Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 30!

And so endeth Juneathon 2010. It's been brilliant. Challenging, yes, but in a good way, and I'm pretty sure my running has improved (admittedly I might not be saying that when I disgrace myself in Sunday's half marathon).

I'm glad of a rest, though. No idea how Ron Hill has managed to run every day for 856 years or however long it's now been.

Things I have learnt:

1. Even when I really, really don't feel like going out for a run, I nearly always forget about that as soon as I'm out there, and I'm ALWAYS very glad I went.
2. I'm very lucky to live somewhere with nice places to run (and indeed to be able to run at all) and I should appreciate it more.
3. Foam rolling is fab. Though painful.
4. Audiofuel is also fab, not painful and really helps!
5. There are loads of really nice people involved in Juneathon, most of whom are far better at (a) running and (b) blogging than me. Thanks to everyone who has given me advice and encouragement, it is all much appreciated! And of course thanks to JogBlog for organising it and the independent adjudicator for independently adjudicating.

Juneathon firsts:

- 10k race PB (8th June along the beachfront, wet and windy)
- training PBs at every distance from 1 to 11 miles
- most miles logged in a month (116)
- most miles logged in a week (29, last week)
- first black toenail

I'm glad it was a Juneathon and not a Decemberathon though because nearly all my runs have had to be late in the evening and I would never have managed in the dark and the snow and the freezing cold.

Today did 4 miles round and about, up some hills, down some hills, etc. Music: Audiofuel, the Jam, XTC. (Strangely, just as the song got to "the church bells softly chime" bit, I was running past the church and the bells did indeed start to chime, though not, it has to be said, particularly softly.)

Distance: 4.08 miles
Time: 39:54
  • 10:18
  • 10:03
  • 9:20
  • 9:24
Average pace: 9:47

Total Juneathon distance run: 116.22 miles
Total Juneathon running time: 19:03:28
Average Juneathon pace: 9:50

Juneathon days completed: 30/30 Yay!!!

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 29

Maybe Juneathon is catching up with me, or maybe it's just the weather, but feeling absolutely knackered today and decided to defer the planned 5-miler till tomorrow. Did a very slow, very short, undulating 1.3 miles instead, and still got ridiculously hot and sweaty. Dear weather gods, please, please can we have a cool day on Sunday? Please?

Can't quite believe Juneathon is nearly over, and I've run every day. I will miss it, but I'm glad it's finishing now because I think my legs really need a few days' rest before Sunday's race. Plan to run tomorrow, rest on Thursday, easy run on Friday, rest on Saturday, and am hoping that will leave me feeling reasonably fresh on Sunday.

All things considered, though (and this may be tempting fate), I'm surprised by how well my body has held up to daily running. Admittedly, a high proportion of the runs were pretty short ones, but there were plenty of long ones too, and aside from the normal aches and pains I haven't really had any problems. A few twinges in my ankle caused brief concern, but nothing to get worked up about, and the knee twinges which I had a few months back haven't recurred at all this month. Definitely think using the foam roller on my calves has helped loosen things up, too, even if it does hurt like hell. Which it does.

Incidentally, the route my Garmin apparently thought I ran today was way off - it had me starting my run at the top of the road, running through people's houses, through hedges and across the river before finally settling down. I'm sure I didn't really do that.

One day to go!

Distance: 1.31 miles
Time: 14:11
Splits: 11:04, 3:06
Average pace: 10:50

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 112.14 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 18:23:34

Monday, 28 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 28

Into the last few days of Juneathon and just a "quick" 5k run tonight, along the railway line which was heavily populated with cyclists (why do they never move over? why is it always me who has to move over?), back up the road (a longish hill, much huffing and puffing - I knew there was a bus stop at the top of the hill and kept seeing bus stops up ahead and thinking I was nearly there, but hadn't realised there were also so many decoy bus stops along the way) and along past the allotments to home. Hardly saw a soul except the cyclists and a man with a dog who gave me a funny look, and who can blame him really. Fab Audiofuel Juneathon mix kept me going for most of the way, then a quick blast of the Jam and that was that.

Distance: 3.19 miles
Time: 30:31
  • 9:52
  • 9:50
  • 9:12
  • 1:37
Average pace: 9:34

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 110.83 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 18:09:23
Juneathon days completed: 28/30
Average running pace over month: 9:50

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 27

Eight mile run this evening - it felt far too hot to run earlier in the day, although I may well have to do so in next week's race. Just hoping next Sunday isn't a scorcher. Anyway, ran three miles along the old railway line to Duthie Park, once round the park, back up the railway line (where I saw a very cute hedgehog at the edge of the path along with the usual many rabbits) and a bit further along in the other direction before turning back towards home. Also on the subject of wildlife, as invariably happens on evening runs, quantities of suicidally inclined small insects decided to do kamikaze dives into my eyes, up my nose, etc. Really must remember to wear glasses. Or a surgical mask, or something.

