Monthly Archives: October 2008

A foot update

Not a running post, as such, more an update so if I remember to read this in a few years, I might remember why I had such a long running break.

Wednesday was the first day in nearly 2 months when my left foot hasn’t hurt with every footstep. I am now treating it a bit gently, I am still conscious that on most occasions i’m rolling around my outstep to keep pressure off my toe, but generally i’m returning to a normal stride. Today, I even ran up the stairs at work without wincing.

But. I’ve promised i’m thinking of the longer term. So, instead of heading out for a run tomorrow, i’m going to wait 1 week from my pain free day until my next run. So, next Wednesday, i’ll be blogging properly.


Can’t wait.

Until then, last night was 4.5mm rainfall. 34 cars.

Cross training?

Somewhat at odds to popular misconception, I haven’t given up. I’m actually being sensible for a change and am resting my injured foot.


Since the week after my 3 peak activity, when for some reason my foot exploded whilst running down the stairs at work, i’ve been running on the injury and it just hasn’t been on the mend. Well, having been accepted into London next year and having had a splendidly rubbish Ashford 10k, it’s time to sort it. So, i’m nearly 2 weeks into resting it; i’ve got rid of any swelling and can now walk on it until lunchtime (yeah, right – as if lunch happens with any regularity!) when it then starts to nag rather than hurt lots. In fact, the most common pain now is when I lace my Etnies too tight on the way to the pub. So, in another week i’ll try a jog.

That’s the plan, anyhow. But until then, as well as in the interim until now, i’ll not be idle. Along with lagging the rest of the roof, i’ve been doing the weights, my sit-up count has gone ballistic, the press-ups have undergone something of a resurgence and I even got out (briefly) on the bike last week. Nice.

So, updates will follow shortly.

Until then, i’m down to 45 cars. Oh, and feeling proud that (just Google her if the link doesn’t work…best blog on the web!) got another magazine mention for her sterling efforts and amazing humour. Smart.

Ashford 10k race weekend

So it’s been the first weekend since late June that I haven’t seen Cathy, a situation made up partly for by seeing her on Wednesday and to be corrected again this coming Wednesday, I reckon. Well, she signed up for the Royal Parks Half, I couldn’t get an entry, all the boys were doing Ashford so it’d be rude not to join in, eh?

So, the weekend kicked off with fog, an hour in the roof (insulation preparation), an hour giving Martin his LandRover back, then a late skydive. No wind again, plenty of cloud to look over on the way up, but with ample gaps to jump through for a safe route down, at last I got a chance to enjoy a good canopy ride without struggling to get back in or going too far. Still landed about 20 foot out from my intended target, though, so my accuracy needs working on before a “B” licence attempt after a few more jumps. And then, the motorbike beckoned so a trip out was enjoyed, including a ride around the 10k course. Hills! Where did they come from in Ashford? Not climb and pant style, just ease your way up but without knowing how much they’d take out of me without a pre-run; I wasn’t sure about today.

So again the day dawned foggy, I got up and cleaned the car (shouldn’t have bothered, it was filthy after 10 miles of lanes on the way out there), rode into the village for my entry money, went to the dump to get rid of two old mattresses from the roof (why did I hang onto them for about 10 years and two moves?) and made my way to the run.

The fog had cleared, it felt warm and was definitely muggy, my foot was just about feeling ok – just a bit of pain on the push off step each time, walking from the car park, then I bumped into Geoff, Gaz, Aaron, Emma, Steve and their families on the way in or while signing up. During the 10 minutes or so getting ready to start, it became apparent the timing was gun to finish, so no accuracy there in the standings, then, but I forgot to look at the time accurately so was relying on someone at the finish for a decent guessed time. Well, I was also wondering who’d set off quickest. And it was all of them except Steve! I couldn’t believe that after scant training, Gaz and Geoff could keep up the pace they did, but Gaz in particular still kept it up for about 2.5k before wilting. Apparently, he fell apart at 3k with bad hips and everything! I was dismayed that it was marked in k’s, not miles. I hate having to convert the two, knowing I can pretty much sprint at 1 mile but feel unsure I’m not being tricked how far things are even at 1k boards. Weird.

Still, I wasn’t having a good run. My foot was wincing. I felt energy less (probably a lack of chocolate!) and was sweating massively from about 4k. The hills weren’t bad at all, I saw a woman i’d run alongside in the Stelling Minnis 10k back in May (she seemed a bit dismissive as I pointed the fact out to the runners around us, but after a bit of encouragement she did admit Stelling Minnis wasn’t a good run for her. Ah, well.). This time, instead of running away from her, she did the same to me and was about 100 yards in front at the finish. Bah. Still, she was in her championship race, so I guess it’s fair. Anyhow, all the way from 6k, I was feeling weedy with no inspiration to up the pace. So, I didn’t. I passed 1k and thought I ought to kick, but still didn’t, I put on a bit of a push in the stadium, outsprinted a man in the last 20m, but felt dejected.

The guy next to me on the line had 45.45 on his Garmin, I had it about 46 dead, so about 1 minute off my target, but the official result has me at 46.12. But again, all the results are non-corrected for start position. I know it’s all relative, but it seems odd to have chip technology and not put it to use to get accurate results irrespective of start position – imagine the times in a huge race like London if they started everyone from the gun! So, i’ll settle for 46ish and be satisfied after an average-poor run on a race day. Especially since, as I look at it now, my foot is huge. The ball of my left foot is twice the size of the right, the toe is twice as fat on profile and it’s hurting just sitting here. Happy days. I’ll give it 3 days to recover or i’ll get it checked out.

