05 8 / 2013

Terrible terrible terrible. I am honestly struggling to find the time to get out and run. Between work, looking after the boys and hangovers, I find very little time at all… for anything.

But I did run yesterday morning. With determination and the fattest tummy I’ve had in over 2 years I plodded, walked and plodded some more through the village on my usual route. 1.35 miles in 16 minutes. Back to square one.

How am I ever going to improve?!

Help.

23 7 / 2013

This should be a blog about not jogging!
Errr, let’s blame the humidity!
Although really my days just fritter away somehow.
Fail.

13 7 / 2013

Bad: not running for 2 weeks.
Good: going further than ever (fractionally).

Bad: not running for 2 weeks.
Good: going further than ever (fractionally).

30 6 / 2013

Despite another tough week at work, I avoided wine on Friday evening, got a good night’s sleep and was up at 5:15am with a determined frame of mind.

I had to slow myself down. Which, if you remember, was Hazel’s piece of advice to me right back at the beginning. But my natural pace is faster than my body can currently cope with. I burn out too quickly and let’s face it, longevity and distance are what I’m after.

So I willingly, purposefully, consciously forced myself to go slow. A real plod. But that determined frame of mind took me beyond the 1.33 miles I was stuck at and to my slightly increased distance of 1.75 miles, which I see as progress.

Next, is to make 1.75 miles the norm.

Jog on!

20 6 / 2013

I could blame the heat but it’s barely 20 degrees C (68 F) here. (That’s warm for us. Everyone’s walking around in flip-flops and shorts.)

I could blame the wine I drank last night but I didn’t run until 3pm.

I could blame the 5 jelly sweets I ate in the hour before I jogged.

I could blame my less-than-aerodynamic hair.

I could blame a number of things but the truth is I struggled today and it feels like I’m not making any progress.

It’s been 2 weeks since I ran so I needed to get out. Determined to do my extended route of 1.75 miles I felt great after about 3/4 mile. Really great, to be honest.

Just after the mile mark my legs suddenly felt very heavy indeed, doubt crept in sharply and the first idea of stopping entered my head. I tried to brush the feeling aside but 10 seconds later I was walking.

Why?! I don’t understand. I’ve never stopped before. Even on my first jog after years and years of doing no exercise I didn’t stop.

My legs were shattered. Heavy and lethargic with no strength. Maybe my pace was too much for them. Something to do with lactic acid build up possibly.

Who knows. But I didn’t do my 1.75 miles. It feels like I’m stuck and my fitness isn’t getting any better. Like something’s stopping me. Like there’s a barrier to me doing that extra half mile. How am I ever going to get to 13 miles?!

Even now, an hour later, I’m exhausted and my legs feel very heavy. And for crying out loud look at the state of me! I need a haircut!

15 6 / 2013

It’s been 9 days since I ran. Admittedly I’ve had an enormous week at work. But it’s no excuse.

What’s worse is I wanted to run today and Hazel got called into work because someone else was ill, so I had to stay in to watch the boys. And I’ve since opened a bottle of wine. Incidentally, it’s a very nice rioja.

So what to write about my half marathon prep this week? Well, nothing really. Nothing much other than my ever-improving jogging playlist full of awesome rock tunes!

I struggle to run to 2/2 time thumping dance music all of the time. Every now and then it’s great. Daft Punk, Justice, Chemical Brothers, Skrillex and The Prodigy are all on there and I love it. But it’s the grinding guitars of heavy rock that really make me feel empowered whilst jogging. And it’s not all Eye Of The Tiger either.

Metallica’s Bleeding Me works surprisingly very well for a slow rock song but it doesn’t make the list. So here we go, the alternate jogging playlist…

1. Duality - Slipknot
2. Bullet With Butterfly Wings - Smashing Pumpkins
3. The Threat - Skid Row
4. Bulls On Parade - Rage Against The Machine
5. Last Time - DOWNER
6. (Rock) Superstar - Cypress Hill
7. Just Got Wicked - Cold
8. Cochise - Audioslave
9. True Nature - Jane’s Addiction
10. Immigrant Song - Karen O & Trent Reznor
11. Stockholm Syndrome - Muse
12. This Means War - Nickelback
13. Mouth Of War - Pantera
14. Slither - Velvet Revolver

06 6 / 2013

This is simply stunning.

(Source: danbarham)

06 6 / 2013

My alarm went off at 3:50am this morning. I had to see Night shift. Seriously though, what a bullshit time of day to be functioning. I’m pretty sure I rose vertically straight out of bed with arms limp to my sides in full-on zombie mode several seconds after hitting my buzzing phone.

