Archive for December, 2005|Monthly archive page

December Statistics & Targets for Year Reviewed and New Targets Set.

In Running Aims, Saint Edmund Pacers, Statistics on December 31, 2005 at 5:33 pm

I managed my fourth highest mileage during December with a total of 132 miles but it could have been better but for the cold I have picked up which is currently left me unable to train.

My statistics for the year show :

Jan 127 miles No of Runs 19
Feb 45 miles No of Runs 7
Mar 94 miles No of Runs 14
Apr 97 miles No of Runs 15
May 84 miles No of Runs 12
Jun 89 miles No of Runs 13
Jul 145 miles No of Runs 21
Aug 130 miles No of Runs 18
Sep 141 miles No of Runs 20
Oct 139 miles No of Runs 20
Nov 107 miles No of Runs 17
Dec 132 miles No of Runs 17

Total Runs for the year 193 out of 365 days.

My average distance that I run is 6.88 miles

My longest run of the year was 12 miles on Boxing Day 26th December.

I have run just three races all year. My racing pb’s for the year are 10 miles 1 hr 17.23 and for 7 miles 52.37.

Back at the beginning of July I set myself ten running aims

1To keep fit and be able to run. Yes I am still highly motivated and keen to test how far I can progress. I have been lucky and been with out injury this year apart from a slight right knee niggle.

2. To join a club again.I joined St Edmund Pacers and I would advise anyone considering running to join a club. Anyone who is training for a marathon really ought to consider joining a club for the advise, coaching support and most important of all the company and peer support.

3. To do a race this year.I hadn’t entered a race since February 2004 but I did three races. The Tarpley 10 the Stowmarket Sriders Scenic 7 and the Hadleigh 10. These were very well organised races though I have to say the Tarpley 10 in its first running was simply superb.

4. To run a 1000 miles this year.I achieved this on the 9th of October. Next year a bigger target I think.

5.To try and lose half a stone to get to 12.5 stone.In January I was 13 stone 4lbs. I am currently about 12stone 4lbs I am down a stone so this aim was achieved. It has led me to wearing belts more often!

6. To take my camera with me so I can capture those sights in nature that sometimes runners are lucky to see because only they are daft enough to get up early in the morning whilst most others are still in bed to go for a long run.I wasn’t happy with the quality of the camera and I evetually replaced it with a Fuji Finepix 345 which is still nice and light weight but is a 4 mega pixel camera.

7. To run hills.No if I am honest ive failed on this one. I merely have it in the back of the mind to do a hill session each week.

8. To continue the track work.I struggle to make most Wednesdays. Commitments mean I often need to be elsewhere on this evening which is a pity. There is a lot more more to be gained from a quality session on the track than another 5-6 mile steady run. When I can I still aim to get down to the West Suffolk Athletics Track.

9. To aim to get back to under 8 minute miling.I was a regular 7 minute miler but after such a long lay off getting to 8 minute miling was my target. I have achieved this in the three races I have taken part in the 10 milers were completed in 7.51 and 7.45 average miles and the 7 miler in 7.31 average miles.

10. My tenth and final aim will be to learn more about blogging as I am a total novice and I am not sure what I am doing.No I still no very little about web sites. Unless it is simple I don’t have the time or patience to figure it out.So all told I think I have achieved eight out of turn.

Now on to next years targets

1. To keep fit and enjoy my running.

That will always be my number one aim. People some times ask why do you run? Quite often they look upon you as weird when you mention that you run. Often they will say they have tried and found it boring. Quite simply I run because I can and I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t love it. I get to see the changing seasons, experience all weathers and enjoy the beautiful Suffolk countryside. I meet similar folks who enjoy running. I gave up a long time ago trying to persuade others to run you either enjoy it or you don’t.

2. I am a signed up member of St Edmunds Pacers and look forward to continuing doing so for next year.

3. I am setting myself an overall target to run 1500 miles next year. That’s challenging for me but hopefullya realistic target that is achievable barring injuries ! I managed 1328 this year so it is an additional 200 miles at an average of 29 miles a week.

4. Long Runs – I want to up my long runs so that next year I run some 2 hour or 15 mile runs .

5. Hills – these are great sessions to include in your training. I know it but I just didn’t do it this year. Can I do it next year? Probably not on my own. I remember that we used to run these as a cub session when I belonged to Stopsley Striders back in 1994. I am not going to set my target for hills anything greater than to do 1 hill session a month.

6. Races – for me racing isn’t the be and end all of why I run but I would still like to run more races than I did this year which was only 3 . My target for 2006 is to do 6 races. At the moment I still think my limit for a race is around the half marathon distance. So I would like to include a half marathon as a race next year.

