As a youngster, I would get home from School, get changed and go out to play with my pals.
Now I'm older, I get home from work, get changed and go out to play with my pals, but now I call it training.

Sunday, October 9, 2011


After that annoying glitch in my late summer plan I resumed training with two good fellruns with Penrith Stu for company. The first was over Clough Head and the Dodds in'c a brief stop at Calfhow Pike where, remarkably Stu had never been. It rained for 120 minutes of the two hours we ran but was nevertheless very enjoyable. Next day was drier and we had another 90 minutes of decent training in the fells E of  Kirkstone pass where Stu was due to run a relay event the following week.

Next day I opted to jog with Scamp in the park after work. It was only  four mile loop on grass and I was taking it pretty easy but strangely my knee started to hurt. I stopped and poked and rubbed it a bit then carried on but within 100metres it was hurting again, too much to carry on running. Worried, I didnt run on the Tuesday and on the Wednesday I took a walk up the fells to assess how it was faring. It seemed not too bad so  when Stu, Sam, Steve B and Carl turned up at 6 oclock I joined them for the remaining few miles of their run. Error! Error! Error!

It hurt a LOT on the Thursday so I took myself of to see Chris the physio. He assured me it was nothing to worry about and would soon be better - he even said I could probably run the Langdale half marathon two days later! Apparently it was a bit of inflammation behind my knee, probably caused when I slipped on the wet grass during one of those two weekend fellruns.

I didnt do the Half Marathon - it still felt a bit too sore at that point. But I did resume jogging gently a couple of days later and this gave no additional trouble, in fact, I could tell that every day it was getting better and better.

Saturday the 1st of October was the date for  a cross country relay event at Sheffield which I had said I would run as part of a Border Harriers veteran team. I wasnt concerned about my knee hurting, but racing  two miles is not exactly my distance, and after so long out of proper training I figured I would struggle.

As the 'baton' was handed to me we were sitting in 2nd place of the veteran teams with the lead team about 50 metres ahead of me. I gave everything to try to catch him up but it was to no avail. When I figured I might be halfway through the course and looked at my watch to see just 4:45 had passed since I started. I was in serious trouble and my legs gave out on me as I tackled the remaining course - two or three lads passed me but luckily they were seniors not vets so once I knew I was within sight of the finish I pushed hard again to ensure we didnt lose the second place.

Waiting at the presentation for our medals we were gutted to discover that only Yorkshire veteran teams  were eligible to win anything. The seniors, juniors and ladies races were all open to all of North England but not the vets. What a stitch up! I expect our £12 will be refunded with interest and full letter of apology any day now.

Unsure if the XC course was really 2 miles or maybe a bit more it wasnt a great time I ran. 12:06. Possibly not even six minute miling! A few days later I ran my 5 mile loop in 30:50 so at least I knew I was still reasonably fit and the race was merely a glitch.

Wednesday evening I was up Blencathra a couple of times - leaning sideways to run at 1mph uphill in 40mph wind - great training - loved it.

Thursday evening was VERY cold and VERY windy and I went home and lit the fire for the first time since summer began.

Friday evening I like to take off from running but keen to get back into a routine of training I ran the 5 miler again. Despite a decent wind blowing I ran it in 30:31 - not bad going at all.

Yesterday was the first proper Cross Country race of the season at Cockermouth. The going was wet and soft and my legs were sapped of strength within two of the four lap race. The field was rather short of many of the talented lads who often turn out for these events and I think I was lucky to get 4th place and first vet40.

Today I ran my 10 mile loop steady - very windy again but really warm - too warm for the  long sleeved top I'd opted to wear. Almost 69 minutes after starting I finished in a lather of sweat.

So there we have my round up of the last month or so - very annoying to have a two week glitch immediately after taking two weeks rest but all is not lost - I seem to have held onto some decent speed and fitness. With well over a month to go until my next target race, the Brampton To Carlisle 10 miler, I should be back where I was by then if not quite in time for the Derwentwater 10 two weeks prior.

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