Category Archives: Colchester Hospital
Tonight I started the main phase of training for my 10k which is at the beginning of June and this means speed work to get more oxygen into my system.
Today also marks a year since I started running. I cannot honestly believe it has been a year already and I cannot believe just how much I have enjoyed, hated, struggled, gained, grown, learnt and built as a runner.
I remember mulling the idea of running in my head, conversing with friends about a plan of attack. Harassing them for advice and support. Promising Richard I wouldn't spend a fortune on running gear or talking about running all the time (I think I've managed both rather well – the blog is the perfect outlet).
A year ago I started this on a whim and never considered I would achieve what I have, my first 10k, raising £1,600 for Alzheimer's, running a 5k for the local hospital raising £500 etc.
I've since learnt what a friendly and supportive community runners are, I've run in various places, seen and experienced things I wouldn't have done had I stayed at home. I'm probably the fittest I have ever been in my life and have an outlay for stress. I also have a nice toned body which I am proud of and I know Richard enjoys too
For tonights run Gipis suggested I run just over 3k with a split of fast and normal sections (ala Fartlek) to exhaust my body to reach maximum oxygen limits. I am not sure if I was exhausted but it was hard work.
I spent the run dreading the beeps that signified the start of each fast session but soon got into my stride and got on with it.
I did stupidly decide to continue running until I broke through 5k as this is a mental target I like to hit. At the time (at the end) that seemed like a foolish mistake but since the run I have made and ate dinner and although I am a little sore I feel ok considering…
The next run is scheduled to be similar with a long fast section. I'll see how I get on but I am sure I will be fine.
It's difficult running two apps at once though. I do like to track my complete runs on iSmoothRun but need to start Gipis mid way for the coaching and this proves tricky. Getting the iPhone in and out of the Y-fumble mid run isn't easy.
I could program iSmoothRun and may try that but I am not sure I like the coaching within that app.
Why can't all the apps be the same and excel at everything rather than one feature over another? If only I could build my perfect running app…
Tonight was possibly the warmest run I have completed in the UK this year and although windy I enjoyed pounding the streets and leaving the worries of work behind me.
I did sweat more than normal, probably due to the speed work. I had to remove my sunglasses mid run as the sweat on my lenses meant I could not see where I was going. Rubbing my eyes just put sweat in them which made them sting and again impaired my vision. Next time I'll take the baseball cap I bought in Spain!
Fastest track tonight was Axis by Pet Shop Boys which conveniently kicked in at the start of my first fast session.
I captured this short Vine video of tonight's run. Seems fitting to share it on my running anniversary! Why not take a look and join me on my run?
Be warned, it's not a pretty sight!
I'd like to say special thanks to Richard, Paul, Enda, Janice, Em, Sean, Dave, Ivan, Milly and countless others who have helped and supported me on this new adventure.
Long may the running continue and here's to the next challenge
Today was the 3rd Colchester Santa Run in aid of Colchester Hospital Charity.
I signed up for the run ages ago when I had signed up for my MoRun and thought it would be worthwhile as it was on our doorstep, looked like fun and was in aid of the local hospital.
I was not sure what to expect as this was a fun run more than a race and was split between a 5K event and a 3K event.
Unlike the MoRun this was much more gentile – there was a great atmosphere when everyone was changing into their Santa suits. There were no timing chips or race numbers – we were just out to run, enjoy the wonderful park and have some fun.
People of all ages took part and there were loads of children, people with disabilities and runners with dogs participated – it was quite a spectacle, especially as we were all dressed as
Somehow I managed to end up at the beginning of the pack when the 5K Santa's set off and I managed a great pace. I did go too far too quickly but I managed to regulate my pace and got into a good stride.
Just like the MoRun in Greenwich there were a couple of hills to conquer and this didn't do me any favours today but I did ensure I paced myself through the hills as much as I could.
We haven't really explored the park that much and as there was an extended route along the river for the 5K Santa's it felt odd to follow everyone else and not know at which point we would turn back!
I think I need to look into checking out routes as much as I can before I race – there was a published map for Greenwich but not for this one.
There was a loop in this course which saw us running back on ourselves and it was at this point along the river when I saw the front-runners. I had slowed from the pack to a stride I was happy with and I was very happy to see the fit guys and squaddies passing me from the front of the pack
This race was lovely to do because it contained people of all ages and abilities which made it a fun run.
