The Middle Ground

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05/11/2012 at 12:37
Dr.Dan wrote (see)

So would you complete the Masters first and then start the PhD ... or is it fully integrated, so that Masters work counts as part of the PhD? Good luck with finding a course. Is there much funding around? Getting on a programme is fairly straight-forward if you have the prerequisites - it's competing for the funding that's usually very difficult.

There is funding - its attached to every institution these days (used to be applied for on an indidivdual basis) so the key is to apply to one that is overfunded but low on numbers

However, it must be a research masters (not taught) to qualify for funding as part of the AHRC pot. They are seperate elements but you must commit to both.

05/11/2012 at 14:04

Hi everyone.

As usual some great training and performances going on. A few comments from me then...

Duck - well done on the 2nd place and 3k PB. Good race report too and interesting to read of your tactics there.

Wardi - well done on the sub 20. Good effort by the sounds of things.

YP - I see you have entered the Eastleigh 10K? It's a great PB course and attracts people from far afield. I had a friend stay with me from South Wales last year and he may do it again to get another PB next year.

I had another 10 mile race yesterday in Lordshill, Southampton. It was a quality field with 27 out of 408 finishing under 1 hour. However, the course had to be shortened with the field at the end where the finish would have been put out of use due to very heavy overnight rain. This was unfortunate but couldn't be helped with the inclement overnight weather. I made it 9:89 miles on my Garmin but this doesn't tell half the story what with a few sections of roadway being completely submerged in over a foot of water. We had to twice run through a 100 yard (or so) stretch of road where the floodwater must have been a foot and a half deep??!!! This also caused a few runners to run into potholes (including one of my club mates) which were submerged...something I didn't really appreciate until the race was over. Certainly very interesting conditions though but it's the 2nd time I have done the race and I very much enjoyed it.

My final time (gun time) was 67:29 so was pleased with this considering my time of 69:53 at the Great South Run last week. Very different circumstances yesterday though with the weather/huge amount of surface water about. It was a big shame that the course was a little short (but understandable with the conditions) as it won't now count as an official PB on Run Britain, etc. But in a way, I do think I would have ran about this time (or close to) on a day of perfect conditions. So I am pleased with the progress I have made recently which started off with a 1:35:00 half marathon in Bristol on 30th September. The only criticism of myself would be the pace I started at which I made 6:28 for the first mile - just a tad too fast with the 67/68 minute finish I had in mind! The 2nd mile was in 6:52 (this consisted of a section with a steady incline) with my 3rd being in 6:34 (there was a steady downward section over this part of the course). My pace pretty much evened out after this though and felt like I could hold the 6:45-6:55 sort of pace throughout.

Training last week was fairly good in the lead up to the race too. Had a good quality speed work session last Tuesday which consists of running 12 reps and recoveries inbetween along a cycle track (a regular session we tend to do at my club). I then did a 7 mile 8:30 m/m run on Thursday with a gym session after that and a 5 mile 7:55 m/m paced steady run on the Friday.

All in all a fairly good week for me. I think I will concentrate on some more fairly easy mileage this week and try to continue building the base mileage. No major races planned for a while now (I will post more about plans for next year at some stage), just a few park runs and X/C for the rest of the year...although will be running the Gosport Half Marathon (helpers half) as I will be helping with marshalling on the 18th later this month.

Edited: 05/11/2012 at 14:08
05/11/2012 at 14:21

Curly, interesting change of direction there, fingers crossed it all nicely comes to fruition!

WJH, Eastleigh is well renowned indeed for fastitude. The south coast seems to be crawling with really fast courses, Over the last 2 months I've had 160mile round trips to Portsmouth twice for the Victory 5 and Great South Run. Gosport in 2 weeks makes it a triple to that neck of the woods.

But then you've got Eastleigh, Stubbington Green and Chichester 10k which TR from the sub 3 hour thread tells me is the best of the lot.

It's just the chance of wind that slows some of these races down. Victory 5 has a gusty last mile you can force yourself through, but the last 2 miles at the Great South Run are about as exposed as it gets, and impossible to run hard through.

05/11/2012 at 16:34
BR thanks for the mention in dispatches. Sorry to hear you're struggling at the moment. Realistically, you don't become a bad runner overnight so there must be some underlying reason for it. Like Phil says its hard to suggest a root cause but as has been said driving can be very tiring. In these circumstance I'd stay away from road races and run a few XC races for enjoyment.

