Sunday 9th October

Cardiff Half Marathon

Well I got around, not quite as quickly as I'd hoped but, bearing in mind the lack of training, it wasn't too slow!

The race started at 8.15 ... AM ... yes that time does exist on a Sunday. I set the alarm for 5 AM so I had time to potter a bit, have some breakfast and then drive into Cardiff with Matt and Giz. I managed to find a free parking place close to the castle ... admitedly I did get through a section of road just before they coned it off and then did a U-turn in front of the castle's main gate (it didn't say I couldn't so I guess it was legal) then got back to the car park with just 4 spaces left.

We walked down to the Millennium Stadium and had some faffing about to try and find where to go. Eventually we found that only competitors were allowed in :( so I had to go in all on my ownsome. More faffing to find toilets without a long queue - I found I could do everything I needed to do in pitch darkness as they hadn't turned on the lights in that section of the stadium. Some more minor adjustments, rub creams onto legs, rub petroleum jelly onto all areas that you think might rub (and a few others I know from past experience do), pack up my bag and leave it on a seat.

Almost too soon it was time to walk to the start and there were Matt and Giz again :) After a short while we were off - I'll list the timings below.

Number Mile Time Minutes/Mile Comment
1 1 04:55 N/A If I had been more awake I would have realised that I was looking at the Full Marathon mile mark rather than the Half Marathon mile mark. (derr)
2 2 14:53 9:58 This was still a Full Marathon mile.
3 2 19:49 9:54 This was a Half Marathon mark (at last I got my act together).
4 3 32:12 10:44 A good rate, although slowing a little bit.
5 4 42:45 10:41 Running well!
6 5 53:54 10:47 A little slower, but still running well.
7 7 1:18:15 11:11 After half way and I'm starting to get s l o w.
8 8 1:33:38 11:42
9 9 1:44:54 11:39
10 10 1:59:17 11:56 It was now I realised I couldn't make 2 hr 30 min (the time I was aiming for)
11 11 2:13:10 12:06 Running out of steam, walking about half the time.
12 12 2:29:10 12:26
13 13.1 02:45:39 12:39 Sprinted for the finish with two women I caught up with on the lap of the stadium - they beat me but it was an impressive end to the race!


Overall I'm happy with the result - the time was slower than I hoped for, but then I didn't do as much training as I should have. As training for the New York marathon this was a good race.

Damage to me
1. One toe nail with blood blister under it. (I'll probably lose the nail although I have popped the blister, so it might survive.)
2. Right shin skinned, caught with other foot.
3. Left foot achey - feels like the arch is trying to fall, but hopefully it will be OK

Matt and Giz looked after me very well, cheering me on at three points, jelly babies, took me to a cafe after the race and generally being there when I needed help (even getting into the competitors only section of the stadium!) so a big THANK YOU to them both. Also a big THANK YOU to the Macmillan Cancer Relief supporters who screamed every time they saw me ... I think it was to encourage me :)

I'll have an early night tonight, I'm quite tired you know ... wonder why that is :)

Peace
peter

Tuesday, 27th September

Now sit down ... OK? ... well I did the circuit here yet again!

1. 12:51 to the high point (12:56 last time, 12, 12, 11, 12 times before),
2. 23:57 to the bridge at Machen (25:49 last time, 25, 25, 21, 23 times before),
3a. Incremental time to start of the cycle path 4:37 (5:26 last time)
3b. Incremental time to end of the cycle path 15:03 (14:31 last time)
3c. Incremental time from cycle path to the main road 2:37 (2:52 last time)
3d. Total time to main road 46:14 (48:38 last time, 49, 49, 42, 44 times before),
4. 53:17 back to the starting point (56:18 last time, 55, 57, 48, 51 times before)

I didn't have my energy drink with me, so I only took a bottle of water and didn't stop for so long after the sections (which I think is one of the reasons I was quicker overall). My left calf ached a bit, but less than last time. I felt good at the end, although I didn't manage to keep running all the way. *shrug*

The Cardiff half marathon is on Sunday 8th October, which is my next race, so I'll probably get a couple more runs in before the race.