And then, it was to the pub for a bitter shandy. Everyone else was happy with their times so it was a good morning all round, despite my moans – Steve especially impressed after 4 weeks training following 6 years off and 5 odd stone extra poundage to carry around – I expect amazing things in his super sprint tri next August.

Then I came home, took the bike for a thrash, saw the parents, ate some chocolate (not tooooooooo much, honest. Ish.), had a pizza and now i’m off to do some upper body exercise.

There’s been a trace of rain from the fog for the last 2 days, 60 cars to go, and i’m going to have to blog some cross training since i’m not running on my foot until it’s better. That’ll be a week, then!

A 5am sheep

After a week long drought, claimed to be a taper before Sunday’s race, I thought i’d better ease the legs out with a jog along the seafront of sunny Hastings before the weekend to blow out any cobwebs and check how my foot is healing.

But following an evening out and an amusing comment on my jumper status, I felt the need to consume 1835 calories for lunch in the form of the nicest M&S sandwiches I could find. Oh, and a bag of crisps and an apple pie. Rude not to, really.

So work was truly hectic, to the point of can’t keep up but with the sun out, the sea as calm as a millpond and no breeze, I wasn’t going to miss the run even if I was really really really tired. And after changing boots back to my trusty riggers to try and repair my struggling ball/big toe pain, I was eager to feel if there was any benefit.

Well, after about half a mile, my foot was letting me know it isn’t right still, but it’s definitely improved, so i’m confident it’ll be fine soon enough, but I knew I was tired with the slow pace I selected being all I could really put in. Which, when all the dogs and owners were factored into the route, possibly wasn’t such a bad thing. Still, the run was pleasant enough, I did get diverted by and old RD 500 LC in the classic bike shop window, but the frame was scruffy in all the wrong places, even if the yokes had been polished and the exhaust housing in the seat unit was immaculate. I guess after 20 odd years, it has every right to be a bit scruffy, but it’s still a shame.

So, this put me on the other side of the road, the run seemed to flash by without the sea to stare at and all too soon, really, I was back in the office, packing things up and coming home.

Now, i’m knackered so am headed for bed. Strangely, even though it feels ok, my foot has started clicking lots. Odd. Still, 69 cars. 1 sheep comment. Happy days.

It’s on!

After publishing great plans for a 3 run week, Wednesday came and went in a blur of being far too busy in the evenings and becoming stressed at not having time to think, let alone relax after a shitty day at work. So, I decided to knock the run on the head and hoover, tidy up and think for a change.

But tonight was going to be different. I knew a run was on as I hit my leg, just above the knee on a lump of balcony steel on site, causing a lump and graze, proving bad enough to induce a limp all day – seems whwnever I plan a run I hurt myself so it was all looking good.

And it was. I planned a 6.2 mile pre 10k race effort, hopefully at an easy pace especially with the leg and definitely owing to my left big toe once again feeling painful and being swollen. I don’t know what it is with it, i’m thinking now i’ll get it checked out – it’s been long enough. Still, I set off for the hilly route, eased the first mile away and found myself happily distracted to hear an old favourite sound as I cleared the first bit of Alexandra Park. When cars used to be cars, they all sounded different. The one I used to hate at the time, and latterly love owing to it being one of the last true individual sounds to linger in production, was the early Ford Fiesta. And, my hearing being a touch dull lately (just ask Cathy), I was glad when I didn’t let myself down and an old “W” reg Fiesta came past, underpowered as it was, in horrible but very tidy orange paint. An old decent Fiesta. I felt quite nostalgic. But the moment passed, the car pulled away to be replaced by modern monotony and two mopeds, I cleared the second climb easily and proceeded onto the next.

Easy pace continuing, I perked right up near the top when what did I see? Only a “Y” reg Fiesta, this time in yellow, parked at the side  of the road. Splendid, two in one run, having not seen any for what seems an age. And at about 400 yards from my turnaround point, I got a good look back down the first bit of hill on the return leg, so it was all good. Sadly this was the highlight of the run. I got back reasonably fresh, a bit late for a Friday, but apart from that, and my now very swollen toe, all was well.

Then, on getting home and opening my post, I found my ACCEPTED magazine for the London Marathon.


4 years of trying and finally I get let in. I’m excited. I’m happy. I’m worried how much training i’ll put in over the winter, but it’s all good.

I’ll say now, I want to do it properly, once. So, my aim is a) to finish and b) in under 4 hours. Possibly a touch optimistic knowing my training will be limited by work hours and a desire to enjoy life between now and then, but hey, i’ve got to dream. and if I only managed a 2 hour half, i’d be distraught, so I can knock a fair bit off my pace and still do it, so i’ll try. (Have I written before that for this year’s Hastings Half I did next to no training due to injury, decided to run only on the morning of the race, set off really slowly (9 minute miles) for the first 5 miles while considering stopping for damage limitation’s sake, but carried on to mile 10 when I realised I was fresh enough for a sprint so did the last 3.1 miles in 22 minutes with an overal time of 1.52? I know I have the pace ( I hadn’t run over 7 miles since new year before the half) I just have to stay injury free and put in the miles.)


So, a good weekend planned. And loads more running to come through the winter. Until then, 1mm rain, 78 cars. Nice.