically I have no choice but to redeem myself because if I carry on like this it will end badly, hospital in-patient type badly!

Despite all the sitting down I have done lately, week 2 has finished on a high and with a cold realisation that there is absolutely no room for complacency in marathon training.  

On to week 3 keeping in mind this golden rule....