Anyway, even on a coolish evening and on a flattish route, tonight's eight miles felt like hard work. Don't know how I'm going to manage next week when it's hotter (probably), hillier and further. Well, there's not much else I can do now... as long as I finish within the cut-off time, and don't have to be picked up by the famous sweeper vehicle and ignominiously transported to the finish line, I'll be satisfied.

Also tried another energy gel tonight, not because I really really needed one but just to see how my body reacted to it, as last time I got a possibly coincidental upset stomach later that day. I took it - or about half of it, probably - after around 5.5 miles. Feel OK so far, although I can't say I noticed a massive improvement in my energy levels.

My black toenail has now turned blue - not sore any more, though. Maybe I should paint the others to match?

Oh, and I've just passed the 100-miles-in-a-month mark, for the first time ever. Woohoo!

Distance: 8.23 miles
Time: 1:21:26
  • 9:50
  • 9:27
  • 9:41
  • 9:41
  • 10:12
  • 10:30 (this involved a bit of walking and gel-opening/eating)
  • 10:11
  • 9:56
  • 1:58
Average pace: 9:54

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 107.64 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 17:38:52
Juneathon days completed: 27/30

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 26

Surprised myself on today's run - an easy three miles along the railway line (longer one planned for tomorrow). Wasn't pushing myself at all - expecting to do around 10 minute mile pace - and was taken aback to notice that I had done the first mile in 9:01. The second mile felt a little slower and I was completely amazed to find I had done it in 8:58. I actually did wonder if my Garmin was broken. But it would seem not. Third mile, I thought I'm not going to push it, I'll just take it easy, and it was another 8:58. So, three miles, without consciously pushing myself at all, in an average pace of 8:59... looks like I really am getting faster.

Distance: 3:01 miles
Time: 27:03
Splits: 9:01, 8:58, 8:58
Average pace: 8:59

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 99.41 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 16:17:26
Juneathon days completed: 26/30
Average Juneathon pace: 9:50

Friday, 25 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 25

Very small window of running opportunity today due to husband coming home from work and promptly going out again to a leaving do, so given the limited time available I decided to do something I have vaguely thought of doing for a while and see how fast I can run a single mile. I suppose you could call it a time trial except that that would sound rather too professional. So I did a rather inadequate warm-up consisting of jogging slowly up the hill, then started my Garmin and set off along the old railway line at what felt like a fast pace. I rapidly noticed that (a) I was running at 7-minute mile pace, and (b) this was distinctly too fast for comfort. (How do people run long distances at that pace or faster? How?) So I slowed down a bit, though still pushing myself, breathing hard, etc, ran along the railway line to the bridge, down the path past the allotments (where my name is on the waiting list and probably will remain there for the rest of my life) and home along the main road, and did the first mile in 8:11 (7.34mph), which is not that amazingly fast I know but is a record for me. Felt absolutely knackered at the end, though.

Distance: 1.39 miles
Time: 11:22
Splits: 8:11, 3:11
Average pace: 8:11

Juneathon distance run so far: 96.4 miles
Juneathon running time so far: 15:50:23
Juneathon days completed: 25/30
Average pace over month: 9:52

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 24

Twenty-four down, six to go...

Another 6-miler today, and an opportunity to test out my scary new sports bra. Have been feeling quite tired and leg-achey today, and running felt like hard work, not that it doesn't always, but particularly so today, and it wasn't a fast one. First two miles were pretty uphill, and accordingly slow, did pick up the pace a bit after that but not by much, nevertheless felt thoroughly knackered by the end.

Scary new bra performed admirably, however. And at least I didn't have to play an 11-hour tennis match, or look like a complete plonker bowing to the Queen.

Distance: 6.37 miles
Time: 1:03:41
  • 10:40
  • 10:47
  • 9:30
  • 9:43
  • 9:44
  • 9:37
  • 3:39
Average pace: 10:00

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 95.01 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 15:39:01
Juneathon days completed: 24/30

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 23

...And the final week approaches.

Just a (very late) 2-miler today, after yesterday's disappointing effort, out along the road and back along the old railway line, which was probably a bit stupid as it was nearly dark, but luckily there were no potential attackers lurking in the bushes, or at least if there were, they stayed lurking in the bushes and didn't bother attacking me. I think the idea that they might did make me run a bit faster, though, in an effort to get home before darkness completely fell.

Earlier, watched some men in red shirts playing football against some men in white shirts, which seemed to go reasonably well for once, although probably just delays what will now be the inevitable exit against Germany.

In other news, got another letter from the Traffic Enforcement people in a place I have never been to where a car which is not mine was recently being merrily driven around in bus lanes by someone who was not me. Happily, it appears my "representation has been accepted", which is apparently their way of saying "oops, we was wrong, sorry". Well, they did write back quickly, so they get brownie points for that if not for the original cock-up.

Distance: 2.01 miles
Time: 20:02
Splits: 10:44, 9:13
(actually the first mile felt faster than that, but I guess Gary Garmin doesn't lie. Or does he? No, probably not.)
Average pace: 9:58

Total Juneathon miles run so far: 88:64 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far:

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 22

Well, that was embarrassingly dire.

