Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Grim weather continues.

14th February 2018

After the euphoria of the last post, it has now changed once again to despair! Having only cycled 31miles last week and none this week so far [pouring down and gales this morning so no Wobble].

Running,  I did manage a couple of 10 mile runs round the lanes, one went well and one I really suffered and struggled with the last couple of miles, But! I did a good 10 k run and felt really good and set a good pace, but the miles are just not being increased, the Grizzly looks increasingly likely that I will pull out, rather than struggle round the 20 miles, lack of training miles. Decision time next week to sell my place or not! The PF is not improving either when running, seems OK with normal walking and the insoles in my normal everyday shoes, but, having them in my running shoes does reduce the pain after but, its still there! And is quite painful. So disappointed with them. I have done a couple of short 3-4 mile runs with my daughter, which was nice to have company and chat.

So not feeling great at the moment, the weather is really getting me down, can’t seem to motivate myself to get out. This morning the weather is atrocious once again and I couldn’t face another wet ride on my bike. Running off road would be a mud fest and cant motivate myself with that either.
We did have a wander down to Lyme Regis on Monday or Wimbledon-on-Sea as we call it, this was a nice day, cold sunny and dry, but heaving with people, all smashing hell out of the rocks to get their fossils!!!! I think half terms are when the second home owners all descend.

Our house is no nearer getting sold, another time waster last week, who hadn’t even got theirs on the market, it was a cold wet day so I suppose it was something to do!

Saturday, 3 February 2018

At last!!

2nd February 2018

Wednesday Wobble in the last two weeks has been wet! The day after the last post[23rd] the forecast was for a wet day , but clearing later so four of us met up at mid day, it was drizzling a little after heavy rain in the morning,  but we were optimistic it would clear! As we set off the roads were running wet and by the time we were 10miles out the rain had set in again once again! We headed over Muchelney and back towards Kingsbury Episcopi and their community café, we were welcomed as even though we were dripping wet! business in the wet weather had been poor, by the time we had finished our cake and tea, the weather had cleared to patchy blue sky, but very windy, a good 35 miles covered and a very dirty bike!

Since the last post I have managed to run 42 miles and cycle 107 miles, the highlight of running was my Seaton Hole/Branscombe run on a beautiful sunny frosty morning, I parked at Seaton Hole and walked to the top of the first hill before running down into Beer and then up to Beer head, off road the ground was very wet and muddy, going down Seaside was a slide!!! The woods above Branscombe now coming to life with the wild garlic and bluebells starting to sprout. Dropping down to the Fountains, down to the seashore once again, beach or undercliff??? I decided on undercliff, it was very slippery and muddy, up the stairway to heaven, and over the Beer, the final climb and descent not too bad and I felt pleased with my efforts, 8.8 miles, a good morning out.
The Wobble the next day over to East Coker and the ‘Goose Slade Farm’ tea rooms was a wet ride, pouring rain descending from the Cheddington ridge and down through Halstock made riding a hazardous affair! But as the previous week, by the time tea, cake and toast were eaten and helmets put back on, it had stopped raining and was clearing up making the ride home much more pleasant, 41 miles covered.

Thursday was a rest day, after my morning stint with the readers at the school and the weather once again conspired against me.

Friday was quite a nice day and I had to decide on run or cycle, I decided to run and did a good 10 miles around town, having to turn back on one of the lanes because of flood water.  My Plantar Faciitis after each run seems to nag after sitting for a time, but, I picked up my new Orthotic insoles on Thursday , I have only had them in my day shoes and I intend to give them a go in my running shoes once I am used to them, they do feel odd at the moment, I hope they work.

Saturday I did Park run, [my 6th] but, the weather once again pouring with rain as I drove to Seaton, I had sorted my clothing, waterproof, hat, gloves etc. by the time we set off the rain had almost stopped. I kept up a good pace 8:20 minute miles , but with half a mile to go I started to slow, and I finished 63rd out of 135 with 26:22 minutes for the 5k a bit disappointing as I am less than a minute off my personal best! If I hadn’t faded I would have beaten it, it was a good morning out, and a test of my fitness, and a good speed training run.

