Since returning from the epic cycle journey that was LEJOG my focus has shifted back to running. Prior to LEJOG my motivation for running had definately dipped and this pattern continued post LEJOG. I managed to log the meagre total of 92 miles of running in the 3 months from June to August with a record low running mileage in the month of July a mere 18 miles!
I did run the Brighton Parkrun in early August in 20:14 around a minute off my PB but a course record on the time set a year previously. But the focuse post LEJOG was on the Bristol Half Marathon in September and the Chester Marathon in October. I wasn't confident going into Bristol and was hoping for at least 1hr 40mins and maybe at a real push a course record which previously stood at 1:36:21. My running prep as mentioned previously was at an all time low, but I was hoping that the cycling had improved my cardio sufficently for me to run something that I wouldn't be ashamed of. As it turned out the bike fitness did translate and I ran strong throughout the race and even managed to pick up the pace in the last few miles to finish in a very pleasing 1:33:22.
The following weekend I was booked in for the Great North Run, which originally I was running for the atmosphere and hoping to beat the 1hr 40mins I had run in 2010, but after the strong showing at Bristol I was suddenly thinking PB as long as the previous weekends race was out of my legs. I took to the start line in Newcastle and felt ready to go. I ran hard as I had done for my PB in Southend in June, hoping to drag myself home when the wheels began to fall off. My splits per the offical results were as follows:
5K - 20:47
10K - 41:51
15K - 01:03:02
Finish - 01:30:05
So I went off fast with a massive unoffical 10K PB and as expected come the 10 mile mark my legs got heavy and it got really tough. The garmin showed me finshing the final 3 miles at around 7:30 miles rather than the 06:40 I had been running previously. I felt the sub 1:30 had gone as I waved to Lauren and Jan on the run in and the offical time showed be falling an agonising 6 seconds short! But I wasn't too crushed, I know the sub 1hr 30min will come and my PB will end much lower than that so off less than ideal training I had achieved very pleasing back to back races.
I am yet to run further than a half marathon since 8th May which was my last marathon at Stratford, and so with two weeks to go to Chester I'm not too sure what kind of shape I am for the Marathon distance, but come the 9th October I will be shooting for a 3hr 30min marathon which would be a PB by nearly 8 minutes.
In other training news the cycling has been shelved due to lack of time but also lack of opportunity with the cycling commute having to be dropped. So that brings you up to date with my post LEJOG training and so to the second part of my blog, my future plans look like this.
Nov 2011 - Billericaey 10K (Hoping for a 10K PB to make it a 5K,10K,HM,MAR PB year)
Dec 2011 - Middlesbrough 5K Parkrun (A PB would be a nice xmas pressie, sub 19 even better!)
Feb 2012 - a HM somewhere (Will be looking for sub 1hr 30min)
Apr 2012 - Two Oceans Ultra Marathon (sub 5 hours)
May 2012 - Edinbrugh Marathon (Signed up with Luke and Pete will be shooting for around 3hrs 15mins)
July 2012 - Outlaw Iron Distance Triathlon (Somewhere in amongest all that running I need to be swimming and cycling, no time goals for this at the moment)
That should keep me fairly busy! And I haven't thought past the Outlaw yet, but I'm sure I'll find something else to challenge me.