Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Two Runs to Chat About

Hello blog lovers.

I was a bit busy writing up my blog for the beginners yesterday and I didn't have time to write up about my run yesterday.  So this is a double blog, I shall have to type fast and not watch too much t.v. like I usually do!

Yesterdays run I began just after 6 in the evening, after a very emotional and exciting day wedding dress shopping with my middle child.  I can't tell you just how I enjoyed that morning and afternoon.  It brought back some lovely memories of me and my mum going shopping for my dress, and my daughter looked absolutely beautiful trying on all the dresses.

Anyway, the wedding isn't too far off and I still have a shed load of flabby bits to tame so I ran out to do my usual 3 miler.  I took a slightly different route too, I ran straight up east arm of Oxhawth instead of west arm of Oxhawth.  I want to start making the bit I dare not stop just a little bit longer and the road opposite Farringdon is perfect start!  As I was going to be back down it I might as well run along it in the first place.

So I ran from mine, like I said about 6 ish and straight up Farringdon and over the road to run up the east of of Oxhawth.  I had my music blasting away in my ears.  I think I must try some other 'phones because the ones I have, the ones that hook over my ears still fall out.  I think the next ones I should try are those bone conductor ones,  see if I can keep those in place.

I was thinking about the day I had with y daughter, and how pretty she looked and right there I was feeling so happy, of course more tears then!  Why does that happen!?  I ran up to Turpington, around to Greenway and then back up Magpie Hall Lane.  Running and walking like I do, and just waiting till I get back to the east arm of Oxhawth because from there it's running without any walking!  Next time I shall add on just a little bit more!

I was pleased with the run, I was feeling good and totally focused and determined to lose a bit more weight and tone up us a bit more, ready for the wedding!  Here's my geeky stats.

Club Run.

And so to this evenings run.  It's Tuesday so of course it's club run.  I decided to do a route that I had done before, but I always get it slightly wrong. It's ok, it's just that I have to think on my feet, and make slight alterations!  It makes for an exciting run for all of us.  There is also not preconceptions on how far we had run, and none of the 'I would normally walk around about now' thoughts going on.  I am checking all the time on my Garmin that not running faster than group 1 pace, anyone that wants to run faster can always run to the back of the pack when we do stop for a catchup.  

I took them up Petts Wood Road, it's all up hill, and I thought that was all the hills that we would be doing......as long as I don't go down the wrong road. Well, I never go down the wrong road, I go down the right right just different direction!  And that is what happened this evening,  It meant that when we eventually got to St Johns road I thought turning left would lead me to the road I had in mind, but of course it didn't.   I had to quickly re calculate with the help of Auriol, a new route, which in fact turned out to be a perfect 3 mile route, exactly what we normally do.  I think I managed to get away with that one, even though they noticed the not so flat route I had promised after we had run up Petts Wood Road, Cardiac Hill is notorious, but at least we were going in the opposite direct to the bigger hills!  Hmm, I think I might plot a route taking in a bit of the steeper Cardiac Hill, it's always good to have a challenge, and of course a new route too, just like this evenings new route.  I think all 11 of us enjoyed it.  Tracy and K were sweeping, now I know that both these ladies can run a 5k non stop, they do it regularly at Bromley parkrun.  So as soon as they had caught up then then we carried on running, with only just a little bit of walking done.  It was a great run, and we also had a new comer to PWR, and I think the nice gentle run made it a lot more easier than stepping up to a faster group on the off!

We finished our run and then did our stretches outside the pavilion, 11 group 1 runners went out and 11 came back, smiling!  It was a good run, and to make it even better there was cake on offer!  One of our longest serving members, John had a special birthday and had bought cake along for all those that turned up, or at least the one that managed to get back in time to get some!

Geeky stats. - the pac man route!

Monday, 18 September 2017

We Begin The Beginners Again!

Hello blog lovers.

I can't believe we have come around to the second beginners course of the year!  I was so excited about starting the new beginners, I just love it.  A drove over to pick up Tracy, she is going too, to help and encourage all the newbies that will be there.  I couldn't actually get in to the car park, there were quite a few cars there already.  Sherry was there with the clip boards, DavidB, DiscoRich, LittleJ, PhysioMiketheMod and tons of other PWR's all in their vests, well most of them anyway.  It was going to be a good session.

DiscoRich welcomed them all to the first of the Autumn sessions and then handed over to me and Sherry.  We decided that I would take the first one, Sherry do the second, etc, and so that was me!  I don't know why, but I always feel totally nervous standing there in front of all those people, wanting us to make them run 5k!  Well I am sure that later on, the further we go on in the course then they will know that it is all about them getting themselves around a 5k route, because without their willingness, determination, dedication and perseverance then whatever we tell them, won't make them fly around the park this time in a couple of months time!

That is one of the things that I love about doing the beginners, watching them as they realise that they are doing it, they are in control and they will be achieving their goals.  It's a sheer buzz, and that's why I will continue to encourage and do what I can for those that want to start running.

The session on Saturday was quite straightforward and a very gentle start for everyone.  We started off with the two lap walk around the rec at quite a brisk pace and then the drills, to get the muscles loosened up.  Once we were all warmed up we got straight into the session, 5 lots of 1 min run 5 mins walk.  That's all we had to do, 5 reps of walking and running.  I know they will be surprised to find out how quickly that minute goes and how they really could run for longer!  But we don't want to hurry things along like this because injuries can and do occur if you try and push too much too quickly.

The session was over really quickly, and I was still buzzing.....still nervous too, but very happy that  it went really well.  There was someone who had pulled a muscle in the calf, I just hope that it won't put him off.  Exercise is just so good, it's not only good for your body (honest, it really is better for you) but it's also good for your mind, your moods and just about anything else!  You can even pray, talk to the big man up stairs!  I know I do often. I feel sure that the new newbies are going to just enjoy being out their enjoying themselves. %There were 52 people who started on Saturday, some of them are coming back because they didn't finish the last course, injuries, life just got in the way, so they are back to finish what they started.  We also had over 20 PWR's, that was amazing.  I know that all the runners are really pleased to see and chat to our members!

Now it's down to that determination and perseverance, now they need to do the homework, which is to repeat the session that we just done, at least once more during the week!  I know that some of the beginners met up today at the rec to all train together!  The beauty of FaceBook, they can all chat on one site and make arrangements!  Well, I am looking forward to the next session, led by Sherry, and then I can get in among the runners and have a chat with them all!

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Back At Track!

Hello bloggers!

It's that time of year again, the summer core training has finished and track is calling!  I usually decide to relax for a few weeks, not do any running on a Thursday evening, you know, have a little break!  But then I usually find it blimmin hard to get back into it and find something very interesting on the telly that I really do need to watch!

My lovely middle childs wedding is coming up real soon, I can't believe that is just over a month away, that is the reason that I am not sitting down watching telly!  I am so excited about it!  We haven't had a wedding in the family for quite some time!  And it really is motivational, when you have something excited to look forward to, you tend to go all out!

I turned up at track, early, well I thought I was going to have Tracy with me but she is having a bit of a rest, I think maybe she been going to crazy with her exercise, and I was chatting to some Track Newbies, Wendy, Emma and Hannah!  They all looked terrified, I tried to reassure them that it was going to be just fine, but I think PhysioMiketheMod (he has quite a few nick names actually!) did a better job reassuring them, and of course explaining all about track.

Our session this evening was 5 reps of 800 metres. that's 5 times twice around the track with 90 seconds rest.  The faster runners, those that run parkrun in 28 mins or faster, will be doing 2 and half laps with 90 seconds rest.  We started of with a tempo run  I smiled. I smiled because not only was I back at track, with strangely I have missed, but I smiled because just as we ran to the first corner everybody was already pulling away in front of me, I was still at the back!  It's fine, it's no problem.  Being the only group 1 representative is good!  Maybe I can persuade some other group 1's to come along and join in.  It is a great way of getting faster, you just ask some of the tracksters!  They have all improved their speed!  I am hoping to do the same.....not that I am competitive or anything.....well, maybe just a bit!

We did some drills and then we started with the session.  On the first rep I noticed that Hannah was behind me!  That's my place usually, I can only presume that she just over did the first tempo runs and stuff!  She normally is way ahead of me.  I think it actually gave me a little bit of a boost, and I kept trying to keep just a little bit of a gap between us.  I don't think she knew how much she was helping me to keep going.  I think maybe I should have felt a bit concerned that she was behind me because she could have actually injured herself!  I kept going though, I felt sure that if she was hurting then she would stop running, so I continued to 'use her' as my pacer from behind.

