12 months of Average HR and Average Pace

I’ve just got back from my Day 10 run of Run Until You Drop (so, 10 miles), and uploaded my magic numbers to Garmin Connect.  I was tinkering around with some of the menus and came across these two charts which I thought showed the effect of my aerobic training so far:

Here’s the pace:

Average Pace

Average Pace

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Update: 2 months of Aerobic Training

[I’ve gone and done it again.  I wrote 90% of this post then never got around to finishing and posting it, so it’s a little out of date but still relevant.  So here it is…]


So, I’ve almost managed 2 months of running slowly aerobically.  I’ve done a race.  And I’ve got some good stats to show whether it’s all working or not so far for me.

Review of the Runs

This post covers the time from mid November when I started through to 6th January, over which time I ran 310 miles.  I’ve downloaded some data, doodled some graphs and even made up a new metric which I think may go some way towards quantifying aerobic fitness.

Heart Rate

First, here’s the average heart rate chart for my runs:

Two Running Feet - Average Heart Rate

Average Heart Rate


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Argh! My legs are broken!

Well, not really, but it makes a better title than “ooh, that smarts a bit”.

So, one week after running 75 miles at Endure 24 I thought I’d better start some marathon training for the Bournemouth & Poole Marathon in October.  With all the ultra training I’ve been doing for most of the year, I don’t really have any stamina for speed any more.  I can still run at a reasonable pace for a couple of miles but it all goes to pot after that.

I’m not really sure how – as an ultra runner – you train for a marathon.  I’ve sort of made up my own plan which is to add more speed endurance work (25-30 minute tempo reps, hill reps and some moderate intervals), shorten some of the longer runs (bring some 12 milers down to, maybe, 8 miles) and speed them up.  But I also don’t want to lose the distance, so I want to make sure I get a couple of 20-30 mile runs in each month as a slow pace, just to enjoy myself. Continue reading →

A little 55 mile run…


I’ve been planning a 12 hour training run for a while, and at the end of last week – with just over 3 weeks to go until Endure 24 – I finally managed to get out and do it.

I spent quite a while beforehand thinking about a route, and settled on a loop that started at Upton Country Park, went up to the Castleman Trailway and followed the path of a disused railway track to Upton, then down and back into the country park and round pretty much the whole perimeter.  The loop was 4.3 miles long.

I ran the whole course a week or so beforehand just to check that nothing had changed and all looked good to go, so on Friday of last week I got up at 6am, got myself ready and filled the boot of the car with stuff – mainly food and drink – then set off and parked in the car park of Upton Country Park.  At 07:25, I started running…


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Pony Express Training, or Keep Smiling and Ditch the Watch!

This week is my peak week for training for the Pony Express (3/4 May 2014), I’m hoping to get up to 50 miles this week which will be spread over 3 runs.  The first 2 (Tuesday and Wednesday) were a back-to-back of just over 10 miles and then a full marathon, and the last will be on Saturday as a run down to the Poole Parkrun, do the race then run home (which adds up to around 13 miles).  This post is about my longer run…

Thoughts on the Long Run

As I mentioned above, the latest run was a marathon distance which was intended to be from Broadstone to Ringwood on the Castleman Trailway, then down to Christchurch on the Avon Valley Way, with a final jaunt along to Pokesdown to make up the distance and land me at a train station for the return home.  It didn’t work out quite like that though…

20140416_073509-PENTAX WG-3 GPS-0429

The Lady Wimborne Bridge

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47.5 Miles – Running from Poole to Winchester

On 1st March this year (2014), I’m doing my first official ultra marathon – the 46 mile Green Man Ultra in Bristol.  Over the last 4-6 months, I’ve clocked a few 50+ mile weeks, averaged about 40 miles per week and pretty much every run is at least 7 miles.  I’ve done some back-to-back runs and quite a few 20+ milers too, but up until yesterday the longest run I’d ever done was 30 miles.

Now I know there’s no need to run more than about 30 miles when training for a 50 (ish) miler, but the reason I’ve got into the distance running is because I love the thought of getting somewhere in a run – going from home, and completely under your own steam ending up somewhere quite a long way away.  You get the time to look around and enjoy the journey and the satisfaction of getting there all on your own.

Back in October, I had the idea of running to a distant train station so I could get home again.  I live near Poole in Dorset, and I’d run to Christchurch a couple of times (17 miles or so) and got the train back, but I wanted to push it further.  I looked at Brockenhurst but it didn’t add that much distance on, and then Southampton, and then slightly jokingly looked to Winchester.

It takes the fast train over 1 hour to get to Winchester, so it really is quite a long way away.  However, I’d had previous experience with the city of Winchester, having cycled 75 miles to work once when I worked in North Hampshire, going a nice (ish) route through the New Forest, Romsey, Winchester and on to Basingstoke.  So that was it then – I had a destination, I had a route, and I had just about enough lack of sense to seriously contemplate it. Continue reading →

Thoughts from Todays Run

Last week I had been planning to run 40+ miles, but after the running club on Wednesday I decided that I’d take it easy as my ankle/calf/knee/ITB* was playing up.  I partly thought I’d be sensible and have a few days off, but mostly I just didn’t fancy running.  Which annoyed me.

(* delete as applicable when I can figure out which one is causing the problems!)

Aaaaanyway, today – despite feeling a bit coldy – I got my kit on and went out, telling myself I’d see how I feel and run appropriately.  As usual, that didn’t work and I ended up doing 10.3 miles and coming within 3 minutes of my 10 mile PB on what was supposed to be a gentle, relaxing run!  I had quite a few random thoughts while running around, so I thought I’d write the ones I remembered down

  1. It takes my ankles a surprisingly long time to wake up when it’s cold – about 2 miles!
  2. Trail running is so much more fun than road running
  3. Autumn leaves make for beautiful paths, but can hide some hefty tree roots.
  4. My running and breathing hardly changes over reasonable hills now – I guess my fitness really is improving.
  5. I love running over the wooden bridge into Upton Country Park.
  6. I was within 30 seconds of running both under and over passing trains on the railway tracks I run past
  7. As a society, we really should move away from selling 2 pub meals for £8.49.  That can’t be real food, can it?
  8. The decorative, twirly railings on Poole’s new Twin Sails bridge look lethal if you fall into them!
  9. I stopped to peer at the second hand £34,000 Evora in the Lotus garage.  One day…
  10. Running on the road is dull (see 2)
  11. I really should see if some people at the running club fancy a head-torch trail run once a week.
  12. When the run gets tough, think about why – what specifically is making it imperfect? Then do something about it!  Simples 🙂
  13. I need to work on my memory techniques, as there’s a lot I’ve forgotten.

It’s funny what you think of when you run.  I enjoyed this one, and am looking forward to another tomorrow.

In other news, I also booked myself a sports massage for next week, and I’m hoping to make it a regular thing.  Hopefully my aforementioned ankle/calf/knee/ITB issue can be resolved this way.

Until next time…