Thursday, 28 February 2008

Moonlight run

Route: 6m+, trail, hilly
Weather: 6C, clear

Ran with Hugh and Chris from Otley AC up Jonny Lane to surprose view, round a Chevin loop, across into Danefield and a boundary loop back onto East Chevin Road. Quick pace but managed ok. Legs feeling a bit tired, but mainly due to increased mileage this week (45m).

Looking forward to sitting still on a train for an hour or so tomorrow on my way to a language conference in Manchester, followed by an evening's rest.

Wednesday, 27 February 2008


Route: 6m, road, hilly and flat
Weather: 4C

Ran Otley, Pool Road, Pool Bank, Leeds Road.
Quick pace and felt good.

Tuesday, 26 February 2008

Pyramid efforts

Ran with the club tonight. We did a good warm-up, followed by some sprints. Then we did a pyramid session:

200m, 400m, 600m, 800m, 600m, 400m, 200m efforts with 100m recovery runs.

2 sets with 60 seconds standing rest.

The wind was so strong last night that it was difficult to make any forward progress on the Westerly stretches!

Enjoyed it!

Recovery run

Short 3m recovery run

Sunday, 24 February 2008

Long run

Route: 20m, hilly, undulating and flat (!), road
Weather: breezy, light rain, 10C

Ran the intended route without too much problem.

Ran a steady pace throughout and felt strong. Walked up about half of Creskeld Lane at 16m, but it is a steep climb.

Total time was just short of 3 hours - not stunning, but ok for a hilly route. Aiming for time on my feet rather than speed as I certainly won't be sprinting the 95 miles from Milngavie to Fort William!

Re the weird 'pulled muscle' in my back... I think it must have been a trapped nerve, as it has completely gone - no sign of anything having been wrong. Pulled muscles don't go that quickly.

Saturday, 23 February 2008

Intended route for tomorrow

This is the route I will run tomorrow:

6m night trail run

Route: 6m, trail/road, hilly
Weather: windy, 11C

I pulled a weird muscle in my back in the early hours of Friday morning whilst in bed! It caused my back to go into spasms throughout the day on Friday and was vey uncomfortable. No idea how I did it, must have just slept funny. Luckily Friday was my rest day, and today I felt ok enough to run as planned.

Ran 6m up to the top of the Chevin and along into Danefield then back down Leeds Road. Quite a bit of ascent for a short run and felt fine.

Hopefully the back'll be fine for tomorrow's long run (20m)

Thursday, 21 February 2008

Windy 7m

Route: 7m, mostly off-road, hilly
Weather: 7C, very windy

Ran with the 'moonlighters' of Otley AC North of the river to Farnley and down through Weston Woods. Good pace throughout and really stretched the lungs out.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008


Route: 4m, road, undulating
Weather: 4C

Sore butt muscles after last night's hill reps, so just ran 4m up to the bar house and back.

Tuesday, 19 February 2008

Kenyan hills

Thanks to Hugh Pearson of Otley AC for a great hill rep session tonight. Ran three sets of 4 X 2minute up and 2minute down hills with 60 secs between sets. Very hard session, but felt good!

Going to try and mix up the training a bit from now on rather than just pounding out the miles.

Monday, 18 February 2008

Late night hills

Route: 4m, road and trail, hilly
Weather: -5C, fog

Late night run with the headtorch up in the forest. Lost my footing when taking my hat off and went over on my ankle, but nothing too serious. Should be fine by tomorrow. Quite strong going up the hills, although I don't think I left enough time after eating!

Friday, 15 February 2008

Summit of Sgurr a'Mhaim

With Nevis in the background, this was our penultimate summit.

Heading back up Stob Ban

Mullach nan Coirean summit

Stob Ban summit

Base Camp

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Few days walking

Off for a few days mental health break tomorrow, walking and camping in the hills in Scotland. Not sure where yet, but the weather looks like high pressure all the way. Bliss.

Will update the blog with a few photos when I can.

Tomorrow morning I am off for the testing for the uni study and I will report back how that went too.

It has been weird recording my diet for the week. I seem to have eaten a lot of rubbish this week. Maybe that's indicative of my normal diet? Don't think so, but I will have a look at my diet as the final push of training nears.

Cool Cross Training!

Tried some different cross training today. Totally out of my comfort zone! Good fun though.

Some of us got quite good at it:

Some of us needed some more time on the ice:

Sunday, 10 February 2008

Spring-like run

Route: 17.5m, road, some decent hills and some long flats.
Weather: beautiful, 7C, sunny, blue skies.