By the 3rd rep I started looking at the time each time I finished a 2 lap rep, because usually I don't have enough time to finish one of these sessions and  have to finish on a short rep, but it seems I am going to be able to do the whole session the PhysioMikeTheMod has for us!

On the very last lap I had a bit of a blip, a had a little pain in my left knee!  I tried to ignore it but it wouldn't go.  So I slowed down and started walking for a bit, it eased off.  Maybe I really was just pushing slightly to hard for a first track session back.  But it still felt great, the other runners are just as friendly and encouraging as ever,  the Ponds were there, Stephen and Matthew, running as fast as ever!  No wonder they are doing brilliantly in all their races and parkruns!

Geeky stats for you.


Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Club Run - A Rain Splattered Run

Hello blog lovers.

No rest for the wicked! Actually, I was looking forward to this evenings run, a nice gentle 3 miler.  My solo runs and parkruns are all about pushing myself just that little bit more each time, my club run is all about helping encouraging my fellow PWR's, chatting, socialising and having fun while running! And can you believe that we do all of that in the rain!

It's not easy for most people to get out into the rain to go running for fun!  It's not motivating, it feels yucky and the thought of cosying up on your chair with a nice hot chocolate is so much better.  Mind you, some people thrive running in the rain, as long as it's not cold of course, our LittleJ quite likes running in the rain, as long as it's not cold.

Last week I had somehow managed to do my group out of half a mile, so to make up for it I chose one of our flattish routes which I know is 3 miles long, but I was going to try and push them along just a little bit. Encourage them to keep up with the 13:30 m/mi pace.  After our count up, there were 11 of us in my group this evening, we ran out of the gate and turned right ran along to Kingsway and then turned right again.  I kept a careful eye on my Garmin, trying to keep my pace at 13:30 m/mi all the way to the top of the road.  When I got there with Becky and Auriol and Selena and some of the other faster ones we waited just a few minutes for the sweepers to get to me, this week they were Ruth and Rachel.  And then I told them all that I was running at 13:30 m/mi and just left that out there.  "So you're saying we need to run a bit faster" was one of the comments that came back to me!  I think they got the message!  I told them that for this run I will be pushing everyone just a little bit more than usual,  to try and keep our pace as near to the advertised pace as I could.  With the weather like it is, wet and horrid, it could work in our favour.  Everyone wanting to get home earlier.

I think we were all running quite nicely together, not too much hanging about waiting.  I sent the faster runners on to little excursions and if they wanted to run back to the sweepers to keep on moving then they could.  It worked really well.  We did lose one of our runners at the very beginning of the run, due to injury, but he was quite happy to walk home!  In fact we met him near to his house, he must have taken the short cut to get there!

Our route took us all along Crescent Drive, along Shepperton Road and then right along Crofton lane to Crofton Road!  All the time we were running at a nice steady pace, all though at one point we were running a lot slower than we should be!  So I just encouraged them along, and considering they are some of my bestest friends I encouraged them in my own unique way!  It's a good job they know me really!

From running over the bridge we turned left onto Beaumont road, and we were finally on the homeward stretch.  The rain continued to come down, a little harder now, but our smiles were on our faces as we ran the finally stretch home!  Not too bad, 3 miles, in the dark and in the rain in under they hour!  Brilliant!  A nice stretch out, with one of the group 9 runners as well, as he had come back early too!

Geeky stats for you.

Monday, 11 September 2017

So Many Blogs, So Little Space!

Hello Blog lovers.

Ok, so I have got about three runs to write about, but I will just kind of blend them all into one, and at the end I shall I add just one lot of geeky stats, todays one in fact and if you want to see anymore then I think you can kind of use a scroll button or something! As for the little space, well, there's tons of space really, but I don't want to be writing all night!

Anyway, this running malarkey, I am really getting back into it, wanting to beat my times, wanting to run further without stopping and stuff.  I am trying all sorts of ways to keep myself motivated, to try and get me beyond the usual places I tend to stop at! At park run on Saturday, I was not really feeling it, but I got up anyway, because this spare tyre around my middle is not going to be disappearing all by itself now.

I was running by myself for almost all of the 5k, with only at the beginning running with my pals.  I was definitely quicker that the week before, which I was pleased with, but I have also noticed I've been 'nagging' myself more, "Go on, keep going" I was thinking and adding a slap on my thigh! And when I didn't keep going it was "Oh for goodness sake, run woman!" I do believe though, that I didn't actually say anything out loud, I am sure of it!

Anyway, I finished my parkrun, as I said, quicker than last week and I even lead the stretches afterwards.  NaggyNeighbour went early so that she could pick up Debs, who was doing her very first parkrun, working her way from walking to running a 5k!   With Naggyneighbour on her side she will get there!

So Sunday I nearly talked myself out of going for my run.  I had church to go to, then my middle daughter asked me to have 2 of her kids for a couple of hours, so that was my afternoon run put paid to! It was lovely having them though, and we picked up the pooch too, he loves coming to see nanny.  At least I had managed to get some washing done!  But then when the Old Boy came home from work he wanted to go out for ribs!  I had planned a nice dinner, with roast chicken and salad (see I am still on the healthy eating) but that was just not satisfying his tasted buds, so we planned to go out to Texas Jacks.  Now in my mind I was thinking, "Ribs, well, it's way over the calories, might as well not go out for a run just relax until it's time to go out"  That is what 'Lazy, fat me' was thinking, but 'active fit' me was saying, "get your arse out that now, go burn up as many calories as you can before you shove more inside" By this time there was a very fine mist coming down. "Shit, it's pigging raining" I thought to myself.  I thought about what is happening next month and dragged my backside upstairs to get ready for my run!

I got my music in my ears, my Garmin all set and I left the house without another thought about not doing it.  I did my usual run to Turpington and then back around Greenway, Magpie Hall Lane and then back on to Southborough Lane.  I felt pretty good, I was thinking of all the reasons why I was there, right there, at that precise moment, why I was running!  Obviously my mum was the first thought that came to mind, and then thoughts of how overweight, inactive, smoking, drinking and eating machine I was back then.  I really don't want to be like that again.  I have working too blimmin hard to get to just be where I am now!  Which is still to heavy, and way off my pb for a parkrun!  Again I beat myself up a bit, and I really felt I needed to be beat up then, "Get a bloody move on Old Girl, because you know what you're like, you will fall back to your old ways!"  I ran/walked the rest of the way home, in the now pouring rain, I flipping hate running in the rain! Yup, I still can't flippin run 5k at my pace, all the way! I got back and 'flumpfed' out of my wet clothes and I felt good because I went out when all I really wanted to do was eat ribs!  By the way, Texas Jacks was closing down for a few days, and we missed the dead line by 2 hours for eating ribs!  We had to go down a couple of doors to Assos, a Mediterranean restaurant, I had a nice healthy dinner instead, Kofte with salad and rice!  Still no beer either!

Today (it's Monday now, by the way) I was nearly put off going out by the weather.  It came down so very hard around 5 ish this evening.  I thought maybe that was it for the evening.  "Don't even think about not going out for a run" were the thoughts running through my head.  Running in the rain is not my fav thing, but I can do it, I did it yesterday and plenty of other times too. I got myself ready and out of the door, I was pleased to see that there was no more rain!  I set of for the usual three miles, up to Turpington and back.  This time I was going to use my music to keep me going.  I will run the first mile, I can usually do that no matter what run or race I am doing, and then if I want to walk then I will start walking only when there is a 'fade out' on the tunes that I was listening to and walk only for as long as the fade out lasts and the words for the next song starts!  It was a good system I thought, and I really tried to keep to that.  When I was beyond the 'turning back' stage and on the way home I was getting a bit tired.

But some of those tunes just got to me.  One in particular "If I could bottle up time" or something like that and again I just thought of my mum, if I could bottle up time then I know she would be in every single bottle!  Of course that brought me to tears!  I was really chocking up.  Sometimes you think you are ok with missing your loved ones, and then other times it just still so bloody raw!  I got through the rest of the run, still trying to run to the music.  Sometimes I did, sometimes I didn't, and at one point nearly chucked chunks!  I got to the 'Road I dare not walk' and just ignored the fade outs and the words and just ran.  I finished my run.....and I felt good!

Geeky stats for you.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Double Leading Today!

Hello blog lovers

I led two sessions today and thoroughly enjoyed it too!  My usual Thursday morning run through the beautiful woods and the final Thursday evening speed and core sessions in rec for 2017!

Thursday Morning

I really enjoyed running through the woods this morning, we all met up at the rec, there were quite a few of us as well.  Now the kids are all back at school, some of the mums are back to their Thursday morning running. There were four of us in my group, me Tracy, Paula and Wanda. The weather was just perfect, not too cold, not too hot and no rain either.  The woods were dry as well we could get some good running done in there, with fresh air, the trees, plants and to help keep us focused, relaxed and feeling good!  When all you have to worry about is all those adorable cute fur babies that just want to come up and give you some love when you have a little walking break, then you know that you are in the right place!  

