New Blog

Just a quick update to let you know that I have decided to start a new running blog for next year.

You can check out the new blog at runforfun2019.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading and Happy Running!

Football Fun

I had my second session of football training this evening. The first was two weeks ago but I missed last week due to a neck/shoulder injury which was earned while watching my team win 5-1 – I really must be more careful with my goal celebrations!

Anyway, to cut a long story short, I joined a football club for ‘older’ women who have never played before or who haven’t played for a while. They have three levels so, having not kicked a football for 30 years, I joined the beginners session.

I have to admit that I was a bit nervous about it, but I figured that since there were no expectations in terms of ability, I should be just about ok.

The first session was a lot of fun. Everyone was really nice and made us newbies feel welcome and, most importantly, it didn’t matter if we didn’t know what we were doing – which is just as well.

The first half of the session involved basic skills, so passing, shooting, dribbling and taking throw-ins, which went pretty well as I discovered that I could still kick the ball at least.

For the second half, we played a 30 minute match, which was pretty exhausting! I was playing left-wing, which involved a lot of running to get the ball and then not having a clue what to do with it! But it was a good work out and I did manage to get a header and a few good tackles in.

This week, we were practising free kicks and corners, which really helped when it came to playing the match at the end. This time, I decided to play defence (right back), which suited me much better. I was still fairly hopeless but it meant that I didn’t have to run so much and could think more about what I was doing. I even managed to win a few tackles and pass the ball to the right team a couple of times!

I know I still have a lot to learn about pretty much every aspect of the game, but it is a lot of fun and a great workout. The thing I like about it most though, is that while we all want to learn and improve, no-one takes it too seriously.

So, after years of thinking that I was too old to play the sport that I loved as a kid, I’ve finally realised that age is no excuse – if you want to do something, you should just go ahead and do it. Life is too short not to.

Do you do any sports other than running? Is there a sport that you used to do or always wanted to do but never got around to it? Please share your thoughts in the comments and, once you’ve done that, go and find out how you can get involved in whatever it is you’d like to do.

 

Parkrun Fun

I forgot to post about last weekend’s run, but I did get a run in. I had arranged to do a parkrun this weekend, which is only 5K, so I had to make sure that I got out last week to do something a bit more than that. So here’s a quick recap:

Last Weekend – C210K Week 10:

I was scheduled to run for 40 minutes continuously, but it didn’t quite work out that way. Knowing that I needed to get some hills in, I decided to run in the park instead of the seafront.

The hills themselves didn’t feel too bad, but I found that I was struggling and, after only 26 minutes of running, I had to take a walk break. I took a couple of minutes to recover and set off running again, but something just wasn’t right and I had to take another couple of breaks.

I still managed to do the 40 minutes, but the distance was short of what I had hoped at only 5.4K, so I’ll admit I was disappointed with my 7:25 pace.

When I got home, I checked my stats and soon realised what the problem was. After about 15 minutes, my heart rate had started to climb and was soon hitting between 160 and 170 bpm, which really is way too high.

So, this weekend, while I wanted to put in a good time for parkrun, I also knew that I would need to pay more attention to what was going on with my body.

This Weekend – parkrun fun!

My ideal goal for this weekend was to run 5K in something between 35 and 37 minutes. The weather forecast said snow, so I guessed I would probably have to walk at some point.

Like last week, however, I found the going quite tough and was gutted to have to take a walk break shortly after the first kilometre. I probably could have run a bit more if I had slowed down, but my mind was more concerned about my heart rate as I was feeling some amount of discomfort in my chest with the icy cold air.

So, I said to my friend to run on and settled myself into a more comfortable pace with plenty of walk breaks and, surprisingly, I managed to finish the 5K in 34:50! While I was disappointed with the walk breaks, I was pleased with the end result.

When I uploaded my data, I was surprised to see that my heart rate hadn’t been too bad for that first kilometre. The problem had been that my pace was to fast for my current level of fitness, as I had completed the first kilometre in 6:15 – hardly surprising that I had to stop and walk!

Despite the fact that I know I always set off too quickly at parkrun, I hadn’t thought to check my watch to see if I needed to slow down. I guess it was partly to do with the fact that I was running with a friend and partly to do with the fact that I assumed I was going slow enough because of the amount of people who were overtaking me.

Either way though, it doesn’t really matter. The main thing is that I enjoyed the run, got some practice running in a group event, and managed to complete the distance in a time that I was happy with.

I’m doing another parkrun next weekend, so I’ll have to remind myself of that again nearer the time!

How’s your running going? Did you get a run in this weekend? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

 

Running After Rest Days

2014-10-04_SummaryAfter running on Monday, I was really keen to get back out again as soon as possible. However, I’d forgotten how tired I can get after training and that I need to focus a bit more on what I eat before a run, so I decided to hold off until the weekend before going for another run. And I’m glad that I did.

When I woke up this morning, I still wasn’t sure if I would go out but after a couple of cups of coffee and a bowl of porridge I decided that there was no harm in trying. I’d had plenty of rest and I’d been eating better so the least I could do was give it a go.

It was still early and had only just started getting light outside so I wasn’t too surprised by the slight chill.There was a good strong breeze and I could feel the rain in the air, which makes pretty perfect running conditions for me.

As I walked down to the seafront, I noticed a couple of kites in the sky above the beach. It’s always nice to see kite surfers out doing their thing first thing in the morning, but I did start to wonder if it might be a sign that it would be a bit too windy for running along the seafront.