Was planning a long run today (last one before half marathon). It's hot, and I wasn't feeling great, and I thought Maybe I won't do a long run today or maybe I'll just do a shorter one than planned. Then I thought no, the half marathon day might be hot and I might not be feeling that great but I won't be able to just not do it or say I'm doing a shorter version instead. Or at least, I could, but it would be a bit rubbish and the people who have sponsored me might ask for their money back. So off I set in my shorts and Baker Hughes 10k race t-shirt with my water bottle and chewy sweet things and fully charged MP3 player, even though I hate carrying loads of stuff with me.

However. Two miles in, I was already knackered, hot, sweaty and my legs were killing me. Three miles in (this is the embarrassing bit), my thighs started chafing uncomfortably. I don't know why, I've worn those shorts before without incident, so I can only assume it was (a) due to the heat and general sweatiness, or (b) that my legs have suddenly, i.e. in the last few days, got significantly fatter (which seems unlikely). Whatever the reason it got sorer and sorer and I was reduced to a crappy walk/run type effort for the rest of the way home, and only managed six and a bit miles in a rubbish time, which is just shameful, and yes I am thoroughly ashamed of myself and my confidence has taken a definite knock because I need to do twice that distance next Sunday.

However at least I now know not to wear those shorts on race day. Or maybe I need to try that Bodyglide stuff?

Off for a good cry now.

Distance: 6.26 miles
Time: 1:04:51
  • 10:16
  • 9:55
  • 10:07
  • 10:41
  • 10:34
  • 10:17
  • 2:21
Average pace: 10:22

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 86.63 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 14:15:18
Juneathon days completed: 22/30

Monday, 21 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 21

Half-marathon now in less than two weeks, and I’m starting to panic. To be honest, it’s the hills that are worrying me. If it was flat, I would be slightly more confident. Though only slightly. Admittedly the hills are mostly for the first 4 miles (map with elevation profile here). But still.

When I first looked at the website it stated there was a cut-off time for the HM of 2 hours 45 minutes, and that anyone taking longer than this would be "picked up by the sweeper vehicle and taken to the finish line" (yikes!). This conjured up alarming images of me, stumbling along at around the 10 mile mark, desperately trying to keep one step ahead of a vehicle with brushes intent on sweeping me up. However, this now seems to have disappeared from the website, or if it’s there I can’t find it. Not that I plan on taking as long as 2:45 anyway. But you never know.
Anyway, I’m planning on doing my last long pre-HM run tomorrow and am thinking of trying to do the full distance (except without so many hills), mainly for the psychological boost of knowing I can do it. Assuming I can, of course. Any expert thoughts on whether this is a good or stupid plan?

Any thoughts on what time I should be aiming for would also be welcome. My 10k PB (longest race so far) is 57:43, but that was on a flat course. My longest training run to date, just over 11 miles, was at 10:03 average pace, but again not as hilly as the race will be. Race predictor type things seem to suggest around, or just under, 2:15 but I think this may be over-ambitious given the hills. (Did I mention the hills?)

Just a short run tonight, anyway, after last night's 10k and ahead of tomorrow's long run.

Distance: 2.22 miles
Time: 21:16
Splits: 9:51, 9:31, 1:55
Average pace: 9:35

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 80.37 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 13:10:27
Juneathon days completed: 21/30

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 20

Apart from Tuesday's 11-miler, I've been doing really short runs all week (5k on Friday was the longest), so today seemed a good day to do a slightly longer one, although I'm saving my longest pre-half-marathon run for this Tuesday. Tonight's was a more-or-less-10k trot along the old railway line and back along the main road. Definitely am getting faster, though, because although I was deliberately keeping to an easy pace (and consciously slowing down at some points where I felt I was going too fast) I ran an average pace of 9:39, which I would have struggled to achieve over this distance not long ago.

In other news, I am now the proud owner of my first ever black toenail. Lovely!

Distance: 6.28 miles
Time: 1:00:36
  • 9:38
  • 9:40
  • 9:41
  • 9:48
  • 9:31
  • 9:40
  • 2:38
Average pace: 9:39

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 78.15 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 12:49:11
Juneathon days completed: 20/30
Black toenails: 1/10

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 19

It's nice to be over halfway through the Juneathon experience. (Yes, I know the halfway point was actually a few days ago, my maths isn't that bad.) I don't know about anyone else but I always find the halfway point to be psychologically important on my long runs, as that's the point where I can start thinking I now have less distance yet to run than distance already completed. (In fact I sometimes start doing complicated sums in my head about percentage completed and percentage still to go. Yes, it's an interesting place inside my head.)

Anyway, today I decided to weigh myself, which I very rarely ever do because I'm not really all that fascinated with how much I weigh, and I'm not overweight although I am a few pounds heavier than I used to be (I blame turning forty, although I suppose having a baby might have had something to do with it as well), and after all I didn't take up running to lose weight, which is just as well because I never do seem to lose any. Even running every day for Juneathon. You would think that a person who is running every day would weigh less than the same person doing no exercise at all (i.e. me, about 18 months ago) but this does not seem to follow. Suppose I must eat more than I think I do.