Then coffee at 5am becomes a necessity. And then a second coffee. And no food until 9:10am. This is an unhealthy practice people. On top of that I had an anger-inducing discussion with my boss. And I’ve been unable to shake the shakes ever since. Even now eat my desert at 6pm, the spoon is shaking uncontrollably as I hold it. Maybe there’s an explanation (low blood sugar, high blood sugar, arguing with one’s boss) or maybe I’m going to die imminently.

When I got home I had 35 minutes until I was solely on parenting duty and I hadn’t run for a week. Determination got the better of me and I was swiftly out of the door jogging to Skrillex and Skid Row.
I wanted to do my 1.75 miles again but I just couldn’t. I was knackered. I managed a sprint finish (just) to my usual 1.35 miles but it was hard work. It almost felt like I’d taken 3 steps forward getting to 1.75 miles and then 2 back. But after the day I’ve had, that’s bloody good enough for me!

30 5 / 2013

I had 2 glasses of wine last night. Watching ‘Breaking Amish’, ‘Whale Wars’ and ‘Honey Boo Boo: Social Reload’. The first two do hold an amount of genuine intrigued for me but that Honey Boo Boo garbage was Hazel’s enjoyment. I thought I might be able to laugh at the rednecks but it was just dreadful. Still, fair play to them for making a load of money out of TV by just being themselves.

So, 2 glasses of wine, eh. I didn’t think I could jog the following day after drinking. Maybe I was trying to make excuses. Reasons for not running. “Hey, let’s have a drink then I don’t have to jog tomorrow!”. I figured this was a falicy. Friends of mine recently biked the Way of Roses from Morecambe to Bridlington doing 70 miles a day and getting pissed each evening. Two glasses of wine and a 20 minute run pale into insignificance in comparison. Plus I hadn’t jogged since Saturday, so I needed to get out.

Slightly dry-mouthed I put my shorts on and a scruffy t-shirt, downed half a pint of water and went for my plod plod plod in the damp streets. Only this time my jogging playlist was more rocked up. It started with ‘She Sells Sanctury’ by The Cult. I managed some Muse, Skrillex, Chemical Brothers and Justice too. So actually it wasn’t that rock really. I need to add more songs.

I was also determined to increase my distance. Having run the same 1.35 miles 3 times now, it was time to go a bit further. And despite my drinking the night before, this was the run. I knew a second loop around the school would add about half a mile and that was good enough for me.

Determined to do it, I was. Determined. By the mile mark, I was still determined but a little worried that I couldn’t. But I had to!

Sure enough, almost subconsciously, I jogged passed my house for my extra distance.

image

I was shattered by the end. My calves had tensed right up. My legs will be aching tomorrow but I’m really pleased with myself. That’s an improvement. Another 2 or 3 times jogging that distance and then I’ll break the 2 mile mark. But I’ll be driven on by Metallica by then!

25 5 / 2013

Three runs in now and I’m doing alright.

The ache in my legs was horrific last Sunday after my first jog on Saturday. We went out for the day to Hornsea and Beverley and I chased my sons all over the park, the beach and the Westwood. Carson Palmer would be proud. But man my legs ached!

On Wednesday morning my leg muscles were still feeling it. But I committed to a run on Wednesday evening after work.

There are 2 issues with that. Firstly, more people walk the streets of my village at 5:00pm than at 6:30am and I’m not that keen on people seeing this pudding plodding along out of breath. And secondly, I’d been up since 5:45am and done 10 hours at work - I was hardly mad keen.

Anyway, I stuck to the same route as in my first jog but I forgot to concentrate on pace. Without consciously holding myself back pace-wise, I ended up going faster than I wanted to (after all this about distance, not time). So I knocked about 2 minutes off my Saturday time.

I was pleased and the following days’ leg ache was sooo much better than before.

That leads us to this morning when I had thought about upping my distance. I reckoned by looping back around the school I’d add another half mile. Hazel said I shouldn’t just yet and that I’d be better doing a sprint finish on the same distance as before.

I was going to ignore her advice until I was rounding the school for the first time and I had thoughts of doubt about my ability to do the extra half mile. OK, sprint finish it is then.

I’d been holding back my pace the whole way round knowing that if I go too fast I’d burn out. My legs are long and naturally they want to run faster than the plod plod plod I’ve been trying to do. So as I turned the final corner and opened my stride and gave it some power for my sprint finish, I felt in the inner kid in me remember the rush of running fast. And I remembered that I could run fast, These legs can do it!

So next I will up my distance. No more 1.35 miles. It is time to go further.

But jeez I need to change my jogging playlist. It’s full of Hazel’s jogging music. Now, I like Justice and Daft Punk, but it’s solid untz untz untz untz. I need more grinding guitars and screaming rock vocals. I’m gonna work on that.