Adding (some) elevation

I havent really done much elevation (unless you count hill sprints) as I’ve been enjoying the beach so much but I certainly enjoyed switching it up and getting up along the cliffs. I can get around 500ft of total ascent if I take this route so I guess its better than nothing.  Why don’t they build mountains on the coast here?

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Up and away

 

Oh the places you’ll go ….

Yesterdays long run went well, only another 11 miles but felt really good and in control of my pace so I finished it feeling quite similar to the start.  Up along the cliffs to Nash Point and then the length of the beach up onto Witches Point for a few climbs. A circuit of Southerdown beach then a scramble over Witches at low tide and then a run home via the ladders and my folks. I love saturday mornings!

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First up – I think these are barrow mounds and Nash Point. There was a Bronze Age hillfot here
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Steps – Lots of steps. From the cliffs you can see the stepped nature of the rocks on the beach. This is why beach running hurts sometimes. No wonder my ankles and knees protest.
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Low tide and a part of a shipreck (I assume) is uncovered. Kinda cool but then ….
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….. when you see it in context of being in the middle of the sand here you can only imagine everything that lies underneath ….
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Someone stole my rainbow!
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The grass covered cliffs of Southerdown beach
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Witches point looking toward Nash Point. This is a fun scramble across which can only be done at low tides.
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I found this in a pool left by a fisherman (along with other litter – arseholes) Not sure what it is but I was attracted magpie-like to the bright green and so I tied it to my pack and ran back with it anyway.
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Spotted the ship!  Good blurry photo this – I can tell you it was big and white!
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First lamb of spring battering for milk! Good luck dude

13 miles of nature

Went out yesterday as the tide was low and the sun shining, didn’t make any plans other than enjoying myself. For those new to the blog I don’t subscribe to training plans, I’m an organic runner – In other words I’m too lazy to make a training plan and would be too ill disciplined to stick to it if I did. Running for me is about having fun and adventures outside.

So off I jolly well went in best Famous Five tradition. Only there was just one of me….

I digress.

First thing I noticed was a battle between extreme rainfall swollen stream versus tides. I’ve never seen all these steps and mini waterfalls before as they are always covered in rocks and pebbles but you can see how the stream has actually cleared a path. Freshwater 1 – Salt water 0

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I headed off towards Witches Point

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Witches Point is yonder! Head for the sunshine!

I got to play on all my favourite rocks as usual and felt pretty good once the usual two or so miles of awww crap its not happening ….. oh I feel awesome

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Was delighted to rediscover the rainbow in the waterfall

Got to Witches Point, turned into a headwind and went back past the stream still battling the tide and kept going to Nash Point at the other end of this stretch.

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Nash Point lies yonder – Where the land ends in this photo

I was feeling great, I had hit what I now refer to as cruising pace. Not even troubling my breathing in the slightest. The legs were starting to feel it but mainly due to the terrain, the constant buffeting of rocks and jumping up and down 2 or 3 feet at a time wears them down eventually. One day I’ll run somewhere flat on a road and will glide serenely – yeah right.

I turned at Nash Point and was feeling good still so as the saying goes I made hay while the sun shone.  Back over the rocks to Witches Point for a second time.

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Approaching Witches for the second time I noticed this smooth rock platform at low tide. Nature is a fantastic builder. It’s a completely smooth pavement of rock, utterly perfect, no way could man make anything so perfect and beautiful.
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Sun shining and beach looking a picture!

I turned at Witches and made my final journey home with legs aching but a happy heart.  Spending 3 hours or so and 13 miles in nature makes for a good saturday morning.

 

Sun & rocks & helicopters & shoes & stuff

This run was actually on tuesday after work but I’ve been installing a new HDD with Win 10 so I’m only posting now. Twas a lovely day in the month of September whence I ventured to the beach on a run whereupon I espied some sights to which I shall now avail ye.

Enough of twee! It was a six and a half mile run as the sun sparkled on the sea and made me forget any aches in the legs. The pace was actually good and the breathing does feel abnormally easy now. It’s always the legs that protest first. I think this is a good sign, at least it’s less likely that I’ll keel over from a heart attack these days (And if I do I’m fishfood anyway)

Oh yeah .. sparkly sea

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What else did I promise?