Just a short run tonight, though involving a couple of steepish, if thankfully short, hills.

Distance: 1.72 miles
Time: 17:25
Splits: 10:18, 07:06
Average pace: 10:08

Total Juneathon miles so far: 71.87 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 11:56:76
Juneathon days completed: 19/30

Friday, 18 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 18

Well, looks like I am definitely getting faster :)

After watching some football, about which the less said the better, headed out in the near darkness for a 5k run at tempo pace, which I managed in the record-breaking (for me) time of 27:09. To put this in perspective, it's the first time I've ever managed more than one consecutive sub-9 minute mile, or had an average pace of under 9 minutes.

Maybe Juneathon is working.

Distance: 3.34 miles (5.37 km)
Time: 29:14
  • 8:52
  • 8:42
  • 8:53
  • 2:47
Average pace: 8:45

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 70.15 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 11:31:09
Juneathon days completed: 18/30

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 17

Continuing this week's general theme of bizarre car stuff, I received a letter from a distant council demanding I pay £120 for a motoring offence committed by someone who is not me, driving a car which is not mine, in a place to which I have never been (although apparently Jogblog was born there). I have to write to them explaining why I don't think I should have to pay this £120. Where to begin....?

Later, got in a panic about impending half marathon and went out to force myself up some hills - didn't have time for a longer run today, but managed 25 minutes. On the downhill last half mile I thought I'd have a go at running at seven-minute-mile pace, just to see what it felt like. Well, I can confirm it feels - for me - uncomfortably fast, even downhill. How anyone can run marathons, or 10k's for that matter, or any distance at all really, at a considerably faster pace than that is beyond me. Then accidentally trod on a large stone which someone had considerately left in the middle of the pavement and narrowly avoided doing something unpleasant to my ankle. That'll teach me to look where I'm going.

Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: 25:31
  • 11:09
  • 9:49
  • 4:34
Average pace: 10:12 (quite pleased with this given the hilliness of the route, although I guess it was lowered ever so slightly by the microsecond during which I ran at seven-minute-mile pace)

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 66.81 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 11:01:55
Juneathon days completed: 17/30

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 16

Over halfway and onto the home straight. :)

Decidedly dodgy stomach in the middle of the night last night and again this morning, and in fact all day. Did wonder if horrible energy gel was implicated, though it seems unlikely I can blame it for upsetting my stomach twelve hours later. Seems a coincidence, though, as usually have cast iron stomach. Not sure whether to try again next week or try something else. I did buy a packet of something called "Ride Shots" (I think they're meant for cyclists, but don't see why runners can't use them) after seeing them in Holland & Barrett, so might give them a go, and will also get some jelly beans as suggested by Eating Trees and Iliketocount. Got to be tastier than the gel. (PS, just read article in magazine - not an advert - stating that these exact gels come in a "range of tasty flavours". I don't know what the writer's usual diet can be like if they seriously consider that sugary, medicine-like monstrosity, which shall remain nameless, a tasty flavour.)

Other new thing I did yesterday was to try out my new foam roller on my sore calves. OW. And again OW. Instructions say "Pause at any tender spots". Um, what are you meant to do if entire lower leg is composed of tender spots? Is, in fact, one large (not THAT large, thank you) tender spot? Strangely satisfying, however, in an AAAAARGH THAT HURTS kind of way, and calves are not at all sore today.

Various other aches and pains have started to pop up, though, most noticeably a pain on the top of my left foot. I made the mistake of googling "pain on top of foot" and, inevitably, immediately wished I hadn't. Well, it's not too bad, so I'm adopting a policy of ignoring it at the moment. Also got a black toenail on the other foot, and then proceeded to stub it painfully on a table leg this morning, so that's a bit sore as well.

What with dodgy stomach and sore feet and whatnot I didn't feel hugely like running today, but finally made it out of the house for a very short and easy run after yesterday's 11 miles (though it did include a couple of short, but steep, hills), and my tum behaved itself and I forgot about the sore feet after the first couple of minutes, so all is well.

Distance: 1.54 miles
Time: 16:51
Splits: 11:03, 5:48
Average pace: 10:57 (this might actually be my slowest ever average pace...)

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 64.31 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 10:36:24
Juneathon days completed: 16/30

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 15

Celebrated Juneathon halfway point with my longest run to date. That's ever, not just during Juneathon. Thought it would be sensible to use this opportunity to do as all the books advise and Practise My Race Strategy. This entails "refuelling", which it would appear does not mean stopping off at the petrol station for a tenner's worth of unleaded, but ingesting various weird and wonderful (legal) substances designed to prevent you from collapsing into a whimpering heap at the halfway point. Accordingly I took a drink with me, which I hardly ever do though I know I should, and my first ever energy gel, since I thought I might well need some extra help during the race and I really ought to try them out.