7. Track and Interval Work – If I miss the Wednesday track session at West Suffolk Athletics Track then I want to commit to doing the Monday session. To my mind track work is so beneficial.

8. To get my weight down to 12 stone – I could still do with losing a few pounds . My BMI still shows I am overweight for my height. This means losing about 4-6 pounds. This should be possible if I keep to my new mileage targets.

9. To replace my watch – I don’t have a very good running watch- sometime this year I would like to get one of those Garmin 201 devices

10. Lastly this one is a bit crazy but when the weather brightens up in the spring I am seriouslyconsidering an occasional run when I take with me a rucksack to pick up rubbish I spot in the hedgerows. I hate to see rubbish which has been dropped from car windows left on the side of roads. It can remain for years in some rural spots. Ok I could say it is not my rubbish but in a way we are all responsible for the upkeep of the countryside and I am willing to give it a go. I expect I will need to wear gloves and an old rucksack. My other though then is what to do with the rubbish as I don’t particularly want to fill my own dustbin with what I collect. Maybe my run will need to by pass a recycling centre.

Ok my aims are a bit similar to last year but I think it helps to have clear targets to give you a focus and a bit of a challenge. If you have set some targets let me know what challenges you have set yourself particularly anything unusual.

Happy new year

Horsecroft Suffolk

In Hardwick Heath, Horsecroft, snow, suffolk on December 28, 2005 at 3:16 pm

1 .15pm 7.5 miles in 1 hour 3 mins.

Year to date mileage 1328

Month to date 132 miles

Average miles per month 112

Average weekly rate 25.7

Weather Sunny dry and cold.

No further snow but it has remained cold so there is only a slight thaw. I run out through Hardwick Heath and took a tumble as I missed a pot hole. Luckily I landed on my shoulder and
did a bit of a forward role which got a bit of a laugh and a round of applause from a big group of folks who were snowballing and sledging. Just for a moment I couldn’t put much wait on my foot and I feared the worst but I was soon ok.

I ran across this field in the photo. The pathway was still evident from some metal rods posted in the ground.

The field was fine to run on with plenty of grip underneath. However once I reached the road to Hawstead I found the road was a skating rink. I only managed a mile or so by running in the
verge. I called it quits and returned by the same route.

Again a slow run.

River Lark & Water Meadows Run Bury St Edmunds

In Abbey Gardens, No Man's Meadow, snow, Water Meadows on December 27, 2005 at 10:28 am

8.15am 7.2 miles in 1 hour 3 mins and 23 seconds

Year to date mileage 1320

Month to date 124 miles

Average miles per month 111

Average weekly rate 25.6

Weather Snow- heavy snow showers.

Course:Head out through the water meadows and then turn left at Bury Rugby Club . Follow the path through No Mans Meadow which is at the back of the Abbey Gardens returning to Southgate Bridge and then returning over the meadows for a 2nd lap.Return home up Southgate Street past the Police Station and through the Abbey Gardens graveyard then through town centre, Risbygate street, Westley road and home. The
snow that had been promised duly arrived this morning.

Very rarely do we get the chance to run in the snow here in Suffolk. as most winters I reckon we only get perhaps at most 5-10 days of snow.

As I set off the snow showers became more heavy and running into the falling snow made visibility difficult. There was a lovely crunching sound as the snow compacted beneath my feet as my shoes landed.

As the going was difficult I found I was running a lot slower. My time for running this course was 3-4 minutes slower than normal.

Ickworth Park Suffolk

In bra, Chevington, Downters Wood, Horringer, Horringer Farm, Ickworth Park, sheep on December 26, 2005 at 7:30 pm

8.30am 12 miles in 1 hour 37 minutes.

Year to date mileage 1313

Month to date 117 miles

Average miles per month 111

Average weekly rate 25.5

Week to date 12

Weather: cool but not cold slight drizzle a little fog.

For Boxing day I thought I would do a long run and try a regular course, which anyone who views this blog, will know from previous entries that strange things can happen in the village of Horringer.

I wasn’t to be disappointed sure enough there was a further bra in a tree this time a bright blue one. The bright purple flowery one was still there but no sign of the red one which has either been taken down or blown away? Curious, perhaps it is the time of year or may be some kind of fertility ritual performed in the village of Horringer and only there? Unless of course anyone else has seen this elsewhere. Maybe there is a network around the country or all over the world of bra tree hangers.

