Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Jewel of Glasgow

Lighter nights are here, and have been like an unleashed beast following the coldest winters in Scotland I can remember! The mountain bike has been getting some more use recently with some sessions in what I would describe as the ‘Jewel of Glasgow’ – Pollok country park. This is a truly special place, to the extent it has been awarded the title of ‘Europe’s Best Park’ in 2008.  This is all thanks to Sir John Stirling Maxwell who left the park for the people. Imagine that nowadays? It would be covered in flats.
Pollok House, and my trusted steed (Kona Caldera)

My pal ‘Hamish’ the Coo at Pollok Park

Sitting on the south of Glasgow, I have the privilege of having this tremendous park right on my doorstep, and I am already reaping the benefits of after work blasts round the mountain bike tracks complete with rolling jumps twists and turns to keep you on your toes. Doing both the intermediate and ‘hard’ (but not that hard) track back to back, it is approximately 1.7 miles. Initially I was doing this in the region of 10 min 50sec at an easy pace, but recently gave it more of a blast and got it down to 9min 48sec. I reckon 9min is achievable with a few weeks practice. Got the Garmin Edge 705, mounted on the bike (been using it on the road bike recently also) and will get some of the sessions up and link to the Garmin Connect page.


Still here!!

Well after a number of comments about not updating the blog, I’ve been shamed into getting my finger out and get some posts up! Progress on the running front is slow, particularly following the discovery is that it is boring as hell, especially in the dull weather of February and March. Alias, the return of some tremendous days in April has helped nudge things on a bit, resulting in my longest running session of over 16K last Sunday. Buzzing off this new achievement, I swooped passed the house, got a drink and headed out again for another 4K, only to start to feel muscle twinges in my foot within the last 400m from the house. There’s a lesson to be learned here……quit while your ahead and you’ll fight another day!!!  On the mend now, but been hitting the bike more this week…….and the barbeque. What?? Everyone needs a carrot!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Recent running escapades

Over the last few weeks I'd been testing the water with this running malarky and heading out locally. First few attempts at breaking the ice was probably about a mile an a half of running comfortably for 200m or so and walking for 100m, and feeling fresh when arriving home. Done this a few times, split up by a day intervals, then tried the same over a larger circuit of 2.7 miles. Trainers have been fantastic with extra support, and no sore knees or ankles as yet.

Figuring this was going well, the logical step was to join up the dots and try the full 2.7miles at a comfortable running pace. This went down alright, working out at a pace of just over 10min a mile. Multiply this over your marathon your talking just over 4hrs, so perhaps this is something to train towards. Best start swatting up then.......

Notice the magazine story 'is bigger better' (talking about stride). Best ask the girlfriend about that one!!!!!!

Major Payne out.

Bike Hibernation

It's been a while since I've been on any of my road bikes, but it is time to dust them down and bring the stoor covered beasts out of hibernation......

The only one receiving any use of late it the cboardman carbon on some sporadic rides just to ensure that I can actually remember how to cycle. Thankfully instinct kicked in.

Next bike to get built up is the specialised s-works TT bike, who will be my trusty steed for any pre iron man time trials over the coming couple of years. Last time it was let loose it got me into 23 min 10 mile TT's (ahem, notice not sub 24's), I'll get it built up in the coming week and give you the lowdown.

- Posted on the move using BlogPress

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

2011 Berlin Marathon

There's nothing like getting thrown in at the deep end. Yes, the entry is official in, - and there's no going back now. Only injury will foil the plan. I've been to Berlin before, flew into the airport and out by car, seeing not much more than the autoban. It was always the intention to return and seen the city properly, and aim to fulfill the oath. And whats a better way to see Berlin than running 26 miles of city roads? Just wondering if dragging yourself by the nails along tarmac and slavering uncontrollably constitutes sightseeing. There was also the option of a 'double entry', where you finish the marathon, run and get your roller blades and go round again. This had once again confirmed that the Germans a likeably mental.

Entry is open to 40,000 competitors, so the buzz should be awesome. Where to begin in the training stakes for this one is still up in the air. Best go and have another biscuit and a sit down and formulate a plan...........

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Correct Footwear Makes a Big Difference!

Well, after trying out running in previous years and finding it a bit hard going on the joints I knew there must have been something wrong! I lesson was learned to never underestimate footware!

A trip over to a the running shop Achilles Heel' in Glasgow revealed that I don't have much of an instep, and require some hefty support, with a bit of extra width. So far on my short runs no significant problems with the new Asics trainers (below), and worth every penny.

Just shows you, sometimes a bit of expert advice can solve a problem as quick as it arose. Got me thinking that a trip to a podiatrist may be of benefit before I really start pounding the road in anger.

Why on earth an Ironman?

This toned down question has been asked over the last few weeks. Usually followed up by, comments about being insane, delusional possibly even stupidity for the suggestion. This is especially so not having participated in any triathlon before, and run like I’m perhaps a bit special. Yes, running is definitely a big unknown and all will become apparent over the next couple of years what level of challenge this will present.  Although joggers trots and nipples are surely things of myth?!

So why an Ironman? I still don’t have a definite answer to this one. I suppose over the last number of years my exercise regime including cycling and more recently martial arts has been a particularly solitary affair based on pushing myself, whilst basically keeping fit. The ironman is perhaps and extension of this, one of the largest all round personal challenges requiring strength, endurance and stamina. Plus it will give more motivation to get up off my arse away from the  40” dreaded life sucking TV that currently occupies the living room which is currently aiding the creeping in of the belly monster.
Feck the belly monster. Bring on the pain. Bring on the Major Payne.