I really am feeling like I am on a winning streak at the moment with the whole diet......no healthier life style and exercise regime at the moment.  It's great when I have some thing really exciting to work towards, my daughters wedding!  And considering she hasn't given us much notice I really am working flat out!  So much so that there are hills in todays run, of course there is, but this time we are going up Goss hill, it's my nemesis, I blimmin hate this hill, but I know that it should be getting me stronger, mentally and physically!  One day, I will run up it again non stop, I keep saying it, hoping that just writing those words will help me!

I was really working hard, either that or I was having a 'power surge' while I was running as well, the sweat was pouring down my face, and I had forgotten my hat too!  My hat helps me to see, it stops the sweat from going into my eyes!  By the time we got to the top of the woods, by the middle path I was feeling brilliant, I turned around to look behind and wait for Tracy.  She came up from the path, I could feel the daggers out again as she gave me 'one of those looks!'  But I know that as soon as it's all done she will feel just as fabulous as I was at the moment, and we still hadn't finished our run.  I took them along to the path that runs parallel to Orpington Road and the turned right.  

We got to as far as the woodsman's house and I looked down the Rhododendron path, that is where we are going to run today.  If it's shorter it doesn't matter, it's such a lovely path even without the plants being in full bloom!  Its all down hill so you can get a nice little pace going, with just a cheeky little kick up when we get to the bottom of the path.  Back down along the middle path all the way to Dog Poo ally and our run was done.  Three miles, or just over, about 5k we did, which is perfect for us on a Thursday morning, here's a geeky stats!

Thursday Evening

This is our last evening session of 2017 in the rec.  It's back to the track for me next week.  Try and build up my speed and stamina under the watchful eye of CoachPysioMike! And all the other people that go to Thursday track sessions, they really a great people who turn up there and encourage me all the way!

I was leading today, and I had a couple of speed sessions in mind to do, plus our usual par luffs at the end.  I just hoped I could fit it all in within the hour!  I picked up Tracy and we went off to the rec.  There were 10 of us this evening, an nice easy number, and I could join in the fun too.  I had my 'magpie' game in mind, but to get even more running, and knees bending and stretching I put us all in twos.  The fastest runner pairs up with the slowest runner, and that way I think it should all be more or less equal! There were 5 little teams, we were to work in a 'tag' style running to pile of cones in the middle and grabbing hold of cone and bringing it back to our own 'nests'.  But as soon as the other teams got managed to get three cones then their nest were up for grabs and we could steel from them and put the cones back into the middle.

It was a great game, a game of speed and tactics too.  Micheal and Tracy seemed to have had a great tactic, not stealing just collecting!  Then I did a quick pyramid running session, very short, very quick and in fairly equal teams.  Just the once, run to no.1 cone, run back to your mate hand over baton, they run to no.1 cone.  Then everyone runs to no.2 cone, then back to no.1 cone!   Short, fast, done!

Then another quick drink and back into our core exercises, plenty of lunges, squats held with back on the wall, planks, push ups, you know, the usual!  We had time for just one round each of the green of a par luffs to finish with some cool down stretches. 

And that's that for Summer Core and Speed 2017.  We had some brilliant leaders, some fun games, and always a ton of fun!

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Club Night Run

Hello blog lovers.

Well, it's finally here.  The first of the full pavement club runs for Autumn.  It's way to dark to think about taking the group through the woods, so it's going back to our 'winter' routes.  Now it has been a while, I am already missing taking my group through the woods, but I still can't believe I short changed everyone by half a mile!  I did, I somehow forgot a road somewhere, and I know exactly which road it is that I forgot.

But anyway, lets start from the beginning.  There were 18 of us in this evenings group, including my team, J.J. LittleJ, K and Tracy!  Illustrious Leader was running with us too, helping to sweep.  We are a group with some very varying paces, so it needs a great team!   Some of our group are coming back from injury (so probably just as well it was just a tad shorter than usual) and some were coming back from a long absence for other reasons too.  It must be kismet, that's my excuse! My route took us up Birchwood first.  That's right straight into a hill, just as usual really, but when we are in the woods it just doesn't seem as tough as running up hill on pavement. And we did some hills today!

I went a tad too fast up Birchwood running with the front of the pack, but sometimes hills just get to me, and I want to get up them as quick as I can before I realise that I am hurting! My sweepers let me know that I was going a tad fast, but I did say to the faster ones that if they wanted to do some loop backs, to keep on running then they could run back to the end of the group and then run back up!  I think they were all just pleased to have a little breather and wait for the others.

I was taking them to Tillingbourne Green, it's a nice route, once we get to the top of Birchwood of course.  What am I saying, it's another hill!  It's the short hill that takes us to the top of Tillingbourne and then the long down hill, which of course is nice, and then that longer uphill back to the beginning of the little loop! It's a tough little loop and a good challenge for group 1.  We can put in as much effort as we want.  I sent off the faster runners, with the option of either waiting at the beginning when then get back, hill reps or running back to the back of the pack!  Jenny was the only that that ran back! Like I said, it's quite a cheeky little hill and it can be a challenge!

After that we had to run up the short hill to Petts Wood Road, it's the little hill that I do hill reps on, but today we only ran up it once.  We continued to run down to Crossways.  Now this is where I got a little confused.  Instead of running all the way up to the memorial hall, which is what we should have done, I sent them back to the rec along Crossways and so therefore cutting our route short!  I was really annoyed with myself about that. I don't like to cut short my planned runs, especially club runs!  I shall have to double check on my routes before I take my group out!

So here is our geeky stats.

Monday, 4 September 2017

Two More squished into one!

Hello blog lovers

Another two blogs squeezed into one.  It seems I am doing the running but neglecting my blogging!  But I think I a glad its that way around and not the other way!  So the first one is about my parkrun on Saturday.  I know, right, it's been two days and no blogging about that particular run!  It wasn't particularly fast, I was disappointed with myself, I should have pushed a bit harder!  But I know I tell everyone else that they shouldn't beat themselves up about a run, and I should listen to myself and not beat myself up.  Every run is a good run, as long as we are ot there and not sat on our arses it just has to be good!

I also had forgotten my barcode too!  So that run is not even counted on my parkrun results! Oh well!  That'll teach me!  It was good seeing all my pals there, Tracy and Ade were there before me (even though I did go to their house to pick them up!)  They really have got the bug now, Ade is doing well, getting a pb each time!  LittleJ is back to running, she's just taking it nice and easy, K, Carole, RefMichael, PinkLadyJo, Becky  We are such a great little group of mates now, I just love it!  J.J. was missing, but she will get back to it soon!  And NaggyNeighbour was missing too, but no doubt she will be in a routine soon too!

As soon as the off was given I started running, I pulled away from the girls at the back straight away,  I knew LittleJ was going to take it easy and I didn't want to have any reason for me not to try and push myself today.  Ade started to run with me, but I know that he will be soon pulling away from me, but Becky was there running next to me as well.  For a while it was the three of us just running and chatting together, keeping each other going. Then Ade started to run faster and it was just me and Becky.  We kept each other going.  Choosing goals to run to before we even thought about walking.  We had to get over that first mile though, I was struggling to even run for the first mile, I had developed a stitch!  But I just squeezed it, raised my hand, ignored it, anything to get that first mile done.

Becky kept me going all the way, we both chose places to run to before walking, and then the other one just pushed it just beyond that point.  That is how we ran our parkrun on Saturday.  It wasn't my fastest, and I was disappointed with my run, but the silver lining is that at least it won't show up on my parkrun record!

Todays Solo Run

As you all know by now, my middle daughter is getting married, so I need to lose weight and tone up at the same time, because looking like Ada, (just look at last blog to find out who that is!) is not on my agenda!  So far, since coming back from holiday I have done pretty well!  It's been hard but not so hard that I have cracked under pressure and gorged myself on chocolate!  In fact I am enjoying feeling not bloated!  It feels like I am detoxing from all the stodge and fast I have been eating, and the no drinking feels good too!  But it is only the first week!  I know there has been some weight loss, but I also know that is just because I am not eating to excess like I did when we were on holiday!  

I was thinking that I should have run on Sunday but I know how important rest days are too.  Running is quite high impact on the old limbs, my knees in particular.  I'm no spring chicken anymore so I really just have to remember that and not go to crazy just yet!  But today I needed to go out and run, I was planning on doing it first thing in the morning, unfortunately I really am not a morning person!  I love my sleep, and I still haven't turned on my phone alarms back on.  So I just had to do it as soon as I got back home from working!  

