Next weeks race t-shirt dropped through the letterbox this morning. I wonder how many people will use that as the a perfect get out of jail card and abandon the trouble of racing at next weeks Great Trail Run at Keswick. It certainly crossed my mind.
I run for pride as well as t-shirts, so dragged myself out of bed for a final half marathon training run. Lynn was joining me on the bike so we scoured the web for an off road cycle route and ended up with the GPX data for the station to station route between Box Hill and Epsom.
Holy moly was that a hilly route?
Not that you can expect to arrive at Box Hill and find a flat route ahead of you but a 6k ascent to start a training run is pretty taxing.
The route ended up being the #22 Surrey Cycleway and although it was predominantly on tarmac it did manage to cut swathes through some of the most glorious landscape of the North Downs. It was a mixture of quiet roads and bridleways and made for a perfect running and cycling partnership.
I took a leaf out of Eddie Izzard’s guide to long distance running and broke off for ice-cream at the first opportunity. If you’re ever in the middle of Epsom race course I would recommend this van – perfectly whipped 99′s with butterscotch dribbles.
This is why I run.
Route: Boxhill and Westhumble Station to Epsom Station
Terrain: Mostly tarmac, quiet roads and a few stretches along muddy bridleways
Google map: link
Garmin tcx course on garmin connect: Boxhill-Epsom.tcx
If you fancy following the route, you should find all the maps and data you need at the gps-routes site. I converted it to a Garmin course trx file so that I could follow the breadcrumb route on my Garmin 310XT but it’s well signposted – just follow the 22 cycle route.
Trains are fairly regular between Epsom and Westhumble but you might want to check times before leaving, we ended up with a 59 minute wait and had to waste a bit of time in the local pub, but it sold Stella so who cares.
I picked up a Nike Fuelband yesterday so now have yet another spur to action in the month of June.
I’ve set my initial target at 3000 fuel points, whatever that means but only got there in the final hour by pushing myself onto the treadmill for another late night run.
I’ve got a lot of gadgets stacked up for reviewing now but I’ll definitely have more to say on the Nike Fuelband, I’m mightily impressed so far and I’m looking forward to comparing it to some of the other body monitors and motivators I’ve been trying out.
I need a few Fuelband friends to challenge me – are there any Fuelband wearing Juneathoners out there?
I arrive home from work and my new watch declares another 2 hours of recovery are required before I can commence training.
What else is there to do but crack open a bottle of Chardonnay and tune in to The Biggest Loser?
I had a rather enjoyable time watching the four finalists crank out a marathon after a meagre 6-weeks of dedicated training. Trouble is, at the end of the show, I’m faced with an empty bottle of Chardonnay and a watch that is no longer giving me a perfect training excuse.
So for day 6, I rattled off a very wobbly 3k on the treadmill.
Day 5, for anyone noticing an absence was a very relaxed 15 mins on the rower.
It was a weird weather day again today, oscillating between glorious sun and then freak hail storms. I found myself ripping my waterproof on and off as each cloud passed by and eventually gave in and left it on for maximal sweat loss.
This years Juneathon is going to be associated with an extreme calorie obsession – if I cant train my way to half marathon fitness I’m hoping to slim my way there. So today I was equating sweat loss with calorie consumption. Probably not a smart move. I came fairly close to pushing myself into a state if dehydration. I’d sterilised my water bladder with a cheapo version of Milton but despite rinsing thoroughly my water tasted of domestos and was nigh on undrinkable. I was pretty parched by the end of my 10 mile run.
I was at the in-laws so went out for my preferred out and back Grantham Canal run laden with 3 new gadgets to test for a future review. It makes for quite a tricky start to a run when you have to synchronise starts for multiple gadgets but I rather like having different views on each wrist.
I was testing the Suunto Quest, Garmin Forerunner 110 and the Runmeter iPhone app. I’ve been playing with the Runmeter app for a while now but its such a feature rich app that I keep on exploring new settings.
Today I was playing with the email updates and had set Lynn up to receive a map link and pace detail every 2k. Apparently it failed at the 4k update and she was left wondering if I’d fallen into the canal. Strangely she didn’t think to ring to confirm until the 10k update informed her that my pace had dropped. Then I found myself chastised for slacking as they were all waiting at home for lunch.
My pace had dropped off a bit due to constant constant gear rearrangements with the weather and then finally due to a concerning pull at the back of my knee. I hobbled home eventually to be informed by the Suunto that I need 56 hours to recover – it isn’t kidding, but it will make Day 5 of Juneathon a little tricky.
The Jubilee celebrations created sufficient diversion for us to escape the city unobserved. We were heading for the in-laws and I’ve never seen the North Circular so clear.
Fortunately our route took us alongside the Thames at Mortlake and we caught a section of the flotilla making its way towards the main action. I had to force the kids out into the drizzle though.
I got my Juneathon run in early, a rather dull 30 minute treadmill run but it was an essential calorific down payment against the traditional Ok Diner breakfast on the A1.
Having spent the morning on the allotment, swinging mattocks into rock solid clay I was a bit limp lettuce and couldn’t muster much energy for a run. Still, Juneathon must be obeyed, at least in week 1 and I still need as many activity calories as I can get.
So I was abandoned (in a pre-planned way) at a distant supermarket and left to run home across ditch and dale, otherwise known as Mitcham Common.
I was lost in the joy of warm weather running, with long grasses swaying and bunnies lolloping, when I looked down to see a Pit Bull Terrier hurtling towards me. I choked a bit with the shock and had no time to scream before the beast hit me right in the knee cap.
He was fortunately a fairly jolly creature and seemed content with dislocating my knee without further savaging. I limped off, hoping he wouldn’t come back and floor me with a back of the knee head butt.