The Scribbler

29 January 2011

Ups, downs and marketing parkrun

Filed under: Parkrun,run,swim,training — The Scribbler @ 19:43
I’ve hit the chocolate again this week. Call it post workout munchies, or just giving in to the tedium, it’s been a bit more than an odd treat and more like a mood enhancing hit, with appropriate post indulgence crash.

So really it’s no wonder I’ve been feeling a bit bloated and sluggish. I’m not going to get myself in a tizzy over this. Sometimes I’m a bit tough on myself and what I ‘should’ and ‘shouldn’t’ do in training. This week I’ve tipped the balance a bit too far the other way.

My head was full of nonsense at Wednesday night’s boxercise and part way through the warm up I was almost giving myself the ease up message. But some good punky rock tunes, and a great class full of fun people and I suddenly just let it all go. As a result I nearly punched myself completely out of breath on a couple of the rounds, hitting hard and fast, launching into the pads with some real aggression. But it felt good and restored my energy and positivity.

Thursday’s PT session on the beach was back to winter darkness, but I was full of happy endorphins during a tough workout for my legs. The only downside was that the time sped by so quickly. I’m sure the hardest part is having to adapt back to office life afterwards. I kept finding excuses to get up from my desk and move around. There will be a hole worn in the carpet from my trips to the water cooler and back soon.

I have an exercise slot on a Thursday night that’s just the right shape for a swim. At first I got in and was quite happily warming up with a few lengths breastroke and front crawl. Then I don’t know what happened, but everything became a distraction. From a leakly goggle to a mis-breath half way down the pool and negotiating with another swimmer whether we were going to do loops or swim at different sides of the lane. I just kept failing to string a decent continuous set of lengths together, with the result that my swim wasn’t one thing or another. Not a technique session or a speed session or a swim a decent set session. I was a bit cheesed off with myself

By Friday I was ready for a rest day. I’d felt my left shoulder and lower back tighten up after the swim, and not just a well used muscle ache, but a bit more of a strain. It meant Friday morning’s breakfast was porridge and ibuprofen (food of champions) and feeling sorry for myself was assuaged by a trip to the choclate vending machine. Thankfully my lunchtime pilates class put me in a better place and eased my shoulders and back far more effectively.

And so to parkrun on a cold and frosty Newcastle morning. So many people to say hello to now, it becomes a challenge to get round and warm up before the start. My friendly nemesis Penny was preparing to freeze her fingers off giving out tokens today, so I had no one to chase after. But with an unusually grumbly stomach, I just decided to run how I felt.

And it was cold, but I was well dressed and once in the huddle at the start I didn’t feel it too much. A more temperate first kilometre than last week and I resolved just to try and keep that pace going the whole way round. At times I felt distinctly uncomfortable around my middle, but reasoning that my legs and breath were good, I just kept pushing on.

The sun was brigh and low in our eyes, sparkling off the ice patches in the mood as we turned back onto the moor. For once I barely took notice of the rougher ground as I chased down a runner and overtook them here. Then, once again I was out on my own. Just keep pushing on I told myself and I felt like I’d been consistent and stronger through that difficult 3-4k section. It was still a relief to see Clare smiling at the 4k gate though.

I’ve got my strategy sorted here now I think. A bit of a mood lift knowing there’s not far to go and a conscious picking up of the pace and strteching out the legs to make ground on the runners ahead. I picked it up a little again at the end of the run of lampposts, edging closer to a tall male runner. Down the final straight and a shorter sprint than of late, but it edged me one place up the pecking order.

Token collected from Pen and Flip doing a great job marshalling a new record number of runners through to get scanned. And then some more chat and catching up before chauffering Rob to the cafe in Jesmond for a warm up hot choc and teacake.

As I was getting up to go, a guy on a nearby table stopped me to ask where we’d all run from. I told him about parkrun and said it was a very friendly event and he replied “I can see that.” Our table full of fetchies tucking into breakfasts, coffees and generally talking ten to the dozen after a good run is a great advert for a great event. And it makes me very happy to be running and spending time with my most excellent friends :-)

Stats and stuff
5k 26:19
km splits:
1. 5.13
2. 5.13 (yes I run like a metronome sometimes)
3. 5.18
4. 5.36 (hmm – not as consistent between 3 and 4 as I felt)
5. 4.50

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