Wednesday, 26 September 2012

3 months on!

Well, 3 months on and I don't know where the time went! Over that time I have completed my 6th Reading Race for Life 5k (July), in 28mins 28 (slower than last year but this time it was definitely measured as a full 5k!)
been on holiday to Portugal and had a 2 weeks break from running, put on a few pounds and really struggled to get back into my running stride. Not to mention watching rather a lot of Olympics and Paralympics, including an amazing day watching Paralympics live at the Olympic stadium and Velodrome, inspirational.

Summer holidays can always be tricky getting out to run with children at home, and whilst I managed to go out whilst staying with my parents in Devon, at the end of August I just didn't know why it was feeling like such hard work. As a last resort, with just over 6 weeks to go until my first Half Marathon on 14th October, I looked for a training plan, with no idea whether or not it would work and get me up to hm distance, when I was struggling even to get up to my old 10k distance and pace.

In addition I started a new job at the end of August, so any plan that I found would have to fit in with my non-working days as training days, and my working days being rest day, given that essentially I can only run in the daytime in the week, and at weekends. 

So I found this HM training plan from Women's Running Magazine: 8 weeks to Half Marathon, and I'm amazed at how straightforward it has been. Because I didn't start at 8 weeks I had to jiggle it a bit but it seems to have worked. I won't say it's been easy, as I'm not sure I'll ever find running 8/9/10+ miles "easy!" but the improvements with every run have been obvious. I had never before tried speed training either and can say now that it definitely helps to strengthen the legs, as well as just adding variety to the weekly training.

On Sunday I did my longest run to date, which was 10.5miles, AND in pouring rain all the way! As I've said previously, I've never been keen on running in the rain, but it's always ok once I get out there. This time, however, it was pleasant to begin with but, after about 6 miles, my legs really started to feel cold. But I plodded on and was pleased to run the distance in 1 hour and 40.  I just hope that the weather is somewhat kinder in 2 weeks time!

Last night I took part in a Pilot run of the new Woodley parkrun which was great fun. I clocked about 27.37 which isn't bad for my current 5k pace, and it was great to be part of the new parkrun which is practically on my doorstep. I hope I might be able to drag myself out of bed on a Saturday morning sometime for a quick 5k.

This coming Sunday I shall be running the Reading O20 10k which I ran last year in a time of 54.40.  I think I may be slightly off the mark on that time this year, but it fits in with the training plan and will be good to complete another race prior to the HM. I am still struggling to shift the half stone extra that I'm carrying and I'm sure that can't help the running but hey ho.

Of course once again I haven't managed to fit in as much scrapbooking as I would have liked, but I can't complain as I have been on 2 Scrap Cafe crops, one Saturday and one weekday, which means I have nearly finished scrapping last year's Portugal holiday photos - phew!! Also managed to complete the mini album of Cameron's birthday party which I'm very pleased with.

Next post I hope to be able to blog that I've completed my first half marathon in a time of less than 2hours 10minutes!