I searched for my Ipod, procrastinating really, I really wanted it though, I need to be able to just listen to some tunes, run along to some perfect beats.  I also decided to do the 'lamppost to lamppost' style running.  Run faster than my usual pace, and have a walk.  I think I did ok!  I know at one time that I looked at my garmin it said 09:??  which I thought was way to fast really!  I know it didn't last long!  I just kept going, running as fast as I could without making myself sick that is, and walking when I got to certain lampposts.  But when I got back to Farringdon Avenue, of course that is the 'road that I dare not stop'.  I still keep to that, and whenever I am running on this road I think about it and smile!  I need silly things like that to keep me going.  

I enjoyed my run today, it was tough, and I felt a little queasy after, I think I must have pushed harder that I thought, I was quite proud of myself, just for that split second mind.  I certainly wouldn't pat myself on my back!  Oh and talking about pat I saw Pat and Paul as I was running along Oxhawth!  I stopped my Garmin just for about 20 seconds to have a quick chat with them!

So geeky stats for my solo run, completely solo, not even the pooch was with me!

Thursday, 31 August 2017

You Wait For One ............

Hello blog lovers.

It's been a while, hasn't it!  It is holiday season, lots of days off, lots of eating, drinking and all!  But now I am back to it!  I have a dress I need to be looking for, Mother of the Bride!  The wedding is in October, so I have a few weeks left to tone, lose some weight and get back on track!

I got back from my holiday on Tuesday afternoon, but I didn't go to club run, RefMichael had taken out group 1, I had lots of washing to do! But on Wednesday morning I went out for a solo run, well, when I say solo run I had little doodles with me, my daughters dog.  He likes to come out for a little 2 to 2.5 mile run before he starts wanting a carry home! But he also likes to sniff every single tree, bush, blade of blimmin grass that any dog....nay, any animal has been near it.  And also when he sees some other little fur babies out with their human mums and dads, then he likes to sit and wait for them to get near to him before he moves!  My run on Wednesday morning wasn't particularly fast, I could feel the tightness in my chest, the soreness in my calves!  I had been doing a lot off hill walking on my holidays, Cornwall and Devon are very hilly places! I was quite thankful that little doodles was needing to sniff every blade of  grass but it felt so good that I had at least made a start on my new healthy lifestyle choices (again!)  Blowing away the cobwebs, stretching the limbs again and getting into the right mindset to be able to keep it going, to keep it up!  I need to, I don't want to be looking like Les Dawson as 'Ada' in the wedding photographs!

Me, if I don't watch it!

Anyway here's my geeky stats for mine and doodles run.

  I ran with Tracy and LittleJ this morning, it was good to see LittleJ back to running, she has been out of action for about a month, I chose the nice round loop, going the easier way  up to the top of the woods.  It was a good route for LittleJ, because if she felt she couldn't do any more at least we could all get to the top of the hill first and then she could walk back on the roads, but it really wasn't necessary, because she kept with us for the whole of the 3 miles, a good walk run but it felt so good being in the woods, running with my pals!  We all kept on chatting after our run so we ended up going for a coffee!  A Costa Coffee run on a Thursday morning, we like to bend the rules!

Here's our geeky stats!

So the last one for this evening is about this evenings Core and Speed session.  This week it was lead by RefMichael, his first time leading these Thursday evenings.  He and Carole have come a long way since Feb 2016! Anyway, he did brilliantly, in fact his first speed session was tough one!  But before that we did the usual 2 laps of the green and the drills, then it was into his first tough speed session. It was the caterpillar/train style exercise, but with a slight difference.  Instead of the person at the back having to run all the way to the front of the train/caterpillar, at Michaels whistle the person at the front had to run all the way around the cricket field to get to the back!  My goodness it was tough.  I thought maybe the slower group 1's should be at the front, setting the pace so that when the first one took off on a sprint to get to the back it should be do-able.  Well I was at the front, I was first to do the sprint all the way around the cricket green, (the bit that we are not allowed to walk on!) and oh boy was it tough!  Michael had blown the whistle at least 2 or three more times by the time I eventually got to the back of the line  It was tough, real tough, but i really wanted to get to the end of the line!

We did it again, only but the way that we have always done it before, running from the back to the front on the whistle!  It was easier that way, but still great fun!

After that we took a drink and then did the core sessions, 9 different kinds of core exercise, I know it was 9 because there were nine of us and RefMichael asked us all to choose one each that we could do!  Planks, lunges, bicycles, sit ups and some others which I just can't think of right now!  All working on our core and strength!  With our favourite par luffs it was all done for another week! And it may be all the we have left on the rec, because of the fading light!

A great session though, and that's three lots of exercises done since I got back from my holidays!

Not a bad start!

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Club Run - After The Wilderness!

Hello blog lovers!

Let me tell you, if you don't know already, I had a fabulous weekend of great people, eating, drinking, and dancing along to some brill music, for 3 nights!  I am still feeling totally stuffed still! For goodness sake don't ask me to explain any more than that! I was still pretty tired too, it's not very comfortable at my age, sleeping on camp beds!  I need my huge deep filled, sprung mattress!

So my route today was going to be the easier route, but still with going through the woods for a little bit.  The light is fading fast at night now, and I don't like it!  I love going through the woods!  Anyway, after all us leaders gave out our routes and pacing (Trish by the way is having her debut lead this evening, well done Trish, just blimmin well done!) we walked over to our post to have a count up.  There were 13 of us in group 1 this evening, a nice bakers dozen!  We were last out of the rec today, and we followed a group up the road and I am sure they went into the woods too, but by the time we got there there was no sign!  Must have been the speedsters!  The cyclists were there again, with the lights lighting on, so it's deffo going to be dark in the woods soon, I think the cyclists will be pleased by then because we don't go in the woods when it's dark but they still do!

We went in through poo ally and just waited for everyone to be in the woods before we set off on the left path, running right pass the cyclists, who were obviously having a break or planning their route through the woods, taking in all the little jumps and hills that I know trail riders love!  We, however, are just out for a nice easy, flattish route for about 3 miles!  At least I hoped it would work out to 3 miles, because of the weekend I hadn't really planned a route, I was just kind of guessing that it would be around about 3 miles, I only just thought of the route a couple of hours before hand!

Running along there I was struggling myself to see all of the roots, I called "roots!" when ever I saw them so that they all pick their feet up over the roots.  Just maybe 1 or two more runs through here is all that is left now!  I feel quite disappointed really, surely autumn is ages away, why is is getting so dark!?  I only took them to as far as the footbridge and then we went up and over the bridge and then ran to the next one and ran up and over that one.  We can't run any further than Little Thrift as the bridge at the end of the path opposite to where we came out of the woods is no longer there!  Apparently the railways will have it back by November this year!  Hmmm, we'll see!

I had told the group that it was a flattish run, I had forgotten about the little undulation up to Petts Wood Memorial Hall!  Ahhh, it's fine, we are tough, we can do this.  So we started running all the way up to the hall, with a smile of course, although I was sure that Tracy was throwing a few daggers at my back!  When I turned to look back at them, all running up "What happened to the flattish route?" Still it's all character building, isn't it!

Then it was just the usual flat part of the route, around Crestview and back to the main road.  We crossed over there but my group was in two parts, so I sent the front runners around the little triangle until the others caught up.  On our winter route, or I should say darker days route, we usually run all the way to Shepperton road and then run down it to the end.  But because we did the little extra in the woods we were not going to go that way.  I sent the front runners to run along to Shepperton, and they could either wait there or run back, do some loop backs. I was glad that I had stopped at Shepperton because J.J. and Auriol said that they would have gone running down that way!

Once we were all together we continued all together to the main road and then we split into the two groups again,  J.J. and Auriol will run with Tracy, the fast ones ran with me until we got to Crossways, then they the could go at a faster pace to rec.

A great run, with some great people!  Love my running club!

Thursdays Double Up

Hello blog lovers.

Today I managed to do double exercise again.  A nice run in the woods with Tracy and I did the core and speed session.  So lets talk about the first run, that was this morning.  It's holiday time and there are less of us on a Thursday morning.  In my group it is only me and Tracy.  I decided on a shorter route through the woods as I need to be back in time, so it was up the right side of the woods to the road, all the way along to the top of the woods, and along the top to Botany Bay Lane and down again.  Anyway I'm telling you the plot!

We ran all the up, Tracy almost made it up to the top of it, and then we continued to run all the way along the side of the road.  When you are in the woods you it does look all the same, and if you are not sure of the woods it could look all the same.  Tracy couldn't get where were were, she popped her head out of the woods just by the road, and I explained exactly where we are.  It soon all be clear to here where we were.  We Got to Botany Bay Lane and then ran down it, there was no going around to Goss hill today, we had the luxury of running along the whole length of it, passing by the lovely house that is there.  It seems as if there is someone living there now!

