This week was always going to go one of two ways. I was on holiday so was either going to have more than enough time to get my training in. Or, I was on holiday and I’d find I relaxed too much. Unfortunately it was more if the latter!

Having done more than was originally intended the day before, Monday was a well deserved rest day, although I did still end up in the North Sea with the kids!

Tuesday called for some hill repeats. Now one thing that I had found on the previous Sunday’s long run is that it is quite hilly where we holiday in Northumberland. The question was where to find a hill within a sensible warm-up distance. In the end I settled on a slightly lower climb that was close to the holiday home. It was still double the climb of any hills I run back home when doing these sets with the climb very focused into the middle minute of a 2 minute stretch. By the end of the set of 10 my quads were burning!

I did then get some bonus distance in that afternoon. I have written on this blog many times about my kids, especially my daughter, running. She had already gone for a run with her aunt and uncle that morning but my youngest got jealous as he wanted to run home as well. Therfore that afternoon I did the almost 3k run back with him. I love that they want to run and not just for a time at Junior parkrun.

On Wednesday we were headed to Lindisfarne Island. If you have never visited, Lindisfarne has a tidal causeway so for half the day it is cut off from the mainland, therfore if you are driving you have to head at the right time. On the day this meant the causeway was opening around 9am so there wasn’t enough time to run early doors. I did have plans to run that afternoon though. Up first however was a loop of the island with my eldest who had seen his younger siblings run the day before and wanted to not miss out. As it was, by the time we had left the island and navigated the traffic, it was later than I had envisaged and I was shattered so the long run home was knocked on the head.

This then ended up also being the case on Thursday. I had planned an early start but bed was too comfy and with family plans for the day, I quickly ran out of time. The learning is that training plans that call for runs of 1hr+ on holiday are actually hard to fit in. Friday was always written in as a rest day as this was check out day and I didn’t think anyone would appreciate me disappearing for an hour before a 9:30am check out and long drive home!

What this meant was that my Saturday morning I hadn’t run for myself in several days. I have written in more depth about my visit to Huddersfield parkrun here but two things were definitely true as I ran a parkrun PB. The extra rest had come in handy and the hill training on Tuesday had seen immediate benefits!

Now one of the reasons that I had done such a long run on the first weekend of my holiday was linked to this week’s finish. My training plan called for a half marathon race at the end of week 8, I guess as a litmus test of where you are at atvthe halfway point. However, this week was the Kimbolton Half Marathon that a friend of mine was doing. It seemed almost perfect as it was out by just one week on the plan, it gave an excuse to do a longer run when I would have the time on holiday and it gave a reason to get home on the Saturday after a week away. But, when I came to sign up I was slightly staggered by the price. £37 (+6% booking fee) and an extra tenner if you wanted a t-shirt as well. I just thought it was too much, especially as there was a risk we’d not be back in time so I “downgraded” to a time trial.

The problem was after two days of lots of travelling and 9 nights in three different beds that weren’t mine, I was shattered and when my alarm went off, I wasn’t getting up! I was ready to call it quits as we were due at friends after lunch but my wife talked some sense in to me as I have missed too many longer runs this time round and it is showing a little in my stamina. Therfore at around 9:45 with a cup of coffee and pint of squash to fuel me I headed out. What I hadn’t bargained on was the heat/humidity. Within a mile of warming up I was already sweating buckets. That said, once I got moving it seemed to be going OK. I wasn’t aiming for PB pace but I was still quite settled at around 4:50 per km pace. I had knocked through around 7km and then all of a sudden I was really struggling as my temperature spiked. I ended up sitting for about 10mins in the shade and taking on my gel early to see how that would do. From that point on the run was hellish but, despite another couple of stops, I did finish the mileage. Not every run will go well and this was definitely one if those, I just hope that it was better to get this out the way now and hopefully not on Oct 3rd.

  • Monday –  Rest Day
  • Tuesday – 10x 2min hills – 12.03km + 2.89km with my youngest
  • Wednesday – Lap of Lindisfarne with my eldest – 3.54km
  • Thursday – Rest Day
  • Friday – Rest Day
  • Saturday – Huddersfield parkrun 20:56
  • Sunday – 22.80km @ 5:00 pace
  • Total – 46.26km
  • Overall Total – 371.23km

By Mike

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