Rocks! Well one in particular I hadn’t come across before. It’s covered in tiny white swirls of …. rock. Never seen anything like it before so if any geologists out there have any information I’d be grateful

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Shadow clearly for scale not because I’m a crap photographer
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Close-up – No it’s not toothpaste, its solid. If it’s solidified seagull shit I will cry.

On I went past the mystery rock and lo and behold a rescue helicopter hovering at the far end of the beach!

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Sadly it flew off before I could get closer. It did some extreme low level hovering though above Witches Point, no idea why it was there

Stuff – I ordered new shoes as I have complete shoe envy since Sergei announced hers. I am awaiting their arrival and hope they fit. I also have a small tweak in my hamstring and a bit of foot pain so guess who’s being a good boy and resting a few days?

Low Tide – High Spirits

After taking four days off running with just some biking to keep fresh in order to let my body recover from the efforts of last week (Yes Sergei I showed common sense!) I waited today until a very low tide to get back out for a 9 mile run. Was out for around two hours but managed to do some rock scrambling at Witches Point and took a look around at the different features which can only be seen at the lowest tides.

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Low tide between Monknash and Wick Beach
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Thee rocks are covered much of the time – The erosion makes for interesting formations and a fun scramble
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More rocks!
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These slabs were fun to cross
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Rock!
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Low tide exposes …… sea stuff (TM)
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Im not saying the snails here are slow but they even have mini limpets growing on them!
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Coral type sea stuff (TM) – Not actually sure what it is – some sort of organisms building homes I think
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The usual gratuitous shot of my playground

And this is why ….

I love trail running ….

grass, rocky path, grass, gravel, tarmac, grass, forest trail, tramac, grass, pebbles, rocks, sand, rocks, rock steps, grass, gravel, grass, earth track, grass, cornfield, grass, tarmac, grass tarmac

Were the different conditions underfoot on a 12 and a half mile run today to St Donats, Marcross, Monknash beach, Witches Point, Wick beach, parents house and home.

Or put it this way.

fields, paths, fields, road, fields, forest, roads, fields, paths, beach, fields, roads

Either way you look at it I had a great time just chilling for nearly 3 hours and doing my own thing. Legs still felt good at the end and heart can’t have gone much above 140 at a guess.  On days like this it almost (almost!) feels effortless.

Onto the photos!

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Way out – tide is in so clifftop time
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Haybale season – I love these, always reminds me that Soaky used to love jumping up on these when she was young.
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Early morning giant horn
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Look carefully for a surprise castle
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This is what we’re doing to our oceans – countless pieces of plastic have come ashore again. If this is a small microcosm of the oceans imagine the dreadful pollution worldwide killing sealife and destroying the marine environment. If we don’t do something soon there will be nothing left here for future generations.
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A view worth saving
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#spottedthebird – A kestrel (I think) just hovering effortlessly looking for prey
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This sheep is confused. This sheep thinks it is a dog and instead of running away like all its friends it allowed me to pat it – note stylish blade of grass  in mouth (which is how I knew it was a sheep)
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“There’s an idiot in our cornfield taking photos”  “Don’t worry it will just be Gareth from down the road being an idiot”  “Ok ok that explains it”
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#spottedthebird2 (at the back the front one looks more like a deformed squirrel

A break in the weather and some advice

The rain has stopped! Yersterday was dreaful but today just the wind remains – I wasn’t intending on running as I have to play cricket later but felt so lazy for not getting out so I did a quick 6 1/2 miles on the beach where of course I spotted some things!

First up though some technical training advice. On many of my runs I have to “step” up onto different levels of rocks. This means using (I presume) the hamstrings and glutes. For example these rocks.

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Ok so the scenario is im approaching this step which is around 3 feet high I’d guess. When I’m fresh it’s not an issue as I have the strength to just pop myself up it but in the later stages of the run when fatigued I don’t have the upper leg strength to power myself up in one move or rather my leg muscles feel tighter and don’t allow me the range of movement to get up there easily. So what exercises are best to improve this sort of movement?

Onto the things I saw!

Someone made this …

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A throne!  Of course I sat on it and waited for my loyal subjects to swear fealty. After around 5 seconds of this I also noticed they had built it far too close to the cliffs for comfort so abdicated.
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Blue skies again – Admittedly they didn’t last long
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More blue skies and actually turned out I caught the best part of the morning
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Trail gear for horses!
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The Romeo and Juliette of the equine world – This gate cannot stop our love!