Category Archives: Holiday
Gipis training had me running tomorrow but I decided to stick to my three days a week with a break and ran tonight's plan.
Tonight was tougher than Wednesday and included a block 15 minutes running at a much greater pace than normal. At one stage my cadence had gone up to 84 and my pace was recorded at 5:47 which I believe maybe nearly the fastest I have run.
I found the block quite tough and didn't quite count the time properly in my head but I kept going until I needed to stop. I stopped simply to take on some fluid and to catch my breath. I continued shortly after but didn't realise I only had about 90 seconds left of the fast session. I was a little annoyed I stopped just shy of the plan but should be happy with my progress.
The plan was to run 4.2k but I ran on past 5 and even managed to throw in another short fast session as I was feeling exhilarated.
The weather was lovely. It was a lovely sunny evening and 19 degrees. Apart from the lack of sea breeze it was reminiscent of my runs in Spain.
I wore my cap tonight and that went some way to help stop my glasses steaming over with sweat etc.
I did think mid run that this being the first run in my second year of running, how I could have imagined that a regular pace and a regular run of 5k was possible. I wouldn't have dreamt it last year and remember the struggle to break 5k. Now it's the norm! I didn't even now what speed training was!
I do however feel grateful (and a little smug) that I learnt to stretch/warm up/cool down properly from my first run as I have a routine that works and seems to help sort my muscles out. It's important kids, make sure you do it too!
The plan now is to rest up tomorrow and Sunday then start again as normal Monday. Of course it's a bank holiday here in the UK so I have all day to run. The forecast is for hot sunny weather so it should be a lovely run/weekend.
I am looking forward to enjoying this long weekend with my baby.
Fastest track again was Axis by Pet Shop Boys and it really helped me step up a gear and motor through the first section of my speed work.
Lets see how much I ache tomorrow!
And so another week in the sun draws to a close but it’s safe to say that Richard and I had a thoroughly relaxing week away.
Of course we have all the photos we captured to remind us of fun week in the sun, I have my sunburnt shoulders and we also have this compilation of short Vine videos which I shot whilst away.
I am feeling remarkably well considering all the running etc I have completed whilst away. Ironically Paul (see below) has been on some major runs in Colchester and has found some routes and venues I was not aware of. I will be sure to get his map details so that I can check out his recommendations (although to be fair he is a lot fitter than me so I won’t be running all of his distances just yet!)We arrived back home at 2am and are a bit tired as it was a long day of travelling. Our friend Paul house/Brandy sat for us and it seems like he has had a mini holiday in Colchester It also looks like Brandy has had lots of fuss and company whilst we have been away.
Until the next time Torrox…
*well the Spanish sun…
I planned to run two runs this week, I’ve ended up running four. Four 5ks on four consecutive days. A first for me and a set of runs I have thoroughly enjoyed.
I’ve run a total of nearly 22k this week and am amazed how my legs etc have held up. Yes I’ve been sore. Yes I’ve had the odd niggle but there has not been any major pain or discomfort. If this week has proved anything it’s that I have the energy to keep going (of course it’s much easier when running alongside the beach in Spain on holiday).
It was cool and breeze free this morning which made for a very comfortable run. I did however feel some tightness in my calves and decided to ease back today. I think this was wise as I don’t want to trigger any injury. The next two days off will prove interesting to see how my body copes with this activity.
I had my usual stop to capture a short Vine video at the lighthouse at the end of the beach…
We had a quiet day yesterday as it came over a little cloudy late afternoon and it was a bit fresh. The local environment agency has also started to move sand from one end of the beach to the other as its eroding. This is usual for Torrox Costa but we’ve never seen it on this scale before and we haven’t ever seen the beach closed as a result.
The owners of the local hamocos companies are not happy as they cannot put their beach loungers out and people cannot use them. As you can see from the photo the mounds of moved sand have been dumped in front of the hammocks at the top of the beach. This made for some entertaining arguments on the promenade this morning (I love how animated the Spanish are).
Fastest track today was Dance or Die by Janelle Monae and fastest runner on the prom last night was this guy (phowar!).
We have a full day here today and fly back to Blighty late tonight. Today promises another day or chilling on the balcony (already doing that), a bit of shopping and chilling before packing up and driving to Malaga.
Until the next time Torrox… Adios!
Besos de la playa!
Another run in the sun and a great feeling this morning.
Little wind, cooler temperature but clear and sunny.
The locals I have been passing this week have gotten used to the skinny idiot running down the beach front and have started to wave and smile as I pass.
I purchased a baseball cap yesterday to try and stop the sweat getting in my eyes. It worked for the most part but my glasses still got wet due to the sweat coming off my grandads eyebrows (I didn’t steal them I inherited them).
