I feel like this was an easier week running-wise but harder with my other exercise. I ran 22 miles for the second week in a row, which is dangerous, as I do like patterns and repetition …

Tuesday – First winter club run route and it really was dark when we finished so I’m glad I wore my flourescent bib. It was the “Feck Hill” route, so named for the mean hill all up the main road in the middle of the course. While both our summer routes go up a brutal hill in the end of the park, the winter routes alternate between this and another one. Anyway, I sort of forgot the place we meet in winter is slightly further away than our summer meeting point, so had to zip up there. I ran round with my friend Fay, and I could tell her how proud I was of her completing her first 10k (after announcing to me a couple of months ago that she would never get to that distance: there she was in her race tshirt!). We sprinted the last little bit, as is traditional, and I got my second fastest time for that Strava Segment out of 66 times! Ran back with Trudie and Dave because some kids had been lobbing water bombs from one of the tower blocks as people came in (I’d missed this by being slightly late) so safety in numbers.

5.4 miles. 12:13 mm

Wednesday – Circuits time. I was a bit apprehensive about this as I was feeling a bit nauseous from a not-well-thought-through dinner combo on Tuesday night after club run. I spent ages looking up YouTube videos of how to do press-ups properly. As shown, I can manage one, and get back up, then did the others kind of half. I may need to re-start them propped up on the stairs and work back down to flat ones! I was pleased that I manged to do my two arm weight exercises at the end, as well as equalling or exceeding last week’s totals, but I was staring into space by the end (last pic).





Here’s my record – amazingly even only doing it once a week I’m seeing an improvement. The Burpees I pushed the mat aside then realised noooo and grabbed it back, wasting a good few seconds!

I have found some extra muscles on the side of my thighs (or streamlined knees?) so something is working in some way, and at least I’m managing to do this once a week, right? I never have to make myself run; I do have to make myself do this!

Thursday – I really do love not racing, not being on a training plan, and doing what I want. Thursday, my friend Sara ran the same 10-mile route we did on Sunday (strong woman!) and I ran down the route to join her and run back with her. I did get a bit further than I’d thought, and worried a little (but she’d set off 5 minutes later than I’d thought) and spent a bit of time taking some (bad) photos myself, but here we are outside Edgbaston Cricket Ground on the way back. I got a bit longer of a run than I’d expected then added some weight training carrying 2 x 10kg bags of cat litter home from the supermarket. I had DOMS from yesterday but keeping moving did help.

Edgbaston Cricket Ground. Thanks to Sara for the photo.

6.1 miles. 12:21 min miles

Friday – Claire yoga, and while I was really happy to find out that Claire finds it hard to do press-ups (given that I’d expected my yoga training to help with that), I was chatting with her with wobbly legs, having had a very hip-opening-filled class. Goddess pose is something I find very challenging, but it was useful to go from that into Warrior Two, as I was more aware of where my bottom should be. Lots of thigh squeezing meant I was stiff the next day!

Saturday – Time for a three-stage long run. Our club was doing a parkrun takeover, taking most of the volunteering roles. The aim of this is to get people starting to volunteer and so I decided NOT to volunteer, as I do usually, but to run instead. It was also parkrun’s alternative (off-road – eeps!) route and I wanted to experience it as a runner so I understood it (ummmm). My friend Jenny’s been poorly and through a testing time and wanted a little run with safe old me, so I ran up her way, met her and we ran down to Cannon Hill park together. It was a perfect day for running, sunny but cool. We’re lucky to live in such a leafy place.

Suburban early morning Moseley

Jenny left me at the park and I ran all the way through, collecting a new parkrunner who was heading for our usual start in error along the way and chatting to him. I got to the new meeting place and ran into my friend Greg, reminding him that it would be good to get a picture of the two of us for the Project 365 photo group we’re both in (he had to do much bending of the knees to get us both in).

Liz running, Greg volunteering. Thanks to Greg for the photo

As for understanding the route – erm.

Just … what?

It started on grass and there were gravel slopes, concrete, more grass, park paths, woody paths with tree roots, little bridges – quite cross-countryish really! We had to walk in the early part in the woods so no PBs (I got a time of just over 40 minutes). But I enjoyed my 21st parkrun – I knew most of the marshals so got a lot of personal encouragement and it was good to remind  myself I can do off-road, so I can face other parkruns that do the same. I met up with my friend Meg afterwards, who had been marshalling for her first time at volunteering (hooray!) and had a chat with her and a few others before setting off again. Meg kindly photographed me going off to the main part of the park (I love my shadow in this pic):

And off I go. Thanks to Meg for the photo

3.8 / 3.4 / 3.3 miles for a total of 10.5 miles. 12:26 min miles.

So a good varied week. Next week I have a day in London and officiating at the first Road Relays of the season, so may end up with slightly fewer running miles and will have to work out where to do my strength training … Lots of races on today so thinking of everyone and  how they’re getting on, including the Berlin marathoners from the link-up and my club friends Hannah and Haybie doing the same race!

Miles this week: 22

Progress towards 1,000 miles in the year: 747 miles (only 3 to do in the whole of the rest of the month to hit my target!)

Weekly wrapI take part in the Weekly Wrap run by two wonderful running women and joined by lots of other inspirational women. Wendy’s weekly wrap is here and Holly’s is here.