Pebbling

I was out early on saturday morning to beat the heat of the day.  It meant that the tide wasnt quite right but I managed to get to the ladders just in time so I could come back along the clifftops.

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Met my buddies on the way
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The tide had just reached the pebbles so I got to walk along them in the shade for a while
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Pebbles and cliffs
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New buddies – Who wanted to come and see me and ran alongside for a field

I’ll let the photos do the talking ….

However you can play spot the red kite

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Not sure what the hell was divebombing me on the left of this photo!

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Google “autotuned” this photo – Not sure if I prefer it … Looks a little too bright

West Wales – Wet, Windy and Wonderful

Spent the weekend down in West Wales with a couple of friends and their dog which of course meant I got to do some running at last. The idea was to do a few miles of the coastal path in glorious sunshine and take in the views. This being Wales of course it was blowing a gale and raining on me from the outset. I was not to be deterred though!

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The beach at Newgale. Not accurately represented here is the howling gale

I was actually really enjoying myself despite the wind, cold and rain and was happily putting out enough effort to prevent hypothermia. The only times I got cold was when I stopped to take photos for you my dear readers. The sacrifices I make!

 

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Newgale is tiny, thats about it – The river cuts between the pebbles to make its own channel which is pretty cool. Well it would be if the sheer amount of pebbles wasn’t forcing the closure of the road

I had forgotten to bring my energy foods with me and so my friend had given me some marshmallows and chocolate but as I didn’t want them to melt in my pocket we shoved them in the only bag we had available – an (unused) dog poo bag.  A bags a bag but I decided to eat while crossing the bridge in the photo – So there I am in front of the cafe shovelling marshmallows straight from a dog poo bag into my mouth. Always make a good first impression when visiting a new place.

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The views were great despite the weather
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And the path was fun, technical and steep
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I returned via the beach and missed the point where I could rejoin the path home so I kept going to see how far the beach went
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Found some really pretty rocks while scrambling along

Then I came to a dead end, the only way was to go back the way I came or so some scrambling up a scree slope. I am not one to be deterred by a challenge so off I went

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Up here – This was actually loads of fun until I got to the top of the scree and realised there was a 20 foot vertical bank up to the path covered in gorse and brambles. Having already cut and scratched myself to bits I decided to let sense rear its ugly head and retreated back down. Only added about 4 miles to my run …..
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View from halfway up a scree slope

I eventually got back after about 3 hours, tired, cold and wet but happy. The quad is still not entirely happy but then i cant really blame it after a dozen miles and a climb up and down a bloody scree slope.

In the afternoon we popped into St Davids – The Smallest city in Britain.

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St Davids Cathedral

More importantly than sightseeing we took Iolo the dog to the pub

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Stare into my eyes and give me your Guinness

Catch me while you can

The sun shone yesterday and I just knew I had to be out in it for a short run. Plus the problem with an injury which only appears after a few miles of running – literally no discomfort at any other time – is that you don’t know if its gone.  So off I went to the beach.  The news is that the quad still hurts a little but I can feel the rest is improving it. To make sure I wasn’t going to screw things up again I took it super easy. The odd thing is that I find it hard to stick to super easy as when I stop thinkning about it my body naturally ups the pace, had to keep reminding myself to apply the brakes.

I think to be fair the time off running (Im counting 4 runs in 3 weeks as off running) is helping me recharge mentally after Preseli, on those days I’ve not been reading or thinking much about it deliberately so if you’ve wondered why I’ve been quiet and not invading your blogs (you know who you are) its purely some time out from the whole thing to recharge perspective. I’m getting to the point now though when I really want to be back fit and training again so as soon as the quad says go – Im gone!

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Was missing this place though
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Just peaceful

Hey legs guess what? Its hurty time again

Saturday morning and the sun is shining so time to uncreak the legs and go and look for some hills. Ok I knew where they were but the spirot of exploration sounds so much more exciting.

The beach was of course beautiful (but had no hills)

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Just enough room to squeeze through
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At the top of the ladders is the Cwm – Just what I was looking for
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Up here and down to over there
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And then back over there again …. repeat

Rinse, repeat, flail about helplessly when the legs go wobbly and then speed off home quads hurting again – Which I think is leftovers from last weekends jaunt.

So I have short sharp hills – now I need long, long long hills to build up the quads.

Bonus photos!

Taken at the Preseli Beast by Robert at www.beerrunner.co.uk

Hop over and take a read!

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Rob caught me in the slate quarries around Rosebush. Guess which I am?
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Short sharp climbs
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Loved the different terrain here

Cheers for sending them Rob, thanks for not capturing my anguished expression!

 

Recovery run?

Not actually sure it’s a recovery run of its 4 days later but it still hurt like a recovery run. I only did 4 miles as everything was still a bit sore but I wanted to try these out – my reward for the training and completion of Preseli

La Sportiva Mutants

Check the tread out on these bad boys!
Can’t judge them until I’ve worn them more and yesterday everything hurt anyway which isn’t a fair test :p 

Was good to be back at the beach though on the relative flat! 

Couple weeks of limbo with no poles

Five miles at the beach yesterday just to keep the legs ticking over. I’m taking it easy this week and the same next week just to give the body time to rest before Preseli. Seems like the sensible thing to do. After so many months of training there’s little to be gained and much to be lost by pushing until something snaps now.

I must admit its the frustrating past of taking part in races, as you know I prefer to just run to feel and mood but a race means having to do things differently. It would be easy to say “well don’t race” but having a date and a distance does at least provide some sort of structure to what i’m doing even if it’s only loose. Plus of course I want to see where I’m at mentally and physically as things toughen up.

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Sky is blue wherever you are or whatever you do
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Grass is always green