Sunday, October 30, 2005

First 4k

So following the schedule I did my longest run so far yesterday, an epic 4k. It was surprisingly hard work, and I thought that I was going rather slower than usual, though it turned out to be pretty much my usual pace. I've switched to a new route for these longer runs, down through Chesterton towards the Pike & EelPenny Ferry and along the river. I absolutely love the river, and it was particularly gorgeous yesterday, with the morning sunshine, the sparkling water, the autumn leaves. Unfortunately it takes about 1.95k to get there, so I turned around and came back almost immediately. Next Saturday it's 5k, though, so I'll get beyond the railway bridge. On the way out I met a group of four fit-looking young runners striding purposefully along in the other direction. One of them wished me a cheery "Good morning!", encouraging me to think that I actually look like something a runner, rather than just a sweaty bloke in a hurry. I expect it's the Asics that make the difference.

One other noticeable feature of the new route is that I was a good deal more comfortable running on a surface that slopes down to the left, rather than one that slopes down to the right. Either my left leg is slightly longer than my right, or fact that my standard route is left-sloping has had some subtle effect on my running form. I'll have to try running it the other way round next time.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

10k Schedule

OK, so after a fair amount of googling I've found a training schedule that I like (though I've cunningly mislaid the link). Distances in kilometres.
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
31 Oct 3 3   3   5  
7 Nov 4 3   4   6  
14 Nov 5 4   5   7  
21 Nov 5 4   5   7  
28 Nov 6 4   6   8  
5 Dec 6 5   6   8  
12 Dec 7 5   7   8  
19 Dec 7 5   8   9  
26 Dec 7 5   3   10  

Most 10k schedules include complicated things like intervals and cross-training, but since my main objective here is simply to finish the race, increasing my stamina with lots of plain old running seems like a good bet. I cycle to and from work, so that's kind of cross-training.

Lets hope I can get up early enough to get all the running done...

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


October goals:
  • Run the short loop with only one minute walking
Done. And in my fastest time yet, the first time I've run faster than a 10 min/mile pace.
But I won't make my other October goals. I haven't been out often enough to make 16 outings this month, and I haven't been doing one longer run per week, either. I'll need to stick to a more consistent schedule to get the most out of the Ely 10k.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Nine and a half weeks

A really good run this morning, though it is getting seriously dark in the mornings now. I went out at 6.45am, very nearly a full hour before sunrise. I'll have to get a back-lit watch; I was having to peer hard to make out the time as I passed under the streetlights. And I failed to notice a large puddle lurking on Milton Road. Things should improve for a while at least when the clocks go back next week.

With the Ely 10k nine and a half weeks away I'll need to start doing longer runs. I ran the very-nearly-3k route this morning, in 18:30. That scales up to 63:08 for 10k, though of course it would be a bit slower than that. My race goal is simply to finish, though if I can (i) run all the way and (ii) beat 60 minutes I'll be well pleased. My intervals are run 7/walk 1 now; after I get to 10/1 I'll stop walking entirely. And that'll be quite a milestone.

I know my race number already: 133. They simply allocate them sequentially. There were 561 finishers last year (of whom 471 finished in under an hour). I'm pleased to see that the route passes through the small fenland village of California.

Monday, October 24, 2005

First Race

In a sudden fit of something or other, I have entered my first ever race, the Ely New Year's Eve 10k. So that's 68 days to get ready. Oooer!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


So, the week before last I went running three times. Last week I went running once. And as you can see I didn't update the blog at all. When you haven't been out one day, it's easier to stay in the next day too.

So I have a new rule. At least one kilometer of running for every unit of alcohol. As well as providing motivation, this rule has the advantage of being calorie-neutral - it takes about 80 calories to run 1km, which is around what you get from one unit.

Since adopting this rule, I have been out running every single day. All both of them.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Almost like running

This week I'm doing 5/1 run/walk intervals, which is an awful lot like, well, running. My standard short loop run takes around 15 minutes (plus stretching/warm-up/cool-down time), so I have only two one-minute walking intervals, and it's very comfortable - it feels like I could quite happily run the whole lot now. But I'm resisting the temptation to push things too quickly. I read somewhere that a lot of running beginners pick up injuries after about three months; your bones and joints take longer to adapt than your muscles.

But I've already come quite a long way. Ten weeks ago I couldn't run for more than about a minute at a time. And I was seven or eight pounds heavier. At this rate I might actually be approaching fitness by the time I'm 40 next February.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

September summary; October goals

September summary
Only 11 outings in September, one fewer than August, but I did run further and faster, covering a total of 27km in just under three hours total running time. My average mile pace for the month was 10:34, compared to 11:10 in August.

October goals

  • Go running on at least 16 days, i.e. more days running than not. But at
    least one rest day per week.
  • Run the short loop (2.36km) with only one minute walking. I should be able to achieve this by increasing my running intervals by one minute per week.
  • One longer outing each week, increasing from 3k to 4.5k over the month

2005 goals

  • Run the short loop without stopping
  • Run 5 miles
Goals before I'm 40 on 9 February 2006
  • Run the short loop faster than 9 min/mile
  • Run 10k