I Blame Jantastic!

At this point in time I should probably be dancing around the room singing along to Pharrell Williams “Happy”. 

Sorry but I am a big Minion fan and I couldn’t resist it!

Instead I’m wondering how long before I can conceivably retire for the day or at least have a sneaky lie down!  Thank goodness I don’t have any clients tonight, they’d probably find me draped across a treadmill. 

And the reason – my lunchtime 11k run in 62’ 30” with NO walking, not even up “Tollgate Hill”.  I felt fine when I got home but after a hot shower and with the muscle glycogen stores replenished (otherwise known as lunch), I’m beginning to feel a tad weary!  Still, I did it, my long run for the week done and dusted and a certain amount of pressure off.  After my 10k last week and with time running out, I knew I had to start pushing the boundaries – 10k after all is a long way off 21k but now I’m passed the half way mark and hopefully this psychological boost will spur me on to greater things over the coming weeks.

To be honest, it has to and I’m hoping Jantastic will continue to inspire me, that and the fear of letting down my Shorne Woods team if I don’t achieve my goals.  This first month I had committed to four runs a week and after a dodgy start, it’s gone quite well, even if the fourth run has only been achieved on the Sunday!  During February we have to set new goals and although I haven’t increased the number of weekly runs, I have committed to extending my “long” run each week.  So next week is 12k and by the end of February I should have done 15k which brings me a little closer to 21k.

I am wondering though what will happen after Jantastic finishes at the end of March – can I put out a plea for another motivational web based scheme?  Something with “Spring” in the title would do – any suggestions?  And any offers to run it (sorry for the pun)!

And February doesn’t just bring with it a new month of running goals, it also signifies the end of “dry January” (four days and counting!).  How convenient that 1 February is a Saturday.  I’m not of course planning to get plastered on Saturday night – to be honest after a Wagamama’s Root Juice yesterday, I’m a bit worried about how one glass of wine will affect me.  Who knew beetroot could be so intoxicating – after one glass, I felt like I’d been drinking!  They say it’s good for athletic performance (not that I’m calling myself an athlete) but I can easily imagine how it dulls the pain receptors!

So on Saturday evening I’m just looking forward to a nice glass of Shiraz to celebrate the new month and my new running goals.

Yup, I’m lining them up 🙂

And if anyone is interested in getting involved in Jantastic, the website can be found at www.jantastic.me – I believe it’s not too late to sign up, you don’t need to be an elite runner and it’s free!



parkrun Perfume Perils!

“Typically you’ll have been trying to break a certain time on a certain course for ages and suddenly just when you look the other way not only do you smash straight through your target and out the other side but it didn’t even seem that hard.”

I’d like to say those were my words but I’d be lying. They are the words of Tom Williams, parkrun’s Country Manager published in last week’s newsletter.  Now before you get all excited and think that I did it, beat my parkrun PB, sorry to disappoint, I didn’t.  Apparently though I helped someone else beat theirs!

But even then it’s not a straight forward tale (as if it would be when I’m involved!).  Saturday’s parkrun started off as normal and after about 500m there was me and two other women running in a group (and I was at the back).  Unfortunately one of the said other women had gone a bit mad with the perfume that morning and as nice as it was, I was desperately trying to get out of the perfume haze and breathe in some oxygen (that gas you need more of when you’re exercising).  I think she thought I was trying to overtake but I seriously wasn’t, I just wanted some fresh air and when I moved to one side she moved to the same side so I couldn’t escape.  Actually, on reflection maybe that’s a tactic I could try!

Finally I managed to move past and caught up with the first of our little trio and there it continued for the rest of the race.  I was literally on her heels, the poor woman must have thought I was trying to overtake when the truth was, I was just trying to keep up!  It stayed that way until the last 50m or so when someone put their foot on the gas and took off for the finish line and it wasn’t me (how do people do that!?).

After the race we had a few (friendly) words and it turned out me being on her heels actually pushed her on harder.  She took over a minute off her previous PB.  Thus if I couldn’t get a new PB myself, at least I had the pleasure of knowing I helped someone else achieve theirs, which I suppose is also in the spirit of parkrun.  And as a consolation prize, my time was the best I’d done in over a month (and no walking).