Strictly speaking, Practising My Race Strategy would have involved running uphill for four miles, since that's basically what the first part of the Stonehaven Half Marathon entails, but I'm not hardcore enough to do that when I don't absolutely have to, so I started with a quick (actually not that quick) lap of the park, back past my house, along to the Bridge of Dee roundabout, along the river to the bigger park, and back up the old railway line. Basically the same route I did on Sunday, but extended at both ends.

Feeling pretty knackered by the 6 mile point (it was quite hot, which didn't help) and decided to give the gel a whirl, which was easier said than done, as ripping off the top of it proved less straightforward than one might think. Then I had to actually swallow the bloody thing which was also easier said than done as it was foul. Think a tenner of petrol would have tasted nicer. I only took about half the packet. However, it did have somewhat of the desired effect as I felt a bit sharper and less like sitting down and not getting up again. Could have been psychological, of course.

Really need to get my head around this refuelling business a bit more. Are there any gels which don't taste horrible?

Distance: 11.18 miles
Time: 1:52:21
Average pace: 10:02
  • 10:49
  • 10:22
  • 9:50
  • 10:15
  • 9:57
  • 9:54
  • 9:52
  • 10:17
  • 9:47
  • 10:19
  • 9:18
  • 1:39
Total Juneathon distance run so far: 62.77 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 10:19:32

Monday, 14 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 14

Today , and indeed this week, got off to a great start when I couldn’t start the car. Daughter had to get to nursery, I had to get to work. Car would not start. Key turned in ignition OK, engine turned over, but the reassuring sound of the engine firing was conspicuous by its absence. After ten frustrating minutes I gave up and called the AA, who assured me someone would be there within the hour. Daughter and I proceeded back into the house to while away the time playing with dinosaurs and washing the breakfast dishes (and harvesting my Farmville crops). AA man continued not to arrive. He finally materialised at 10.20, tried my key in the ignition, immediately asked me if I had a spare key, which I eventually hunted down among all the other spare keys, tried the spare key in the ignition, and lo and behold, the car started. How much of an idiot did I feel, knowing I could have got the car going in the first place by the simple expedient of trying the spare key (which never occurred to me for a second) and would not then have had to wait an hour and a half for AA man to solve the problem in five seconds. Apparently the old key had "lost its coding". Well, how was I to know? It looked the same...

So I finally made it to work, where I wasted some time reading Juneathon blogs and wondering how the Independent Adjudicator is going to decide the winner. If it goes on total miles run, or indeed entertainment level and professionalism of blog (or for that matter, considering the above start to the day, intelligence of blogger), I have no chance, even though I’m almost certain to do more miles this month than ever before. However, I do think Juneathon is having a positive effect. My legs don’t feel sore at all today despite yesterday’s 7-miler and I have tons of energy, despite having to stay up late last night to pick son up from his job at Cineworld at past midnight.

Anyway 14 days of Juneathon completed, 2 weeks of daily running, so I guess having come this far I'll just have to keep going. Unless I get injured, or ill, or drop dead, or something.

Just a short and (very) slow run today, though. In my defence it did involve hills. I still hate hills.

Remind me again why I'm doing this half marathon in less than three weeks?

Distance: 2.07 miles
Time: 22:12
Splits: 10:59, 10:25, 0:47
Average pace: 10:42

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 51.59 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 8:27:11

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 13

Had planned 11 miles today, but only managed 7. Weather was crap and I wasn't feeling all that great either. Rain did clear up slightly later in the afternoon and I couldn't put it off any longer. First 2 miles were horrible, even though it was partly downhill and I tried a new route which included running along the riverside and back along the old railway line. I actually stopped at one point, ostensibly to admire the prettiness of the river, really because I was knackered. Doubt I was fooling anybody. Then I put on the nice Juneathon mix kindly made available by Audiofuel, and that helped.

Actually, just noticed that was my best ever 7 mile/11km time. So maybe not that crap after all. Just not long enough.

Definitely going to do the 11 on Tuesday, though. Half marathon now only (eek!) three weeks away.

Distance: 7.12 miles
Time: 1:09:57
  • 10:09
  • 9:49
  • 9:55
  • 9:51
  • 9:48
  • 9:41
  • 9:32
  • 1:14
Average pace: 9:49

Untitled by sheri3004 at Garmin Connect - Details

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 49.52
Total Juneathon running time so far: 8:04:50
Juneathon days completed: 13/30

Juneathon: Day 12

My Garmin gave up the ghost directly before I was due to go out on tonight's run. It seems to be a week of flat batteries - last night my MP3 player conked out after two minutes. Anyway, I didn't have time to recharge my Garmin as it was another late evening effort, so had to go for an unmeasured, unrecorded run, which was a slightly worryingly strange experience. Am clearly a slave to technology and find it difficult to believe I've actually done it without lots of numbers and a little map on the computer as proof.

Anyway, both Garmin and MP3 player now fully charged ahead of Sunday long run. Phew!

