Sunday, 27 June 2010

Brocket Hall Blast

Cracking weather. Cracking route. Who needs roads when you could do a run like this nearlt all off-road.

Got lazy/tired towards the end and did a section on the Lower Luton Rd but you don't have to.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

The long route to Peters Green

With no one responding to my Sunday morning call (text message) to roster I was left on my own for this morning's run. Naturally I took this as an opportunity to sleep in and didn't hit the tarmac until 7:30 am.

The planned route as vague as ever: head in the general direction of Peters Green and see how it goes. As it happens I was barely a mile from home when I deviated from plan. The path through Sauncey Wood was too tempting and then at the end I went left instead of right. Now in new territory the path came to a road. It didn't look familiar so I went straight across onto a promising looking footpath. In truth I thought I was close to Kimpton Bottom. But I wasn't and was now heading east. Eventually after another mile or so I realised where I was and took a right turn and back in the general direction of Peters Green.

Ah but why stay with the known when you can venture off into the unknown. So off-course I went and ended up the wrong side of a barbed wire fence and having to run an extra mile to get back on the right road (mile 5).

So eventually I did make to Peters Green but it had taken a while. I started heading along my newly discovered path to Kimpton but time was against me so I had to cut right and made for home.

Sticking to familiar paths I cover the last 4 miles in good time although overall pace was still only slightly sub 8-minute mile. All in all quite an enjoyable run. Just a shame I didn't have time to make it to Kimpton and Gustard Wood.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

No Dramas

Easy week: 20 miles - lowest weekly mileage since October.

Monday: three miles easy Blackfriars Bridge loop.
Wednesday: five and half miles easy Westminster Bridge loop
Friday: three miles on the treadmill (yes treadmill!)

With Simon entered in the St. Albans half and Kenny not running I was left to my own devices today. Which meant I immediately morphed into Mr Indecisive.

North, south, east, west? Hilly, flat?

Hmm. In the end I decided to start by running north along Swan Walk. Why? Because it was flat. Yup I took the easy option.

But what to do next? Left up the big hill? Right at East Hyde? Right up Copt Hall Lane? My indecision meant I kept going until I'd run past all the options except one: Copt Hall Lane it was.

The running relaxed and easy. There was no need to rush so I didn't. The hill up to Sommeries Castle (it was really a fortified manor house rather than a castle) wasn't a problem. And from there back it was all more or less downhill home.

Eight and a half miles done. No dramas.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Zoo Stampede (ZSL Whipsnade Zoo 10K) June 2010

So four weeks after my PB destroying Dorney Dash 10K I find myself lining up for another "PB Perfect" 10K. Three laps of Whipsnade Zoo were on the cards with the promise the animals would be well fed beforehand and kept in their pens.

The weather forecast had been all over the place with thundery showers, heavy rain, light rain or a combination of all three being predicted. As it happens it was dry and not too warm with a light breeze for good effect.

Once in the Zoo I caught up with the Aro Sports fantastic three before warming-up and rolling up to the start five minutes before the off and bumping into Dave from work. Great - I knew four people and all were faster than me.

The start was uneventful. The hooter hooted and we started running. The majority of slower runners had kept back and the perimeter road was wide enough for all (perhaps too wide!).

First mile went OK. A touch fast maybe but given it was net downhill nothing to worry about. I had a pace that I could just about hold. Just one problem: it was too slow. I felt reasonably good. But the legs felt, well I don't know, just not as fresh as at Dorney. I just didn't have the spark to push just that little bit harder. Was it physical? Was it psychological? I don't know. But the end result was I was unable to pump out the kilometres quick enough.

My finish time? Well lets just say if I decide to join Zoological Society of London (ZSL) before 21st June I'll have to pay £40-48!

So not a good day? Well according to the Garmin my sub-optimal route round that ever so wide road meant I actually ran 6.32 miles. Which, if true, would give an average pace of 6:27 - just one second a mile outside 40 minute pace. So maybe not a complete disaster.

However, I think this will be my last serious race for a while. I've been training hard since last November during which time I've covered over a thousand miles (sound familiar?). For the last 12 weeks I've been consistently covering 45 miles over six sessions, three of which were speed work. It's time to give my body a rest and go back to running for pleasure, Saturday morning bile rides and, dare I say it, the occasional foray over to Southdown to meet up with the Aro Runners.

And hey it didn't go all that bad to day - I lapped Scooby Doo and Simon will have change from thirty-six quid if he decides to join ZSL (Lee and Darren will probably only need a few coppers more).