I cannot say I was a fan of the Santa suit though. The jacket kept undoing and it put me off my stride so many times. In fact 2/3 of the way in and I gave up. I tried to undress mid run then realised I had my sportband on my arm so had to do some nifty manoeuvring to get my Santa jacket off without losing my iPhone or my stride. Some Santa jackets were lost on the run and there were red jackets all over the place!
By the time I crossed the line the jacket was tied around my waist and the beard was on the back of my neck but I kept the baggy trousers and Santa hat on!
I started iSmoothRun a little late into the run but my final time of 28:59 was great. I made it in earlier than Richard and I expected and the leaders made it in around 21 minutes!
It was a fun race and I am chuffed to have taken part in this great run for such a worthy local cause. It certainly is something to run amongst 500 Santa's!
If you get the chance sign up for a Santa run and join in the festive fun.
Thanks to everyone who sponsored me – I felt cheeky asking for more sponsorship following the MoRun and the phenomenal amount I raised, but you guys were great again and I reached my target for Colchester Hospital Charity – thank you all x
As you know I have the Colchester Santa 5k on Sunday and I planned to run this evening.
I managed to run Tuesday and it was really cold. I couldn’t have imagined what weather we would have following that though.
Wednesday morning it was incredibly cold and a brief rain shower at 6am turned into a fairly hefty snow shower which lasted a couple of hours.
I gingerly walked to the station this morning trying to avoid the sheet ice and frost. This lead me to think about my run this evening.
Now it’s misleading working in London where it’s warmer and there are more people but this by lunch time convinced me to run this evening as it was dry and sunny (but cold), in London.
I’ve looked at the forecast and for London it’s 5 (feels like -2) and Colchester 0 (feels like -5).
I’m sure I could run in this but the forecast for Colchester also states Hard Frost and Black Ice. Given the conditions this morning I’ve decided I will see what things are like when I arrive home but it looks unlikely that I will run this evening.
I want to run again before Sunday and as I am working from home tomorrow I may see if the day conditions are better and that I can get out during the day. That said snow is forecast for tomorrow morning
Do you run in the snow? What precautions do you take? Is running in frost and ice worse than running in snow?
I wondered if anyone could offer some advice as I don’t want the weather to our me off running.
I’m not sure how Sunday will turn out. Hopefully it will have cleared and the stewards would have done an excellent job setting it up. I hope so as I am looking forward to running dressed as Santa!
Whilst I deliberate all this why not watch this amusing video of a cat sleeping in an arcade claw machine!
I'd like to say I am enjoying these cold runs but I'd be lying.
I only headed out for a 20 minute run tonight as I am really tired following work on Sunday and Monday. I've also still got pain in my lower back but I am determined to preserve with the runs.
It may not have been a long run but I am happy with what I achieved and do feel better for it this evening. I was sure I was so dead asleep on the train home I may of possibly missed my stop. Thankfully the carriage had a loud loudspeaker in it and woke up just in time! The run has reinvigorated me once more.
I am looking for sponsorship but am not aiming to reach the grand total I made for Alzheimer's Society when I ran the Mo Run 10K a couple weeks ago.
I want to run this race on Sunday because…
- It keeps me interested in running
- It's only 5K!
- I get to dress up as Santa
- That sounds like a bit of a laugh
- It's on our doorstep
- I'd be raising money for the local hospital who kindly took care of me as an emergency admission at the beginning of the year
I'm £25 away from my target – will you help me raise money for this local and worthwhile cause?
Go on, it has to be worth it to see me dressed as Santa!
My first run since the Mo Running 10K last weekend…
It was damn cold this morning 0 degrees with a wind chill of -3
Fastest track today was All Nite (Don’t Stop) by Janet Jackson
Another Saturday morning run and another 10K under my belt and I feel great.
I took a completely different route this morning along a road called the Avenue of Remembrance which is a horse-chestnut tree-lined straight road leading out of Colchester.
There was a news report on the radio this morning about the lack of Conkers at this years National Conker Competition. They should come to Colchester! The pavement is littered with broken Conker shells and nuts all per the place. It was a challenge not to step on one of the sharp spiky cases the nuts come in. I then had to negotiate the squirrels who were harvesting the nuts and the plethora of school boys collecting them for Conker competitions at school.