Distance: 2 miles (approx)
Time: 20 mins (approx)
Average pace: 10:00 (approx)

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 44.4 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 7:15:02
Juneathon days completed: 12/30

Friday, 11 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 11

30 minute fartlek style run out and back along old railway line. Was going to do 40 minutes but it was getting dark. Really must try to get out earlier in the day, but it just isn't working for me at the moment. Quite like evening running, but prefer not to do it in near-darkness.

Anyway, weekend running plan (to be fitted in around football viewing): nice short easy run tomorrow, ahead of long gruelling effort on Sunday. Will try to improve on last Sunday's 10 miles. Will also try to squeeze in yoga session somewhere. Not feeling too bad on 11 continuous days running, but definitely think I need to improve on my stretching.

Distance: 3.22 miles
Time: 30:08
Splits: 9:52, 9:07, 9:04, 2:04
Average pace: 9:21
Best pace: 6:55

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 42.4 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 6:55:02
Juneathon days completed: 11/30

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 10

Juneathon challenge #376: finding clean kit to wear every day. Have managed reasonably well up till now, but today was forced to raid the back of the drawer and hit the streets in a pair of baggy three-quarter length trousers and a voluminous race t-shirt. Looked like elderly skateboarding type person, especially with addition of baseball cap as disguise. Not a good look. Fortunately only did 2 miles (same out and back route as yesterday) - was planning a longer run today but precluded by time constraints/domestic commitments/the fact that it was getting dark out. Definitely doing interval session tomorrow, though. Although I suppose Juneathon running, and indeed life in general, for rest of month will also be constrained by World Cup watching commitments.

Distance: 2.26 miles
Time: 21:50
Splits: 10:21, 9:19, 2:09
Average pace: 9:40

Total Juneathon distance run so far: 39.18 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 6:24:54
Juneathon days completed: 10/30

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 9

Recovered from last night's windswept, rain-drenched, PB-busting beachfront 10k with a gentle evening jog of one mile (slightly uphill) out and one mile (slightly downhill, obviously) back. Nothing interesting to report. Saw a man walking a dog in full running gear (the man, not the dog, which would have been more interesting) but showing no signs of actually running. Perhaps the dog was tired.

Distance: 2.05 miles
Time: 20:37
Splits: 10:37, 9:34
Average pace: 10:03

Total Juneathon distance so far: 36.92 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 6:03:04

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

The Running Shop Beach 10k Race Report (and Juneathon: Day 8)

When I signed up for The Running Shop Beach 10k I had visions of a lovely sunny evening down at the beach, clearly having temporarily forgotten I live in Aberdeen and mistaken it for somewhere with a pleasant temperate climate. My delightful vision was, of course, completely wrong. Wind. Rain. Cold. Runners huddled together for warmth at the start line. Etc. At least, unlike the last time I ran this race, there was no snow and ice underfoot.

It's a nice flat route, though, if a bit lacking in anything to look at other than grey sea and matching grey sky, and what with all the training I've been doing lately, I had definite PB hopes. Set off fastish, possibly a bit too fast I thought, but I felt OK and went through the first mile in 9:23. Second mile still felt OK and did it in 9:16, worried I was going too fast (as my plan was to stick to around 9:39 min/miles with a view to squeezing in under the hour). But I think the training is paying off and I am definitely getting faster, because I was still happily plodding along and did the third mile in 9:15. Wind and rain was playing havoc with my Garmin, though, which kept whizzing from screen to screen, and around the halfway point it suddenly occurred to me that I could, in fact, lock the bezel to stop it doing that, so I did, but not before I had accidentally stopped the timer and had to restart it again. Continued to plod and found myself actually overtaking some people, including the bananas who seem to do every race I ever go to and run at about the same pace. But I left the bananas far behind this time so I must be improving.

Did feel pretty rough in the last mile and was severely tempted to stop and walk (why? why does this always happen to me in races?) but managed to keep going and finally dragged myself over the finish line in, according to my Garmin, an amazing 57:43, a good 3.5 minutes better than my previous PB, and 5 minutes faster than the last time I ran this course, six months ago. (Official time might be slightly different as it took me several seconds to cross the start line and I'm not actually sure exactly where the finish line was, but shouldn't be radically different.)

No medal or t-shirt, but I did get an Asics gym bag and a plastic cup of orange squash. And a big PB. Woohoo!

I love Juneathon.

Distance: 6.22 miles
Time: 57:43
Splits: 9:23, 9:16, 9:15, 9:20, 9:15, 9:07, 2:07
Average pace: 9:17

Total Juneathon distance so far: 34.87 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 5:42:27

Monday, 7 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 7

Concluding the first week of Juneathon, and (nearly) a quarter of the way through, I thought it might be a good time to review how things have been going so far. I’ve run every day for a week – not quite on a par, admittedly, with Ron Hill running every day for 100 years, or however long it now is, but a first for me. My concerns a week ago were mainly around (a) finding the time to run (and blog), and (b) not overdoing it, since I’m not used to running or indeed doing any other form of exercise every day and I didn't want to either wear myself out completely or, worse, pick up an overuse injury. My hopes were, basically, to get fitter (and win all the prizes, obviously, but that goes without saying).

