It has been quite a while since I posted an update, who would have thought that renovating a house and training for a marathon would be so time consuming……
Anyway….I have battled back from my ankle troubles and am back full-time training…although I am quite conscious that I am well behind where I was last year when training for Boston, something is troubling me a little. This said some of my training runs are being recorded as my fastest ever times for distances such as 15 miles and today 24 miles….which was nice. I have completed three races, one of which I am still feeling to this day, one that was right off and another which went well but maybe could have gone better.
Inskip Half Marathon – January 22nd
This was my first race back from injury and it probably shouldn’t have been. I turned up with less than three weeks of training in my legs and attempted to run the thing at my PB pace…..This went well for six miles, but sadly a half marathon is more than twice that distance and I spent the next seven clinging on to a decent pace. The result was a miserable feeling race but I came home in just over 84 minutes which still a respectable time.
The Northerns XC – January 28th
This was the North of England cross country championship race and this year it was held at Knowsley Safari Park….sadly there was no time to go around the park with the mens race not starting till 15:00, coinciding with the final entrance time to the wider park (Blast). The race was a monster of a race….as by the time the mens race started, the course had become a mud bath. With thick, ankle deep mud covering the most the course, save for a few sections, with most of these being uphill sections!! It was a battle more than a race and my usual XC race plan of staying in bed till 10, eating breakfast then heading to the race didn’t really work out here. As were other the XC races I have done started at 14:15, just over four hours after I had woken up and eaten. This later start of 15:00 left me starting to feel hungry just as we approached go time. However, my XC strategy of starting fast did work out as well has it has done in past XC races and I completed the course in 55 minutes. Which given the state of the course, was a good time and it was a time that secured me a top half finish, something which I was pleased about given my limited XC experience and the fact that I was running in fell shoes.
Wrexham Village Bakery Half – February 19th
A favourite race of mine and one I’d recommend doing. Coming at a time when my training was back on track, but also a time when I had no time to taper due to my December ankle injury. Although that said, I turned up for this race feeling confident of a good time but worried about the lack of any taper, having completed a 15 miles just two days before and I was still slightly sore from the Northerns XC. It really has left its mark!
The race did go well, I set my virtual pace as my PB pace (6:20) but I felt good enough to stay ahead of that for the majority of the race, with just three disappointing miles. Mile 4 where I must have lost concentration and miles 11 and 12 were the impact of having consistently stayed ahead of my PB pace started to take effect. It would have been smarter to stay on pace and then speed up. That said, I did take 11 seconds off my PB to come home in 1:22:59, so that was pleasing but if I had raced smarter, I could have achieved a better time.
So plodding on and starting to feel a little more confident but still feeling pains and stiffness in my left upper tight/quod muscle area from the Northerns. Hopefully, it’s nothing serious, it certainly seems to go away after a few metres of running. In a couple of weeks time, I have my customary spring marathon practice race, the Trimple 20. Here is hoping for a great time, which would be a great confidence boost, as Brighton looms on the horizon.