Sunday, November 23, 2008

End of Week Report

I love running, and for as long as I can I will continue running. But that doesn’t mean I don’t get frustrated from time to time.

The weather recently has been shite as we say around here, excuse my language. A few weeks ago that amount of wind would have sent me to the elves of the Ard-na-Sidhe road, but I decided to be less of a softy and face the conditions head-on on the Caragh Lake road. It’s never as bad as it sounds anyway. The road is still somewhat sheltered by two mountains, Seefin and Callahaniska, but there is one corner where the wind comes through the gap between the two of them and you get some kind of funnel effect. I’ve named that stretch “Windy Corner”, and twice on the last few days the wall of wind hit me so suddenly that it quite literally took my breath away. Today was particularly bad; I had seriously considered the Ard-na-Sidhe road, but running up and down the same stretch of road 3 times in each direction just doesn’t have that much of an appeal to me. I might have reconsidered had I known that by mile 1.5 I would be caught in a short but sharp rain shower. That happened a second time, around the 5-mile mark, when it rained so heavily that I was soaked right through within seconds.

The little bits of technology I keep carrying around are even more frustrating. The Garmin’s chest strap has finally given up completely, and I’ve been wearing the Polar HR as well as the Garmin on my recent runs. The biggest problem I have is remembering to press the start and stop buttons on both devices. That won't be a problem in the future because by now the Polar has finally given up the ghost as well. At least I have finally managed to purchase a replacement battery for the Garmin. Let’s hope this will solve the problem from tomorrow on.

I have noticed an improvement in my paces recently, but with the lack of a proper HR monitor this might have been the result of me inadvertently crossing my self-imposed threshold. But my runs are still all of the easy variety. I will keep building my mileage for the next two weeks, and then the proper aerobic base training phase will commence. I’m looking forward to a few faster runs already.

My legs will get a faster workout before that though, because there is a 10k race in Killorglin next Saturday. It does not fit into my training schedule and I certainly won’t be in my best 10k shape, but with a race so nearby I can’t possibly refuse participation.

The weekend has been stressful. Niamh had some work to do on Saturday and had to leave at 8:30, which meant I had to get up early for my run, and then I had to mind our entire unruly brood on my own. I still managed to bake my most complicated dinner ever, which went down extremely well. Unfortunately Niamh forgot to reset the alarm clock, and since it woke not only us but also the boys it meant yet another early morning. At least it enabled me to have time for some clandestine shopping; Cian’s birthday is in a fortnight, and I managed to track down the perfect present. I’m almost as excited as he is.
20 Nov
10 miles, 1:22:49, 8:17 pace, HR 148
21 Nov
9 miles, 1:13:54, 8:13 pace, HR 146
22 Nov
7 miles, 57:06, 8:10 pace, HR ???
23 Nov
9 miles, 1:12:26, 8:03 pace, HR ???

Weekly mileage: 63+


  1. Hope the battery does the trick for the Garmin. HR monitors are indeed quite valuable.

    And the weather you guys face is nuts. Anytime I think Maine is bad, reading your blog always makes me feel better.

  2. I am glad that we don't have to deal with quite the weather dilemna that you face so often. It makes you all that much tougher though. I hope Cian's birthday is a success.

  3. I had the same wind and rain in Cork this morning although I was on a 20 mile cycle - still got soaked through and the crosswinds gave me a few scary moments.

  4. I'm sorry to hear about the weather. We've enjoyed a rather mild winter thus far but I fear the wind and rain is just around the corner. What doesn't kill you...

  5. Hi Thomas,
    I'm hoping that you or somebody on your blog will be able to give me some advise. The week after completing the Dublin marathon I developed a pain just below my ankle. It is at its worst first thing in the morning when I get out of bed. The strange thing is that it seems fine when I run on it. I have replaced running with an hour on the bike in the gym each night for the past two weeks but the problem remains. Do you think I should go back running, stay on the bike or give it complete rest. (I hate rest!!)

  6. You made sweet buns for dinner?? Sounds good. Also, it sounds as though you've dived headlong into winter out your way. Good for you for getting out in it anyway!

    Good luck on the 10K. And, I can't wait to hear what the perfect present is!

  7. It sounds like plantar fasciitis (called PF) - an inflammation of the tendon that joins the front of the foot to the ankle. Google it. If it's not that it could be a heel spur - an additional growth of bone.

    A Physio will advise on treatment and cure (rest is in the mix if it is PF).