Thursday, May 26, 2011

Some progress...and Irish Runner Episode 6

Today I did my first run in well over a week. It felt good to be running again, albeit on a treadmill. I did 3k in just over 17 mins, taking it easy. The difficult part wasn't form, breathing etc. It was staying upright as I was running.
You see, over the last week or so I've started getting bouts of vertigo whenever I move. When I say move, this might be running, walking, climbing stairs, brushing my teeth...not good.
I went to the doctor about it yesterday and was told that it probably isn't a big deal (yea, right) and was given some pills to take. Apparently the pills work after you *stop taking them* (eh?) and the doc said "we don't know how they work, but they do". I was sooo brimming with confidence after that conversation...
Oh yea, the hamstring was fine BTW.

Also, here's the Irish Runner podcast Episode 6:


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Decisions, decisions...

I'm recovering from my strained hamstring slowly. I'm icing it still (even as I type) but I'm not running or cycling or even stretching it. So there's about four weeks until the 50k in Portumna. If I jump back into training straight away then I'll most likely re-injure myself. If I don't get some distance in soon I'll crash and burn in the race.
Having said that, doing the race isn't a life or death thing, if I don't do it this year I can do it next year, no biggie.
So, do I back out now and maybe closer to the day feel ok for it? Or, maybe start training again tonight to get as much training in as possible before the day, but risk doing damage? Or maybe the third option: Take it easy two more days and do a light training run on Thursday to test it out?

I think option three is a winner. I'm not going for a time in the race, just to finish the distance. So I reckon I'll do an easy 5-8k on Thursday, and if that's ok another light run on Friday and rest Saturday. All going well I'll try a LSR on Sunday morning.
Fingers crossed!


Friday, May 20, 2011

Kildare HM

I was unsure on whether to run or race this one. I'd been having hamstring issues for a bit so decided to see how I felt.

I met up with Jgal and Brian and a couple of his running buddies before the start and we all had a good chat - Jgal has a pic of us even! It was chilly with a bit of rain, but the wind had died from previous days. Start was delayed due to the amount of cars trying to get in to join the race, but we got underway and I then realized that my Garmin wasn't logging distance or pace! At about 500m in I powered it off and back on and that fixed the issue. We had aid stations every 5k and a few unofficial ones setup by the locals - very welcome treats :-)
At about 9k I was chatting to a runner I met and I started taking a gel. I squeezed it too quick and it went down my airway! I had to walk, cough and take in a load of water but got back on track. Then I dropped my other gel pack, went back and got it, then dropped my cap and went back for it...I was beginning to think I should get a bus! Anyway I kept going and caught up with the guy I had been chatting to and then overtook him.
I met a girl from my running club with 4k to go but my leg was in a world of hurt by then. The grandstand at the Curragh was a very welcome sight! The last 1k was signposted with distance left: 600m, 400m, 200m.
I pushed my pace as much as I could given my hamstring issue and got an official time of 1:50:04, a new PB! How much time did I waste picking up things I dropped and how much time could I have gained without hamstring issues? We'll never know.Average HR was 166, so not too bad for a 21k run.

Jgal finished shortly after me, sub 2 hours for her first official HM race, mega congrats!!
No time to rest for me. I took the kids swimming, had to do a few hours work later that evening and then get up at 4am to bring my mum to the airport just before starting work!
I went to the physio on Monday and he did some deep tissue work on the hammie and said to keep icing it and not to run for the week. Today, Friday, it's still a bit tender, so it looks like I won't be doing a LSR this weekend. That's a pity as it's only 4 weeks to Portumna. I really need to be getting some long runs in. I know I won't be ready to "race" it, but I'll push on and finish it, hopefully next year I'll be able to do it justice.
Four more half marathons planned for the year, so hopefully I'll be able to get sub 1:45 in at least one of them :-)

Keep running,

Friday, May 6, 2011

May monthly update

A thought for the day:
"I'd rather be a failure at something I enjoy 
than a success at something I hate"
George Burns

A little later than usual with this, but here we go...

I'm trying to keep a reasonably steady amount of KMs on the clock per month but building them up slowly too. Looking back over the last few months, this seems to be working. As you can see in the screenshot from DailyMile below, there was a slight dip last month (April) due to tapering for Connemarathon and I took five days off totally to rest at the end of the month too. Bearing that in mind, the totals still seem pretty good.

I am working on a hamstring strain right now and hopefully that will be good by the Kildare HM in just over a week. I'll be taking it easy until then. Kildare is the only real race I have lined up for May, but I'll be (hopefully) getting in some long runs again shortly after that to build up to Portumna!

Keep running,

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

New training goals

I hadn't blogged about this, but I entered the lottery for the NYC Marathon this year. After anxiously waiting to see if a mini-holiday was about to didn't. I was a little disappointed, but it's not the end of the world. I'll enter again next year.
So as I now had a definite opening in my running calender I went and booked myself on the Dublin Marathon (5 days before NYC). I won't get a holiday out of it, but I guess I'll save on flights and a hotel!
It'll be good to have less hills in DCM than there was in the Connemarathon and I'll be able to set a realistic marathon goal, which I wasn't able to do before. As to what time I'm aiming for? Not sure yet, I'll see how the training goes.
So the speed session at the track took a bit out of me last Tuesday, actually it feels like a bit out of my right hamstring! It hasn't been the same since, so I'm keeping an eye on it. (It feels like either the Biceps Femoris, Long or the Semitendinosus to be precise!)
I took Thursday off to recover and on Friday I did a session in the gym, which went fine. I ended it with 3k on the treadmill in the VFFs. I'm slowly (read: very slowly) building up my distance in them. I then took Saturday off, which is a usual recovery day for me and drove to Pheonix Park on Sunday for my LSR. I had decided to do 20k or over, so I did a slow 3k warmup on the grass in the VFFs and then switched to my Asics before setting off.
I had to work the previous evening from 21:00 to 00:45 and I also had a couple of glasses of wine (the joys/pitfalls of working from home!), so my energy levels could have been a tad better. After 7k, both of my hamstrings felt a bit tender, but they eased up later. Towards the end my right hamstring felt sore again and stayed that way for the remainder. I felt like stopping after about 11k when I passed by the car, but I pushed on. It was a really sunny day, but a bit windy, so if you stopped for too long you got a bit cold.
After 18k I had no energy left in me so I stopped and jogged the 1.5k or so back to the car and did some stretching on the warm grass. Despite the niggles, I had done 22k or so for the day, so not too shabby.
Monday was a recovery day, and my hamstring was still bothering me. I walked for about 4k with the kids, nice and slow to get the legs loose. Then this morning I hit the gym again and added in bosu ball pushups as recommended by Sandi on DM. I had done my 50 pushups for my warmup and on the bosu ball I did another 4 x 10 sets, so 90 pushups before 07:00, not bad!

We have our track session tonight, but I can't make it as I'm picking up my Mum from the airport. I'll try a light/short run tomorrow, with more stretching later tonight.

Keep running,