Sunday, 25 September 2011

Orton Autumn Fair Fell Race

6 MILE/845 FT

Its been 9 weeks since I last raced and feeling upbeat with how my left leg has been improving these last 2 weeks, thought this 6 mile race would be ideal to give it a proper test
With only 845ft of climbing it felt more like a cross country race and with all the rain we have had recently it was ankle deep in soft mud for parts of the course- just like cross country.

A small field of 63 stood on the start line and a good turn out from Helm Hill was present. I positioned myself in about 3 rows from the front and as we set of up the road for the first 500 yards I fund myself jostled into about 20th position, so as soon it was possible I started moving up on the inside and by the time we had set foot on the fell I had got into 5th place and was on my own, with 4th place about 20 yds ahead and group of 4 about 20 yds behind.

The hill was all runnable but eventually the group of 4 caught and passed me as if I was stood still and I struggled for a couple of minutes whilst they got ahead of me.
Once on the top I managed to open my legs out on the descent and caught one of the 4 who had past me and was beginning to catch up on another  runner.
Managed to catch another runner on the run in and ended up in 7th place and 2nd v40, 15 seconds behind David White of Helm Hill, who I have never beaten since he turned v40.

So, happy with run and got some great tips/stretches of Dave Stones and Gavin Thomas regarding my problems with my left leg. All in all a good day.

Tom Addison was first male and Melanie Hyder first lady. A double for Helm Hill.

Helm Hill team bath

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Why is it....

....that you only stretch when your injured ?

For the last couple of weeks I have been stretching a lot more, and touch wood, things seem to be improving.
I hardly ever stretch unless I see someone else doing it and I copy them so it looks like I know what I'm doing!

I have managed 4 good fell runs in the last 7 days and even so I can still feel a bit of tightness all down my left leg, I feel im picking up a bit more speed.

It was a big test last night when I joined up with mates Stevie B , Sam Ware ,Carl Bell and roadie Steve Angus (who are all much faster runners then me) and apart from the climbing I just about managed to hold some pace going on the tops without feeling too much ill-effect this morning.
Stretching is the key for me and hopefully I be be back blogging soon about races instead of self pity.

All smiles after a good run out

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Still complaining

Not raced since Snowdon - injury is stopping me from stretching out, more about that later.

It has been a piss poor year for me on the racing front, I normally get about 30-35 races in a year- this year I have done 13. Its is the racing that I enjoy most, meeting up with friends that you only see at race meets and that special moment  you always get in a race when your half way up/down a fell side and you look up to see the amazing view and the feeling of great well-being.

I had an entry for Ben Nevis but it was too much of a risk in case I made the injury worse. I was gutted not to go and to be honest I have not read any other blogs if it had the words "Ben Nevis" in the title, pathetic I know, but it is so painful when you have badly wanted to do a race and not been able because of injury.

The year started and I had high hopes of improving my times, concentrating more on speed rather then endurance. I felt like I had a good winters training leading up to February and at the Pennine Relays I don't think I had ever felt so fit.
Since February though I seemed to have been through a rotation of injured -getting fit -injured again.
When I was free from injury I was really enjoying going to the local tri clubs speed sessions and I felt I was improving and beginning to look forward to the Autumn road racing season, but I have not been able to attend them for about 6 weeks now. If I do any road racing at all this year it will to try and build up my speed for next year.

So the injury or should I say injuries. Two. First one was like a torn stomach muscle that really hurt if I did anything that involved me tightening my stomach muscles. Still sore but 80% better.

The second one is a bit more complicated for me to explain. I'm fine if I jog slowly and take very small steps but as soon as I try and stretch out my legs to pick up a bit of speed my left calf, hamstring, groin and buttock goes really tight and sore. The good thing is that its not stopping me from running up hills, very slowly, so slow that some of my fell running mates would question if it is running at all. Even roadie Stevie A , who I ran up Blencathra with last week last week thought it was ridiculously easy.

So not all bad I know at least I can still plod away, but after 6 weeks I would of hoped it would be better by now.
One thing I have been doing is instead of running up a fell side as fast as possible and then running back down again, I have taken a bit more time on the tops enjoying the views..... which aint a bad thing.

Some photos below from the last 6 weeks plods.
I enjoyed watching the Lakeland 50/100 mile race
My kids took great delight in beating me up Blencathra
Haweswater with Kidsty Pike
Hope it was on a training exercise
Climbing Great Mell Fell
Sun going down on Blencathra
Survey Post

From Catstycam
High Pike
Blencathra Ridges