#operationhardmoors week one

So folks, week number one is done and dusted, and it has been a good one.

My training plan is one basically taken from a 50km plan on the ultramarathonrunning.com website and includes 5 runs per week. I figured that with 50km being 31 miles, that it’d be pretty perfect for a 30+mile race :-)

I started the week with a nice easy 4 miles running home where I managed to find out how I could get home from work with very little time spent on the road – and even less on roads without paths. It is so much fun running around on the many footpaths around the area, though I can’t wait to get some better shoes that stand up to the job once the winter weather sets in.

Wednesday saw me running away from home and up the hill from work to start with as I stretched the run out to an ‘easy’ 7 miles. Having dropped in to Peaslake, it was time for the climb back up hill towards Ewhurst. It was quite a long drag uphill, and having mapped the race route it is interesting to note that top elevation seems similar to that to be expected in Ravenscar – however, that point is reached by climbing 600ft over a couple of miles, so I need to try and factor in that hill from home as much as possible in training I guess as it seems to be a good representation of what to expect!

up, down, back up, then back down again

On the way down the hill I certainly did experience a little discomfort in my knee that has caused me issues this year, nothing serious, but I was aware of it!

On Thursday I was back to the 4 mile route – but this time I was heading home 30 seconds/mile faster. One landowner did accuse me of going the wrong way on a footpath, and looking like the kind of man who would routinely carry an axe I decided not to argue – though I did point out that the public footpath sign did in fact point in the direction I was travelling. Looking at the map I was going the wrong way, but I can hardly be blamed for following the council erected arrows. I finally found the correct way to go this morning, so I won’t be making that mistake again!

The training plan calls for two long runs in on a weekend – generally with the longer of the two on Saturday. And so it was that yesterday I set out for 12 miles in the sunshine. It was a lovely day for it, and I decided to head along the Downs Link route that was cut short a fortnight ago due to flooding. It’s a lovely track that follows the train line that was axed by Beeching many years ago. There were a number of cyclists out on a race/sportive type event who were on the whole quite courteous, but some were taking no prisoners down the single track route which was disappointing!

The route was fairly flat, but as a large part of the hardmoors event takes place on disused railway I figured it would be useful practice to get used to that environment.

It was interesting to note that I can now maintain 9:15min/mile quite happily whilst my heart rate averages less than 160bpm – I really must be gettting fitter!!

This morning it was time for ‘long run’ number two of the weekend, and as I stepped out the door into the drizzle I wasn’t sure how I would cope as legs felt tired and glutes in particular felt as if they had been well used this week. Again I used a mixture of footpaths, fields and roads, so pace was a little all over the place as I got a little lost compared to where I thought I was due to be. But it was a thoroughly enjoyable run discovering some new footpaths.

33 miles for the week, and I crept past 800 miles for the year. So a little less than 450 to go. Evidently I need to average 31 per week to hit my 2012km target, and the training plan suggests that this is going to be easily done so I think the challenge is still on!! :-)

This weeks training is similar, but a slightly longer second run on Sunday. #bringiton

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