TS, I hope the exercises help clear up that troublesome achilles of yours.
Columba, the cross-country went well thanks and it was indeed dry underfoot.
Very dry in fact and most of the course was on rough grassland. Hard under the grass and not kind to the ankles. I ran with the ladies again but knew it wouldn't be another first place as my friend Harry was running this time. He's especially good at cross-country and finished in the top 30 which means he's promoted to the medium pack in future. They start later than the main field, with the fast pack starting behind them.
Anyway, I was second old man with an average pace of 7:35. That's 10 seconds a mile faster than last week but the course yesterday didn't have any steep hills, just gradual ones.
There's a great friendly atmosphere at these events but there are always a few idiots to spoil things. Apparently one of the men in the fast pack was caught urinating on the start line. Amazing isn't it. Inexcusable at any time as there are lots of spectators there, including children, but even more so as there were toilets a couple of hundred yards away without queues.
And a group of other male runners told a female marshal to eff off in a separate incident. What is it with some people that they can behave in such disgraceful ways? Hopefully there will be repercussions.
Monday night is my normal club night but very reluctantly I've deicded to give it a miss today as the race yesterday has left me with a few aches and twinges. Nothing to worry about but better to err on the side of caution I reckon..
Siv, how good to see you back on here. You've been through a lot since you last posted, that's for sure. Very best wishes and good luck with your aquafitness sessions. They sound just the thing for you.
Welshpoppy, as always I'm so impressed with the number of miles you run. With two recent PBs, they're obviously paying off.
John, you shouldn't be too disappointed with your parkrun. It's still a pretty respectable time. I'm sure your achilles will recover as it has before.
I did the first of the monthly winter handicap races on Tuesday. It's a fairly level 3.6 mile course on the coast. I managed 26m 15s in a strong headwind on the out leg. That's 30 seconds slower than the last (pre-injury) race in March so pretty comparable bearing in mind the wind this time. Nearly there!
Another cross-country tomorrow. Apparently the course is very dry so normal road shoes may be in order.
Columba, good that you seem to have your knee under control. I'm not very impressed with your parkrun experience. I know everyone's a volunteer but really the marshalls should stay until the last runner has passed through, hopefully indicated by the presence of a tail runner.
ceal, welcome back.
I really enjoyed the cross-country yesterday. Just how I like it - not cold and hardly any mud. You can keep the hardcore experience thanks very much. There's a great atmosphere at all the NE league events. Just about every local club takes parts so there are lots of tents and banners and all ages take part, from under11s upwards.
I ran with the ladies for the first time, so two laps rather than three. I had a great race with another Over 65 man, neck and neck most of the way. Luckily I had enough left in my legs to put in a strongish finish and beat him by a few seconds. I'm sure we'll have other tussles at other meetings. I was first Over-65 man out of 9. Some of the officials didn't know about us old blokes running with the women for the first time. The one noting numbers at the finish gave me an old-fashioned look and said "You're not a women!". Not last time I looked I wasn't.
The time for the 3.75 mile, rather hilly, course was 29:15. Average pace 7:46 minute miles. On the same course back in the spring, pre-injury, my pace was 8:20 but that was 3 laps and parts of it were muddy then, not dry like yesterday.
John, unlike you I do enjoy most cross-country courses. As long as there's not too much mud. Just about everyone locally professes a love of the deep sticky stuff but I suspect it's sometimes bravado in the same way as claiming to enjoy a really hot vindaloo. I don't know if your comment about climbing over gates is meant literally. I've certainly never come across that thankfully as I'd make a real meal of it.
Anyway, I cleaned my cross-country shoes yesterday and removed the mud left over from the last race of the season and am really looking forward to the race on Saturday, especially the new experience of running with the women. I'm about the same pace as quite a few I know so it'll be interesting to see what happens.
Rest day today after three quite hard days; the 5000 race on Saturday, a 10.5 steady run on Sunday and an 8-minute a mile 6.5 mile run with the club last night. The latter finished in the dark for the first time since earlier in the year so that's a sign of things to come. Speed session on the track tomorrow.
Mick, I was talking about the benefits of lightweight shoes recently with a very experienced runner and he said something they did was to slightly increase stride length. With their lower cushioning though, I imagine that's a road you don't really want to go down, at least on training runs.
Yesterday was my 5000m track race, in blustery conditions. The field was smaller than usual and the ladies and over-65 men all ran as one rather than being split as usual. I was going to race on feel rather than constantly looking at my watch but with someone calling times on each lap it was hard to ignore what pace you were doing.
Anyway, I felt reasonably good in spite of the fresh wind and didn't slow too much as the race went on as far as I can tell. I finished in 21:52, which I was pleased with, not expecting to beat 22 minutes based on my parkrun times. AG percentage of 76.4%. Only good enough for fourth place though. Definitely another step in the right direction.