Back on the road

The most pleasing thing about my Friday bike is how quickly I recovered. Some might say that means I didn’t push it hard enough, but I prefer to think of it as conservation of energy for the rest of the weekend ahead, which as it turns out I needed to do.

Parkrun on saturday looked like it was going to be sunny but then it was pretty chilly down at the track. I didn’t really have a plan other than to pootle round, but when Mike turned up and said he was happy to run round with me I thought I would go for it and try and get him to pace me under 27 mins for the first time since November. He was up for the challenge and since I had forgotten my Garmin (ARGH) I left myself in his hands. He was really good actually, he didn’t expect me to talk all the way round and kept me updated when I needed to push on. Near the end I thought I’d blown it but found some effort from somewhere and finished in 26:55. Still nowhere near the heady heights of sub-25 but the fastest all year and it felt pretty good. I don’t have my splits but Mike reckoned we’d done the tricky middle mile the fastest, so I was pretty chuffed with that.

The rest of Saturday passed in a haze of cleaning, the sunshine is lovely but it doesn’t half show up the dust so we topped and tailed the place between us and it looked much better by the end of it. I also got a bit of baking in – a second attempt at Tiger Bread, this turned out really well and tasted AMAZING. I made it by hand rather than in the Breadmaker and used my new proving basket and both worked out really well. Will definitely be doing that again (after the wedding though, the temptation to eat the whole thing warm drenched in butter is too strong).


Sunday saw my first 10k of the year – the North Tyneside 10k. I’ve not done it before but it is popular as witnessed by the large number of clubmates also taking part. The race starts in North Shields and heads up the coast before finishing in Whitley Bay. Rather unusually for a race of this magnitude there is no chip timing, so the start was a bit of a scrum. The beginning bit is downhill but then it climbs quite steeply up to the coastal path by Tynemouth Priory (I walked up that!) and then never really flattens out before you get to the end. My aim was to get round in under an hour, but my parkrun yesterday had spurred me on a bit, and apart from a niggle in my upper thigh (caused by cycling I think) I felt ok, so pushed on and came home in about 55 and a half mins. Again like parkrun it is some way off my best but represents an improvement on recent times so I was happy.

Or mostly happy anyway since if I thought the start had been a scrum then that was nothing compared to the finish where people were barging in the queue left right and centre. I don’t know if they just didn’t understand funnel etiquette or wanted to boost their finishing place but it was rude and made me quite cross, and coupled with a 45 min wait for the bus back to the start I think the organisers could think a bit more carefully about next years race. The nice t-shirt and socks helped though, as did some easter cakes baked by some clubmates and it was hard to be cross for very long.

After all this excitement there was still more to come on Easter Monday which saw a very pleasant round of golf in the sunshine and then back on the bike again (this time my hybrid which has yet to be named…) for 22 miles along the trail with some clubmates.

This leaves the last week or so with the following:

Sun: 12 mile fell race
Mon: 4 mile recovery run
Tues: 4 mile lunchtime run, strength and conditioning training in the evening
Weds: track session (4.5 mile total)
Thurs: 1 mile swim
Fri: 53 mile bike ride
Sat: parkrun
Sun: 10k race
Mon: golf and 22 mile bike ride

I make that nearly 110 miles of activity – not bad at all. Unfortunately this equated to a 5lb loss by Friday, and a 4lb gain from Fri to Monday so my diet needs some work this week, but that I can do.

This week is:

Tues: possible run (colleagues have wimped out though) and strength and conditioning
Weds: Relay race
Thurs: Swim

Then away for the weekend which scuppers most plans except maybe parkrun on saturday. Better go out for a run today I think…

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