Right, a little more computer stuff then I'm off to bed - oh and finish my bottle of Spitfire bitter :) Cheers.

Peace
peter

Tuesday, 20th September

Now sit down ... OK? ... well I did the circuit here, just north of Cardiff, again today. It must be 5 weeks since my previous run!

My watch has been playing up, so I used my mobile to record the times on its stop watch function. This means I can give you more accurate timings, down to the second.

1. 12:56 to the high point (12 last time, 12, 11, 12 times before),
2. 25:49 to the bridge at Machen (25 last time, 25, 21, 23 times before),
3a. Incremental time to start of the cycle path 5:26
3b. Incremental time to end of the cycle path 14:31
3c. Incremental time from cycle path to the main road 2:52
3d. Total time to main road 48:38 (49 last time, 49, 42, 44 times before),
4. 56:18 back to the starting point (55 last time, 57, 48, 51 times before)

I took it gently and my legs were OK, although my left calf muscle hurt a bit. The times were better than I feared they might be, which has to be a good thing.

I'm running the Cardiff half marathon on Sunday week, and just over a month later I'm running the New York Marathon ... so the training is definitely needed.

[OK, I'll admit that having four people die whilst doing the Great North Run (a half marathon) at the weekend made me think that I should be doing something more! ]

Right, off to bed now. Take care and catch you all later.

Peace
peter

Monday the13th June

Did the circuit here, just north of Cardiff, again today. Now let me say that I'm happy with these times; although they are not up to my best time they are better than last Wednesday. I started off better than last time and went a lot further before having to walk. The problem was that my calf muscles were not happy; the right leg hurt inside the calf muscle and pushing with my toe at the end of the step was painful, the left muscle felt strange - like it was going numb from the inside. So, the times :-

13 minutes to the high point (12 last time, 11, 12 times before),
25 to the bridge at Machen (25 last time, 21, 23 times before),
49 minutes back on the main road after the cycle track (49 last time, 42, 44 times before),
55 back to the starting point (57 last time, 48, 51 times before)

Slightly slower on the first section, slightly faster on the second section down to Machen, same on the section along the cycle track then faster on the last section. I tried running through the pain but I'm not sure if that's the best thing to do - what do the runners reading this think? It didn't feel as bad as on Wednesday so I think I might be able to just keep running through this. I may manage some time at the gym at work so I'll see what the manager there says about it all.

Right, off to bed soon so I can rest my eyes - they are not happy today, I think the air is too dry at work.
Peace
peter

Wednesday 8th June

Did the circuit here, just north of Cardiff, again today. I started off better than last time, I thought, as I managed 120 paces before having to walk instead of the 100 last time ... but look at the times :-

12 minutes to the high point (11 last time, 12 time before),
25 to the bridge at Machen (21 last time, 23 time before),
49 minutes back on the main road after the cycle track (42 last time, 44 time before),
57 back to the starting point (48 last time, 51 time before)

So that's slower on every section :( Well it was a bit hot, I'm probably still recovering a bit from giving blood yesterday and it's the first time for a while I've tried running twice in a week. My calf muscles were the main problem, the lower leg muscles went completely solid and I couldn't even loosen them when I stopped. They are a bit better now, after a shower and rest, but the right leg is still aching.

Right, off to bed I think.
Peace
peter

Monday the 6th June

I know, I usually run on Tuesdays but I'm giving blood on Tuesday morning, so I thought I'd do better running tonight :)

Did the circuit here, just north of Cardiff, again today :-

11 minutes to the high point (12 last time),
21 to the bridge at Machen (23 last time),
42 minutes back on the main road after the cycle track (44 last time),
48 back to the starting point (51 last time and previous fastes time 50 minutes)

I didn't think I was doing very well 'cos I ran out of breath before I'd even got out of the village. I eneded up running for 100 double paces then walking for 20 'till I got to the second steep bit and I added an extra 100 walking up that. I thought I was going slowly and was quite surprised when the time was 11 minutes to the high point. I managed to run all the way down to the bridge then had to alternate between running for 100 (then 50 a few times) and walking 20 (or even a few more sometimes). I guess the running bits were faster but I didn't feel I wanted to push too hard as I could feel my heart racing, I was running out of breath, and I was sweating loads.

