Monday, 25 July 2011

parkruns and hill walks

After my chickening out of my first parkrun due to torrential rain last week, I am pleased to say this time the sun was shining and I made it down to Cramond in Edinburgh to take part. And I am so glad I did. It was weird not having my iPod with me (I never run without music) and I was a little apprehensive as I was on my own an when I arrived there were quite a few serious looking runners all warming up. But as more people arrived I realised how mixed it was and there did appear to be others running on their own.

Anyway. I started off well, though I thought I was going a little too fast to sustain for the full 5km but once I got into it and started overtaking people (turns out I have a bit of a competitive streak in me!) I found myself managed to average a pace of about 7mph. There were points when I felt I was about to flag but I kept going. I even managed to pass a teenager and a tall athletic looking girl with very long legs. I did miss my music at some points but it certainly didn't affect my speed - far from it. I used my breathing as a way of keeping a beat. Anyway managed to get a time of 24 mins 28seconds which was a 5km PB for me and according to the results I came 4th in my age category and 106th overall out of 195 parkruners and was the 20th 'lady'. So overall I was chuffed to bits.

I didn't run on Sunday but instead went on a very long 13 mile hill walk around the Pentland Hills taking in about 6 summits all in all. There were a few wrong turns and scrabbling through the heather but made back in time for a pint at the pub. It was a beautiful day and got some stunning views right across the firth of forth and beyond - you could see the proper mountains in the distance. Needless to say after all this activity I was in bed very early on Sunday night.

I shall definitely be going back to the parkrun though maybe not next weekend as it will be a pub-themed weekend and I have a wedding to attend.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Time for a change??

Sometimes I don't think about much when I'm running other times I think...a lot. I've had a lot on my mind at the moment. It's actually the 'keeping me awake' variety, though it could be worse if I didn't have my think-athons while pounding the streets/treadmill.

The main thing occupying me is employment (or lack thereof). I've been unemployed now since March and haven't really had much luck so far - a total of 5 interviews, 1 of which I got to the 2nd round and was very close and rather upsetting when I didn't get it. The other thing occupying me is my running and general exercise. As some fellow Juneathoners will know, it has really been helping me with being unemployed both my giving me something to do and staving of obesity and insanity through lack of activity.

Lately it has been occurring to me that running and exercise is becoming more important to me. Since I started my marathon training, my interest in running has definitely developed into something far more than just something to keep me fit. Then just the other week, after another fruitless job search I started to wonder if I needed a change...while I've enjoyed working in communications, I kind of fell into it and I do always envy people who do something that they are truly passionate about. I also started to think if I am going to, maybe, possibly have a career change I'd better get on with it as I feel I've wasted enough time looking for jobs that don't seem to be there. I ask myself - why can't I combine all the time I spend exercising with earning money?

So anyway, while bobbing along on the ski machine today I came to a decision - I'm going to look into fitness instructor courses. At least do some research into what's involved, how much it could cost etc  etc.

I know I have rambled on here (though, not much on today's gym session, which was good and sweaty), but I feel that typing it out and sharing with the blogsphere (whether or not it is actually read by anyone) will encourage me to act on my decisions rather than wimp out. Its time for a change.

Stats for today:
Run (intervals):

Ski machine:

Friday, 15 July 2011

featuring a guy with a Hitler moustache

I should be writing this on my new wordpress blog but I haven't quite got round to setting it up. While I'm assured by Bad Wabbitt that it is all very easy to do but reading the introduction with all its techie talk I thought I would leave it until I was feeling a bit more web-geeky (I did do a multimedia masters but have forgotten a lot over the years).

Summer has actually decided to visit north of the border at last so I have managed to get in a few really good runs recently. Today I actually managed 9.7 miles which I was very proud of. Of these 9 or so miles, 4 or them were under 9 minutes, my fastest mile being done in 08:36 and only one taking over 10 minutes (this was one up a very steep hill).

Although I promised myself I would keep up a pretty intense running schedule while still out of work I don't really think I believed my own posturing but I have actually done really well, with only 2 proper days off since the beginning of July. On those days I went for a walk in the sunshine.

I do realise that exercise is rather addictive and I do find myself getting a little anxious when I haven't done anything.  However, I do listen to my body and always take it easy if I'm feeling tired or achy. Anyway, am also loving that all this activity is allowing me to eat what I want and still keep the weight that I have lost recently off.

A long run today meant doing the Portobello seaside route. Always cheers me up on a sunny day.  In the summer time its always good for people watching too. There are some strange people around. I have recently been attracting some weirdos who seem to feel the need to impart some very important gibberish whilst gesturing at me with intent...Funnily enough they never seem to notice or care that I have my ipod on, doing my best to ignore them. Anyway, my weirdo moment of the day was seeing a man with a perfect Hitler moustache, with hairstyle to match, walking along hand-in-hand with his lady friend. I'm sure he was a perfectly nice bloke but I do think someone should maybe advise him on the facial fuzz.

My other fav moment of my run was overtaking a very fit looking guy while running up a very steep hill  *smug grin*.

Distance: 9.75mi
Time taken: 01:31:23
Average/Max Speed : 6.48
Average/Min Pace : 00:09:16
Calories: 1159
men with Hitler moustaches: 1

Friday, 8 July 2011

post Juneathon blues

Its been a week since the end of Juneathon and I have to say I miss it.  I miss having to think of something new to write about every day and looking forward to reading how others are getting on and looking at the comments. I know people out there are continuing to pound the pavements, especially those who are diligently raising money for charity and there are those who are keeping their blogs going and I will continue to read them.

As I said I would, I have also tried to keep up my running (I think I said I was aiming for 6 days a week), I have on the whole been doing this, though I have to say I'm finding it difficult to stay motivated now that I no longer have a target/challenge to work to. I find myself having long debates with myself in bed in the morning on whether or not to go - so far, thankfully my will power has won the argument).I have also had to go to the gym thanks to the crappy weather and I never like the idea of the gym. However, I have so far prevailed this week and even managed a 4mile outdoor run today before the thunderstorms came along. Even though I felt heavy-legged and slow I was surprised to find that I was managing to average a 9 minute mile pace so can't have been too bad. I may have a day off tomorrow, though I had hoped to start attending a park run out at cramond but the rain looks set to stay so will put it off another week.