A review of the fortnight, build up to Molehills, and a new plan

I ended up not doing a review of the last weeks running – a shame as I managed to complete all 5 of my run sessions which is certainly rare for me, annoyingly, as it feels really good to complete the full training plan. Quite often though, its my nutrition that scuppers me as I just feel devoid of energy by the time it get home, I really need to spend some time working on a better strategy for eating properly and at the appropriate time to facilitate tough training sessions in the evening.

I see a lot on twitter about the @6amClub. Fair play to those who can, but I just can’t get out of bed, and my body moving in time for this. I suspect I might be able to do up to 5 miles easy running, but some people I see doing interval sessions just baffles me!! This post, that I wrote in February 2011 as part of VLM build up highlights my hatred of the early morning session.

My second Kenyan Hills session was better than the previous attempt, and although the hill distance was somewhat sporadic, as I think I kept changing the bottom turn around point, I managed three sets of 7 minutes with a 3 minute rest. Each rest period basically had a slow jog and then a stretch of quads and calves. But I felt really good about it in the end. Confident of a strong hill session in the legs in preparation for the race.

Route profile for Kenyan Hills set on 16/11/2011
Kenyan Hills Elevation Profile

Parkrun at the weekend was my second ever attempt – and following a strong week of training, my legs felt pretty good. Perfect running conditions were evident in the morning, and having had very little in the way of damp during the preceeding week meant that on the whole, the paths were pretty dry – just a few muddy squelches to be avoided along the route. The run felt good, and I seemed to be with a bigger group from the start than I had last week, and although this concerned me that I was a little too fast perhaps, my heart, lungs and legs felt pretty good. In fact I was surprised to be given my halfway timecheck at 13:12 – two seconds slower than last week. Still though, I felt stronger, and that I had more in the tank for the second lap than I had done last time out. As I sprinted hard for the finish line, I could hear the heavy breathing of a fellow runner on my shoulder – but I pulled away, and seeing him after getting my time he was telling his friend how he had nearly got me before I pulled out of sight. I was pretty pleased about this :-) As I crossed the line I stopped my HRM, and reached to stop endomondo on my phone.

The watch said PB by 3 seconds, endo said not by 9 seconds. So it was too close to call – I would have to wait for the text message. Midday, and it finally came through – the harsh truth. Last weeks first attempt remains my PB at 26:17, as this Saturday I ran 26:19. Noooooooo, two measley seconds!! It’s true though, I’m fully hooked on parkrun now that I have a PB to beat!! I can’t say I wasn’t warned though. :-)

Last Sunday was final ‘long’ run in the buildup to the Molehills training plan, and although the fog and mist shrouded all I could see from the house, once off the main road heading through the lanes past Gatton Bottom I managed to get a peak of one of these beauties just sat on a fence pole just across a field from me. I don’t run with a camera, but I kind of wish that I did (this isn’t my picture):

a peregrin falcon
Peregrin Falcon

I made it to Gatton Bottom, and ran up the lane, through the fog, to the top of Reigate Hill and the car park at Gatton Park. Above the fog, the sun came bursting through and it was truly beautiful. A short sharp downhill ensued, and I am hoping that this particular route that I chose is actually quite a good profile equivalent for this weekends race. So I am quite confident in my ability to complete – something that had concerned me before this.

This week has been pretty slow on the running front – completed just a little over 4 easy miles on Tuesday, the main issue here was that it evidently wasn’t quite so cold as I thought it felt on my walk home, so the tights and long sleeve top left me a little too toasty. Wednesday I opted for the t-shirt and shorts option again, despite temps dropping a few degrees from the night before. But I managed just shy of 3.5 miles in a tempo session (including the long drag out of Reigate to Redhill) in 28 mins, so I was really pleased with this pace. Even more so as I obviously didn’t have any other runners to pull me along in the way you might during a race.

The training plan also called for a couple of short two mile leg turnover type of runs at the end of the week, but legs felt a little tired on Thursday, and stomach ache on Friday meant that I didn’t want to risk any injury/illness/damage so I haven’t bothered. Sadly, it also means no parkrun for me this morning, although I did offer to volunteer – but somewhat too late so all posts were filled.


So, tomorrow is the date of the race I’ve been building to. I am pretty excited for it now, despite weeks of apprehention about the task ahead of us. What wally signs up for a challenge like this? and everytime I think this I remember that it was my idea to suggest it to the folks! Woops!!!

Mum and Dad are coming up to stay with us tonight which will be nice, and I got a carbo loading feast planned with some of the veg from our scrummy Abel and Cole delivery we received mid-week :-) But it also means a day of tidying the house ahead of me!

Thankfully, this week has been pretty dry except for the rain that evidently fell sometime Thursday night/Friday morning, so the routes should be pretty dry and safe, although this doesn’t affect me too much as I am hoping to do the predominently road based route of the second leg.

and the aftermath

I’ve had a few thoughts about what to do after the race. Firstly, I’m a little annoyed that the 100 reps challenge hasn’t really gone to plan as I have been focussing on the running training for the race, but I think following molehills I am going to cut back the running slightly for the month of December. My aim being to build some general core strength and fitness. So I am going to aim to parkrun on every Saturday that I can, I will aim to long run on Sunday, increasing my distance a little at a time – aiming for 10 miles to be fairly easy by the end of the month. In addition to these two runs, I think I am going to finally pull my finger out and try and join the running club who meet on a Tuesday and Thursday. Tuesdays in particular are track sessions to help build speed, and then the option is there for more on a Thursday or a road run. So in addition to this – Monday, Wednesday and Friday will be the days to complete the 100 reps challenge. It only takes 5 minutes, so no excuse not to, and I think I might squeeze it into my morning routine of not doing much despite waking super early everyday :-)

As always, my plan is open to flexibility, but I think the key is Sat, Sun, and the 100reps. Running club will drop in when time/motivation allows I think.

Anyway, if you have read this far then I am amazed – apologies for blabbering so long. Next post will be a review of the Molehills, and hopefully plenty of pictures as the weather is due to be really quite nice, so Lynds will probably come with us. It helps that she won’t be stood all on her own owing to the relay nature of the race :-) and I threatened her with no wine if she didn’t come and support!!


2 thoughts on “A review of the fortnight, build up to Molehills, and a new plan

    1. Hi

      :-) I ran up Gatton Bottom, then back down Wray Lane (against the one way traffic) so not up the hill itself, but I got to the same point, and it was pretty tough!! I do wonder if I should use Reigate hill for hill reps, then I always think better of it :-)


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