The gain in time was on the first two sections and the last two are the same as last time. So a good run, fastest I've done the circuit but definitely not an improvement in my fitness. For those interested, i had a second blood pressure reading taken last Thursday and this time it was 144/94 (much better than the 161/114 the previous time) so I now have to go back after a month for yet another reading.

I'll try and run again on Wednesday but it depends how I'm feeling. I think that anyone can comment here even if they are not LJ members (I'll check after I've posted this) so feel free to comment if you want to.

Peace
peter

Tuesday 31st May

Did the circuit here, just north of Cardiff, again today :-

12 minutes to the high point (12 last time),
23 to the bridge at Machen (23 last time),
44 minutes back on the main road after the cycle track (43 last time),
51 back to the starting point (50 last time)

Although the time is one minute slower overall, I did manage to keep going for longer on the climb out of the village and on the section along the cycle track so I'm pleased with the time. Well OK I'd have liked it to be better but I'm not going to push too hard 'till I get my high blood pressure sorted out [in case you haven't seen that post it was 161 / 114 last week and I have to go back this week for another test with the practice nurse. If three tests in a row are high then I get to see a doctor and they can do something ... although by the third one I'll have given a pint of blood (a week today) so that should reduce the pressure a bit :) ]

I don't think I'm going to make that much difference on the climb to the high point, maybe a minute or two; most of the descent to Machen is too steep to run flat out without risking injury, so I'll only gain a minute or two there; the section along the cycle track should be a lot quicker so I should be able to pick up five minutes there; and the last section is along a road so I can't push too much there, probably won't change that much at all. So that's 1.5 + 1.5 + 5 = 8 minutes ... 43 minutes for the circuit. Sounds doable ... eventually.

Right, off to do "stuff" on the computer and try and get my contact lenses out early tonight - they've been a pain today so my eyes need a rest.

Peace
peter

Tuesday 24th May

Did the circuit here, just north of Cardiff, again today :-

12 minutes to the high point (14 last time),
23 to the bridge at Machen (25 last time),
43 minutes back on the main road after the cycle track (46 last time),
50 back to the starting point (52 last time)

I started off quite well, but had to walk three times before the high point. The down-hill section into Machen was about the same time, although I did have to stop to massage my right leg which was cramping up a bit. The section through Machen and up to the cycle track was OK, but I had someone running faster than me passing me on the cycle track, which made me feel a bit bad. The "sprint" finish *pause for manic laughter* seems to be a minute slower, but since I'm only using the minute hand of my watch it's not that accurate for short times.

Overall two whole minutes quicker than last time - I'll have to check back to see if I've done it quicker than that - I'm pleased how the running is going. I may even end up fit *gasp* :)

Peace
peter

Edit: Yep, that was the fastest I've done that circuit ... go me! Now to get it down to 45 minutes.

A question ...

Is there actually anyone reading this journal? I know a few of you have it on your friends list but that doesn't mean you read it. I'll still keep posting, for my own information, but I might do it in more of a shorthand form if no one else reads it.

Peace
peter

Tuesday 17th May

Did the circuit here, just north of Cardiff, again today :-

14 minutes to the high point (13 last time),
25 to the bridge at Machen (same as last time),
46 minutes back on the main road after the cycle track (not timed last time),
52 back to the starting point (53 last time)

I started off well and got further up the first hill before I had to stop running jogging, but then I had to walk quite a bit on the road/track up to the high point. I seemed to pick up some time on the down-hill section to Machen and then managed about the same rate along the cycle track - actually I ran a bit faster along it, but had to walk a bit more as well so it balanced out. I'm now timing when I get off the cycle track and back on the main road - that way I can time the "sprint" finish a bit better *manic laughter*

Right, off to bed soon.
Peace
peter