Sunday, 22 February 2009

21st February 2009

The day of the National XC Race - and also my birthday!

I didn't run myself but was keen to go along as a spectator and try out my birthday present, a new Canon Ixus 970, a compact camera that has a video option! So in JK fashion I filmed throughout the race, thinking that holding the camera vertical would be a good idea as it gets the runners better into the picture. Not knowing that it seems rather difficult to later rotate the picture and it is also easy to loose all sound when editing it ... Obviously I still have to learn a lot until these videos are presentable!

We met a lot of WHW family members including new addition Harvey. In fact I spotted Harvey first before I recognized Caroline! She was wrapped up in a few layers including full waterproofs.
Thomas wasn't sure until 2 days before the race if he should actually run or if it would interfere with his general training etc. But he felt good and got ready for the race. And he had a brilliant run. He finished in 98th position. And he was first for the club (though that did not help the overall position of Glenpark, i.e. last!)

Anyway, off we went home after the race for some last minute preparations for my birthday party. Jude, his running partner from Inverclyde AC also came and told us that he had lost his shoe in one of the mudholes on the course - maybe some of you spotted him digging it out?! Thomas has been running with Jude twice a week (Tue+Thur) for the past 3-4months. They meet up for "steady 8-10M runs" and this certainly seems to be great for Tom's training. Jude is also quite an experienced coach so he has become a bit like a personal coach for Thomas.

I was out running myself today and thought I better tried these "steady runs" myself. And I had a great 14K steady run along the waterfront, my legs were feeling good and I really enjoyed it. Halfway I met Thomas & Jude and they came flying past me, so much for their "steady pace". As they were discussing their run later in the kitchen over a piece of left over carrot cake, I heard them talking about 8min/M pace being "jogging pace as if you were running on the spot"! Well, so much for my recent fastest pace at the 5M race! But that just shows how different we all are. I know not to run with Thomas nowadays as he keeps getting too cold when he runs with me due to my slow pace! So he says anyway. :-)

I passed Lunderston Bay in Gourock on my run and I could not believe my eyes when I saw people out there with a picnic! And not only was another group out for a picnic but they also got their BBQ ready! What weather forecast had they seen!?

Next weekend will see me running from Tyndrum to KHH, trying to get there before I am caught by the large group of runners doing Drovers to KHH. I am looking forward to it, maybe we should have a BBQ afterwards?

Sunday, 8 February 2009

RRR Renfrewshire Road Race

Today was my 1st race this year, a 5 mile road race just around the corner from us, in the Battery Park in Gourock and along the waterfront, organized by Inverclyde Athletics. Looking at last year's results my goal was not to come last! And maybe holding off at least one of the other Glenpark girls. Well, Thomas had set me a target of under 40:00 which I thought was rather ambitious and I complained that he put too much pressure on me! I don't know what it is about running, but when it comes to running or even running races I turn into a rather pessimistic person and can't really judge my ability. I am usually very nervous before the start and I wonder what I will be like when it comes to the start of the Devil!
Anyway, I managed to achieve all my own goals and even had 2 Glenpark girls behind me and overtook a Bellahouston runner with a sprint finish to get in after 39:31. This makes it my first run with a sub-8min mile (7:55min/mile and 4:55/km). And most importantly :-) my personal trainer was pleased that I had in fact beaten the 40:00min target.

Sunday, 1 February 2009

News Update

We came back from our skiing holiday in Austria last weekend. The snow conditions were excellent, but the weather wasn't. Poor visibility and in fact fresh snowfall during the day made for difficult skiing most days, but we did have 1 sunny day (see photo) when we stayed on the pistes from the first until the last lift! I tried my luck with snowboarding one morning - it was fun - but also rather sore the next day as I had lots of -expected- falls. The little village of Obergurgl looked like a magical winter wonderland and all in all we spent a relaxing week with great food in good company. We will go back to the same resort next year as the skiing area and the scenery is fantastic (when you can actually see it).

Back at work now and also training in earnest for all the upcoming running events. We went to the club's speed session on Wednesday where at the moment we are doing 10 hill reps. After the first of this kind of session a couple of weeks ago I was actually told off by Thomas for not having worked hard enough. Well, I did try to save some energy on each repetition as I thought that was quite sensible given that I had to get through all the 10 reps .... But not on Wednesday! After the second one I felt quite sick and a quick glance at Thomas assured me that this was exactly what it should be like!? I only managed 4 of these though, did 4 easier ones and bailed out on 2. Not to worry I was assured by my "trainer", at least I worked hard enough on 4! Next time I have to record my HR to see if my max HR is higher than what I think it is (180). Tom has been promoted to be my coach, well at least sometimes. I do like to follow the training plans of my German Guru Steffny as they have worked out quite well so far, but as I am doing a few other runs and different speed training with the club and of course the DOTH, his plans do not quite fit in. So this is where Tom's advice will come in handy, I hope!

Anyway, we were off to TISO yesterday to buy new running shoes for me. Who came out with a new pair? Well, not me. My Asics GT 2130 model has been "upgraded" to the 2140 with apparent better heel fit etc. Well, it does not fit my heel any more. But the guy at Run4It is trying to source the old model for me from EDI. I will stockpile a couple of pairs if he can get them.

Today Thomas and I were back on the WHW. He ran from Milngavie to Rowardennan and back to Balmaha. I ran from Balmaha to Rowardennan and back. We met when I was half way back between Rowardennan and Balmaha. It took me 3:35 in total. I was quite exhausted at the end, but it was a good run. Thomas also had a good run and it seems his training is going well.