Reading Half

Quite possibly the wettest race I have taken part in…. ever! 13.1 miles of heavy rain and temperatures somewhere around 6-7 degrees made for a cold and wet half marathon.

The good news is that I managed a PB (note- its only my second proper half, so wasn’t hard to beat my current time). I clocked a 1:46… So having targeted a 1:45 I was pretty pleased. I was really pleased with the consistency of my pace – proving to myself that having a race plan a sticking to it is important (remember this in the desert!!!)

So after running a 1:46 at a comfortable pace, I reckon sub 1:40 is achievable. However I need to keep reminding myself that pace isn’t important at the minute; spending more time on my feet is more valuable. Yesterday’s 13 hour shift on site helped with that! As will next weekend’s festivities – I am off to the New Forest on Saturday to take part in a Questars 5hr Adventure Race! Bike, kayak, bike, run, bike…

Time for some foam roller action!

Keep Rollin’, Rollin’, Rollin’…

I’m pretty sure that when Fred Durst penned Chocolate Starfish and the Hotdog Flavoured Water he wouldn’t have thought that his lyrics would end up being quoted on a running blog. Well Fred, here it is!

Breath in now breath out
Hands up now hands down
Back up back up
Tell me what you’re gonna do now

Keep rollin’ rollin’ rollin’ rollin’
Keep rollin’ rollin’ rollin’ rollin’
Keep rollin’ rollin’ rollin’ rollin’
Keep rollin’ rollin’ rollin’ rollin’

Fred Durst, Rollin’, 2000

Well that pretty much describes the last week! I’ve been ramping up my preparations for Reading Half Marathon since returning from the snowboarding trip and my mileage and pace were all going to plan. I have a target of 8 minute miles, which works out at 1hr45 on the day. Prep runs were coming in at 7:45 splits that dropped off a bit at 9-10miles, but still OK for the 1:45. However, over the last week I’ve had to slow my training down and STOP running! I’ve been suffering with some pretty bad knee pain (I think it’s IllioTibial Band Syndrome – inflammation of the ITB)… basically its bloody painful on the outside of my knee. Really really frustrating with only 2 weeks to go!
Causes :
a) unbalanced running style/gait
b) bad trainers
c) over training (likely!)
d) pounding the road (yup- my local trails have been flooded recently)
e) muscles tightness (feels it)

Solutions:
1) stop running (yup)
2) ice and ibuprofen (lots!)
3) rolling on a foam roller (yes, just like Fred said!!)
4) stretch (yes!)

Foam rollers appear to be popping up all over the place at the minute… It seems to be the latest fad. You’re not cool if you don’t have a foam roller propped up in your home gym, hanging out your back-pack or bragging about the pain of it on twitter. So yeah, here I am – it hurts! But I will add that I’ve been using it for the last year… clearly, I’ve not been using it enough. I tend to wait for the aches and pains before I use it. This week is a good reminder that prevention is better than cure! It is now a fixed part of my weekly routine.

So what’s the plan for Reading half? Well I don’t know, to be honest! I plan to run it, but almost certainly wont be getting the 1:45. Gutted! I have a final 10mile training session planned for next Friday, so we’ll see if that’s even do-able and then re-asses the plan. In the meantime, I’ll keep rollin’ rollin’ rollin’!

Anyway, I wonder what Fred is up to these days?