Because of the rainfall yesterday, and there was a lot of it,  I thought maybe we should go up over the bridges and out to Little Thrift.  There were a few puddles the way we had already been, so I just knew that at the bottom of the woods there will be a few quiet sticky puddles.

So up and over we went, two bridges and then out on to the road to finish our run to the rec.  A lovey run, a nice little gentle run.

So geeky stats for that one is just below.

Thursday Evening Core and Speed Training.

Well, DiscoRich and IllustriousLeader were not here, and really, this time Thursday Evenings are usually lead by us minions leading each other.  So this week we had a fabulous leader, a beautiful, fair and thoughtful leader.  Ok, so I lied, it was me!  I was the first of the minions to lead the more informal groups, but that doesn't mean that I was going to be too easy, but I was also going to keep it fun.

The first thing to do of course is the warm up laps and the drills.  Then it was on to the fun bits. a bit of fun speedy type session.  I call it magpie, I am sure others will have a name for it.  The idea is to have groups, I think I should have gone with 3 groups, but I did two groups as it was  nice even number which included me playing along too.  I put a pile of cones in the middle of two batons about 20 or 30 paces apart of the cones.  each team member took it in turns to run to the middle of the pile take  cone and then come back to their team mates.  As soon as each team had two cones each then the opposition could 'steal' two cones from them, but then not to keep them but to put them back into the middle of the pile.  It's a game of speed and tactics!  Great fun.

Then we had our core session. Star jumps/cycling/lunges/push ups/ squats and then 30 second plank! In that order too!  It was a case of up, down, up down, with about 10 seconds between each discipline!

Of course it wouldn't be the same if we didn't have our par luffs to finish off!  I had fun, and I think everyone else had fun, the midges seem to enjoy us too, where's the antihistamine!?

Monday, 7 August 2017

Running In The Wilderness!

Hello Blog Lovers!

So this weekend was a bit different!  I am writing a blog but my blog is about the whole weekend of friends, fun, music, eating, and maybe the odd glass of beer!  From Friday early evening through to Monday morning I was one of those trendy people who go to festivals, I was with with Kirsty!  As you can imagine, I was pretty excited and apprehensive all at the same time!  I had been to a festival last year with Kirsty, so I knew exactly what to expect!  Those campbeds are not the most comfortable to sleep on, but according to hardened campers, it's 'A little bit of heaven' compared to sleeping on a mat on the floor!  So I guess I shouldn't moan so much,  I had company with me too, the ants were very curious and got up close and personal! And of course Kirsty was tons better company and some other great young people and their carers, nurses and doctors too.

Festival Spirit are the organisation that make it possible for young people to be able to experience a festival even though they have some huge life challenges!  They are a  "Charity providing the full festival experience to young people who would not normally be able to enjoy one due to life-limiting illness or disability"  they are an amazing group of people who make it possible for them to feel as safe and secure at a festival, a non profit organisation. Festivals are an experience that I think everyone should do at least once in their life, says she who swore she wouldn't ever going camping!  This was the second time I had been to a festival, camping with Festival Spirit, I went last year as well. An amazing bunch of people, Steve, Debs, Paul, Ross, Catrin, I am sure I am sure there were some others whose names escape me.  They made us feel so welcome and relaxed.  Everything was done, the tent put up, the floor down, the heating on, the little rooms all set out for the guests! Hospital beds for the guests, camp beds for the carers and nurses.  Of course this weekend wouldn't have been possible for Kirsty and me to go to if it wasn't for the wonderful people at St Christopher's young Adults.  They had done all the fund raising to be able to bring along 5 great people with their carers to be able to enjoy festivals!  It's all done on charity, fund raising, people like you and I giving money specifically to St. Christopher's Young Adults! (a little plug if you are not sure who you want to raise money for in your next race!)  I can't even imagine what the cost is to get them to a festival, last year we had a Jumbulance, and this year we had two minibuses, and a van, as well as to use the wonderful people of Festival Spirit to supply the marque,  the beds, the tickets, the electricity, the food, the cooking, the clearing up well, just about everything to make sure that we all had a great time!  I'm telling you, I can not 'big' St Christopher's and Festival Spirit up enough!

Anyway, I am guessing you are wondering why I am writing all this?  "Did she run?" "Is she just trying to make us all jel?" Well yes I did run, and I ran only because I was 'well jel' of all those wonderful pictures I had seen of my running buddies on the Facebook page which were of them all in their PWR shirts in exotic places, #pwrruntheworld is the hash tag they use!  But I was wondering how many of them had ran at a festival!

I wanted to keep it at parkrun time but as you can see, I was a little early! I can tell you, even though I had a camp bed I am not a very comfortable camper!  I like my bed, I like comfort! I like all the mod cons that come with 5 start hotels! So I didn't sleep very well and I was up at a sparrows fart to get ready.  After an on/off rainy evening to wake up to lovely sunshine was good, and I had a feeling that I did the right thing in only packing run pants and my PWR top!  Well, it is #pwrruntheworld! I have to show off my cub colours.  Although the sun was shining and we had blue skies the morning air gave me a little chill while I waited for the satellites to find me.  And then I was off, I had no idea how how big the Wilderness Festival grounds were but I was determined to run around the whole off it, and it was was 4 miles then so be it, and if it was only 1 mile then I would run three loops, as in a park run.

I set off for the site.  I hope you had noticed that I have already laid out one very good reason for it not being the most speediest of runs by the way!  I was very tired and very achy! The site is also a very uneven and bumpy ground. with cheeky little undulations, dips and rises! It's not my usual nice, flat park run! And of course I took a couple of pictures of the two main stages, this is the Atrium, Will Young was supposed to have turned up, but he was a no show!

The Atrium
Oh well, there were plenty of other great acts that were there! This was not far from where I started but already I was feeling tired!  But still, when do I ever not feel tired on a Saturday morning!  There was plenty to see, I was using this run as a little recce to tell Kirsty where everything will be.  I found the Chocolate Brownie stall!  The sun was shining brightly and as I ran around the site I was getting very warm.  I was also getting some "Hey, well done" from some of the other festival goes as they were on the forage for food and caffeine!

 I had ran around the whole site and got to the main stage, which was spitting distance to our camp site by the way,  and I was feeling quite pleased with myself.  I checked out my Garmin and realised I actually only had done 1.5 miles! Well, that answers the question of how many loops I shall be doing!  To be truthful I was feeling blimmin knackered, and again, I point you to point number 2 for me feeling pretty tired that morning, the fact the main stage was just 'over the road', it was pretty noisy! But of course, I couldn't not run a parkrun distance, could I, so I did a second loop, finding another little bit to look on site, and spying some other stalls I had not see on the first loop.  I investigated it and then carried on with my loop but I got slightly confused and missed a bit that I had done before and found a few more stalls that could be worth a visit when they opened!

I ended my run by going out the gate near by the Main Stage, this is me at the main stage by the way, it was huge!
Main stage, redder face,
but a better picture of this stage!
 The sound system on there was incredible! The Back Stage area was there too, which you could go in and party after the main events!  Yup, it truly was a noisy sleep, probably not great training for a 1k run let alone a 3k run.  Never mind, I am sure the beer could possibly help in that situation! Oh, yes, no.3 reason for feeling tired, but still, I guess 3 beers were not too much for the previous night!

So that was my Saturday run done, Petts Wood Runners, Run The World!  Not exotic, no sea and sand, although there was naked swimming in the lake (and no I did not do that!) but there was a music festival happening for the entire weekend, from the Friday till Monday morning!  I was knackared!

The girls and boys from St Christopher's and the carers were kept busy as they made sure that all the guys and girls with these life limiting conditions had a brilliant time, while the boys and girls from Festival Spirit kept us well nourished with cereals, fresh fruit salad and bacon and sausage rolls for breakfast, plus tea and cakes in the afternoon! Our evening meal was found out there, from the stalls on site.

Oh by the way, this was our home for a few days, and some pictures I took off the Spirit of Festival Facebook page of the way it all gets laid out.

I a sure we had a little bit more room this time, because
Kath, a St Christopher's nurse made a little table at the back
with a plastic box and a wood slatted top!
Kirsty with her scatchcards!

Oh, by the way, the acts that I managed to get to see were brilliant, Toots and the Maytals, and Grace Jones, plust Leanne Carroll singing Nina Simone songs!  Just brilliant.  Also a quick blast of a bluesy group on the Friday night was good, but we couldn't stay to see the end of that session.

