Sunday, January 8, 2017

The home-country

First up, if you’re training has unravelled a little over the last few weeks, never fear. Put off hopes of a personal best and concentrate on the basics. And the basics are to just go out and run. Between now and race day focus on getting out and clocking up some miles. Resolve to wrap up for the coming cold, toughen up and team up. If you start doing it from this week you’ll still be fine. You’ll be able to get around the Trim 10 mile and you’ll be all the happier for it.

As for me, the training continued though not for the first half of this week. In fact, the only training related activity I did was to buy a new pair of runners from my friendly local running shop. For the next three days, I broke these in as I walked around Madrid on a short family holiday. While this was fun and walking is exercise, I failed to get out for any runs. Part of this was because our city centre location was so good it meant a bit of a trek out to find a decent park to spread the legs and part of this was due to the fact that our little 15-month girl took over the double-bed moving across it each night like an Atlantic weather-front meaning slightly disrupted sleep and thus more desire for lie-ins than run-outs.

It wasn’t until Friday that I got out. And for this I took off on a short but very enjoyable run along the regular route from my home to the nearest pub and back. (I didn’t stop when I got there). It’s about 7.5 kilometres and despite going a little faster than a slow run it was not fast enough that I couldn’t enjoy the mild weather we’re still enjoying.

Saturday I got out again, this time in the company of a bunch of my students from school who are the cross-country team, or several of them anyway. With their season culminating in races late January, a few sessions organised over Christmas have given them more of an opportunity to meet up and keep up their training as well as give me extra impetus to get out and get the legs moving.

Finally, not wanting to let the three-times a week slip I made it out Sunday for a 10k race. Having not indulged at our club annual party the night before I took off for the home country of Westmeath where both my parents are from to compete in the wonderfully well-spirited Lough Lene Gaels 5k & 10k in Collinstown. Here, having called first called into a relative to clean the gutters, an unorthodox warm-up I admit, I lined up with a few fellow runners for the scenic though very undulating G.A.A. club fund-raiser. With a killer 2k uphill coming home, despite giving it a rattle, I didn’t manage a personal best but came home a very respectable 9th, something my dead relatives in the graveyard I passed 200 metres from the end would have been proud of!

This week’s training:
Slow run: 40 minutes.
Tough run: 10 min warm up - 4*6 mins intervals with 2 mins recovery - 10 mins warm down.
Long run: 80 minutes slow.

* Photo credit – Lough Lene Gaels

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