This made for a fun run as it gave me something new to focus on. The road is busy with traffic one side but it is all farm and country side on the other (it's the farm that separates the main part of Colchester with where we live). This made for a rather idyllic run even it if was a damp October morning.
A friend of mine gave me a copy of Chi Running and I started to read it yesterday. I've only just got through the first third of the book but the tips and training have helped me this morning. I took the advice to relax and try to control my breathing and this helped me on my run this morning. It wasn't as cold as last weekend but it meant I wasn't bunged up and I didn't throw up. I also believe my new inhalers are working a treat as I wasn't congested this morning and apart from having to spit out a bit of excess water/fluid I felt fine all the way round.
I really did enjoy this mornings run. Sometimes I tend to dread moving from the brief walk segments back into the run segments but today I didn't let it phase me and I just carried on. I focused on my running style, listened to how I was running and kept my pace consistent and clean.
I added some new tracks to my running playlist and it was nice to hear these pop up every now and again. I will add these extra tracks to the playlist I have shared on Spotify. I have also uploaded the playlist to iTunes.
Fastest track of today's run was Magic by Sound of Arrows.
I ran a consistent cadence of 82 and ran an average of 6:25 for the duration of the 10K. I'm a little sore on my return but I have cooled down properly and genuinely feel that I have had a good run. I'm not aching and I'm not tired, I'm happy. In fact I finished my running with a smile on my face.
It seems a bit sadistic to admit it but I found myself singing along and smiling to some of the music that was playing whilst I was mid run. Thinking about it I was pretty much relaxed all the way around. More so then I think I have ever been before.
Like my friend Enda said on twitter this morning “we've become those people who run weekend mornings” and I am very happy I have as it has a transformative effect on my well-being and my weekend.
All this whilst running for the longest, the farthest and the most consistent pace I have ever run. I think I have right to be happy with my progress.
Apart from the personal benefits and pleasure I am getting from all this training, please remember I am running for charity and I have already raised £1,130 for Alzheimer's Society and £45 for the local Cancer Centre. Please stop by my Justgiving pages and sponsor me as much as you can for these worthy causes.
Now to enjoy the rest of our weekend and its a special one as my baby and I celebrate the 6th Anniversary of our Civil Partnership on Sunday
Great run tonight. Another night of hitting the road for a solid 30 minutes which enabled me to reach 6:23km today which is more than the same time Tuesday.
Cadence was up to 81 and my best pace was 5:53. I definitely believe its the LunarGlide's ya know!
I will do a long run Saturday in my Asics to test that theory and to see how I compare with the same run last week that had me breaking 10K.
Fastest song tonight was Love Sign by Prince and I can understand why as I got totally consumed in the song and was running in time with the music. I may even have been singing as I was going (oh dear!).
I am not sure why but when I started running tonight I was in a bit of a state of shock as I simply got home, changed and got on with it. No stress. No pressure. I guess that's how it should be.
Glad I had my high vis jacket as it is certainly coming in darker in the evenings now :(. I am determined therefore not to be a fare weather runner and will continue to run through the autumn and winter.
My medical assessment went well and I am now on a different combined steroid inhaler which seemed to help with my walk to the station in the cold this morning. I forgot to take it this evening before my run but didn't seem to need it. Even with high cold gusts of wind I seemed to managed to carry on ok today so hopefully this will see me improve on such troublesome runs.
It's brilliant to report that my sponsorship for both Alzheimer's Society and the Colchester Cancer Care Centre has crept up since my last post. Please please do all you can to help me reach my targets – I'm almost there!
Everyone runs for charity don't they?
People are always asking for sponsorship aren't they?
Does my donation really make a difference?
I think this really sums it all up…
And why am I sharing this? Simple. I am running for two charities this year. Charities I believe in, two charities I hope I can help make a difference.
I am running my first 10K for Alzheimer's Society with MoRunning – supporting families, patients and carers of Alzheimer's and Dementia – as well as supporting Prostate Cancer charities by running for Mo.
I am then running a more sedate (!) 5K in support of Colchester Hopsital Cancer Care Centre.
I'm doing my bit, why not help me to achieve my targets and become one of the many many people who do make a difference simply by sponsoring someone who give up some of their time to raise money for worthwhile causes.
*Facts and figures courtesy of November 2012 edition of Runners World Magazine