Silverstone Half-Marathon Training : Week 4

Week 4, and into the New Year we go…

Monday 31 December 2012

This is a rest day.  When have I ever let that stop me ?  I think I am just going to cut out the concept of rest days until I feel I need them.  The weather was too wet for our planned walk, so I did a minute of press ups, two minutes of plank, and then went for a 3.5 mile run, which I completed in 37 minutes and 53 seconds.  I ate some of my proto pure chocolate cookie flavour protein bar when I got in from the run.  While I have been away from the office I have found that I cannot eat a whole bar in one go, or that I do not want to eat a whole bar in one go.  I am sure that will change when I am back having to work through the afternoon.  We are eating out this evening for New Year’s Eve, so I have just snacked through the day, eating some walnuts and then some red onion and gruyere fougasse with parma ham, which was very tasty.  I also got round to drinking my fizzy vitamin C and took my supplements.  The good news is a favourable weather forecast for tomorrow, so a walk is planned.  We ate out at Chez Mumtaj at 10pm, which is not the best of times, but it is New Year’s Eve and the last of our indulgences.  After an amuse bouche of a vegetable pachura, I had the swordfish steak marinated in kasundi grain dijon mustard and honey grilled in a clay oven as my starter, and for my main course the Suffolkshire Crown Estate Farm tandoor roasted corn fed chicken with curly kale, spinach and wild mushroom in truffle oil, butter cream of tomato and fenugreek black lentil ragout.  I did not eat the saffron basmati rice.  I had two glasses of pineapple juice with the meal, and you can see photos of the delicious food here.  We got home almost spot on midnight, so it was another late night.

  1. Press ups (69)
  2. Plank
  3. Run – 3.5 miles (home) – 37 minutes 53 seconds

Tuesday 01 January 2013

Happy New Year !  The sun was out so we went on a 4 and a half mile walk around Essendon and Little Berkhamsted, mostly by muddy tracks across fields and through woods, and it took us about 2 and a half hours.  It was a lovely way to start 2013 and you can read all about it here and see the photos here.  One thing that did come to mind while we were doing it is that it would be an excellent course for a training run before I do my Wolf Run.  I had my fizzy vitamin C and supplements before we went out, and ate a banana.  I did not really feel hungry when we got back, and so in the early evening I had the leek and potato soup from the New Covent Garden Soup Co with some oaty thins from rude health.  We are off to see Quartet at the cinema tonight, and I cannot go to the cinema and not have popcorn…and so it was, with a large popcorn and a large Pepsi Max.  Plank and some sit ups beckon…

  1. Walk – 4 and a half miles
  2. Sit ups (100)
  3. Plank

Wednesday 02 January 2013

Back to work today, and before I left the house I did a minute of press ups, 100 sit ups, 100 and two minutes of plank.  I ate the remains of a nakd bar while driving in, then had my fizzy vitamin C and supplements together with a cup of redbush tea and a pot of Quaker’s Oat So Simple original.  The ingredients are 70% Quaker rolled oats, then skimmed milk powder and finally sugar, so I am hoping it will prove to be a good start to the day.  I still need to sort out the nutrition side of things.  I will be running 4 miles at lunctime so I need to be properly fuelled for that.  I now have a 1 litre bottle of water on my desk at work, which should make it easier for me to keep track of how much I am drinking as I aim towards at least 2 litres each day.  A berry delight nakd bar makes a very tasty mid-morning snack, and I will also eat a banana before my lunchtime run.  I ran the 4 miles at lunchtime in 42 minutes and 04 seconds, it felt quite easy and I am very pleased with that time.  I ate the remains of a proto pure chocolate cookie flavour protein bar when I finished the run, and then the rest of my banana from earlier, and an apple.  I do need to keep eating more fruit, and given that I enjoy bananas, apples, oranges, satsumas, mango, pineapple and grapes, among others, there really is no excuse.  I ate a satsuma mid-afternoon, and then an apple later on together with a pumpkin 9bar.  I got home, ate a handful of walnuts, and then was off to The Yoga Hall for an hour and a half of yoga, and I felt wonderful after it.  It felt excellent to be doing it again and I must make sure I keep it going this time.  It was late when I got home from that, but I was hungry so I had an Innocent indian daal veg pot with spicy cauliflower, chickpeas and fresh spinach, with a few rice thins.