Here this is a few of the pictures I took of the festival and a couple of pictures I 'nicked' with permission from Festival Spirit. I have a couple of shots of some of the team among my pictures, but if you click on either of the blue links at the top of this blog, (one is the web page the other is the FaceBook page) I am sure you can meet the rest of the team, Paul Steve, Debbie and the rest, as well as hundreds of other photos of the guests enjoying what you and I could do, at anytime if we wanted!  Fabulous photos.

Warrior Danny

Caris and the gang


Me and Kirsty

I took this because it just
looked amazing!

Ravi, Jan and Nick


Some of the St Christopher's crew

Watching Toots

Watching toots!

Oh and this is my geeky stats for the Saturday run!

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Double Day! Yay!

Hello blog lovers.

Yes, I have managed a double day Thursday!  This morning it was only me and Tracy, she really does not like to have all my attention on her.  I don't know why!  But there you have, just me and Tracy in the slower group, Helen and David in the middle group and Nickie, Ralf, Gary and and another chap in the faster group!  You can tell it's holiday season, can't you?!

It had been raining all day yesterday and I really didn't want to go through the woods, it will have some very muddy puddles which will slow us down, I really wanted, nay, needed a good run so my choice of route this morning was the cinder path, it's all nice and flat, it's all tarmac and it does have the bit through the woods, best of both worlds.

We all set out together, fast group going out through Towncourt Crescent entrance, middle group and me and Tracy out of the other entrance, but we turned  right to run along to Tudor way, so that we can run through the woods on the cinder path.  Tracy was behind me, I was really trying to get her to pick up her pace a bit.  I kept stopping, looking back and then running again.  No let off.  I know that she can run parkrun without stopping, she has done it several times, this route that we were doing is the same distance.  Psychologically it feels different, but she can do it.  I wish I could do it really, at the pace that I run, but I always walk some of it!  If NaggyNeibour was next to me she would nag me until I started running again!  I am just passing on that 'love' to Tracy.

We got to the very end of the path, with me making sure she was behind me all the time, turning to check, even running back sometimes to make sure, and we took a bit of a rest. Then it was all the way back again, a straight out and back, following the exact and I mean the EXACT route that we took to get there! In fact its the EXACT route that  take all the time when I lead group 1 along this path! I kept the same sort of pace going back, looking back to make sure Tracy was behind me, I mean, it's not as if she can go any other way, we came this way, just a few minutes back right!

Anyway, I ran and I came out of the pathway and waited on Shepperton road for her to emerge around the corner along the path.  I waited, I waited before and she came in sight, but this time I waited, and waited some more.  surely I hadn't ran that fast in front!  I waited.  I thought may I should go and see, and then I realised something.  "I bet she turned right instead of bared left!"  Why she would have done that  I don't know, because Tracy has been up this way so many times before. But When I looked up Shepperton to the main road Tracy came around the corner!  She had indeed ran on the wrong path!  Of course I can say that it was Tracy getting lost, but, as the leader, I should have been there at the particular (although we have never ran along that particular path before) point to wait for her again. So, a bad mark against me!  Tracy thought it was funny, but she said she kept running all the way to Crofton road, which is good!

We continued our running all the way to rec, I was in front, and as I crossed over Petts Wood Road I made a point of letting her know that we should be running up Crossways!

So, geeky stats for our morning run.

Thursday Evening Session

So its the last session of the year for our Thursday evening sessions, well, the ones that DiscoRich and IllustriousLeader will be taking the lead.  From next week it's going to be all of the rest of us doing the leading until it becomes too dark, then its back to track!

DiscoRich had some fun and games for us to do.  So the warm up laps done, the drills done and then it was on to our first running section.  A fast lap with a baton to hand to our team mates.  DiscoRich had us all in teams, there were five teams of three, and not three teams of five! Don't ask, it started to get quite confusing!  The teams were all mixed up because there was a team cup involved!  each team had group 1 or twos, going up to the faster runners, so it makes for a nice even race.  I had a couple of quite fast runners in my group, so it could be quite interesting.

So the first members of each team ran around.  Not to the half way point but the whole way round, as fast as we dared!  Stephen was our fist member, he is really speedy, well he is married to ZippySherry and he had his two speedy daughters at the session too!  Then it was another young lady, and I have forgotten her name, she was pretty fast, so we had quite a good gap between us and the rest of the teams, but of course, the two mini zippys were in the field racing again each other, and also gaining on my team mate!  So when I started my lap the gap was a bit closer!  I knew I had to try and get some distance between me and the others, and I tried I really did.  but I soon heard the faster runners coming along.  Simon was steaming up behind me, and then he passed me!  DiscoRich then came up behind me.  He said he was going to run in with me, but seeing Simon pulling away, the competitiveness got hold of me and he chased him down.

It was close, but my team didn't win!  Then we had the core training bit.  Some planking, lunges, you know the usual stuff! Then it was the fun bit, an egg and spoon race!  We stayed in our teams that we were in for the fast paced lap.  There were all sorts of tactics to getting up the course with the egg still on the spoon!  This is where Tracy came into her own!  We all thought Auriol was a dab hand at the old egg and spoon race, but Tracy, well!  She flew up that course and back down again!  Twice! And that one her team the egg and spoon race!  There was this cup that DiscoRich had bought along for the winning team of todays racing.  And as Tracy did so well at the 'relay' eggy sort of race well, she got the cup!

After that we had our par luffs, still in the same teams and we did the relays for about 6-7 minutes! before having our cool down stretches!

A great fun end to 2017 'official' core sessions.  And to top it all, both me and Tracy actually managed to get on our bikes to get there, an extra bit of  exercises!

Geekys stats

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Club Run - Where's the Sunlight Going!

Hello blog lovers.

Have you noticed how quickly the sun is going down in the evenings now.  When I want to take my group 1's through the woods I have to think about quick escape routes to be able to get out of the woods and run on pavements for the last bits.  It doesn't seem that long that we have been running in the woods.  A couple of weeks it has been far too wet in there, I just so love running through the woods and I miss it when I can't do it!

Today I had planned to start off in the woods, then run through the housing estate at the top and then back into Scadbury Park.  I thought we would just have enough light to do that, and maybe even finish up the last bit in Petts Wood, the part that runs parallel to Orpington road.

NaggyNeighbour was driving this evening and we picked up Tracy and Ade on our way to the rec.  Ade was going to join in group 2 this evening, as it's move-up week.  Naggy was going to try group 5, as she wanted to take it easy!! I know, group 5, easy, it don't compute!  I wasn't sure I had the right fuel inside of me today, especially as I had planned these blimmin hills!  I wanted to give our group a little challenge, just going around the woods, although it is just such peace and tranquillity in there, we still need to push ourselves just a bit to get fitter.

I took the middle path to get to the path that leads out of the woods and into the estate.  It's a gradual rise to the top of the woods, but I had  great sweepers in place, J.J. and Auriol, who will make sure that no-one gets left behind.  We had to wait at the sign in the woods for our backers.  We took a little walk so that we could get past the muddiest bit of the woods so far, it's where all the horses churn it up a bit when they are ridden through the woods (that is a word isn't it, ridden?)  My English and grammar ain't up to much, I should have paid more attention in school!  Anyways, once we were passed the muddy bits we had to take the right hand path that lead out to the lovely houses, they are truly love houses!  Of course, we were at the bottom of the road, almost, we had to run down a very small hill from the woods and then it was a nice steady plod all the way up to the main road!

I was running up here on 'empty', I literally had nothing left.  It's my own fault, I should have eaten properly, two weetabix and two slices of toast all day before a run in the evening is not good fuel for a 1 k run let alone 5 k!  I passed on my new found findings to my group stating "the things i do for my group so that you dont have to!" I said first "You are what you eat, and if all you are going to eat is weetabix and toast all day, then you are going to be a soggy sorry mess on a club run"  I don't think anyone actually believed I did this 'experiment' just for us in group 1, but it's still a lesson to learn.  A good breakfast and a decent lunch, possibly a snack late afternoon will get you around an evening 5k!

The light was was still good so I took them through Scadbury Park, I am sure it will only be a matter of weeks before that will be the end of woods running in the evening!  I will be planning pavement runs again. We ran all the way through the Scadbury and then  crossed over the road once out of the park.  It was still just about light enough to finish off woods running with the last bit running in the woods next to Orpington road.  We came out of the woods by the bridge, as it was quite dim in the woods, I wanted to just run along the road passing Birchwood and then down the next road which comes out opposite the entrance to the park.  I sent the faster runners on and I was there in middle.  It was then that we had a faller!  She came down with quite thump!  It's always most horrible when we have falls, especially on the tarmac and pavements!  We sat with her for a while until she was ready to sit up. We were at the top of the road, we could see the rec from this road, she said that she would walk the rest of the way.  With her was Auriol and Selena and Tracy.  They said they would see her back to the rec.  In the end Selena drove her home and made sure some one was with her.  I don't like people falling, but if it happens we have the bestest club that will rally around and make sure everyone is just fine.

