A good solid week in which I did all the things I try to do per week (win) but I have to admit I had 10 hours’ sleep between Saturday and Sunday and am still slightly creaky! Oh well …

Monday – Because I’d run long on Saturday, I was able to run with lovely Claire on Monday (a day she’s not at work). She’s always brilliant for a different and off-road route and this was no exception, with some beautiful canals and then a nifty short-cut through Hazelwell Park and a cut-through onto half-way up Cartland Road that makes that hill a lot better.

We sat on the bridge by the lock-keeper’s cottage for a bit to enjoy the lovely view and all the trees, and said hello to a man with a dog who was skittering up the steep bridge. Lovely. I was pleased with my pace because there were a good few hills and slippery canal bridges among the flat running and it was a lovely morning out.

6.7 miles, 11:55 mins per mile

Tuesday – It’s always a big ask for me to go out two days in a row but a couple of friends were going to club run who hadn’t been for ages, and I wanted to support Jenny trying to go a bit longer, and in the dark. We started off near the back and then Tracie tripped (and in going to save her, I managed to hit her back and nearly push her over – great work!) and was a bit sore so we took a shorter route and popped back home. It was good to stretch the legs out and I still got 3.5 miles in. Tracie seems to be OK now – phew!

Here’s a shot providing evidence of my ability to multi-task: stretching, drying my hair AND reading. All good as the glutes and hams are feeling much less tight.

3.5 miles, 12:40 mins per mile (middle section walk-run)

Wednesday – Jenny wanted to go to Dave yoga but could only make the early (hard) class so we went for it – she’s not a massive ashtanga fan so I wanted to be there for her. Phewee, it was hard work – I was sweating during and after. BUT I managed a shoulder stand for 6 breaths, and that’s the longest I’ve held a shoulder stand since the 1990s! I think it must be the Paul Circuits and their shoulder and core strengthening that has helped with that – another reason to keep up with them.

Thursday – Supporting the club’s 5k and beyond group again, taking Caroline’s slot as she was unavoidably busy: this was their first continuous running attempt so a big ask for them. I ran with a lovely lady who I’d run with in my previous volunteering session: she was a bit nervous but we took it steadily and did it! She was so happy and amazed, and I reminded her how they started out one minute running, one walking, and how she wouldn’t have imagined she could have run that far then. I really love helping this group as it’s wonderful to see their confidence grow. I tried to set a good example by going head-torch and one of my Lidl lights front and back (they have a loop and clip that will work around thin clothing. Mary Ellen saw my red light from ages back following me up to club, and when I did some extra at the end to make my miles up, first with Trudie, then on my own, Trudie and Dave could spot me from way off, too.

0.7 mi, 11:19 mins per mile / 1.59 mi, 14:24 mins per mile / 2 mi, 12:11 mins per mile

Friday – Realised I hadn’t done my Paul circuits and was seeing him for a coached session on Saturday, so had the bright idea of a) hoovering the stairs and landing and downstairs and bathroom and cleaning kitchen and bathroom b) doing Paul circuits, c) going to Claire yoga (second, easier session). Phew! I managed to do more in the circuits than last time, except the planks, where my shoulders were still sore from Wednesday. Claire yoga was very v e r y slow which was incredibly hard, but I did get through it just about!

Saturday – I was looking after Beginners in the park again for club – I’d swapped with Grace, meaning she could take my session in December when I’m officiating at cross-country in the afternoon. I had arranged to have a running form session with Paul so basically tried to get more miles in around those two points at 9.50 and 11.00.

I first ran three lovely miles with Trudie – it was so bright and sunny and blue. And we saw a PEACOCK!

We’d just run past it and Trudie said, “Um, that was a peacock topiary” and so it was. Instagrammable moment! But the lady from the house came out which was pretty awkward, though not to tell us off or anything!

Highbury Park was particularly lovely in the sun.

Then I took the beginners – one person turned up, but that was a lovely lady who had run with me last week. This week we did 1 min running, 1 min walking for 25 minutes and she did brilliantly.  I then ran a few loops to make up the time until I met Paul for my coaching session.

I met Paul at 11 and we went down the bottom of the park and went through my running form. First I ran a loop the way I would without thinking – and I was tired and sore so this was ideal as I wanted to work on my form when I was tired. He videoed me, yay. Then we worked on arms, and not crossing them in front, bringing them back, etc., with some exercises and demonstrations. Then it was legs, picking up my knees more and running with a little cone to bring my foot over – more videos and photos so I can compare. This was brilliant, if rainy, and I then ran home the long way round, trying to put all the instructions into place!

3 mi, 12:29 mins per mile / 1.8 mi, 13:57 mins per mile / 1.2 mi, 11:27 mins per mile / 2.5 mi, 11:35 mins per mile

So I got in 4 runs, two yoga sessions and a circuit session – done!

Kit update

I keep forgetting to share my new trainers! I was very upset when I got hold of the last two pairs of Saucony Guide 9s in my size, and I really didn’t like the Guide 10s (toes too narrow; went up a half-size; felt like I was running in clown shoes). So I had to bite the bullet and go to choose a new brand. Except I didn’t have to – after trying some Hoka OneOnes (too squishy, though many love them) and Brookes GTS (OK in a pinch and good to know they’re an option) I settled on Saucony Hurricanes hooray! Also the lovely folk at Up and Running give us a discount for being in a running club, which helps.

I also needed some trail shoes for training and then doing the trail ultra. I couldn’t face two sets of shoe shopping that day but Up and Running kindly put a pair of Saucony Peregrines aside for me, IN THEIR SALE and I went and tried them on Saturday afternoon. Loved them, very comfy (and I already knew several club friends like them) so bought those.

Aaand as my walking boots have developed a crack and leak, I treated myself to some updates in the sale. Except these are the same model, just a few years on, and don’t seem so tough and heavy. Must be a trend, as I popped in an outdoor shop on Saturday and could find nothing heavy and leathery. So I’m going to mend the crack with duct tape and use those for the bad conditions, and these for other conditions.

Other women might have millions of pairs of heels; I have a trainer and walking boot problem. There are worse addictions, right?

Miles this week: 23

Progress towards 1,000 miles in the year:  908 (916 is my end of November mini-goal)

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.