Seeing a bra in a tree in Horringer doesn’t surprise me anymore, I have come to expect it. Imagine my surprise though when I spotted a new addition a folding chair in a tree! Totally broken of course and very high up this tree . Well that’s different! I wonder if it is the same people who are responsible? Is there a connection between the broken folding chair and the 3 different bras? What kind of message are they trying to send out? To be honest this spot is fairly isolated and only frequented in the main by farmers and dog walkers.

Oh well, I will continue to look at for further developments on things in trees in Horringer next year.

I continued on in to Ickworth Park , past the house , gardens and lake. Near the lake there seems to be several paths that I am not familiar with but will explore next year. I chose a path running slightly uphill over a cattle grid which took me through Downters Wood and on to Chevington Field Plantation. There were a handful of houses here in the middle of the wood and virtually no sound it was so quiet. I wasn’t so sure if I was on private land so I returned home by the same course for a good 12 miles.

Cullum Road/Ramada Hotel and Newmarket Rd Bury St Edmunds

In Bury St Edmunds, Tarpley 10 on December 23, 2005 at 7:07 pm

5.30pm 5.4 miles in 43 minutes and 34 seconds

Year to date mileage 1301

Month to date 105 miles

Average miles per month 111

Average weekly rate 25.5

Week to date 32

Weather mild and dry

I didn’t realise until I looked at my watch how slowly I ran tonight. I think I am generally tired after finishing workfor the christmas break.

I have posted a few pictures that were lurking around from previous runs. These are a few more photos of the Tarpley 10 in September at Beyton that I don’t think I have posted before. In the background is Beyton School. I remember well

playing football here for my school.

West Suffolk Athletics Track Bury St Edmunds

In Bury St Edmunds, Saint Edmund Pacers, West Suffolk Athletics Track, whiskey on December 21, 2005 at 9:49 pm

6.20pm 7.5 miles in I hour

Year to date mileage 1296

Month to date 99 miles

Average miles per month 111

Average weekly rate 25.5

Week to date 26

Tonight I ran an interval session down at the west Suffolk Athletics Track. There was a good turn of club members from St Edmunds Pacers for the final track session until the new year.

I decided to run down to the track which is a mile and as I was early I managed to get 5 laps in before we started the intervals. The session consisted of 3 blocks of 4 x 3minutes with a minute recovery inbetween each 3 minute run and 5 minutes between the block.

All in all this was 36 minutes of track running. It was intended that we run theintervals at slightly faster than race pace. I think I generally run most of the intervals at a speed of 1.45 per 400 metres which I assume is 7 minute mile pace?

The big squeeze will be on over the next 2 weeks as we runners try to somehow balance family life with a desire to also maintain a decent level of fitness and get the mileage in. The stress can come if you try to do everything and I for one won’t worry if I miss the odd session after all there is plenty of time in the new year.

This week in preparing for Christmas we had a little bit of a clear out of the drinks cupboard. Out popped all this bright colourful drinks such as peppermint cordials and orange liquers which have hardly been touched. I think they are drinks that have been given as presents or won in competitions. Anway they have all headed for the bin and I know this is a terrible waste but I think they have lurked in the cupboard for 10 years already and no one ever wants a peppermint cordial drink do they?

On the plus side I did find quite a good selection of whisky ( which I am not throwing out) and again these have tended to be presents or duty free bottles we have bought on the ferry from trips to France.

I have found Old Masters , Lenlivet, Murray McDavid, Islay, Famous Grouse, Old Pulteney,Bowmore, Bells, Glenfiddich, Glen Ord and a bottle of Seagramms.

That lot should keep me going over christmas and might be good reason why I might miss a session or two!

November Statistics

In running, Running Aims on December 19, 2005 at 7:28 pm
  • November was a month when my overall mileage suffered as I prepared for my second and third races of the year. The Stowmarket Scenic Seven on the 13th of November and the Hadleigh 10 on the 27th of November.

    My statistics for the year show :

    Jan 127 miles No of Runs 19
    Feb 45 miles No of Runs 7
    Mar 94 miles No of Runs 14
    Apr 97 miles No of Runs 15
    May 84 miles No of Runs 12
    Jun 89 miles No of Runs 13
    Jul 145 miles No of Runs 21
    Aug 130 miles No of Runs 18
    Sep 141 miles No of Runs 20
    Oct 139 miles No of Runs 20
    Nov 107 miles No of Runs 17

  • Total Runs for the year 176 out of 334 days.
  • My average distance that I run is 6.8 miles
  • My longest run of the year has been 11 miles back on the 12th of June.
  • I have run just three races all year. My racing pb’s for the year are 10 miles 1 hr 17.23 and for 7 miles 52.37.

I have dug out my old running diaries in an attempt to catalogue those and work out what years I ran and which I didn’t and just how far have I run.