So we ran for 3.25 miles, most pleasant, well apart from the fall.  I love my club! I am glad SmartyPants put my name down for the 10k back in 2010!

Geeky stats

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Morning After The Night Before

Hello Blog lovers

Yesterday was parkrun day, of course I was there, why wouldn't I be.  So I had a busy day on Friday, with a very busy Friday night celebrating Auntie Eve's birthday!  The gathering for Evies birthday should have started at 3 but me and Kirsty got there at 4 pm, at the pub that is.  Of course I only had coke for the first three hours, just in case Kirsty wanted to be driven home by me early.  But from about 7:30 the party started for me!  It was a good party!  Come Saturday morning I really wasn't feeling it!  "Self inflicted headaches does not warrant staying in bed" is what I told myself, so I duly got up and got ready for parkrun.

I collected Tracy and Ade, Naggyneighbour was making her own way there as she had to do something to her car.  All my other pals were there, J.J., LittleJ, Carole and Michale, K, Auriol and PinkladyJo.  My run was a 'just get around without 'chucking chunks' run, but again I was just going to not try and keep up with anyone nor was I going to wait for anyone,

We all took off and found our own pace, spreading out through the field, Naggy Carole and Michael were all in front while the others were behind me, how long that long that will last I didn't know! I heard Ade catch up to me and we started running together, to be honest, he did keep me running longer that I would have done if I was by myself but then he fell behind.  I thought about waiting for him, instead I just kept to my plan and just kept running along.  I did eventually have a walk and Ade caught up with me again, he seemed to have found his running mojo, or maybe his mojo found him, he started to take the lead and just got further away from me.  I knew it wouldn't have been too long before he started to get in front of me, just 3 parkruns and he has found his feet.

So there I was by myself again, I was going slower for the second lap.  It was quite warm yesterday morning, but I made sure that I drank some water before I left the house!  There was so much encouragement from all of my friends and running club buddies I almost felt like a celebrity! "Go on Old Girl, keep going"  And then there was Michael, "Go on Old Girl, get them legs up"  I've taught him well, the student has become the master!  But evey time someone called out to me I smiled, and then I tried that little bit harder to keep going.

Then I heard, "Hello Old Girl"  it was J.J. and LittleJ and Auriol, that had caught me up!  I ran the rest of the way with them, cheered on by Helen, she told me that she had decided to be sensible and not finish parkrun today, she had a little niggle and thought it best to sit this one out and just cheer instead! She chose a perfect place to cheer from too, at the Hook Farm end of the park, well away from all the finishers, but still with three quarters of the park to run around, exactly the spot that you really need cheering on!

So the three of us all came in together, of course I had to do that little sprint to the finish, I think I probably took off a bit too soon, because that sprint seemed to go on for ever!  I head Naggy, Carole and Michael cheering me on, and I just stayed focused on that orange funnel!  There, I did it, hangover and all!

But that wasn't the only thing I did on Saturday! Just check out my cycling blog! Ride London(ish)

Geeky stats

Thursday, 27 July 2017

In, Out, Left, Right? Which Way Zippy?

Hello blog lovers.

Just the one exercise to write about today.  I was leaving Kirsty early, so I wanted to make sure I spent longer with her  in the morning. I was feeling a bit down, and didn't know how to pick myself up.  It's good that I have have Kirsty to take care off, as we do have a giggle together. I had planned on taking my bike to the rec today, on the way collect Tracy as well, obviously I wasn't going to give her a 'backie', she was going to be riding her bike, but the weather was against us again!  I am not sure, but Tracy just didn't seem convincing when she said "Oh what at shame, I was just so looking forward to cycling there"

Anyway, we got there in time for the two lap warm up jog around the rec, I did the first one and the second one I did in the opposite direction to everyone else, as I wanted to finish at the same time as everyone else, which means that I would be doing just a tad less than two laps.

ZippySherry was in the lead seat today, with speedy1 and speedy2, her two girls!  My goodness they are speedy too.  The littlest one, doing the warm up lap, was half way around the rec and I hadn't even completed a quarter of a lap!  No sense of pacing!

After the warm ups it was the drills, just the usual, skipping, sidesteps, drum majors, sidestepping and butt kicks.  Then it was on to the fun and games.  A bit of calf stretching I think we were practising as it involved an awful lot of jumping.  I think I had got hold of the rules of the game.  ZippySherry had us all holding hands for this!  Most peculiar, there we were, all holding hands in a circle, Zippy does have a way of bringing out the child in all of us.  So the game was, when she called out 'In!' we had to jump into the circle shouting out 'in' as well, when she called 'out' we had to jump out again calling 'out' as we jumped, and left and right of course.  Sounds easy, don't it.  Well that was, then she changed the rules.  We had to listen to what she said, 'Out', but we had to jump 'in' while calling 'Out' and when we jumped left we had to jump right but call out left!  So not only was we working our calv'es we were also working out our grey matter!  Well, maybe not for me, because I always get my left and right wrong, so therefore in theory I was doing things right! Right?  It was a fun game though, and then there was an even more complicated version, involving tagging someone, it was all good fun I think, my brain hurts!

After that it was time for bacon!  I know, that's exactly what I was thinking 'yummy, bacon!' But the bacon in question was a baton!  We were paired up with people of the same speed, more or less, then placed opposite each other.  The bacon (baton) was placed in middle of the 'gaming area'.  Two lines of runners, team A and team B, then we were given numbers, 1 to 5.  When ZippySherry called out "1" both team A and B numbers 1's ran for the bacon and had to get back to their spot without getting tagged by the opposing number 1.  Confusing, well, we all did eventually get it!  At first, when Zippy Sherry called out mine and Tracy's number (she was my opposite by the way) I tried the 'war scream' approach to the 'bacon'.  I did get the bacon and I started back to my starting position, but I got tagged, so the point when to the 'B' team.  The next time my number was called out I tried a different approach, I let her get to the bacon first, and then tagged her before she got back! Another fun game, and one that we have not done before.

As we were in teams already, we had a relay racing,  running from the patio to the cricket thingy!  That was good fun too.  I really tried to run really well, not too fast, I've seen too many of my pals pull up with injuries!  But just enough to get the heart pumping and the legs moving faster!

So, core training section.  It was two reps of Star Jumps, Lunges, planks and Squats, all thirty seconds long.  Zippy was kind to us with only the one discipline on the wet grass, and if we were doing that right it will only be our arms that get wet!

Back to some more running, after all we are a running club, and so ZS put us into two teams, different teams this time, the fast runners and the faster runners!  We in the fast team had the shorter route around the cricket thingy, hugging the rope as tight as possible, while the faster runners were on the outside about 2 meters further from the rope.  We had to run against the other team, one at a time, around the square, as soon as we got to the third corner we had to raise our hand to send our next member running.  First team back after doing 3 laps each was the winner!  The faster runners just beat us, but it was pretty close!

Just a nice little cool down lap of the rec and stretches finished off a fun, brain hurting, calf stretching, speed encouraging session!

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Club Run - Back to Normal

Hello blog lovers.

After almost a month a 7:30 starts due to mob matches, awards evenings etc, we are back to our normal start time of 8:00 pm.  I was also looking forward to going through the woods too.  I can't believe that we have lost a couple of weeks of not going through our woods due to rain, but today we just had to do it.  The daylight hours are already going down, it seems totally wrong to me that we are already losing daylight hours when the kids have only just started their summer holidays! I am just going to have to make the most of it.

I wasn't sure how many people were going to turn up today, as I just mentioned it is the school holidays, people go away.  So after I had told them about my route and all the other leaders had told them about their route we made our way to our post.  There were 18 of us!  A great number, we have been down on our numbers lately, but I am sure the weather has been a huge factor in that.  J.J. was back, LittleJ was back, in fact the whole gang was here.  Carole and Michael have decided to go up to the next group.  Well, Michael is a leader in group 2 and he can run in group 3, but he is supporting Carole in group 2 today.

