Sunderland 10km race number
It takes a bad race to give you a kick up the bum
It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything on here but that’s because I’ve been busy and whilst I sometimes complain that I’m too busy I love it really!
The week or so following the Blyth 10km was a week of up and downs - I was buzzing with a new 10km PB and I had North Tyneside 10km coming up which I was hoping to knock more time off and adding to this I had my twitter running buddy Michelle there to pace me and support me to the finish. The theory was great but in practise I struggled with the NT10km! 2 miles in there are some short steep hills which took it out of me and I felt sick at the top which stayed with me for the rest of the race. I stopped and started so many times I lost count and by mile 4 I’d had enough. My PB was way out of reach so I tried to enjoy the rest of the race but my head and heart weren’t in it and I struggled to the finish. I did manage a strong sprint finish where I overtook a few people but that was the only positive I could take away from the day.
Thinking about my training and reassessing my goals I chatted with other runners and one of the coaches at TBH who has been fantastic in helping me progress and get the most out of my training! I looked at what I needed to do to get the most out of my training - stop training at 100% as it was burning me out, cross train, work on flexibility, and get some longer steady runs in.
I’ve been trying to do this over the past few weeks and the benefits have been enormous! I feel more comfortable and confident when running and most importantly I feel in control of my training and positive about future races.
In some ways I’m really happy that NT10km went a bit wrong … ok alot wrong! It’s given me the kick I need and it’s made me look at my training. Next on my list to add in is Pilates and swimming and my next race is Sunday at the Sunderland 10km!
Blyth 10km and training update
First ever track session and decisions to be made
So it’s been a while since I’ve wrote anything on my little blog here so I’ll try not to ramble on but update with what’s been happening!
Training has been going quite well but I did struggle in the heat last week and felt a bit down about it as it felt like I was going backwards rather than forwards, but I think everyone has days or weeks like this so I’m just looking forward rather than back. With the light nights we’ve started running down Jesmond Dene which is lovely but rather lumpy do good to run somewhere different!
Today I ran the Blyth 10km having only decided late yesterday to give it a go! I would recommend to any on my North East followers for next year as its a lovely course, very well organised, great tshirt and flat as a pancake!! I started out too fast which seems to be a mistake I make far too often but we set off and I felt fairly comfortable at the faster pace until I hit mile 3 where I felt a bit rubbish so stopped. I got a drink and set off again after a wave from a fellow TBH on their way back to the finish. I could see a few people not too far in front of me so kept as close to them as I could. As we came into the finish I gave it all I had left in me and after a shout from a supporter ‘go on you can take them’ I managed a sprint finish and overtook 2 people on the home straight. Provisional results show 1:03:03 which is a PB knocking 4 mins off! I know I could have got closer to the 60min mark I dream of but it’s all experience for the future and I know I’ll do it this year!!
Great training, New Experiences and DOMS
So since my last update the muscle soreness has eventually worn off and I’ve done my first ever track session, I’ve also got a pretty big decision to make (in running) and I’ll come to that later!
I headed down to the track on Saturday morning in North Shields on what was a beautiful day, the sun was shining and there was a slight breeze but nothing much. I was kicking myself for not choosing this week to attempt a parkrun PB as it would have been near perfect weather conditions but never mind I still got a PB in the blustery winds the week previous (smug face).
There wasn’t many of us at the track as there were various races happening, which left us with the option of doing the track session or going for a bit of a run. I had said that I wanted to have a go at track but was happy to go with the flow, our coach decided to just stick with the track and gave us a session of 400m, 1min rest, 200m, half the field rest x4 - sounds easy right? WRONG! We warmed up by doing a few laps of the track and our coach joined in with us for the first few reps. I did the first 400m and it was hard - running on the track felt so different to running on the road and I was determined to try my best! It’s hard to describe how the track feels different but it does! I got to the 200m and this felt better but still tough as it’s hard to know just how fast to run. We got a few reps in and I looked down at my watch the first mile I ran - 7.06 and I was so happy but couldn’t show it as I felt sick from pushing myself. This is the fastest I have ever ran in my whole life probably considering I was never a one for sports at school. I finished the last rep and then headed home after a good chat with another one of the girls at TBH and the coach.I’m never going to be a track star but I can see how it will improve my running and fitness and it’s something a bit different to add into the routine.
I’m starting to feel much better about my running and dare I say it I appear to be niggle free at the moment. I’m feeling lighter on my feet and that the improvements are happening gradually not overnight as that’s how I’ve injured myself in the past - I’m FINALLY learning! I’ve got amazing support around me and this has been half the battle, the support I’ve received is even tempting me to attempt the half marathon I had decided to pull out of which is taking place on Sunday. My number arrived last week and I felt that little wave of excitement come over me so tempted to try it but as a training run and a prep race for Edinburgh which is my main goal. So I have a decision to make and I’m no good at that - long run planned for tomorrow so going to see how I get on with that before making any definite decisions. I do get to carb load tho I suppose …
This week I’ve been training my butt off in hope it will disappear and in hope that it will get super strong (I’ve been told that it’s all in the glutes)! Monday was a 6amClub run which was great I felt light on my feet and that my legs had fully recovered from pushing it at parkrun on the Saturday. We normally just do a couple of miles but I wanted to add one onto the end so Micky (my coach from TBH) ran another loop with me. Tuesday was a TBH session … HILLS! Now I love hills much to the disbelief of my fellow runners and it’s not because I’m particularly good at them but because I know after that I’ve worked hard and it makes running on the flat feel a lot easier! I maintained 10min/mi pace on the hills (including warm up and cool down) which for me is good and shows that I can run on the flat a little bit faster that what I have been. Wednesday was 6amClub run which I thought would be a breeze because my legs hadn’t seemed to of suffered but once I started running they felt pretty heavy, I maintained my pace, powered through and got another 3 miles in the bank.