Abbey Gardens & Nowton Park Suffolk

In Abbey Gardens, Nowton Park on December 19, 2005 at 12:08 pm

8.10am 11 miles in I hour 33 minutes

Year to date mileage 1288

Month to date 92 miles

Average miles per month 111

Average weekly rate 25.5

Week to date 19

Weather Mild clear blue skies.
I dropped my car off to be serviced and ran from the railway station around town and through the Abbey Gardens. The sun was just rising and the sky was bright pink just for a while.

The completed tower of St Edmundsbury Cathedral has completely changed the skyline of Bury and is a wonderful sight. It is a pity there is no walkway or opportunity to see the views from the top.

I wasn’t sure where to run this morning it took a little while to wake up after a late night in London. Eventually I decided on a couple of laps of Nowton Park. There is a lovely circular trail of the park which is about 2 miles. As the park is quite popular you can expect to encounter several dogs and for this reason I don’t run it as much as I should. There is a small pond and a lovely avenue of trees to run through. Lime Avenue was planted in 1880 and gives the park a sense of grandeur. This morning much of the pathways were heavily covered in leaves and a few times I nearly tripped on tree roots. I was ok after telling myself to lift my feet up a bit more. Outside

of the woods several of the paths were a mixture of crusted ice where the overnight rain had frozen, mole hills and some really nice springy ground up by the school pond. Over the years it appears the conifers have regularly shed their needles and made the ground soft and springy to run on.

I ran slowly this morning and my laps of the park took 19.50 for the first lap and 19.30 for the second.

Fornham Circular Run Suffolk

In Books, Fornham All Saints, Fornham Saint Martin, Fornham St Genevieve, Life of Pi, Ottakers, The Clash on December 17, 2005 at 11:36 am

8.30am 7.5 miles in 59 minutes 29 seconds.

Year to date mileage 1277

Month to date 81 miles

Average miles per month 111

Average weekly rate 25.5

Week to date 7.5

Weather Cold clear blue skies.

Mind numbingly cold this morning. Gloves, hat and two layers of clothing kept out the cold and towards the end of the run I felt well and truly glowingly warm. I bought some second hand players sweatshirts whilst at Portman Road for a fiver and they have turned out to be quite a good investment. I must admit I wasn’t sure about them as they looked a bit heavy but if they are designed for football players running around then they are good enough for me.They certainly seem to wick away any sweat so they have the same properties as the designer running gear which can set you back a lot of money.

I have just finished reading two books.

‘Passion is a fashion The real storey of the Clash ‘ by Pat Gilbert. This was a bargain basement book, cost I think was £2.99 from HMV. A good read if you are in anyway interested in the Clash. It brought back a lot of memories for me of the late seventies and early eighties when I was living in London. The Clash based themselves in Camden and many people will have shopped at Camden Market whererehearsallrehearsall Studios used to be.

This was a time when unemployment was very high, the fascist National Front regularly held marches and you could easily get beaten up for wearing the wrong clothes. The Clash played a mixture of punk and reggae songs and so by following them you naturally supported movements such as Rock against Racism.

‘Life of Pi by Yann Martel’ £7.99 from Ottakers. I am always a bit suspicious when I see on the front cover that a book has won the ‘The Booker prize’ . I often find these books a bit disappointing however this was a good book and I would certainly recommend it. It would make a really good film. This is the storey of a shipwrecked boy called Pi (shortened from Piscine Patel so as not to get bullied as it sounds like Pissing Patel) who is the only survivor from a cargo ship which sinks in the pacific ocean. The Patel family are emigrating to Canada from India with a cargo of zoo animals that Mr Patel, Pi’s father a zoo manager used to manage.This is a storey of survival with a difference as the only survivors on board the lifeboat are Pi , a hyena, a zebra and a tiger.

Moreton Hall to Gt Barton Suffolk

In cat, Gt Barton, Moreton Hall, suffolk on December 16, 2005 at 12:26 pm

9.30am 7 miles in 58 minutes 56 seconds.

Year to date mileage 1270

Month to date 73 miles

Average miles per month 110

Average weekly rate 25.4

Week to date 34

Weather Mild windy and overcast.

I ran this morning from the car park at Matalan in Moreton Hall out to Gt Barton on the busy Bury Road. Heavy clouds threatened a downpour but it never happened because of a good breeze.

As far as the mileage goes 34 miles this week represents the most I have run since the beginning of November. I got in five runs which is what I like to do with 2 rest days.

I took a photo of I think of a cat on a roof at Gt Barton , it looks as if it has just had a fright. Maybe it is a good luck charm to ward off witches. It reminds me a little of the victims that the White Witch of Narnia chooses to freeze.