Monday, October 10, 2011

Survival of the fittest & Budapest almost-marathon!

Hi all,

I may have sneakily (& rather naughtily) run the Budapest 30km section of the marathon a few weeks ago! Here is a pic of me at heroes square just near to the much sought after finish line! What a beautiful city to run in! The weather was hot (a balmy 32 degrees) and it was lovely to run along the banks of the Danube river and admire the Hungarian architecture! I was supposed to be resting a foot that has had a bout of Plantar Fascia recently, but I couldn't resist the temptation and have to say resting it for a few months beforehand has helped and it seems to be doing okay so far! Touch wood - and yes, I am tapping my head!

On the recruitment front, anyone interested in Battersea's survival of the fittest 10km on 12th Nov?

I just entered the 2pm wave and would love to have some keen punters to run/obstacle/struggle through the muddy cargo nets with!

See you at training!


Friday, October 7, 2011

Windsor Half Marathon 2011

I've run the Windsor Half a few times now, drawn into it as there's an inter-company challenge race for the Construction Industry. I threw in a speculative entry in February and forgot about it

In August - having been doing nothing more than Tuesday and Thursday training sessions all year - I thought I'd better do something about the forthcoming distance and set about a couple of 8mile weekend runs in rather unspectacular times. I resigned myself to forfeiting my entry...until everyone down the track on the Thursday before the race bullied me into running!

So, with insufficient training, but with positive vibes from the club and lots of upbeat music in my iPod I set off!

If the photo uploads properly, that's me one mile in with most of the first hill behind me. I knew there was a bigger hill at 8miles and another at 10 - but hills just seemed to keep coming this year - far more than I remembered! But each time I just cranked up the music and kept pushing - Boulevard of Broken Dreams, Unfinished Sympathy and Numb by Linkin Park seemed to keep me going when I really needed it.

The course is a small loop followed by a larger loop - all within Windsor Great Park and always seems to be a great weekend for weather, so there's lots of supporters out and about. The final mile is dead-straight with Windsor Castle in the distance, but has a habit of catching people out. You come round the corner at the top of the hill and see the finish and people start sprinting...but then you go into a dip and lose sight of the finish and it seems the longest mile ever!

But the crowds get deeper towards the finish line and everyone is cheering and the commentator is calling out as many names and numbers as possible and it all helps to get you over the line. And in my case - a new PB of 1:33:11 :-)

I wouldn't entirely recommend my method of preparing for a Half - putting a few more miles in the legs before the race would be sensible! But if I can do that time off Tuesday's and Thursday's only then Jon is obviously doing something right with his training regime.

So, my 1:30 target is still out there. Now I need to find another half to target it on, and prepare properly for a change....


Rat Race 2011

Date: Sunday 25th September
Time: 9-5pm, 8am rendezvous
Location: London (Tower Bridge, Isle of Dogs, Canary Wharf, Arsenal, Stoke Newington, St John's Wood, Mile End and Kennington)

One a rather pleasant late September morning myself, Fiona and her friend also handily called Fiona(meaming I only had to shout one name for the two of them to respond) embarked on cycle tour of London with varous challenges along the way. Over the course of the day we covered 11.2km on foot, 53km on bike, 1km in a kayak and a 20m swim! - why you may ask? Because it is fun and we got to do things that you can't do otherwise.

Afte a quick challenge on foot (1000 runners in black t-shirts running around central London, bemusing tourists), we cycled to the isle of dogs where we hopped off our bikes to do a spot of orienteering followed by a cold 20m swim in the Thames (in all our race gear - which was lovely as it helped cool us down as we were already working up quite a sweat).

It was then back on our bikes to cycle (whilst getting slightly confused with the directions) to our next water experience kayaking by the Excel centre. From there we cycled to Arsenal and arond the stadium and onwards to Stoke Newington where we had to travese a climbing wall.

From Stoke Newington it was a hop and a skip to Lord's and the highlight of the day - abseiling down the side of the cricket ground (last year it was the Oval - so if you are a cricket fan this is the race to do).

If that wasn't enought it was on to Mile End for a little spot of circuit training in the park before heading off to Kennington and the Imperial War Museum where I got to clamber over one of the cannons!

Luckily for us that was the last stop of the day before we cycled off to the finish line crossing it 8hrs and 1 second after we started! It was a fanatastic day, and I would recommend it to anyone. For more of their crazy events check out