January I ran 53 miles compared with 98 last year and cycled 221 compared with 247 last year, so mileage is down for the month, but the weather has been poor, I have had a nasty cold for several weeks [ Mrs IanB still has a nasty throat infection] , I also did a quick decorate of the downstairs hall to brighten it up as we still haven’t sold the house! so I am hoping I still have the miles in for the Grizzly in six weeks and the Exmoor run on the 4th March.

The weather this winter has been very wet and windy, but at least no ice or snow, my bike has had a real hammering from the filthy roads, not to mention the hedge cuttings that the farmers don’t clear up and off road running has been very wet and muddy.

I have made a good start to February and am optimistic at getting the miles in for running and cycling, I am also hopeful for my new insoles.

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Wet weather, another heavy cold and an offroad run

23rd January 2018

Last Friday was the last time I was able to get out and do a few miles on the bike, since then  the rain hasn’t stopped! Saturday was a brief respite in the afternoon, so I was able to dash out and do 6 miles round town just as it was getting dusk, one of the down sides of these late afternoon runs is that my route takes me past the local reservoir, which I sometimes run round [no dogs allowed!!] and late afternoon is when all the dog walkers come out with the stupid extending leads that means by the time the dog has lunged for you its too late to pull it back in, I do try to give all dog walkers a wide berth, risking life and limb sometimes by running on the road !! not to mention those that don’t pick up the mess, so you have to keep an eye where you are putting your feet. Anyway, Saturday was quite mild, but damp, I found the 6 miles hard work once again, my PF in my foot reminding me every so often that it was there!! But! At least I got out.

Sunday was a very wet day , heavy rain all day so no outdoor activities, which I find hard to stay in all day, however, I could have gone out in the rain and got soaked, which brings me onto the next point, my heavy cold has returned with vengeance, I had a sore throat on Sunday, Monday [yesterday] I was sneezing all day, and felt dreadful, I was hoping to get out and ride or run, but! My mind wouldn’t let me, so another wasted day.

 views from Neroche  looking over Taunton Vale towards the Quantock hills, showing how low the cloud was

Tuesday [today] we had another viewing on our house, another timewaster we think! So had to make ourselves scarce, Mrs B had the hairdressers so after a wet start to the day  and the weather had cleared up I forced myself to get out and run , the cloud was low and it seemed at times as though it would rain again, but it held off whilst I did a 6 mile route over Neroche once again, it was very,very muddy and my feet were soon wet! I decided to take it very steady as I was suffering from my cold, I was alright until about 4.5 miles then realised that my legs had no energy, and I was feeling quite ill! I struggled on back to the car, feeling I had overdone it!!!! But pleased I had a 6 mile off road run in the bag, I just don’t see how I will be able to run 10 miles in a months’ time or 19 miles on March the 18th!!! My PF was also giving me some pain, so am looking forward to the miracle cure of my expensive orthotic insole.

On another point the ‘spine’ race has just ended where the runners do the Pennine way in winter, I really don’t know how they do it, non-stop, the weather was atrocious, but the still manage it in about 6 days, that’s over 250 miles, huge respect for them!!!

I would settle just to get rid on my cold once and for all [ the third this winter] and build up my running and cycling, I am way behind last years miles for both and this time last year I was running 12 miles over the Quantocks, this year I would be lucky to walk it! I must stay optimistic, the days are very grey and wet at the moment, we could do with some bright sunny dry days.

Its wobble day tomorrow, the weather forecast once again is for heavy rain, I think at this rate I will have to get the paint out for a bit of DIY to tidy up the house as it doesn’t seem to be attracting buyers!

Not a very positive post, I must make an effort to be positive ! all this negativity is not good.

Friday, 19 January 2018

feast and famine week for running and cycling

19th January

After a really good week of running 21 miles and cycling 58 miles I was feeling I was getting into a good regime to build up to the Grizzly. Sadly it didnt last and this week including today I have not run for a week and I have only cycled 32 miles [today]. The weather has been very poor last week end, and a visit to Gloucester for eldest 39th birth day on Sunday  put paid to any weekend miles. Monday wasa complete wash out again with heavy rain and winds and also a trip to the podietrist!!!

