I have to admit to being a bit of a Debbie Downer over the last few weeks – despite stretching/strengthening and cutting back on training my IT band is still giving me a pretty sore knee and now all race plans for Jan have been abandoned. At this moment in time actually completing the races is the only thing planned and as much as this will be an achievement in itself I can’t help feel a little bit disheartened after training since March for this event. I highly doubt I’ll be able to run the races and its just made me a little bit down after dedicating so much time, money and effort.
To cheer myself up I am going to reminisce on happier times and complete a running survey which I stole from the wonderful ladies at werundisney.com (a great blog if you ever think of running at disney or just want tips for packing for a runcation).
1. Would you rather run along a beach or mountain trail.
Definitely embrace the hills and run in the mountains. I’m not particularly a beach girl and although I’ve never done a mountain trail race (living in a city centre doesn’t present too many training opportunities) I do love hiking and wish I could get to do it more often!
2. If you could choose any flavour of Gatorade for your next race, what would it be?
I’m not a fan of gatorade and only really like lucozade orange. I much prefer to drink water/nuun and get my energy from gels/shot bloks.
3. If you were given a $100 gift card to a running store, what would be the first thing you purchase with it?
mmmmmm toughy as I will probably need new running shoes come Jan, however I am a sucker for new running kit. So probably some new funky nike shorts (I love their designs) and maybe a few new tops!
4. Do you prefer to follow a training plan or wake up and decide then how far and fast you want to run?
If I have a goal race in mind then I love a training plan – theres something very satisfying crossing of completed work outs and hitting your weekly goal! When I haven’t got a race in mind I just tend to run on feel – although I usually follow the rule of two shortish runs during the week and a longer run at the weekend.
5. Would you rather start your run with the uphill and end on the downhill or start your run with the downhill and end on the uphill?
Probably get the hill out the way – like St. Vincent street and the Great Scottish Half Marathon. Saying that running downhill on spent legs is a fine art and can be as draining as running up hill!
6. When you can’t run, what type of cross-training do you choose to do?
I used to play hockey and swim a few times a month when I lived in Edinburgh and I’m hoping after the new year to take up hockey again and maybe check out some pools nearby (I actually find swimming wayyyyyyy more draining than running, but its a great all over work out). I’m also a fan of pilates and would like to do this more than once a week.
7. What’s your preference –> out and back or point to point or loop runs?
During training I’ve been running a mixture of two loops close to my flat, which has been great. For a race however I like point to point races or where you do one big loop – no repeating sections! Out and back I find a bit depressing especially in a race when you see all those lucky souls miles in front of you!
8. If you could recommend ANY running related item to a new runner, it would be a…?
Ooooooooh I’d probably say, for ladies, definitely a good sturdy sports bra (I use shock absorber and have never had any problems). This would be closely followed by good shoes and then injinji socks (lifesavers!!).
9. Do you ever see any wild animals while out on your runs?
Most of my training is in the city centre of Glasgow, so apart from a few pigeons then no!
10. Ever gotten lost while out on a run?
Gladly no. I’m pretty boring and keep to the same routes, makes me feel a bit safer when running outside (classic paranoid me).
11. If you could have one meal waiting and ready for you each time you got home from a run for the next 30 days, what would that meal be?
Ahhhhh this would kill me as whenever I’m doing anything over a 5k all I do for the majority of the run is decide what I want to eat – and I get massive run induced cravings all the time!! Seen as its winter though probably homemade chilli with lots of cheese on top.
12. Capris or shorts…what do you run in most often?
Shorts – I don’t usually like anything covering my knees when I’m running, but when I’m outside capris are a must in this winter weather. I still can’t run in long leggings, my calves just can’t handle it!
13. At what mile (or how many minutes) into your run does your body start to feel like it is warming up and ready to go?
Definitely takes me a few kms to warm up – which is probably why my 5k time is so slow when compared to my 10k/half marathon pbs. Once I hit 2 or 3 km I’m usually into my stride and get into a nice rhythm. This is why I always tell new runners not to give up after 1 mile – your body probably isn’t in the groove yet!
14. What do you do with your key when you run?
I always run with a waist belt to keep my phone and keys safe. I don’t like armbands for running and I need several keys to get into my flat so cant just attach them to my shoe! I’m hoping Santa is going to bring me a new waist belt as my trusty old H&M one gave away a few weeks ago 😦
15. If you could relive any race that you have done in the past, which one would it be?
Can I choose two pretty please?? No, okay fine then! Probably the Liverpool Rock n Roll 5k this year – mostly because I ran it with my little sister, but also because the route and organisation was just amazing. If you want an actually answer regarding the race I ran then probably the Great North Run this year. It wasn’t a pb for the half marathon, but I beat my previous time by 18 minutes (in one year as well) and although the route was super crowded and I could have gone faster, this gave me a chance to fully appreciate why this run is so famous. Also when I crossed the finish line and realised I had beaten my time by 18 mins and was in better shape than last year, gave me a great feeling knowing how much I had come on in just 12 months (and 4 of them I didnt really run!)
Hope this wasn’t too long and I didn’t sound too depressed at the beginning! This week I’m going to have another rest week and see how my leg is after that.
As always sending the injury free vibes your way!