Always better in the sun

Did 11 on sunday and got back into running with a pack. Its not particulary necessary but the extra water and bananas are nice and I’d better get used to it as Preseli is signed up for (32 ultrabeast) and thats about 10 weeks.

Went along the beach and as the tide was dropping went out past Southerndown on rocks rather than cliffs. The terrain there is a little tricker.

Seriously cool erosion going on here
Twas a nice day and over here I cant see people!
A smidgen of rainbow
Broken ankles ahoy!
Best thing for sore ankle?  Freezing cold streams – Also handy for cleaning shoes. These are my current favourites – La Sportiva Mutants – These things do everything!

Looking at the long game

Short midweek run this week of 5 miles up the cliffs as the tide was in.  Only the one run in the week – unheard of!  The ankle is still niggling me so I figured more rest would help it plus I’m doing a little more work on flexibility and recovery including taking first steps at yoga! Yes indeed yoga. My suppleness could be best described as like an old oak tree, the trunk and major branches dont flex at all but I can move my twigs.

Where the hell do you start with yoga?  I started by asking the best in the business – Ceejay! Who very very kindly sent me huuuuuuge emails with instructions, videos, advice and encouragement for which I’m extremely grateful. Also brought it home how much support and help I get from the readers of this blog. Something I certainly didnt anticipate when I started it. So huge thanks to Ceejay and to all of you, the smallest messgae always means a lot and raises motivation =)

So if you are interested in yoga hop over to her blog and take a read.

So I’ve done it twice now and its harder than I thought, the 20 minute starting video I followed was manageable as long as I paused it long enough to work out how the hell to bend over there while keeping this bit straight over here.  So I did what I could and one day I will flex more and will be able to follow properly and better.

As for the long game – Well UTMB released their qualifying rules this week and as per usual I kinda jumped the gun, OCC now requires 6 points in 2 races this year onwards and not 4 – So the races I have planned this year get me 4 and to get the 6 I will need to do a 4 pointer or higher.  Thats out of the question this year – its planned, 3 ultras I really want to do, Preseli, Scafell and Sweden plus various other plans. And 4 pointers are basically 50 miler minimum. So I guess thats for next year. It’s a long game and I’m more than happy to be patient and wait a further year. I’m not pushing and breaking myself to rush a 50 or qualifying, it happens when it happens.

Theres the motivation – hey look how round my face used to be!

Bit o running, bit o news

Ran the usual on sunday, twas cold and hell windy and I even chased a childs rugby ball which was off down the beach on a mission of its own. The father congratulated me on my excellent ball pickup skills as I swooped, still got the old magic. I lie I never had any magic at rugby I was a prop and in about 15 years I think I touched the ball 3 times and 2 of those were accidental.

Anyway news – I’m off racing in Sweden in August!  Decided to get a few UTMB qualifying points abroad and seeing as I’m off for 6 weeks in the summer holidays why the hell not?

Ultravasan 45

So I figure as long as I can complete Scafell Pike in July and Ultravasan in August thats my 4 points accrued to enter the lottery for UTMB OCC plus I get weekends and weeks away!

Til then I’ll keep pounding away at the beach


Mixing it up

Running with someone else has given me a bit of a jolt in that since …. I’m not actually sure when …. I’ve been running in a bit of a comfort zone. It’s been a case of mileage being king, more miles the better and thats it. Time on feet is important but I’ve realised I’ve been doing most of my training in a relatively easy zone, how often am I really training “hard” I’ve slipped into the habit of slow hills and nice easy runs.  If I was recovering thats fine but all the time?

So a little speedwork here and there, some of the old fartlek type things have come into play plus hill sprints.  Speedwork I quite like, hill sprints I do not. But I think all these things easy, fast and fuck hills need to come together if I want to make the improvements to run well for the rest of the year.  Oh and listening to my body (before it breaks down not after)


We had sun?

Must be like mondays run or something as judging by the photos it was sunny – which it certainly hasn’t been since.

It was actually run after hangover run and to celebrate I did double digits and found some new fossils.

Swirly shell thingies – Im no geologist clearly
Roundy shell thing
Obligatory sunny cliff shot

Errr thursday?

All these days run into one amorphous mess so I think this was thursday or friday, does it really matter? It was a run and judging by the photos and where I was it was around the 11 mile mark. So in running order …..

Start off with the carrot delivery
Rainfall means the waterfall has ramped up its efforts
Good day for it
From Nash Point which leads tme to believe it was at least 11 miles if I did the photo above too

Inability to co-ordinate = comb fail

The title does make sense I promise. On saturday a friend and I were meant to go beachcombing for an xmas tree. However due to my lack of insight into how late the sun rises (as I rarely see dawn) I kinda messed up the timings so we called it off at 6.30 and I stayed in bed until it was light and I could run (silver linings eh) Can you spot the mistake below?  Sunrise at 8.08, tide at 8.08 over 6 metres – no beach to comb …. oops


Only around 9 miles but along the cliffs as I want to get at least some hill work done for next year.  I fed carrots to the horses and got to look at high tide folly from the cliffs


In other news sorry If I’ve been a bit slack on updates and following all your blogs and stuff.  Mums been in hospital for a few weeks now (very kind of her to do it in my off-season though!) and it’s been a bit hectic.  She looks to be on the mend now so as I know you’ll read this sending love mum!