Silverstone Half-Marathon 2014 training : Week 10

Week 10, and the game has changed…

Monday 03 February 2014

I was working away from the office today, so of course my morning routine went out of the window.  I need to make sure that does not happen, but at least I got my morning exercises done.  Today was my VO2 max training, where I run for 5 minutes to warm up, then run three repetitions of 30 seconds hard, each time followed by 30 seconds recovery, then run two repetitions of 1 minute hard, again both times followed by 1 minute recovery, and finally run another three repetitions of 30 seconds hard, again each time followed by 30 seconds recovery, and while it was cold outside I powered past the traffic lights at the crossroads, on to the road to the left, past The Breakfast Club cafe, which is where I had got to on my last home VO2 max run, and continued on to the block of apartments on the right hand side of the road.  This really was a definite improvement on previous attempts, and I was a little disappointed that I felt like I still had something left in me, so I could have pushed a bit harder.  Next time I will, because this has to be 100% every time.  I did some squats with weights when I got in and also ran through the Thrive Fitness shoulder exercises.

I ate a banana before heading off to hatha yoga at The Yoga Hall in St Albans.  It was another very good workout and I can feel things coming together, even if I am still not very bendy.  I did enjoy the stretch in my legs, and know that will prove to be beneficial.  There were peppermint teas and wheat-free biscuits available afterwards, which was nice.

We got home and ate lentils, courgette and sweet potato, spinach and quinoa kiev, which was delicious.

  1. Plank – 150 seconds
  2. Press ups – 4 x 32
  3. Squats – 50
  4. Run (home) – VO2 Max
  5. Squats – 50
  6. Thrive – shoulders
  7. Yoga – 1 hour 30 minutes

Tuesday 04 February 2014

I did my morning exercises and ate an apple during my drive in to the office.  I drank more water through the morning before eating my special muesli (Rude Health muesli (which is excellent in itself, containing oats, rye flakes, raisins, sultanas, barley flakes, apricots, almonds, brazil nuts, dates, golden linseeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, cranberries, quinoa flakes, apple, buckwheat flakes, goji berries, hazelnuts, puffed rice, blueberries, poppy seeds, sesame seeds and cinnamon), to which I added spirulina, hemp, flaxseed,
and chia.  For the liquid I added a cup of yerba mate tea from Teapigs) – and if you want to know more about why I am eating what I am then you can read about it in my previous blog here.  Today I was doing an Interval Workout, which would be seven sets of 400 metres at 5km pace, each followed by 400 metres at 10km pace.  I ran 3 minutes of warm up followed by seven sets of 1 minute at the full pace, with a minute after each at the recovery pace.  Doing that in the chilly and very windy conditions I managed to complete one big lap and got down to the io centre trading estate on a small lap, before I continued on to finish 2.5 miles in 22 minutes and 53 seconds, which is almost a minute quicker than my similar IW run from last week.  I got back into the office and ate a couple of dates while drinking half a cup of milk, did some squats and took my shower, then ate a banana Chia Pod with maca, hemp and flaxseed.  I did not add extra chia this time !  I drank water through the afternoon and ate some dates, to try to make sure I was ready for the evening.

I ate a banana as I went to a very cold Welwyn Garden City for a Regiment Fitness session taken by Tom and Richard.  The weather was mild but there was a cold, biting wind blowing across the field, which at least seemed to have dried out the ground.  We bagan with a moving warm up which very soon progressed into getting into numbered groups, and I actually managed to avoid any forfeits during that.  I did not avoid the extra push of a run to the car park and back, which was some distance because we were across the field and around the corner.  The circuit was one I remembered from the long-gone sunny days of summer 2013 which seem a lifetime away at the moment, with us running into the middle to do a certain number of repetitions of each exercise.  Tonight we would be running shuttles into the middle to do 30 repetitions, then 20 repetitions and finally 10 repetitions, of press ups, burpees, sit ups, squat jumps, and finally tuck jumps.  I was very pleased with how well I came through that.  We got into pairs for the boxing with Richard, starting with staright punches from incline sit ups, initially in singles and then a set of 50.  We then moved into position with one person sitting and the other standing behind them for upward punches, before finishing in a standing position and working up in 10s from 10 straight arm punches to 50.  It was a good little boxing session.  Then it was over to Tom who got us into threes with an ash pole for each group.  As two of the group held the pole, the other person would carry out an exercise for a minute, starting with our feet on the pole for press ups, then our legs up straight with our heels against the pole for sit ups where we bring our arms up to touch our toes, and finally alternating between legs to have one bent behind us over the pole while we did 5 squats on the other.  That was tough, different and good fun.  I am not sure I really needed a warm down because it was still so cold, but at least it had stayed dry through a session I had really enjoyed a lot.  When I think back to where I was with these sessions five months ago and look forward to where I can get myself by 5 July, it does make contemplation of the Fan Dance a little easier !

I got home and ate some cottage cheese with hemp, flaxseed and chia.