I tried something new last night - Circuits in the Park. Which is ran by a fellow TBHer who runs the classes to raise money for Alzheimer’s, all the proceeds go to the charity and he is doing lots of fantastic work for this charity. He explained the session and I couldn’t believe my ears when he said HILL SPRINTS my quads screamed out a little but I thought just do your best and give it a good go. We started with some power squats and lunges after a short warm-up I was hurting already and it took me ages to get to the finish line but everyone was really supportive and cheered me on. We then went on to do the hill sprints down a steep hill, up 2 sets of steps then a sprint up to the hill and repeat. The first one my legs felt like jelly and I could barely feel the ground beneath me (very strange feeling) but I soldiered on and managed 2! Some people in the class were doing 4 or 5 to me these people are Olympians! We then moved onto a grass area where we did burpees, bear crawls and a number of different exercises which got me a bit dirty. This went on for an hour and I managed the majority of it but it’s a total different ball game to running but something that I think will have a positive impact on my running and help me keep the title of #PBgirl.
I’ve woken up today with some serious DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness)! Proof that lots of my muscles remain unused from just running and that in order to have the body of a goddess (I can dream) and be the runner I one day hope to be I need to do different things and mix my training up. I’m not sure if i’ll make it to TBH tonight and might just have a rest day today but all in all it’s been a pretty good week of training so far and considering this time last week I felt pretty rubbish it just shows how quickly you can turn things around if you try.
Pain is weakness leaving the body.
Return of #PBgirl
Thanks to Rob for taking this pic of me against my wishes!
Magic Miles, 6amClub and Long Sunday Runs
Good news to report (it’s been a while) a new Newcastle Parkrun PB! I had agreed to do parkrun earlier in the week so was going to stick to my commitments but after a rubbish week of training I wasn’t sure what would happen when I got out there. I had a plan, I had organised my kit but one thing I couldn’t control was the weather! I woke up on Saturday morning to a glorious morning, nice and bright but there was a bit of a wind. I didn’t think it was too bad until I made it to the moor and it was worse than I thought. Still psyched up to go out there and run hard (or go home as I now tell myself) I did a short warm up and made my way to the start line after some encouraging words from some of the lovely runners I know from TBH, twitter and parkrun.
The gun went off and I overtook a few people at the start as it was quite congested. As we started the steady incline up to the 1km mark I glanced quickly at my watch to see I was running at 8:50min/mi pace a little quicker than my plan but I felt good and comfortable so kept at it. I then heard some beeping and thought it was from a runner next to me until I looked down at my watch and realised I hadn’t even started my timer!!! So I had no idea how I had ran the first km but I soldiered on and once heading to the 2km sign along grandstad road I decided to dig in a little and overtook a few more people.
The first mile beeped on my Garmin and read 08:51 for mile 1 and even though I was out by 1km I thought if I can keep running like this I’ll do it - I’ll beat my PB. I kept going and once the 3km sign passed I said to myself ‘right Danielle, you’ve done more than you’ve got left just keep going.’ Kilometres 3-4 are always the hardest of the Newcastle course in my opinion, it’s quite gravely and you’re coming back on yourself which is psychologically a bit off putting for me. I did stop and catch my breath a few times and looking back I should have gritted my teeth and got on with it. I got to the finish line and didn’t feel like I had run my best and got the PB I was chasing but I cued to get my barcode scanned and recover.
Luckily enough a runner approached me and said she pretended she was called Danielle when people were cheering me on near the finish to keep her going this is one of the reasons I love parkrun it’s like a little community! She came in just after me and when I asked her what time she did she replied with 29mins. I could feel the excitement building if she came in after me then I would have to have come in under 29mins which would mean a new PB! I spent the rest of the day desperately awaiting the results but unfortunately there was a small problem with the results and I had to wait until today for the results.
The email flashed on my phone - 28:52 a new PB! I’m chuffed but I know I can improve on that so back to training hard and will give it another go in a few weeks :)
Not getting the time to write as much which I guess is a good thing means I’m working hard! Thursday night was a pyramid session with TBH I was feeling good and raring to go but after eating far too much food I was feeling a bit sick when we started the warm up.
Naughty Danielle eating too much but I think that helped me realise that eating rubbish is no good for not only losing weight but for training well.
The coach was up front and waiting to shout for the first interval to go, I went for it - lengthened my stride, filled my lungs and picked my feet up. I felt great (apart from the sickness) and thought I was actually going quite fast, I was up front and making sure no one took over me! We continued with the intervals and I felt so good by the end of the session I was bouncing all over the place! Got home checked my Garmin and I’d ran my fastest ever mile 08:06!
Buzzing from my run I got up at half 5 on Friday morning to head down to the quayside to meet some members of TBH for a short run. It was a lovely morning and so peaceful in a usual busy place. We chatted and the time flew by before I knew it I’d done 4 miles.
Today was my long run and Julie decided to come along with me. I planned to do 8 or 9 miles and did 8.5 so on target for my build up. Again the miles flew by as we chatted. I must admit tho I’ve never been happier to see the bridges of Newcastle as we headed back past the business park. It was tough but really enjoyed it and hoping to go a bit further again next week!
I’m still way off where I want to be but I’m getting there and the improvements are visible which makes the journey that little bit more enjoyable! I think about this time last year when I didn’t do any exercise at all let alone run and I was more on the heavy side to what I am now, it’s good to remember where you’ve come from it shows me that it’s possible :)