Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Lessons in Running.....

Let's start with Saturday's long run. It was supposed to be 14, I ended up doing 10. It was painful, I was tired and I just ran out of steam. It is one of the worse (if not the worse) run I have had to date, as I always finish my long runs, even if I have to struggle through them. I was disappointed in myself and disappointed in not finishing it, but there you have it. It was a bad one.
I thought about it a lot on Sunday, and decided that not every training session works out, but that there is a lesson to be learnt in the ones that don't work out. For example the Friday 'tempo' run which I did with my colleagues was really quite challenging for me, as it started off at quite a strong pace. But it has also made me realize that if I want to improve a bit, perhaps I need to occasionally run with a group who are quicker than me. That is something I need to force myself to do, because it would be like Waiting for Godot if I waited until I 'felt' like it.
The second lesson was in Saturday's long run. Should I have just insisted and do a run-walk finish, or even just walk 3 miles and run the last one? Well, all good options, but I stopped - now let's move on. I listened to my body (as everyone has been telling me, and reinforcing my belief anyway). I felt terrible and in pain. I rested, and my next long run will be better.
My interval run last night was pretty challenging. Again, I was out of my comfort zone, and quite a few times felt like crumpling up in a heap. I think this programme is quite good, even though last night I did have a fleeting doubt. Every workout pushes me out of my comfort zone, and it feels like it's an effort. And that is what I need to work on - so I have started doing my circuit training again to build some stamina.
I have also discovered a most wonderous thing:  this Kefir drink is delicious- the only down-side is that it has 21g of sugar!

I suppose one should drink sparingly, but it is really good!  And what better way to watch the pilot episode of the new Hawaii 5-0, than drinking a glass of this.  Now personally I think Jack Lord was just too hunky and classy to have any pretenders to the throne.  That being said, last night's pilot was passable.  It is certainly the best police series on telly at the moment.  The atrocious rubbish that is on is just mind boggling - no wonder Dexter reigns supreme.  In all fairness, I am not sure if I can give a good assessment yet, as the build-up to last night was so heightened, that I suspect nothing can really live up to the original.  I will definitely watch a few more episodes, and see if they can stand on their own.....  Meanwhile thank goodness Dexter is back on Sunday.......


  1. If you push yourself out of your comfort zone, as you did on Friday, then you need to lower your expectations for your Saturday long run. It sounds like you did a hard workout, and then tried to do a long run the next day. I think you did very well in finishing 10 miles after Friday's hard workout. Anytime you push your body out of its comfort zone, you either need to allow for extra rest or adjust your expectations for the next run. Sorry for sounding like a preachy know-it-all. I mean well.

  2. First of all you are the best running teacher of yourself and you know what is best for you. However about the lessons: 1) I have just decided to join a running group every friday to improve my speed; 2) I prefer not to follow the idea run-walk-run if I don't feel comfortable during a workout.
    Good luck on the next trainings.

  3. Hi Natalie!

    Each and everyone of us have our off days! And you have the courage to share your with us your readers. That's even guttier than finishing a long 14 miles long run. Best off luck with your next one!

  4. Nothing wrong with cutting short a long run if you feel really bad. You will know when it is the right thing to do or just being lazy. Building up really gradually is the way I get to longer runs. I walk on all my long runs because I walk during ultra races as well. It has to be part of my training.

  5. scusa ma reagire così negativamente non aiuta, anzi.... fai bene ad assecondare il tuo corpo, lui sembra più consapevole di te! ;)
    ottimo il kefir, io lo prendo naturale... e grazie per il consiglio, lo proverò: avevo già letto di quel frullato qui, sul tuo blog....

  6. Everyone has an off day - but take care if each and every run takes you out of your comfort zone - you do need to recover sometime

  7. I've just started interval training on the treadmill, actually I've only just started on the treadmill as opposed to running in the outside world as I was always worried about falling off the end! All the magazines I've read recommend it for stamina building so being out of the 'comfort zone' every now and then has to be a good thing for trying to run that bit further and faster.

  8. @Frank: Thank you! I love reading your advice, and it's usually true. This is all good, as most times I feel like I'm fumbling around in the dark.

    @Black Knight: I thought about what you said - that running in a group is a good way of getting a tempo run in. I think you are right, and I know that if I do it once a week, it will pose just the right amount of challenge for me, without being depressing!

    @Ole: Hmmm, do they now?! I did think twice about going public with it, but I am so glad I did - I am getting some really great advice and since I have a half on Saturday, this is most timely.

    @Johann: Tim Noakes is a strong advocate of what you recommend. I am so glad you shared this, because I was wondering if anyone actually does do it (the walking part I mean) and what are the effects. Now I know! Thanks.

    @Yogi: Grazie x l'incoraggiamento...a volte mi sembra che faccio 10 passi indietro. Ma tutto cio' mi rassicura che si va sempre avanti. Oh ma avete anche il Kyr, che e' un buon di dio.....yum!

    @Alan: Thanks, I had actually forgotten about that! Since I am feeling quite anxious about Philly, (time really is fleeting), I have developed slight tunnel vision. cheers.

    @ Jenny: That is a super way of training. I love doing hills and yes, intervals too on the treadmill. Thanks for coming out and saying it, as I sometimes feel I am cheating when I have a good run indoors!

  9. Not every run goes smoothly. I've stopped sometimes too and like you I felt guilty. These days I just walk a bit more as long as I finish the distance I had planned to do and it works.