Monday, 10 January 2011

New Year, New Optimism

Well, hello again and Happy New Year to all readers!

My, it's parky out isn't it? Mrs HF and I are a tad more sensitive to it at the moment because we've spent the festive period on an Exodus trip touring Vietnam and Cambodia (hence no blogging). We're used to 28-31 degrees C and humidity upwards of 80%. So it was a bit of a shock when I went out this lunchtime for a quick half-hours poddle around the lanes in the sleety rain!

After the diabolical year that was 2010, I'm hoping 2011 will be a lot better, running wise. To that end, I'm going to try and introduce a bit more structure into my training this year.

I've been hugely impressed with Runningbear's spreadsheet, target HR, scientific, precision-running, timetable approach, even if I know that I could only stick to it for about 5 minutes before it all went pear-shaped. 

So my programme will be more yer classic slow, steady Sunday run, dipping into a rotating selection of intervals, hill reps, Kenyan hills, fartlek, doglek and tempo runs during the week. I'm going to go through the Bible, otherwise known as the FRA Fixtures Calendar & Handbook, to try and pick out some races that can act as mini targets through the year.

But first I needed to assess my baseline fitness after having spent three weeks doing nothing more strenuous than a bit of flat cycling and a couple of hours in a kayak. I also had my traditional festive cold which I'm now just getting over.  That was what today's run was about.

Basically I went up the hills from home for 15 minutes, turned round and came home, all the time monitoring the following:
  • aches
  • niggles
  •  degree of raspyness of the breathing
  • closeness to the 'bugger this for a game of soldiers' mind meltdown
  • level of agreement/disagreement with the statement: 'I'm getting to old for all this nonsense'
  • degree of curiosity about  'How fast can I run if I train properly and consistently?'
  • scale of enjoyment about defying the weather
  • my personal coefficient of belonging (0= outsider, 1=committed) to the fellowship of runners
 - not stuff that can be spreadsheeted (?spreadshit) very easily!  My conclusions are: my fitness is rubbish, but miles better than this time last year, my cold's got a way to run, I feel younger for having been out than not, sod the weather, and, though I tend to do my own thing, I like being part of the running fraternity.

Let's hope this optimism lasts.

Smileyrating for this run 5/10. Not great. Not total cr*p.


  1. I say, that's a bit exotic isn't it? Vietnam and Cambodia? Anyway, welcome back, here's hoping you're soon racing again and achieving all you set out to do in 2011.
    At my time of life HF I don't make plans, I just take life as it comes. That way, I'm never disappointed but, on the other hand, some very pleasant surprises often come my way!
    Happy New Year.

  2. now thats what i call something to build on

  3. maybe a flow chart or even a pie chart. mmm.....pie. happy new hf, hope you have a great 2011 on the fells :)

  4. Happy New Year!! The exact same thoughts were on my 'why do I this do list' on my wet and windy trot about the lanes this morning. It's good to know I'm not the only one that could botch up a training plan within 5 minutes and that there are more training programme rule breakers out there!

  5. Hi Hayfella,
    Welcome back from your trip! And what a lovely post to kick of new running ambitions for the New Year.

    I also feel a bit famous after Smileyrunner name check.. and my spreadsheet is looking rather splendid already thank you :]

    Best wishes for a fresh and new running you and look forward to reading your 2011 adventures.