I must say muddy roads along with hedge cuttings made the going heavy and the head wind didnt help. I renewed the chain, cassette, rear deraillur and the chainrings as well as rear brake blocks. I was shocked how badly worn the whole transmission was. I fitted stronglight chainrings instead of Campagnolo as they were much cheaper, but! as with all Campag I had to make a little alteration to make them fit! it all seems to work ok, the indexing is a little out and I think I need to shorten my chain by a link or so. I am pleased this is done, except today, the muddy wet roads have made it all a mess once again!!! I am also getting through brake blocks! riding in groups means you are always braking, especially down steep long hills. I also changed the rear tyre as it was looking decidedly worn, I had a partly worn one so was able to save a few pounds! so over £100 worth of kit fitted! hope thats the last for a while, alhough the winter roads are taking their toll.

Monday we also had a call to look after grandchildren as one of them was sick , so we drove up to Gloucester on Tuesday morning at 5:30 am for an early start. we then had two nights camped in 'Briersfield' campsite after looking after the twins in the day. the first night was chilly, but lovely and warm in the van, the heater being very effective, My new TV ariel also seems to work very well we can now get all channels not just 3 !!!! the second night was galeforce winds, a bit of van rocking, but nothing to worry about. the van was very comfortable and warm, we were very pleased with it over the two days.

My trip to the Podietrist was an expensive do! as it was suggested I have orthotic shoe insoles as she suggested this would correct the issue, I was also told to continue with my exercises. I was a little disappointed as she didnt tell me more and encourage me to run etc, she just said I could carry on running and the orthotic inserts would help, so I now await the arrival of my £325 insoles [£250 + scan consultancy etc]

So now we are back I hope to create a routine once again cycle 3 times a week between 60 and a 100 miles and run 3 times a week two times 7 miles and a longer 10 -12 miler by the end of the month.

I will only continue to look to do my Exmoor run on the 4th March and the Grizzly on the 18th if my PF improves and I can get the miles in, I am over 100 miles down on cycling for January last year and 60 + miles down on running, I am not sure why, except for weather!

One final point! spring is coming I saw my first snowdrop today! a solitary one in a hedge bottom on my cycle ride over the levels , wonderful to see!!!

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Happy New Year

Happy New Year !
Since my last post of 2017 I have finally got rid of the nasty bug I picked up before Christmas.  I started the year well  with 19 miles run and 90 miles cycled, including a lovely ride over to Ottery St Mary, visiting Branscombe and Honiton on the way round, 40 miles covered and some big hills both up and down , a good lunch in the ‘peek a boo’ café in Honiton, weather was good for a change with bright sunshine.

I also did the Seaton Park run last Saturday with my daughter who achieved a PB with 31 minutes. My Planter Faciitis is still niggling in the background and is somewhat painful after the event. I have now decided to visit a podiatrist in Axminster who may be able to advise me on the best course of action to address it, or at least sort me out some orthotics, I fear however that the advice will be to stop running again, I have now entered the 10 mile ‘Exmoor Run’ in early March a good off road run round Symondsbath two weeks before the Grizzly. 

I do need to order some new road running shoes as my new ones are clearly too big, so hope to pass to my son, they just don’t feel right, but can I justify new shoes after having to spend over a hundred pounds on my bike! I have also signed up for the Trail Running Magazine #1000 which you challenge to run 1000 miles over the year, I did enter last year but the several months off in the middle for France and my injury meant I only covered less than 600 miles, but! I hope this year if more successful !!

The weather continues to be changeable warm then freezing with the roads now being very wet, muddy and full of pot holes. After cleaning my bike last weekend I was shocked at the state of the transmission, I have now ordered a new rear derailleur, cassette, chain and two new chain rings, all badly worn and likely to let me down, I also had to change the rear tyre as it was in a poor state, the winter this year is taking a toll on my equipment as its wet each time I go out, roll on spring!!