  1. Plank – 150 seconds
  2. Press ups – 4 x 32
  3. Squats – 50
  4. Run (work) – 7 x 400 Interval Workout
  5. Squats – 50
  6. Regiment Fitness – 1 hour

Wednesday 05 February 2014

I was at a meeting in Milton Keynes today so I did my morning exercises before I set off.  Have I mentioned that they hurt ?  They look so much easier on paper.  I ate an apple as I drove their and some dates during the meeting, while I drank tea.  I had some time available in the afternoon so I went for a Fartlek run in the pouring rain.  Well, I say rain but it was more some strange combination of rain, hail and sleet, and it was very cold running.  I got home and ate some cottage cheese with maca, hemp, chia and flaxseed, and two boiled eggs.

Today I received my confirmation that I will again be running the Silverstone Half-Marathon in aid of Helen & Douglas House, who provide respite and end of life care for children and young adults with life-shortening conditions.  It is an excellent charity and I want to raise £200 for them by putting myself through 13.1 miles of running torture.  So, if you are reading this blog, I am asking you to go to my Just Giving page and please donate just £1 – I must know at least 200 people so that should work…otherwise I will just have to make up the difference myself.  You will find my Just Giving page here.

Pushing it...

Pushing it…

  1. Plank – 150 seconds
  2. Press ups – 4 x 32
  3. Squats – 50
  4. Run (home) – Fartlek 30 minutes
  5. Squats – 50

Thursday 06 February 2014

I was too tired to do any exercises this morning and ate an apple during my drive in to work.  I ate some dates and walnuts, drank a cup of water with a Redoxon vitamin C plus zinc tablet, and took a Wellman Sport tablet and a Seven Seas cod liver oil plus multivitamins tablet.  I drank a camomile tea and more water through the morning but my work schedule was going to prevent me doing a run at lunchtime.

I got home too late from work to be able to do anything more than my indoor exercises.

  1. Plank – 150 seconds
  2. Press ups – 4 x 32
  3. Squats – 50

Friday 07 February 2014

I had to leave the house early to get to a meeting in Sheffield and after 5 hours and 300 miles in the car from that round journey I was not up for going on my run.  Not to worry, I have enough running still to come this weekend.  I did make sure to do my indoor exercises and added in the Thrive Fitness shoulder exercises.  Once I get past the Silverstone Half-Marathon I will properly formulate my fitness schedule again.

  1. Plank – 150 seconds
  2. Press ups – 4 x 32
  3. Squats – 200
  4. Thrive – Shoulders

Saturday 08 February 2014

My running training schedule is about to be expanded and my weekends will not be the same for the next five months, at least.  I mentioned last week that I have entered the Fan Dance event on 5 July and in order to complete that I reckon I will have to put in a run of at least 10 miles every weekend, as well as doing some hill work (because I live about 3 hours drive from a mountain, so hills will just have to do…).  My plan is to use Regiment Hill on Dunstable Downs and begin by running up and down it as many times as I can in half an hour.  Hopefully I can develop that as I get better at it.  I had eaten an apple and a banana and arrived at the Downs just in time for the hailstorm and set off, running along the top path until it dropped down to the grass area where Regiment Fitness set up the zipline as part of their Warrior Adrenaline Race.  It was not only the path which dropped down, because the ground was so muddy and slippy that my feet went from under me as I went down the hill.  I turned around on myself to take the bottom path below the Downs and discovered that it was even more slippery than the hill I had taken down from the top path.  I slipped over twice more before I got to the bottom of Regiment Hill after running for 21 minutes and 42 seconds, a time which I will be looking to better week on week.

Going up...

Going up…

Then began the hard slog to get to the top of the hill, and I certainly could not run it all.  It was no easier coming down it and trying to run down would have been reckless given the ground conditions.

You want me to run down...

You want me to run down…

I managed to do two climbs in the time I had available, and will be aiming to do more than that next time.

I got back to my car and ate some dates and cashew nuts.  I snacked on nuts during the day and in the evening ate roasted vegetables with stuffed mushrooms.

  1. Run (Dunstable) – 21 minutes 42 seconds
  2. Hill climbs – 2
  3. Plank – 150 seconds
  4. Press ups – 4 x 32
  5. Squats – 50

Sunday 09 February 2014

My running schedule required me to run 11 miles this weekend and I decided that Sunday was the best time to do that this weekend.  In fact, I am thinking that Sunday may well turn out to be the best (and only) day for my long run from now on if I am also going to be doing my big hill session over the weekend.  But leaving it until the final day of the week brings its own problems when other matters get in the way, and so the long run did not happen this week.  I need to rethink this, and maybe see how I could fit the long run into Friday.

  1. Plank – 150 seconds
  2. Press ups – 4 x 32
  3. Squats – 50
  4. Thrive – Shoulders

Positives from this week – despite the continuing awful weather and an increasing workload at the office, I still managed to get in some good sessions this week.

This entry was posted in Silverstone Half-Marathon 2013, Summer Fan Dance 2014. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *