The life of a runner, mother, radiopharmacist and vicar's wife – that's me!
The schedule for today said to run a mile. The whole schedule is really about the mile, running one mile fast. It has involved lots of exercises that I wouldn’t normally do and probably not as much running as I normally would do. It’s been fun though and after I’ve completed the schedule I will definitely throw in some of these exercises into my normal routine. I think that the jumps, squats, burpees, steps, planks and stretches in particular will feature in my next training schedule.
The day started with a swim. This wasn’t actually part of the training and, apart from racing Dominic for about 15m across the leisure pool a couple of times, it could hardly be described as exercise. I had promised the kids that I would take them swimming though and the best part was that it was free as Wirral council have a special thing over the summer where the kids can swim for free. Apart from nearly being drowned by Dominic when he grabbed hold of me in the deep end and pulled me under, it was quite fun.
When we got back, the kids made some cards. This involved me more than anticipated as I was asked to fold card, cut card, glue card etc. I’m not sure if they are incapable of these things or just want me to be involved. I was trying to get changed to go to the gym at the time so I wasn’t that excited to be helping with sticking things onto a piece of card.
It rained all morning so that pretty much decided it for me. I had thought about driving over to Wirral Country Park for a long run but instead I opted to do the mile, as per the schedule.
I still don’t feel that I am all that fit. For the first few months after we moved (6 months ago) I really wasn’t very well and hardly trained at all. I haven’t got involved in a club yet so I’m not training with a group – it’s been pretty much me and the Nike Training Club app for the last month. I had actually been running fairly consistently for a few months before I started on this 12 week programme and did a mile in week 2 (I’m now on week 5) in a fairly reasonable 5:54.
The other reason for going to the gym was to watch the telly, specifically to watch the World Athletics Championships. I knew that the men’s 10,000m was going to be on so I was keen to see how Mo Farah would do. I also wanted to see the British girls in the heptathlon 200m.
My legs felt a bit funny and I wasn’t sure how I would get on. I had that post swimming wobbly leg feeling as I warmed up rather conservatively. I was delighted to see our girls run well in the 200m with Katarina Johnson-Thompson looking impressive (her name always makes me think of the detectives in Tintin!) It will be an interesting day tomorrow and I really hope that both Jessica Ennis-Hill and KJT do well. Is a British 1-2 really possible?
Last time I ran the mile, I think I set the treadmill on a 1% gradient at 10.2 mph so I knew I should go quicker this time. I started from a standing start but this time I had to negotiate the complexity of getting the TV screen on too as I wanted to know the points standing after the 4 events of the heptathlon so I reckon it took a little longer to get up to speed. Anyway, I started off at 10.4mph and sped up from there as I felt OK. I actually felt OK for the whole time which makes me think that I can go quicker. I finished in 5:41, which I was really pleased about.
Although this is a fairly reasonable run, it was put into perspective by the 10,000m in the World Championships. Their first, slow, lap was run in 78secs whereas my average time for each 400m of the mile was only 85 seconds. I’d be very happy if I could run a mile at 78sec per lap pace. Most of the other laps of the 10,000m were run in about 65seconds and I’d be happy if I could even run one lap at that speed!
Anyway, I watched the rest of the race as I ran on the treadmill at a somewhat more gentle pace than them. In total I did 7 miles in about 55min which is a pretty long time to be on the treadmill without getting bored – I should schedule my training to be at the same time as major races more often.
The race itself was fantastic. Mo Farah really had to work hard for the win. I thought that the Kenyans might just do it, working together as a team, but Mo was too strong.
By the time I got home, the weather had cleared up and the sun had actually come out so we all jumped in the car and went over to the RSPB reserve at Burton-Mere Wetlands. We didn’t spot many birds, we did spot some cows though, and a few other wild things.
It is really lovely at this reserve and the staff are very friendly and helpful. I would have liked to stay a bit longer but it was already getting late and Dominic was getting tired – probably from racing me at swimming this morning!
It’s a rest day tomorrow, so no running. I think I might miss the best of the athletics as we are going out for lunch with the church but hopefully I might be able to sneak a look at the results on my iPhone.