  1. Press ups
  2. Sit ups (200)
  3. Plank
  4. Run – 4 miles (work) – 42 minutes 04 seconds
  5. Yoga

Thursday 03 January 2013

I have a work meeting near Sheffield tomorrow, so I am travelling up today so that I can climb Kinder Scout – my first mountain of 2013.  I had my fizzy vitamin C before setting off, ate a nakd bar and a proto plus protein flapjack during my drive up and a banana and my supplements just before setting off.  For some reason I did not feel hungry while doing the walk and so just drank water.  You can read all about how I got lost in the mist at 633 metres here and see the photographs here.  I finished off the protein bar when I got back to my car, then drove to my hotel via a supermarket, took a hot bath and ate a prawn pasta, smoked salmon, some cheese, mango, melon and pineapple.  I spent the evening drinking a mixture of water, pure orange juice and fizzy vitamin C.

  1. Walk – 10 and a half miles – 664 metres height gain

Friday 04 January 2013

I did a minute of press ups, 100 sit ups and 2 minutes of plank in my hotel room when I woke up.  I had my fizzy vitamin C and supplements with a pot of Quaker’s Oat So Simple original.  I had two cups of tea with a little milk during my work meeting and ate a banana and satsuma during the day.  I had some time to myself in the evening and decided to do my first Fartlek run of the week, with a plan to run the second one on Sunday.  I managed the 3 miles in spot on 30 minutes this time, which took in 7 repetitions, and that not only knocked over 2 minutes off my previous Fartlek time for 3 miles, but also put me on 10 minutes per mile pace for the first time, which pleases me a lot.  So I suppose I could call the chicken and chips I had later on a reward.

  1. Press ups
  2. Sit ups
  3. Plank
  4. Run (home) – 30 minutes 00 seconds – Fartlek x 7 – (3 miles)

Saturday 05 January 2013

I have my personal training today and the hour-long session went very well.  Lots of work on the legs in the cross-training session, and some focus on the abs to finish with.  It all feels a lot more comfortable and I can feel I am pushing on.  I was somewhat surprised, and a little disappointed, that my body fat had stayed at 19%.  At least it had not gone up – I need to do more sit ups.  Debbie had rehearsals for a concert next weekend so we went to Brasserie Blanc for lunch.  I avoided all the bread and had the cream of haricot bean soup with rosemary oil, the trout fillet with warm potato salad and grain mustard butter, and the hot chocolate cream mousse with pistachio ice cream, and two glasses or orange juice.  Now to let it digest before I start my 7 mile run.  I am not going to lie about it, that run was hard.  The first 4 and a half miles or so went very well and I was keeping up a good pace, the next mile was harder, the next half a mile gave an indication of what was to come and the final mile was really tough.  I made it all the way, though, and made it in just under 12 minutes per mile pace, so I am satisfied with that for now.  I had a proto plus protein bar when I got in, and got some chips on my way home from picking up Debbie.  Another reward.

  1. Training
  2. Run – 7 miles (home) – 1 hour 23 minutes 15 seconds

Sunday 06 January 2013

I woke up and weighed myself and I am 98.9 kgs, down from the 100.2 kgs of the past two weeks, which is good.  I dropped Debbie off at her rehearsal and continued to Wheathampstead for a walk through the Ayots, Brocket Park and the River Lea.  You can read about it here and see the photographs here.  I ate a banana and a protein flapjack during the walk, and drank my water throughout.  I got home and started to drink a 2 pint bottle of skimmed milk, and ended up drinking it all, probably because I had read an article which said it was the best way to replenish protein.  My body told me to not even think about doing some Fartlek training this evening, so I sat back and relaxed.  I ate some oat thins from Rude Health, some brie, and a low fat Admiral’s Crumble from Iceland, and drank Innocent orange juice.  Oh, and some Ben & Jerry’s chocolate fudge brownie ice cream – that is a good way to relax.  It has been a hard week and I think I pushed my legs to their limit, so it was good to kick back a little to finish it off.

  1. Walk – 9 and a half miles

Positives from this week – I climbed my first mountain of 2013; the running is still getting longer without getting very much harder, and I am keeping consistent times; I enjoyed the Fartlek training again and am really looking forward to seeing how more of that helps me; my weight went down; and I got along to a yoga session.  I think I have made very good progress over 4 weeks, and am now at half the distance I am going to be running after only a third of the training.  I will be adding in more sit ups over the coming weeks, keeping an eye on whether I am eating enough, and after this week will also be looking more closely at the recovery time I need through the week.

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