So far the New Year has gone to plan from a running perspective. I’m building up the mileage, managing 65 and 72 miles over the last two weeks. The aim is to get a few 100 mile weeks in before spring and another 3-day block in the Lakes. Unfortunately I have a sticky left glut and hamstring which has caused some soreness and stiffness at times, with occasional light imbalances. It’s a lot better this month though and I’m now able to get some faster paced running into the programme. I also still have swimmers-ear from December, which doesn’t seem to want to shift. I think I have had one swim session to date.
Because of the lack of swimming and cycling my training is very much based around running and gym (core, balance, weights) work at the moment. I don’t mind this, but I am aware that my body is far more sore and stiff despite the drop in weekly training (hrs). However I am enjoying the new focus. Last Wed I did a tough XC event followed by 10 miles along the Ridegway Trail. Then on the weekend I did a 15mile run on Sat and a 25mile run/walk (25/5mins) on Sun to incorporate the London Loop, Grand Union Canal, Capital Ring and Thames Path. I thought I might have to pull-out from the start as my right leg was very sore, but it gradually worked itself out after a self-massage and broken running.
The XC event was a 10km race at RAF Halton. I was in the Civil Service select team to take on the RAF select and RAF special, Fire Service, Police Service. We came 2nd to the RAF again, but it was close. I was really pleased with my run and seemed to have improved over last years performance despite the heavier training. I did just under 36mins for the technical 10km course, and certainly felt like I could have done a mid 34min 10km on flat road.
GREEN MAN ULTRA
On 3March I hope to take part in the Green Man Ultra. It follows the course of the Green Man challenge, a 45 mile loop around Bristol. This will probably be my first main race of the year. I’m hoping to be in good form. My only slight concern is navigation as there have been plenty of comments from people taking wrong turns. I’m doing a (run/walk) recce of the course on 31 Jan to get it loaded into my Garmin. I’ll then just follow the tracker on the day like I did for Malvern Ultra.
The Green Man Ultra is organised by the same company that do the Malvern Ultra (amongst other races) – Ultrarunning.uk.com. I’ve been offered by them to run Offas Dyke as a recce for a race they’d like to stage in 2013+. I may do this at the end of the season depending on how my body is holding up and my experience on the GUCR.