Winter running is great because… MORE KIT!!!

IMAG0510Buff, obvs.  Glasses (always contacts during the day and for races).  Sony Walkman waterproof all-in-one MP3 player (although I need a new one of these!).  Tribesports black t-shirt. Kalenji arm sleeves. Garmin 220.

IMAG0514_1As above, plus Nike Victory Women’s Court Skirt. Adidas black-and-white running tights.  Honestly, I only bought these because I couldn’t decided if they were super awesome or super ugly.  But they are awesome.

IMAG0516As above, plus Brooks Pure Connect 2.  I don’t have to tell anyone how much I love these shoes, because I LOVE THEM and THEY ARE THE AWESOME!!!  These are men’s, and obviously very, very green. IMAG0518And all as above, plus a Quencha Extend 0-10L vest.  Honestly, it’s a good enough vest but I would like to get a more sturdy one.  It’s very light, and I mainly use it for longer runs (clearly) and for times I run to pick up the Neon Toddler from nursery, and need to take her a drink, myself a jacket, and our Oyster, and keys.

I ran tonight, and other tragedies

I went for a run tonight and it was rubbish.  More on that in a moment.

During last year’s Ealing Half I struggled to find a rhythm.  I spend 21.1 kms battling myself to find a stride that I could, um, stride into.  Well, I searched and searched for rhythm during that run and the rhythm just didn’t come.  If I had spent any time in training dealing with this issue then it probably wouldn’t have derailed me as much as it did (at the start… although I struggled the whole race, I kind of got used to the struggle, if that in any way makes sense).  So, after that I was determined to be a bit more of a hard arse when it came to not bottling out on training runs that weren’t particularly going to plan.  So, that’s what happened tonight.

I ran from home to Neon Toddler’s nursery – it’s about a 6.8km run, and mostly flat.  Oh my gosh, tonight it was just terrible.  I felt like I was moderately pushing the pace and just not going anywhere (as in something in the vicinity of 20-40 seconds per km slower than my normal easy pace).  My feet were hitting the ground in odd and unexpected ways, and going all over the place.  Even when I was consciously trying to run ‘to form’ things just were not happening.

About 1.5 km in I stopped and took off my long sleeve, because I was just slightly too hot.  I love the blistering heat when all I have to do is sit by the pool and drink a beer, but when I’m running I’d rather be a lot too cold than a little too hot (god help me if I ever decide to run a desert race…).  So, off came the jumper, but the running didn’t get any better.  So, on I struggled.

And struggled.

And struggled.

But, I didn’t give in (I easily could have stopped anywhere on my particularly route and taken a bus).  And gosh my run was awful.  But, it was also one of those days that – for totally no reason whatsoever, even in the face of an awful run – things were just good.  Running was good.

And that was that.  I guess ‘train through pain, to race through pain’ can also just as easily be ‘train through weird, uneven, nothingness to race through weird, uneven, nothingness’.

It all helps.

signature_t30mjx7dgiwqczqq7i

2015, year in preview.

I only made one resolution for this year, and it was to stop resolving to do things.  I did not meet any of my set resolutions or goals for last year (for various reasons), and it has left me feeling a bit hopeless about 2015.  My win to loss ratio for last year looks pretty dismal, and so I have decided that I do not really want to reflect on 2014, but look forward to this year.

I know I say this every year but I want to do more running.  The last two years my running has been pretty up and down, due in large part to the unending pressure of finishing a PhD and raising a toddler (on my own, for the last part).  This year, my circumstances are slightly different, and so I hope to prioritise running a little bit more.  I have already started organising things differently in my life to accommodate this (and, generally, a more positive lifestyle) including swapping around the days on which Neon Toddler is with me (mainly, in this regard, is the switch of Friday to Saturday nights toddler-free).  The last 18 months have been a bit of a whirlwind of negativity and downward looking, and I need to change that around for myself.  And, I know that running and being active will be a big part of that.

I would also like to loose some weight.  Ideally, I’d like to be 7 to 10 kgs lighter by the end of July, when Helen (of HelsBels) and I take on the 70 mile Saffron Trail ultra.

So, as for goals for 2015, here they are:

Run.  Enjoy running.  Don’t worry about anything else.  (And, maybe sneak a few races in…)

signature_t30mjx7dgiwqczqq7i