We have managed a couple of visits to the coast for coffee in the van over the past couple of weeks, keeping the van aired and running, I am looking forward to getting out for a few days sometime.

We have not had any more viewings on our house, up for sale since October last, we hope the spring will bring more interest.

Finally , I start my fifth year of my blog, going since 2014, last year I only managed less than 50 posts unlike my first year when I did 69! many thanks to anyone who reads this, I don't have any followers but notice I have views from all over the world. I still see this as a personal diary, and it is nice to check back previous years what I did when, what the weather was like and how I was going in my training etc.

Friday, 29 December 2017

Topsy turvy month

29th December 2017

Since my last post of the lovely run down on the coast, we have had to spend a night at Briarsfields campsite in Cheltenham to look after the grandchildren once again, sadly this coincided with William having an horrendous cold with sneeze and snot going everywhere, the result of which both me and Mrs IanB have spent the last week with the cold from hell, both now suffering from an endless cough!!! We were able to visit my eldest son in Wimborne on a pre - Christmas visit to deliver pressies etc . before welcoming our daughter home for Christmas day, we sniffed and coughed our way through the day, it was very pleasant and very quiet, the weather was horrible so no after lunch amble outside!
Boxing day was a day in Gloucester with Grandchildren, so an early drive up the M5 to deliver presents and spend the day eating and playing with them, it was really nice made extra niice with a wonderful walk down to Barnwood Park to feed the ducks, G and W both walking there and back, G accompanied by his teddy!!! The drive home was grim with heavy rain; however, we missed the snowfall which appeared to come later in the night.
The weather seems to have settled into a pattern of one reasonable day and one wet and windy day, same with temperatures one minute freezing, next day back to ten degrees again.

This month the cycling and running mileages have taken a hit, with nasty weather and horrible colds [ my second in a month despite the flu jab] only 34 run and 154 cycled compared to 45 run and 427 cycled last month. I did manage 4.5 mile run round town yesterday [28/12/17] but finished with a very sore throat and lots of coughing, it was hard work and to make matters worse my Plantar Faciitis seems to have returned with my foot feeling quite painful last night so disappointing, I had hoped to see the back of that. I did roll it and wore the splint for a short time, hope this helps!

The year cycling and running has been interesting with 574 miles run in the last twelve months and 4602 miles cycled compared to 862 miles run and 3019 miles cycled last year, I think this reflects the emphasis of my French Manche to Med ride, the preparation mileage and the actual mileage. Running wise I have lost a lot of miles due to the PF I didn’t run for two months !!

The Grizzly is fast approaching and only 12 weeks away, which seems a long way but I know it will soon go, so I need to start building my mileage, I think I will see how I go in January and how the PF goes , if PF persists I may pull out of Grizzly early, to save the pain of training and perhaps try once again to get rid of it, seeing a specialist, exercise, etc, and try to get more miles on the bike, I must say the winter cycling is made extra difficult with the filthy roads, I seem constantly to be washing my bike down, which is a pain in the backside!

My plan will be to build up to 10 -12 miles by the end of January, then up to 16-18 by the end of February, leaving the last couple of weeks to maybe do 19-20 in preparation for the event, I still believe the miles and time on your feet is crucial, to success. My running partner up the lane I have no doubt will run twice round the block before the event and then have a fantastic race!!! [ well done Rachel if you read this!! I don’t know how you do it!]

The other issue is our house is up for sale, so this may cause distractions should we actually sell it and have to look for other property to buy.

Monday, 18 December 2017

even more running and cycling, but a bit of tree cutting

19th December

Brilliant run over Beer Head yesterday, glorious sunshine 6.8 miles
And some cutting down of the dreaded leylandii by my son, great job he did too, hard work feeding his shredder though, my arms, shoulders and hamstrings felt it the next day!

                                             after run coffee
                                              parked at Beer Head
                              top of stairway to heaven
                                          looking down on Fountains Inn
                                 woods to Fountains

Woods to Fountains

                              Beer Head
                              Beer Head looking to Seaton
                                 Looking down on Branscombe Beach

Woods to Founains