In order to take the constant pounding away from old knees I get on my bike and hit the hills. If I don’t do it for awhile the shock when you start the first hill never gets boring. This was one of those early mornings where I was out of the house and riding well before the last dreary feelings of a long sleep had left me. The hill woke me up.
90% of my running I will do after I finish work. The half an hour build up to that point consists of me having an internal battle weather I should go or not. The myriad of excuses, some borderline mental, are endless. Is the weather bad, have I got all my kit?, did I pack my GPS? (I can always use my phone), am I over doing it? (never), have I got the time? (Always) and the list goes on. I then start to give myself some good reasons to go and all are just positive and obvious.
Now as I type this in my note app on my phone looking out the front of my van window at all the drama out there. I’m asking myself “will it rain?”
I went for the run. It rained.
I’m going wild camping here next Saturday. So I combined a run while searching for a place to sling our hammocks. In the end I was spoiled for choice. I found a lovely spot near a babbling stream. I love running here. My favourite 7 miles.
I had the pleasure of spending 7 days in Kefalonia last week. This place is the largest of the Greek Islands in the Ionian Sea. It’s also hot in July.
I packed my running kit with the intention of running every morning. I drank to many cocktails. So I woke up when it was to hot and no wind. I took the easy option of jumping into the clear, cool, blue waters of the sea and swam. But I did manage 2 runs. Both of these were brutal.
I felt OK for about a mile and then the heat would just drain my energy.
The scenery cushioned much of the pain and I was in heaven running along the coast of this beautiful island.
I used to plan my running months in advance and try my best to stick with it. Life got in the way and I couldn’t do it as planned. I would source these schedules from respected running websites and magazines. Because of that I thought they were set in stone and this is what you had to do.
So as the years rolled by I realised this was nonsense. What you need to be is realistic and follow a lose structure based on these plans.
These days I just write down roughly what I am going to do 1 week at a time. This all depends on how I’m feeling, what races I have coming up and time with my family. It’s worked for the last few years and that’s fine. I no longer feel like a slave to any program.
As a result of a health screening test at work It was found I have high cholesterol. I had to have a series of blood tests and then went to a hospital for a consultation with a blood specialist. After 45 minutes of drawing diagrams and some intrusive but necessary questioning on my food and drink habits it was concluded that I need to lay off the butter and the booze but keep running.
I asked the question if running will directly reduce my cholesterol levels and I was surprised to find out that the answer is no. It’s all about reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke and putting yourself in the lower risk categories by doing all of the stuff we all know we should do.. Which actually makes a lot of sense.
It certainly focuses the mind and as a result the running has a lot more purpose and the way I fuel myself. I got up this morning and went for a 6 miler down the beach. With a change in attitude.
Way back in the old days I ran the Snowdon Marathon. This is mostly a road race and doesn’t take in the summit of Mount Snowdon. Towards the end of this July I am going to fix that missing piece by running to the peak in the Snowdon Half Marathon.
I have been to the top many times but these were all done as a walk taking in the stunning scenery in this National Park.
I had to take a week off training because of the below post and this has actually been a blessing in disguise as I needed the rest. Training has resumed and while I have lost a small amount of fitness it’s nothing that can’ be fixed in the next few weeks.
24km is an odd distance for an organised race, that’s 14.9 miles. When and if I make it to the finish line and my GPS says 14.9 miles I will
run that extra bit crawl that extra bit to make it to 15.
Coed Llandegla (Coed means wood in Welsh) is a race I am doing next weekend. This place is where I usually take my mountain bike for a run as they have some great routes. Training has gone really well with a slight drop in weight, which always helps.
Making an effort to do more trail runs as the road pounding is becoming tedious although I’m not going to stop doing those types of runs. Looking forward to this.