Anyway it may be tempting fate but: so far, so good. I've managed to run every day (albeit very short, easy efforts on the "in between" days) and I'm not knackered, or injured, in fact I have noticeably more energy. And it's probably too early to tell, but I think my running may be improving, as I seem to be able to maintain a faster pace for longer (cf. yesterday's long run and Friday's 10k). Fingers crossed it continues. I have a 10k race tomorrow so will be interested to see if I (a) blast my previous PB to smithereens, or (b) collapse and die.

Just to completely undermine all of the above, I didn't really feel like going out for a run tonight, as had attack of tiredness probably brought on by lack of sleep last night (daughter had nightmare at 2am which resulted in whole household having to wake up and then stay awake for ages trying to get her back to sleep). So once she was in bed tonight I more or less conked out and seriously considered not bothering to Juneathon. Then thought No! The gods of Juneathon (and the Independent Adjudicator) must be appeased! so got off my lazy backside and out for a very short and very slow jog along to the park and back. Saw a young deer peeping out from between the trees on the way back, which was worth going out for in itself.

Distance: 1.22 miles
Time: 13:01
Splits: 11:02, 1:59
Average pace: 10:40

Total Juneathon distance so far: 28:65
Total Juneathon running time so far: 4:44:44

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 6

Didn't really feel like going out for today's planned 10 mile run, partly because the weather looked unpromising, but mainly because I felt stupidly nervous about it, given that on the only previous occasion I attempted to run 10 miles I felt awful the whole way and only managed 9 and a bit. So was hoping, indeed needing, to remedy that today, as half-marathon is now a mere 4 weeks away, but I can't say I felt confident. Spent morning buying daughter a new car seat and "helping" husband buy new football boots in JJB Sports, where I discovered an entire, pink section of the shop devoted to women's exercise equipment, which was a bit perturbing. Why would you want pink weights?

Anyway, finally set off for run about 3.30pm with freshly loaded MP3 player (didn't feel in the mood for music so had downloaded comedy podcasts - Alan Davies' World Cup programme from Radio 5, and Radio 4's Friday Night Comedy, guess middle age really is setting in) and stupid bum bag type thing which won't stay put and bobs around my waist annoyingly, containing phone, key and a handful of jelly beans. Never used to bother taking my phone but then thought "what if I fall down a hole and twist my ankle in the middle of nowhere" so now I do take it. Sometimes. Didn't bother with a drink, although I was going to take one and probably should have done, in the interests of Good Hydration as advised by all the books, but I don't like carrying stuff, so I didn't, even though I bought one of those oval shaped bottles specifically for this purpose. Maybe I will use it next week.

So anyway, I ran up the hill (slow first mile, as always) and along the main road towards Peterculter, and luckily the rain more or less held off for most of the way, and some of the time I felt quite good and some of the time I thought, there is NO WAY I am ever going to manage 10 miles, but I kept going, ran through Peterculter, turned round and ran back through it the other way, then back onto the old railway line (at about 5.5 miles) towards home. Confess I did have a couple of short walk breaks at this point, one at about 6 miles and one at about 7 miles, but in my defence they were very brief. Reached the path heading down towards my house and had only done 8.7 miles so pushed myself on a bit further and managed to complete the 10. Yay! And amazingly, even with the walk breaks, in an overall average pace of just under 10 minute miles, which as I am aiming for 10:15 minute miles in the half marathon, I was well pleased with. Though to be fair, the half marathon is hillier, at least in the first few miles. But still, yay.

Distance: 10.08 miles
Time: 1:40:17
Splits: 10:59, 9:51, 9:51, 9:41, 9:57, 9:52, 10:19, 9:46, 10:02, 9:17
Average pace: 9:57

Total Juneathon distance so far: 27.43 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 4:31:43

I'm going to try and upload the Garmin data here, but it won't work, because it never does, and I don't know why, because although it looks OK when I preview it it never seems to show up in the actual post.


Don't know whether this works any better.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 5

Didn't get out for a run until evening again today, mainly because mother-in-law was coming round for tea and therefore I obviously had to spend the entire day cleaning the house and cooking the tea. Although all this additional housework may well have qualified as extra exercise, I thought it probably sadly wouldn't count as Juneathon, so hauled myself out of the house for a short run. Definitely a short one tonight as I did 6 miles last night and am planning a 10-miler tomorrow, and the last time I attempted a 10-miler I felt awful the entire way and only finished up doing 9 and a bit and even then had to stop a couple of times during it, so this time I don't want to knacker myself too much beforehand.

Ran up two hills very slowly and then slightly but not much faster on some flat and downhill bits, once round the small park, up the short but evil incline at the end of the park, and along the road back home. Uneventful. Smiled at man walking towards me along the narrow pavement on the way home but he pretended not to have seen me. Even though I was running towards him along a narrow pavement.