Wardi - good to see that sub 20 is becoming a habit.

Stevie - in response to your comments about the Victory 5 and the discussion about how far to travel for a race: I've run a 10k on that course and it was gale force: Traveled down from Lincolnshire for that....could have stayed at home and got blown to b*ggery out on the fens. Also made the journey to the Folkestone 10M but missed meeting BR, Pantman and a couple of (then) DTT luminaries....but I did get a modern day PB.

Anyway....I raced yesterday in the Frostbite League, a closed club winter series of road and off road 5 milers. Ended up midpack (36:45 for about 5M) despite leaving my racing head at home and over-modestly (!) standing too far back at the start and getting caught in traffic. Enjoyed the experience immensely...perhaps I won't leave it another four years til the next one.

Surprised (well amazed actually) in running 8.1M this morning at 7:27 pace. Two months ago I was wingeing about not being able to run sub 8:00 in training. Bloody 'ell, running eh!
05/11/2012 at 16:37

WJH, was there not something the organisers could have done to make it up to 10? Conditions sound less than ideal so good running, and a promising improvement even with 200m less ran.

Dan, I thoroughly approve  Does she know if she wants to do a more physical or human style degree? 

Dr.Dan wrote (see)
The Duckinator wrote (see)
Did 9M this morning, pre-breakfast (including a Phil-inspired wait to let everything 'settle'). A solid effort ...

At this point I was thinking .... " Nooo, too much information....".

Haha! I totally missed that first time around  

Results are out and I finished third SM in 18'14 (I got a medal! And I didn't stay around to get it!). Those around a minute ahead run 9'3x 3k/sub-17 5k, and one 30s ahead runs mid-17 5k, so in line with an 18-flat performance or thereabouts. Happy with that. 

05/11/2012 at 16:40

stop arguing with Barnsley Runner on facebook, get to Middlesbrough next Sat and settle your differences there!  

Yd actually lol when i read that  I was being a mardy arse, fb doesnt bring out my best side when i feel someone is having a bit of a dig. So....

Barnsley runner to be fair  you were having a bit of a prod to try and get a reaction! I was just defending myself 'your honour'. Ive no issues with anyone doing what they want to do, but for me a 2 hour round journey for an 18minute parkrun  isnt worth it. Especially when Harrogate park runs is 20min away.. [since they started ive done 1 and paced 1 out of 43 ish]. The furthest ive travelled is to Wasdale head for a sub 2 mile fell run up kirkfell. Great race.  There are so many things i want to do with my free time and park run in middlesboro is not one of them. So there is no sliding scale. Organise a meet in harrogate for your next park run tourism outing and i shall mark it in the calander and you can beat me there. Just make it a dry one so i can pb then i wont have to go back for a bit  

Right we all friends again..... good. 

Steady one this am after half hour of snoozing i did a slooooow 6 mile in freezing conditions. Karate tonight then speedwork after once im warmed and stretched.

Got some new Kinvara last week after finaly realising i cant do all my running in racing flats and fell shoes.. My toes love me again. 

Right i will go catch up on the rest of the thread now after yd and Barnsley runner derailed me! 

05/11/2012 at 17:00

Nosemi, you're dealing with some of the greatest park run fans ever on this thread, BR, Hilly, prf and Curly love a good park run!

personally, i wouldn't walk the 200metres round the corner to my local one! I might still be scarred at doign a pretty slow (relatively speaking) time on my one attempt though. Hearing it was a fast course, yet finding a boggy swamp (yes the conditions get worse every time i quote it! )

Tom, that's a heck of a drive for a short race! I think my limit is 90miles each way. I'd probably try and mix in some long trips/foreign trips if I got witrh a particularly keen runner girl, but until that day, 90mile limit, usually once a year, this year, and in particular Sep-November is an exception! 3xPorstmouth area, 1xSouthend (all 80-90milers)

05/11/2012 at 17:23
The Duckinator wrote (see)
Dan, I thoroughly approve  Does she know if she wants to do a more physical or human style degree? 

She wants to do both - a lot of courses push you in one direction or the other but she's applied to places that allow both elements (at least to start off with ... before specialising in later years).

5.2 easy miles for me today ... legs still not great but I reckon they'll be right for a mid-week session.