This was my route for today's long run. Furthest I've run since London - quite pleased with how I coped. Low point at 13 miles, due to not having had enough to eat beforehand.

From 15 miles I needed mint ice-cream. Not wanted, needed. Had some as soon as I got home!!

Saturday, 9 February 2008


Route: 6m, some hills, road
Weather: Clear and fresh

Bit worried before this run as felt a couple of knee niggles, but ran with no problems.

Lovely clear, crisp night.

Friday, 8 February 2008

Midnight run

Route: 6m, road, mostly flat with one decent hill.
Weather: milder than I had expected - 6C

Had to run late as Briony late home, so headed out about 11. Ran to Pool, up Pool bank and home, about 6.5 miles. No real problems, but quite tired, especially in quads. I put this down to the increased mileage this week. Have only run 28m this week, but relatively that's quite a bit. All in all I'm really pleased wuth my first proper week back training.

I have to say how delighted I am with the SOLES (the custom footbeds I was talking about recently. They are so comfortable and seem to be helping the tendonitis I have been getting in the top of my foot. I even take them out and wear them to work now as they are so comfy. Highly recommended!

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Hilly 6

Route: 6m, road, hilly
Weather: 3C

Ran a reasonably quick 6m on a hilly course. Felt fine physically; a little stiffness in the quads, but just due to increased miles I think - that kind of 'good sore' rather than the grinding sore I had a few weeks back.

Nice clear night too!

Some Research

Next Wednesday I will be taking part in some research at the Leeds Metropolitan Universtity. They are carrying out a longitudinal study looking at the bone mineral density of long distance runners and walkers. Here is the basic blurb about the study:


Endurance sports such as running and race walking are popular and have a number of health benefits. However, some endurance athletes, particularly runners, have been shown to have low bone mineral density (BMD). Low BMD is linked with a higher risk of fractures. At present it is uncertain why some endurance athletes have these bone problems. It is also uncertain whether they are losing bone too early in life. This is mainly because there have been very few studies that have monitored bone density over a period of time. There are even fewer studies in male athletes than female athletes.


The purpose of the study is to identify the most prominent factors that influence BMD in long distance runners and race walkers over a 9 month period. This will be achieved by measuring BMD at the start of the study and after 9 months, together with measures of body composition (% fat and muscle), genetics, bone loading patterns during treadmill exercise, muscle strength, diet and hormone levels. These measurements will tell us if these athletes have lower than normal BMD, whether they are losing bone prematurely and the reasons for changes in BMD. We intend that our findings will help inform athletes to balance their lifestyle and keep their bones healthy.

I am looking forward to the study. One of the tasks I have to carry out this week is ti record not only exercise, but a thorough record of everything I eat and drink. The study requires that you do not alter your 'normal' diet so I am being brutaly honest! It is amazing to see what you do eat in a day. Some good, some not so good!

Sounds like an interesting study and I will update the blog to the progress and results.

Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Club run - 05/02/08

Route: 7m, road, undulating
Weather: 6C

Good run with the club tonight, a bit faster than I have run for a while with tapering and injuries etc. Felt pretty good. Small amount of foot pain, but nothing really. Bit of cardio and muscle fatigue towards the end due to the speed, but coped ok.

Here is my route:

Sunday, 3 February 2008


Route: 10m, road, mostly undulating with some hills.
Weather: 6C

First training run of any distance in 2008 so quite pleased. Ran a steady 10m (1h20m)on a reasonably hilly route, although all still on road.

No knee pain at all, and although I had some foot pain during the latter miles, it feels fine now an hour later.

Fitness wise, felt quite strong, especially from about 6m when I settled into a rhythm.

A big thanks to Wendy for the sponsorship today - first person of 2008 and really nice to get the total of the 61% mark, where it's been stagnating for a few weeks. It's going to need a real push between now and June, but I'm totally confident that I can reach the £1000 target for Epilepsy Action.

Saturday, 2 February 2008


Route: 7m, road, undulating
Weather: sleet, 4C

Ran the same route as Thursday except I was re-routed along Pool road around Knutford Nook as there had been a fatal accident on the Pool Road. The carnage was clearly visible from the diversion and it looked horrible. Scary thought is that I nearly went out last night along this route and would have been there or there abouts at the time it happened. It's so important to remember how fragile life sometimes is and how much we need to live it.