Hey everyone! Merry Christmas and happy New Year to you all!
I write this post as I sit on a flight bound for Auckland after spending three weeks throughout the sunny South Island with family and friends. While this break away was exactly what I needed to refresh the batteries after a busy few months late last year, my training has seriously suffered. When the last three weeks should have seen me approaching the peak of my training (and completing between 70-100km per week), it instead became a rest period with an occasional run thrown in every few days so my legs didn’t forget what running feels like!
Since starting my 6 month training plan, I have kept a tally of how many km’s I have missed throughout my training; something that holds me accountable and occasionally guilt trips me in to strapping on a pair of shoes when motivation is hovering between low and non-existent! This tally was at ~50kms before going on holiday (not actually a bad effort after four months), and now sits at around ~150km…yuck!! While these circumstances occurred, time wasn’t completely lost. In the meantime, I was helping my Mum by repairing/ improving things at her pre-schools and helping Dad out on the farm (carting hay bales, etc.). Work-life balance has proved to be somewhat lopsided since I’ve been away, but I guess some of it could count as a form of cross training!
Anyway, I aim to move onwards and upwards now my wee summer break is behind me! What has been going well for me since my last post?! Well, there are three highlights that really stand out…
– Going in to the holidays I knew that I had to sacrifice overindulging in unhealthy food and cheeky ol’ alcoholic beverages, even if those around me might be. Luckily I don’t normally consume too much of either and while there was some temptation, I managed to behave myself for the most part.
– Last week I went on a 40km run through the North Canterbury high-country. While this wasn’t my longest training run to date, it was probably my most successful. Perhaps a little break did me some good after all?! My pacing, speed and gear was all on point, I noticed that my tolerance for the heat has improved, the scenery was amazing (!!) and after being dropped off at the starting point, then cheered on at half way by my family: spirits were high. Above all, I didn’t have any aches or pains during or after the run and after a few hours I almost felt like I could go and do it again! Beeeaaauuutiful! 😀
– I started fundraising for the Key to Life Trust and within 24 hours of setting up a Give-a-little page (www.givealittle.co.nz/fundraiser/running-for-a-life) I had raised over $1400!! The generosity of my family, friends (some of which I hadn’t caught up with in years) and even total strangers blew me away! The webpage contains my story/ motivators for doing it and will be online until the middle of March, so feel free to go and take a look. If you’re feeling generous, then donations (big or small) are always welcome 🙂
As mentioned earlier, with the holidays behind us it’s time to place my upmost focus on the task at hand. While I will attempt to play “catch-up” over the next three weeks before I start my taper, I know that I need to take care of my body too… achieving a balance of zero isn’t worth breaking myself and subsequently pulling out of the race for, is it?!
This weekend I have a 50km run which I will do in the Waitakere Ranges…effectively a practice race. The aim: to confirm that my nutrition plan is sussed (after months of tweaking) and that I’m race-ready. While I was pretty happy with how it went during the 40km run I mentioned above, 50km will be the real test. Once I know that I’ve… hopefully somewhat… passed that test, I’ll be a bit more forthcoming with specific details (race plan, nutrition, gear, etc.). After all, there’s no point in giving you specifics if they don’t even work for me…;). Which leads on to my last point…
Just before Christmas I received a package from Tim Farland at EveryRun which was filled with all of the promised ‘CEP Sports’ and ‘Icebug’ gear! Thanks Tim!! While you will see some of it in action in the photos above (yes, it’s as good as everyone says it is!) my next post (in a week or so) will cover off on some of it as well as shed some light on what else I carry with me.
Train hard, stay safe and I’ll catch you then!