I cannot convey just how much I enjoyed the morning. In fact when Empire of the Suns Alive (hence the title of this post), came on I wanted to sing the chorus at the top of my lungs. I was happy. Running well. Enjoying the sun and smiling as I went.
I am also really pleased I’ve managed 3 5ks 3 days in a row. This is a first for me and I feel great. I’ll probably do the same tomorrow and that will be it for this week.
Fastest track today was a classic, Powerstripe by Tigercity.
Yesterday was really relaxed and chilled. We both had a lovely relaxing day and a lovely meal out last night.
I was sat watching the locals running along the prom and used to ogle the fit young Spanish men. Of course I am still doing this (we both do), but now I check their running form too. I find myself checking how they run, land, lean and breath.
Probably helps that I reread The art of Chi-Running yesterday and tried to practice some of this again today.
We got up to 23 degrees yesterday and I caught some sun when I feel asleep on the balcony.
Today promises much of the same
Did I mention I nearly left the apartment without my trainers on!!! Not sure I am awake enough for morning runs – or maybe I am really relaxed!
I followed a similar route and a similar routine to yesterday. The difference today was that it was much warmer and the wind had dropped.
I felt fine on the run but stopped to take on water near the lighthouse and that’s when the sweat started to poor and I couldn’t see due to it running in my eyes.
I ran all the way back and was determined to get another 5k under my belt but today I ran out of promenade. I ran on across the dunes until I hit my target. It’s certainly different running on sand.
I was a hot sweaty mess on my return and I had to jump straight in the shower as the field full of garlic which was in lasts nights starter was oozing from every pour. I am now shower fresh and ready to enjoy this lovely day in the sun.
Fastest track today was Doesn’t really matter by Janet Jackson.
Gipis did a good job of keeping me on track again but I selected a workout shorter than I run so it stopped mid way. I must try and figure it out.
I’m planning 5k again tomorrow and that’ll be me for the week
I was checking out my running record yesterday as I was curious as to when I started running (it’s nearly a year). I noticed I haven’t got my quicker.
I consulted my running buddy and good friend about this and he reminded me that I can run longer and have lost weight and am much fitter as a result of my running. This is key to remember as I simply started running to get fit and not win races. It’s good to have my sensei around to guide me (you know who you are – thank you).
Yesterday was very relaxing, we walked to the lighthouse and back, did a bit of shopping, had some lunch, a siesta and out for dinner in our favourite restaurant in Nerja before checking out el gatos on Balćon de Europa.
I would never have imagined running here whilst out at the apartment in 2013 but here I am, day two, up early (ish) and pounding the pavement of the beach front.
I had a minor false start as I was about to finish my warm up walk when I realised I didn’t have my water bottle. I headed back and also put a compression top under my tee shirt as the wind was biting.
The promenade is approximately 2.5k end to end and dead straight with a minor incline.
Running into the headwind up the prom was a big challenge but I got on with it.
I reward myself with a drink break at the head of the promenade by the light house and used that as an opportunity to capture the photo above and a video on Vine.
It may not be obvious but the point in the left of the photo along the coast where the buildings stop is where the apartment is and where I started my run.
Running back seemed much easier as the wind was behind me and I knew I could complete 5k simply by heading back to the apartment.
There was plenty of old timers out walking, people walking their dogs, bar staff and beach workers setting up for the day. The odd passer by would say hello. I chose to smile and wave after a couple as I wasn’t sure whether to respond in Spanish, German or English!
Fastest track was Alive by Empire of the Sun but once again Gipis did a good job of keeping me on track. I found the instructions a little hard to follow running against the wind but I kept up with it. I didn’t run its forecast 7k but hey, in on my holidays!
I wasn’t going to run with music but decided it would help motivate me and cut out the whirl of the wind!
After stretching on the beach I stopped by the local panaderìa for some nibbles before joining my baby back at the apartment, on the balcony for breakfast.
I type as the sun gets warmer, the clouds are pushed away from us to reveal what looks like a lovely day.
I am sure we are both going to enjoy this holiday (we already had a lovely day chilling out yesterday).
Now before I start I am a keen photographer but I admit an amateur one. I don’t have the best eye and am not having a dig at anyone in particular but something struck me today…
I am very lucky to be able to walk to St Paul‘s and enjoy a wander around during my lunch break. Today the weather was clear and bright and I decided to go for a stroll (although I stroll most days regardless of the weather).
I stopped in the park behind St Paul’s and it struck me how many people/tourists were out taking photos. Indeed I was one of them:
On such a lovely bright day it would be mad not to take advantage of such great light – especially in London in January!