I wanted to do a bigger route with the group 1's, go from one side of the woods right over to Goss Hill side of the woods.  I knew that it was going to be a challenge, but I know that we can do it, if we all just give a little extra. I know we can! We ran in through Dog Poo ally and then just stopped just at the map.  "Ok all!" I said "Make sure you all memorise the map in case we get lost"  Just a little bit of humour for the new guy!  Yup, we had a newbie running with us.  He found us on the 'tinternet, and came along for the first time this evening.  He is a good runner, I think maybe he will be group 2 or three.  But I am sure he will suss out exactly where he will be comfortable running.  That's what I love about our club, we have so many groups to accommodate runners from 13:00+ mi/m runners to to the 7 mi/m runners.  In fact we have decided that we need a new group too.  A group 1.5 because group 1 has started to become a group of 2 halves!  We just need a little step from group 1 to group 2 to help them on their way up to speedom!

So the first hill is the more gentle of todays hills,  it is the longest of course, but as its such a nice gentle incline I am sure everyone will do fine, it will hardly be noticed!  We ran up there and then we waited for the sweepers to come along.  i noticed that the light was fading real quick.  I really can't believe that that our days are getting shorter.  I don't want to even think about that!

Once we were all together we ran along the side of the woods, pass the woodmans place and then along the top of the woods.  Slowing down at each crosspaths so that we don't lose anyone on the way. We were making good time, I was thinking that maybe we could all make it along Goss hill before running back to the railway lines.  We ran along the top of the woods, pass the school, and then on to Botany Bay Lane.  I had sent the faster runners along the path first while I waited for the rest of our group to catch up.

When we all were at Botany Bay Lane I had decided to give Goss hill a miss, I thought that maybe it will be just too dark by the time we have to go through the last bit of the woods.  But J.J. and LittleJ said that it was fine!  I should split the group into two, I take the faster ones down Goss hill, J.j. and LittleJ take the rest and we can meet at the little bridge.  So that's what we did!  Everyone had the best of both worlds then.

We met up again at the bridge.  We just had the last bit of the woods to do.  We only had about another half mile to do, so I kept the same two groups, faster ones and the slower ones to finish off and then to meet back at the rec for a head count, and hopefully I will have a count of 18 still!

Well we all got back to the rec, and we had a count up, the first wave there were 12 and then there was the other 6 making all 18 of us back safe and sound!

A great run!  I totally enjoyed it. I think everyone else did too!  Here's our geeky stats, oh and I forgot to turn it off when we got to the rec, we had done our warm down stretches before I had realised!  But I do know that the faster half of the group had done 3.45 miles!

Monday, 24 July 2017

Late News!

Hello blog lovers.

I have been a bit late posting my last couple of blogs.  So here they are!  I hope I can remember what I was doing, and how I felt!

Ball and Beans 

 So the first is about Thursday evening.  We had Illustrious Leader being our tough but fair leader in the speed and core training session.  I was a tad late, I very nearly just collapsed on my chair and took root that night.  I was a long day!  But the Old Boy said, "Go on, go and run!"  I knew I just had to get out and do it! It was just too easy to sit down and watch mind numbing telly.

I had text Tracy to see if she was coming along but she was away for a couple of days!  I had forgotten.  No one to pick up, it really was so easy to sit down, But still I got ready, and went out, not to the car but to the shed. To help me warm up I got my bike out, I was going to ride there!  Feck knows how I had time to do that and to get to the rec for the beginning of the first two laps of the rec, but I did.  There were not as many people as there usually is, but then summer is here (honest, it is, the schools are off and everything!) so holidays have take a few of our usual Thursday rec'ers. After locking my bike up I managed to do a lap and a half with the rest of them and then it was straight into the drills.

Then next exercise was really a team effort.  Illustrious Leader  had put us into two teams.  The fast runners, and then the really fast runners! I was in the fast runners!.......What?.......What?...... Anyway, the two teams were handed a ball, a foot ball.  We were going to be running around the cricket square thingy all in a line, with the slowest runner at the front (me in our case) and then while we were running we had to pass the ball back to each member, then pass it forward again and then back again  and the pass forward again, all before the other team got back to the start.

We had a team talk while the faster runners had their team talk, then Illustrious leader blew her whistle and we were off.  Our team started to pass the ball back immediately, the other team, who by the way were on the outside lane of the cricket thingy so had further to run, kept hold of the ball!  I couldn't quite figure out what their game plan was!   But it soon became clear when we both got back to the starting position and they quickly sent their ball back and then forward and then back and then forward again!  Well, their plan didn't work, because we still won.  We had to do that again, this time the faster team had tried another plan, but guess what,  we still beat them! That concludes the 'Ball part of our session!.

After that it was a pyramid speed racing.  Again two teams were chosen, by Illustrious leader.  A mixture of fast runners and really fast runners into two teams.  I.L. had laid out two rows of four cones in a row.  Each member of the team had to run to the first one, run back and the next runner had to run to the first cone until all runners had done it.  Then it was to the second, to the third, fourth and then back to the third, second and first.  It's what we have done before, but to help with our running posture I.L had bought along bean bags, which we were to place on our heads and get to the first cone only, as quick as we can before passing the bean bag to our team mates!  That was fun!  And it really did make you think about our posture!  And so that concludes the Bean part of our session!

After that we had our core exercises, some star jumps, lunges, push-ups, bicycles and squats.  That was my Thursday evening. I didn't manage to get out on Thursday morning, so I really tried hard to push myself on the Thursday evening.  I am glad I went.  My mood picked up immensely after that, and I was really glad that I went to the rec and not just vegged in front of the telly.


As usual I was out on Friday night!  Just the usual 3 pints of lager, but then followed by pizza when we got home, probably not the ideal preparation for Saturday morning parkrun!  But it is what I usually do.  But still, it was no.1 reason for just staying put in my bed.  No.2 reason, you just had to look outside the window to know that that was!  It was raining, not my favourite thing to do on a Saturday morning.  I got dressed regardless!  I texted NaggyNeighbour to see if she was coming but her little boy was sleeping soundly and there was no way she was waking him up, no.3 reason for staying put.  I texted Tracy to see if her and Ade needed picking up!  They had come back really late from the time away they were not 'feeling it' for parkrun, no.4 reason!  I really had to drag my ass out of the house.

My mind was not really into parkrun mode, but I knew that I would feel better. The nagging voices in my mind, the still quiet voices telling me to just 'do it' is what got me out on Saturday.   Endorphins work!  Even just a few minutes, but the fitness levels stay, and hopefully get better each time!  

I had no one to run with, I was helping no-one, I planned on helping no-one!  I just wanted to run.  So after meeting up with all my buddies, J.J. was back to running, LittleJ had come back from her holidays and Carole and Michael were there because they just love it!  PinkladyJo had joined us too.  Everyone will be running together with someone but I was just going to do my thing.  See how I could do it!

The usual chat before the start was done and then we were off  "See you at the end" said J.J. and the rest.  Some will be there first, some will be there after I get in.  I settled into a pace and just stayed focused, I didn't want to run off with the fast runners, but I was going to go just a bit faster than the other girls behind me.  Then PinkLadyJo joined me!  She normally runs with K and Tracy but she was on a mission I think.  We were chatting for the whole of the first mile, but then she just kept on going while I started to flag a bit!  I tried to catch up with her but by then I had lost the momentum.  I was really annoyed with myself.  

I started to beat myself up for the rest of the next two miles.  I kept catching up to a couple of girls, there were my 'targets'.  I caught up with them and then over took them, then I had a bit of a walk and then they took over me!  For the two miles left of the route that was how it was.  But again, when I had left it too long to be able to catch up to them again I beat myself up!  I knew that I wouldn't be able to beat them to the funnel this time!  I took a look at my watch.  Now it is all against me and time.  If I try hard enough, for the last half mile or so, I could at least beat my PB for this year.  So I tried to stay focused, I just kept on running, trying to pick up the pace.  I looked behind me, towards Hook farm car park and I could see J.J. and LittleJ, they were waving to me!  I waved back and then just put my head down, metaphorically of course, because our heads should be up, always when running, and kept on running.

I was so pleased to be able to see the finish funnel and I just started running as best as I could.  People who had finished were calling out saying, 'nearly there, keep going'  I could see the orange of the funnel, I stayed on the pavement for as long as I could.  A runner overtook me about 10 feet from the finish funnel, he had taken the grassy approach, I tried to catch him up but I am not as fast running on the grass as the pavement!  He beat me by about 5 seconds!

The now familiar feeling of nausea was coming over me, as I walked through the funnel to collect my finish token.  I had to concentrate real hard on not throwing up, try to get my breathing under control again and just wait for the feel good little magic stuff to do it's thing! 

I did, it.  Two days of not really feeling it, but I managed to drag myself out.  I felt good, I felt really pleased that I had got out and did exercises, I usually do. No, let me correct that, I always feel better after exercises.  It's when I don't do exercises that I feel yucky!  I really need to try a lot harder!

Geeky stats for parkrun, which by the way wasn't the faster for the year, second fastest though!