05/11/2012 at 19:20

Too much to catch up on... but I will do later.

I find all these discussions  about travelling x miles to run y distance amusing. Remember as a kid when you went off exploring randomly for hours on end just to see what happened? You could end up miles away, discovering places and things that you could never have anticipated. Travelling to places that you  would not go to otherwise to run/race is infinitely more interesting than repeatedly restricting to the same oft visited local venues.

WJH - That reminds me of Brampton Carlisle 10 a couple of years ago which became 9.3 miles due to the worst floods in living memory up in  Cumbria in the previous 2 days.

As Dr Dan mentioned I've just had 4 weeks of letting the body do whatever it wants, the summary of which:

Days: 28
parkruns: 3
Other races: 2 (Cabbage Patch 10 and Lancaster HM)
Training runs: 6
Rest days: 17
Weight gain: 4.8kg (11 lbs)

A well executed slob month I'm sure you'll agree

I took YD's number for a trip around the Lancaster Half Marathon yesterday in 1:34:14, so a mere 16 minutes loss in form compared to 7 weeks ago in the GNR. Mind you I did go off course mid race to retrieve a spooked horse, without that I could have been on for a sub 93!

So, time to get back into it now............


05/11/2012 at 19:20

NOSEMI - yes it's really funny that.  I've never got drawn into any online spats about running (or indeed politics...).  I did the Bespoke Harrogate parkrun and my last appearance there was around 6.30pm on Friday evening in August after doing 8 sub-20 parkruns around Yorkshire that day en route to Pontefract for number 10!

Yes up for a visit to Harrogate once I've saved enough money to buy a bacon sandwich in that over-priced deli-cum-cafe around the corner from the Stray (which we'll probably find is run by your auntie to kick off spat #2)!

Tom - fantastic!  In Lincs / Cambs they have the Frostbite League (harsh and desolate like the area).  In Hull they have the Champagne League (indeed - light and sparkly like the city).  In London they have the Assembly League (the melting-pot of nationalities).  Does anyone else have a random distance league which reflects their locality?  The Fried Mars Bar league for example?.

Wardi - are you following up your sub-20 with a crack at the £25 fireworks 5k?

Dr.Dan - I reckon Leeds is work perhaps 25 secs at this time of year with that mud section.  Take the lad to Hull.  Broaden his mind as well as improve your times.

Curly - sounds very exciting.  What will your do your MA / MPhil / PhD in?  Will it be the same subject as your degree or striking out in a new direction?

Thanks for the insights.  Thinking across it all, I enjoyed my slow 5k on Saturday so I'm happy just to run with whatever I can.  I need to grow old gracefully.


05/11/2012 at 19:22

Tom - fantastic news!  You must feel right pleased to have done a race and then still feel strong the next day - as the saying goes 'get in there'

Duck - you've made some really good improvements in the last year!

WJH - well done on the 10(ish) miles!  I lived and raced in Dorset for many years and Lordshill was one race I wanted to do and never got around to doing. A shame it turned out to be short, but I guess sometimes these things happen and can't be helped.

On the travelling for a race question I have always travelled to wherever the best race courses were and as I lived in Dorset for many years you had to travel to be able to race!  There was only 2 races a year in my town and the neighbouring town, so a hour or more was a common driving distance.  Since moving up to Yorkshire and especially since the arrival of parkruns I will travel anywhere and enjoy the parkrun followed by a weekend exploring a new place.  Parkrun is great for combining two passions of running and vising new places

05/11/2012 at 19:24
Barnsley Runner wrote (see)

  .  I need to grow old gracefully.

Less of this talk old son, you're the famous Barnsley Runner from RW!

I'm sure most runners have their times of feeling battered or needing a break or a change. Simply enjoying some slow or offroad stuff maybe even without a watch, wouldn't hurt.

