This week’s running – 11th to 17th of August 2014 

A puppy because I couldn't think of anything else

Because I couldn’t think of a more appropriate image…

This week had some ups, downs and went out with a bang.

1x 1 mile, 2x 800m, 1x mile on the track

Whilst working away from home last week in King’s Lynn, I got chatting to a fellow runner in the office and he told me there was an athletics track at a nearby leisure centre. I was back in King’s Lynn again on Tuesday so decided to stick with the schedule.

Taking inspiration from Ed Barlow’s session of 1x 10 minutes at threshold, 5x 800m at 10k pace, and 1x 10 minutes at threshold, I decided to do 1x 1 mile at threshold (6:45/mile target half marathon pace), 2x 800m, and 1x 1 mile at threshold. Enough to get my legs and lungs working hard, but not enough to cause serious fatigue. And given the 5:15am start that day, it was probably for the best!

The track itself consisted of 6 lanes and had certainly seen better days; lane 1 was in pretty bad shape and my Garmin’s altimeter even reported that the track wasn’t level! To top things off, there was a very aggressive 17mph headwind blowing right on to the home straight (but also acted as a tailwind on the back straight).

The first rep at threshold pace was manageable, even with the headwind. The 800m reps, not so great as you can from my splits. Ed did mention that the final rep at threshold would feel pretty easy after some 800s and he wasn’t kidding; I had to dial myself in slightly because my legs wanted to launch into 5k pace!

Here’s the Garmin data for this session.

10k along Hagley Road

I had to skip the recovery run on Wednesday due to timings, so Thursday was my next run.

Approaching halfway, I suddenly lost power and everything felt like I was running through treacle. I have no idea what happened so on the return, I eased off the pace and allowed the subtle descent to carry me back home. Most odd indeed and probably highlighted the need for some rest ahead of Sunday’s race.

Here’s the Garmin data for this run.

Saturday lie-in

Due to preparations for the Eid festival at Cannon Hill Park, there was no Parkrun for me on Saturday. Sure, I could have gone to another event like Brueton Park over at Solihull, or Arrow Valley over in Redditch, but I was in desperate need of a lie-in. With no pressure to run on Saturday, I simply kicked my feet up and watched the women’s marathon in the European Championships (and what a marathon it was!).

Worcester City Half Marathon

For the full race report, please click here.

Here’s this week’s dose from Mark Remy’s The Runner’s Rule Book:

Before a race or long run, strong coffee is your best friend

Science has shown caffeine to aid athletic performance. My own experience – and that of many runners before me – has shown coffee to provide another rather stimulating effect. And one that you might appreciate even more than the performance boost.

I won’t get into the details here. Let’s just say a cup or two of coffee about an hour before I run is part of my, um, regular routine.

Try it and see why.


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