Luckily though, the wind was coming from the south more than anything else, so it was easy enough to run along the promenade.

I knew that I probably wouldn’t be able to do much over 3 kilometres, so I decided just to run down to the West Pier and then back again, with some walk breaks as and when I felt like it. To my surprise, I didn’t take too many walk breaks this time. In fact, I managed to run the first two kilometres without stopping at all!

At the third kilometre, I was back to my starting point but I still felt pretty good, so I decided to keep going and run part of the way home. I had to stop and walk again, partly to cross the road but mostly because I was getting tired, but managed to complete 3.5 kilometres.

That’s half a kilometre up from Monday’s run and with fewer walk breaks, so I guess it goes to show that rest days really do make a difference!

How’s your training going? How do you feel about taking rest days? Do you get enough rest between training sessions? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

No Pressure

It’s no coincidence that my return to training has coincided with a couple of days annual leave from work. Training this summer would been pretty hard to fit in, injuries aside, due to the fact that the last two months have been the busiest ‘busy season’ that we’ve ever had. However, now that the ‘busy season’ is coming to an end, I can finally take a couple of days off, so what better week to book my break than the week that I planned to return to training?

I wasn’t sure about running today. Yesterday’s session, short as it was, went well but it left me feeling pretty tired for the rest of the day. I didn’t want to overdo things or run the risk of the injury flaring up again. But then again, I did have the day off and tomorrow as well, so I figured that if I just took it easy I could probably get away with it. Besides, there’s something quite liberating about getting an early run in on a Monday morning when everyone else is on their way to work.

So yes, I went for a run. A nice, easy, no pressure 3K walk/run. The same as yesterday, pretty much, except that this time instead of going to the seafront, I headed to Hove Park to have a go at running on some inclines rather than just on the flat.

When I got to the park, it was fairly quiet. There was a small fitness group running around on the grass, a guy doing some exercises with his personal trainer and a couple of other runners, but that was pretty much it. No dogs, no cyclists, no kids. Nice and quiet with plenty of room to run.

Although I was looking forward to trying out the inclines, I decided to avoid the steeper section of the main lap as this tends to put a bit more pressure on the ankle and achilles, and opted for two and a half small laps instead. As with yesterday, I took some walk breaks but only on the flatter sections, and ended up with a slightly faster average pace of 6:44 minutes per kilometre.

2014-09-29_Splits

To be honest though, at this stage I’m not too bothered about the pace. What I really want to do is get myself back to running regularly and without injury before I start training for February’s half-marathon. Nice, relaxed, no pressure running – that’s the key!

Of course, I’ll probably go for another short run tomorrow. Well, I have got the day off after all.

How’s your running going? Are you training for a race, getting back after injury or just running for the sheer fun of it? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

A Wee Short Jog

After two whole months of sitting on the sidelines, feeling miserable about being injured and not being able to run, I finally decided this morning to tie on my running shoes and go for a wee short jog along the seafront.

Getting back into running after a such a long break isn’t as easy as you might think. Even though I’d missed it like crazy and was itching to get back out there and start working on my half marathon training, I was nervous. I knew I wouldn’t be able to do what I could do two months ago and that there would be a fair bit of catching up to do, and that bothered me. I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to do it.

Silly, I know, but there you have it.

In the end though, I realised that the only way to get back on track was to get up, get dressed and get out the door. That was always the hardest part back in the days of C25K and even then, when I could barely run for 60 seconds, I always felt better about it once I got going. It was just a case of getting out there.

So, a little after 8:00 am, I headed for the seafront for a wee short jog. There was no plan, no expectation, no training goal to aim for. Whether I ran or run/walked, it didn’t matter. If I managed a kilometre, I would be happy; if I did five, it would be a miracle. I just wanted to have fun and see what I could do.

Surprisingly, I managed to do more than I thought I would. Ok, so I had some walk breaks but I completed 3K without too much trouble.

2014-09-28_Chart

I did consider jogging back home to clock up another kilometre, but with narrow uneven pavements and the prospect of dodging pedestrians and dog walkers, I thought better of it. No point in risking a rolled ankle at this stage, right?

Besides, I’d been for a run. And that was all I needed, for now at least.

How’s your training going? How do you motivate yourself you get back out there after a long break from running? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

A Quick Update

I just realised that it has been six weeks since I last ran (or posted), so I thought I’d better explain myself…

Ever since I started running last year, I’ve had a bit of a niggle in the ankle/achilles area. It’s nothing major and I usually just wear a support when it starts to annoy me, but on my last run it started to become pretty painful so I decided to take a proper break and let it sort itself out.

Six weeks on, it’s still not great. I can walk on it without any problems but there’s a definite weakness there – stiffness in the morning when I wake up and sometimes it’s tender to touch. Tempting as it is to just ignore it and go for a run, I know that’s not the answer. So, I’m resting. Taking a break. Trying to be patient and let it heal. Annoying, yes, but there you have it.

As a result of all of this, I’ve completely neglected my little blog, which there really isn’t any excuse for. So, today I decided to put things right – to start posting again and catch up with all of my favourite running bloggers.  And, even though I’m not running, it feels great to be back!

How’s your training going? How was your summer? Are you still running and blogging and all that good stuff? Please leave a comment to let me know how you’re doing- I’ve missed you!