Edited: 05/11/2012 at 19:29
05/11/2012 at 19:30

PRF - to be fair your 'down time' is more than I would do after a marathon what with a 10 mile and half marathon race, 6 training runs and 3 parkruns!  That is a fair amount of running for many, but I guess as it's you and you normally run 20 parkruns in a weekend followed by several other races then it's a rest 

05/11/2012 at 19:34

Stevie - BR does not always run with a watch, normally only in races  We don't train with watches unless doing a session.  Believe it or not we don't run with a Garmin and sometime we don't wear a watch in a race either

05/11/2012 at 19:37

Stevie G - That definately is the case with some of the races down here. I also did the Victory 5 in September and the wind was definately a factor before getting back to the Mountbatten athletics track. That said, I didn't get an official result that day as I accidentally entered the Victory 10K....doh!  My club mates were asking why I had two red circles on my number and it was only later that evening that I realised what I had done (over previous years there has not been a 10k or 10 mile race on the same day but that's my excuse for this oversight!). The 5 mile race tends to be the most popular with club runners down here as it is part of the Hampshire Road Race League (as was the Lordshill 10 this Sunday). I am entered for the Stubbington 10k and am giving some consideration to the Chichester 10k for the same reason, in that I have heard it's one of the fastest 10k's for PB potential you can do! There was a 10k in Portsmouth last month too which started at the Hayling Ferry end of the city. Conditions that day were calm and sunny.....perfect overall and I reckon that it is arguably one of the best 10k's you could do for PB potential given how flat it is...but the flipside with most of the route being along the seafront also gives it potentially the worst PB potential for a flat course depending upon the weather and exposure to gales! That day last month though was perfect, but it isn't an affiliated course to my knowledge so doesn't qualify for Power of 10/Run Britain. 

On the subject of travelling to races, I can see what is being said on how far it would be worth for travelling to a park run, etc. For me, I guess it depends on the size of the event overall. For example, I am thinking of doing the Amsterdam marathon next year but it is only an initial thought at this stage! I guess I am lucky down here in that there is Netley Abbey (edge of Southampton), Southampton Common, Eastleigh, Staunton Country Park (Havant) with park runs all within 30/40 maximum travelling time. That combined with my girlfriend living in Winchester gives some good options. She has also started doing them and PB'd at Netley Abbey on Saturday in about 35 minutes! 

I also do some races in Cardiff and the surrounding area when I can with my family living am likely to do a park run or two in Cardiff with my brother between now and Christmas. In that way, it's not a wasted journey doing races like this because my travelling has a dual purpose...and also gives me options of doing other races which are known to be fast (e.g.Cardiff Half, Swansea 10k, Lliswerry 8....the various organised Cardiff 10k's often have fairly fast courses too). 

As for Lordshill yesterday, cheers Duck! I think the organisers were left with little choice in the end as the rain was relentant and didn't stop until not long before the it must have beena very last hour/minute thing which forced their hand with the finishing area. Also didn't notice that you ran another race as missed reading the previous page earlier....well done that performance too.

05/11/2012 at 19:39
Stevie, as a glass half empty man, it's just as easy to go from being in top form to "cripes, I didn't see that niggle coming" . As I've previously said, runners have two states of fitness, you're either injured or in the process of getting injured.
05/11/2012 at 19:48

Hilly, i was forgetting some of you guys on the thread like to smash every single convention there is....running for 50million miles in each pair of trainers, doing shedloads of races, never doing any tempos etc etc

Tom, true, I must admit I spend a lot of my time thinking i'm on the fine line between pbs and injury. Maybe that's a line you have to tread, as otherwise you're not pushing for a breakthrough.

WJH, that Victory 10k was an odd addition. First time I've ever seen the "fun run" event being longer distance than the main one. I'll never forget the sight of a lady (bless her!) doing the 10k, with a whole belt load of drinks with her! 

 Seemed unneccesary to add the 10k. People say that the 10k is a more oft run distance, so better to attract newbies. But i'd say if they're that new into it, they wouldn't know what the standards are, and surely would prefer to run less?!

05/11/2012 at 19:51
Tom: I hope I'm in the process of becoming uninjured! Walked 200 metres without sticks today! A big step forward, although resting now!

Good to see you, PRF: you seem to have given the forum and the blog even more of a rest than the running! Looking forward to you getting back into the swing of things!
05/11/2012 at 20:02

Stevie - lol, glad you get the picture  Although I do have to admit to having several years of paper diaries (none of this online stuff) where I recorded everything form the weather to how many miles each of my 10+ pairs of trainers had run.  Every HR, every mile split etc, etc!  I guess we all do that for a fair few years before it then just isn't needed any more - enjoy the process though because I certainly did!!

05/11/2012 at 20:10

cripes that is anorak...i keep a log of trainer miles, and splits on quality runs, but that's enough

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