By the way, today I did my first solo 10k (no walking) run for coming up to two years, with a time of 54’ 55”, which I think must be a top three or four time for me; so I’m “well happy”!  My route took me out through the Activity Park, across the A2/High Speed line (yes, I did use the bridges – I wasn’t playing chicken!), across the fields to Ifield and then back via Jeskyns Park and then a little bit more of the Activity Park.  So I’m now incorporating Plan C, part 5.2iii of my half marathon training plan!  Now that I’ve managed a non walking 10k, my plan is to increase my long run by 1k each week and with 9 weeks to go before Paddock Wood, that should just about get me to where I need to be (she says with fingers and toes crossed).  Yes, I know that still leaves another 2k but I’ll find them from somewhere on the day – preferably from a passing motorist!

The Lamest Excuse Ever!

So Jantastic got off to a good start!  I did the first of my four weekly runs on Monday after having had a serious word with myself.  It really did get to the point where I had to point out to myself that if this was a Saturday morning, I’d be up and out there irrespective of the wind and dark clouds.  So eventually I pushed myself out the door and managed a mediocre 5k.  In my defence there were a couple of times when I think I went backwards rather than forwards thanks to the wind but I did it and got back to proudly log my first run.

By this morning (Friday), things had got desperate.  Three runs still to do and only three days left!  I knew one would be covered by parkrun but that still left another two.  So there was no choice, either let me and my parkrun team down or get out there and do my stuff.

But we shall come back to that later.  Why didn’t I go out between Monday and Friday?  Well life just got in the way.  On Tuesday the sideways rain rather put me off and at that point I planned on running Wednesday and Thursday so no panic.

Thursday morning was busy and Thursday afternoon was filled by a hairdresser’s appointment.  Yes, it would take all afternoon, it takes forever to cover all the grey!  I could say that I didn’t want to spoil all my hairdresser’s hard work by going for a run afterwards but my mother will tell you the first thing I do when I get out of the hairdressers is find the nearest power point, plug in the straighteners to flatten out my fringe and brush out the “bouffantness”, before pulling my hair back into a pony tail.  So that excuse just does not work.  But if you think that’s lame, wait until you hear about Wednesday!

The size of this picture represents the size of the hair!

Wednesday morning was dentist check up time so plenty of opportunity on Wednesday afternoon to go for my run.  That was the plan.  Unfortunately on Tuesday evening while brushing my teeth, a filling decided to jump ship so check up time became treatment time!  Now this may sound bizarre but in view of the expense (and pain), I asked my dentist a seemingly very stupid question, “If I go for a run later, will the filling fall out?”  He, however, was kind enough to humour me.  Probably just as well I couldn’t see his expression behind the mask but his polite advice was to stick to cycling.  So yet another get out clause for Jones!  Now you have to admit, that is pretty lame as excuses go!?

Is he laughing at me behind that mask?

So back to this morning and last chance saloon time – unless I fancy trying two runs in a day.  Now that would be a first for me!

With lovely sunny weather and no time pressures, I set out with 5k in mind, 7k if possible.  Got to the 3k point where I was going to turn around and go back but I was feeling good so I carried on.  And this means going down quite a steep slope, followed by a gradual incline up and an even longer gradual incline down.  This took me to the 5k point and I’m feeling good.  Now I have to turn around and do those inclines/declines in reverse.  I’m pleased to say the next 2k passed reasonably well especially in comparison to last time I did this route.  So I was feeling pretty confident that a 10k (no walking) was possible.  Until I got to the top of “Tollgate Hill” by which time everything was screaming at me and I had to have a walk break.  But at least I got to the top of the hill and a lot further than last time.  And this time I carried on with the walk/run routine for the last 3k whereas before I gave up after another 500m and just walked home!  So things have improved but there’s still a long way to go.  Another 11k to be precise!

Tomorrow’s parkrun should also prove interesting.  This will be the first time I’ve not “saved myself” for my Saturday morning run so this could be a case of my legs just getting me around the course in one piece.  In the meantime, I’m now off to register my second Jantastic run.  And hopefully next week will be better.  No, next week will be better!

BTW – the filling is still in place – for the time being! 🙂