Distance: 1.8 miles
Time: 18:45
Splits: 10:41, 8:04
Average pace: 10:25

Total Juneathon distance so far: 17.35 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 2:51:26

Friday, 4 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 4

Maybe this running every day as per Juneathon is having a positive effect, even though it's only been 4 days, or maybe it's just a coincidence, I don't know, but fabulous run this evening. Didn't manage to get out till nearly 9pm, ran along the old railway line (didn't see the llama on this occasion but did see zillions of young rabbits nibbling grass and scooting back and forth across the path, very cute, wished I had taken camera), and then back along the main road. Felt great the whole way, even the first couple of miles which are usually horrible till I get warmed up, did feel I was flagging a bit in the last mile though actually managed it in fastest split time of whole run. Listening to Neil Young, XTC and early REM on my MP3 player. Barely thought about my pace the whole way and was surprised to find I had run 6.25 miles in 1:00:16 without particularly trying.

Now, can someone tell me why I can't manage a sub-60 10k in a race?

Distance: 6.25 miles
Time: 1:00:16
Splits: 10:03, 9:46, 9:42, 9:45, 9:28, 9:21
Average pace: 9:39

Total Juneathon distance so far: 15.55 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 2:32:41

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 3

So this has been the first Juneathon day when I have really struggled to find the time to run, which I knew would happen. Had to work in the morning (so unreasonable that they expect me to show up from time to time when I'd far rather be out running), then had daughter to look after in the afternoon, then husband didn't come home till lateish and promptly wanted to go out to play football. So today's very short run had to be squeezed in before tea - along to the park, round the park, back home, short but hillyish, just over a mile. Hardly seems worth bothering to put on my trainers for a crappy 10 minutes, but I did say I was going to do short little runs in between the longer ones in the interests of injury prevention and not getting excessively knackered. So that's what I did. And will do some of my Core Fusion Body Sculpt DVD later for good measure.

Distance: 1.13 miles
Time: 10:37
Splits: 9:28, 1:10
Average pace: 9:23

Total Juneathon distance so far: 9.3 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 1:32:25

Juneathon: Day 2

Boiling hot day today, which was just as well as it was daughter's nursery sports day, rescheduled from last week when it rained torrentially non-stop for, it seemed, several days. Cannot complain of lack of variety in weather. So spent an enjoyable hour sitting on small plastic chair watching toddlers get in a complete muddle about which direction to run in. Daughter was very proud of her medal and certificate, anyway, even though she didn't win anything and in fact came last in the first race, partly due to getting distracted by a butterfly on the start line and setting off a good five seconds after the rest.

Participants were then requested for the parents' race , which was the cue for everyone to sit staring at the ground and shuffling their feet in the traditional manner. Thought I'd better show willing, but it looked like I would be running in solitary splendour until a few more reluctant volunteers were hauled out. Was chaos anyway as nobody knew where the race was meant to be finishing or where, or indeed whether, to turn round and run back to the start. Mothers clearly even worse than toddlers at knowing where they are meant to be going. So I have no idea who won, though mother-in-law said I did, which was probably just family loyalty as it was impossible to tell, but as it's the only race I'm ever likely to even be in a position to not be sure whether I might have won it, I didn't argue.

Anyway it seemed unlikely that this would qualify for Juneathon so I dragged myself out for a five-mile run in the evening after daughter was in bed. As my hilly half marathon is now only 4.5 weeks away and I'm frankly crap at running up hills and generally make a point of avoiding them wherever possible (though can't entirely), thought I'd better include some in this run and not only at the beginning when I am not yet knackered but also in the second half of the run. So I did. And hurray, I managed without stopping, except at around the 4-mile point when a suicidal insect flew into my eye. But I really, really hate those hills, even though they're not very big.

Distance: 5.01 miles
Time: 49:43
Splits: 10:12, 9:49, 10:24, 9:45, 9:28
Average pace: 9:55

Total Juneathon distance so far: 8.17 miles
Total Juneathon running time so far: 1:21:48

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Juneathon: Day 1

Think stress of Juneathon must be getting to me already, as lousy run today. Felt like someone had stolen legs and replaced with lumps of lead. Should say, "felt even more like that than usually feel". Ran along to small and overgrown local park, round small and overgrown park, back past my house, seriously considered going into my house for a nice cup of tea and abandoning rest of run, but forced myself on and managed to complete a measly 3 miles.

Decided to relieve monotony of daily blogging by uploading photos of interesting things I see on my runs, then remembered I never do see anything interesting on my runs except the occasional llama, so here's the dilapidated monument from the small and overgrown park. But it's been there for 113 years so I suppose it can be forgiven a bit of dilapidation.

I know it does look a bit like a headstone but happily I haven't died yet. Still 29 days to go, though.

Distance: 3.16
Time: 32:05
Splits: 11:36 (including photography time, think I accidentally turned off the auto pause on my Garmin), 9:52, 9:19
Average pace: 10:09