What struck me was the amount of people wobbling on the top of buses, walking with their cameras above their heads or just simply pointing and shooting with no thought whatsoever. It made me think about just how many crap photographs are taken every day?
We all know that apps such as Instagram don’t help as everyone believes their blurry vignette shot is an arty masterpiece when in fact it’s usually a blurry wobbly mess (I am as guilty as the next man on that one).
Back in the days of film we took time and care to take photos. Lots of people didn’t even have cameras as it was an expensive hobby but now in this digital age we all seem to click at random and hope for the best. I used to love waiting to get my photos back from the chemist to see how good they were, I always put some much care in the 24 shots I got per film and each one was precious.
I don’t protest to be a serious photographer but the shot above was taken with some thought. As I visit St Paul’s often I just wanted a photo that showed the lighting, the stunning Wren architecture and the fact it was winter so I framed my shot behind a dormant tree.
I shudder when I think about just how many photo’s were taken just around St Paul’s today and I reckon the majority were taken with no thought or planning. Just how many crap photos do people take on average and what do they do with them?
I doubt everyone filters through all their photos and it scares me to think that some poor friend or family member has to see hundreds of shit shots when they get home or worse on their Facebook photo page or whatever.
To cap it all the worst crime today was the amount of tourists out taking photos with their iPads. Now I got flamed a bit for my comments about this on Twitter today (although most seemed to be on my side of the argument).
I know some people may not have a separate smartphone or camera, I know they may be conserving their phone battery etc but how on earth can you take a good photo with an iPad?
It’s cumbersome to hold as a camera. The camera quality is ok – not great. The screen is really reflective in bright sun light. For example there was a guy today taking a photo of his companion, she was sat in front of St Paul’s and he was trying to take her photo. This is obviously a momento of their time in London – something you believe they will want to treasure… However the sun was behind him and you couldn’t see anything on the screen because of the glare. I bet most of his photos were out of focus or wobbly. Such a waste. If he had a small compact camera he would have been able to see immediately what he was shooting and had a half decent shot. He probably stopped at his hotel, flicked through his photos, saw they were out of focus and deleted them… But then I doubt that actually happened at all.
I cannot imagine travelling somewhere foreign and hedging my bets on shots taken on an iPad, without thought or through some low quality arty app. Why spend all that money and just have blurry pixellated photos for your momento?
I just hope when you take photos that you take care to compose your shots and think about them. If you don’t, I hope you have the decency not to subject your loved ones to all the hundreds of blurry shots you took…
Update: as if to feed my post I found this posted online today. Kevin Russ shot stunning photos using just his iPhone. It’s not the equipment. It’s the photographer.
I had my first run back on the road today following the dreadmill running in Cyprus and it was good to get back outside.
It felt a little odd at first but I soon found my stride and my pace seemed to pick up as I had spent time trying to listen to how I run whilst I was undisturbed in the hotel gym.
I have twelve weeks until my first 10k but was adamant I would start proper training once I got back.
I've looked at several plans and have picked a six week training regime which, like the one that started me running, builds me up to 10k in a matter of weeks.
Today's run was the first such training run and it was hard work. Being back on the road, in the English climate was a little tough. It was windy out and it felt a little odd when compared to the sanctity of the gym in Limassol.
I'd read some articles and a great book on holiday and they all advised keeping the running energising by having different routes etc. I always amend my route slightly but know I needed a change to help my motivation and to suck up the extra miles.
I got out of the park where we live and headed out into darkest Colchester along the main road and down a straight road called the Avenue of Remembrance.
This is my first mid day week run in Colchester and I had to avoid lots of parents and toddlers on the school run. More annoyingly I had to avoid teenagers who insisted on getting in the way. Some of the little bastards refused to let me through and some bunched up when they saw me coming. I simply put my foot down and ran through them. Two boys took my sharp elbows to their sides as I forced my way through. It was that or run into on coming traffic on a busy a road – not likely. Why are teenagers so rude?
The avenue was lined with conkers as we are heading into autumn so that trees are shedding their stock in time for the arrival of winter.
I also had lots of bunny rabbits to avoid on the route but they were nicer than the kids and got out of my way when they saw me coming.
I confess I ran 4×10 min hard runs but may have cut a minute or two from two of them to slow my pace and get my breath. This is after all the furthest and longest I have ever run.
That said I am really proud of today's achievements as I had a great over all pace and managed 7.70km in 56 minutes. It's great to know I am so much closer to 10k and am now more confident that with this training routine I can crack the 10k target
Fastest song of this run was Cubik by 808 State and I believe I ran that at 6:25!
Really happy with my progress and it feels like my running has entered a new phase (although my shoes won't last much longer as I note they are wearing on the mid sole – time for some replacements).