Race, Run and Relax.

This weekend was always going to be a bit hectic, a lot of things we wanted to do fell on the same dates so rather than cancel any we thought ‘what the hell’, lets do them all.

Race: Tri Preston 141

On Saturday it was the first Tri Preston 141 of the year at the UCLAN Sports Arena in Preston, a mini series of four duathlons to generate interest in multi sport events held once a month. The format was to run a mile, cycle four then run a final mile. This time last year this event was our introduction into duathlon and it certainly opened up a few new possibilities. The weather was glorious as we registered, placed the bikes on the rack and chatted with a few people we recognised from last year.

After the race brief, “run clockwise on the outside and cycle anti-clockwise on the inside of the mile loop“, with a simple 321 go, we were off. I went off like a rocket (for me) and managed the rather breezy run managing to break my best mile time while still trying to conserve a bit of energy for the bike. Stop at the transition point, helmet on, a quick look up and down the track to make sure no runners were coming, cross to the starting point and I was on the first of four laps.

I knew this was going to be tough as I was racing my mountain bike (the only one present) against ‘proper’ lightweight road bikes, and tough it was, any semblance of wind or incline sapping gradually eating away at my speed. I lost a few places but I was expecting too and towards the end I was glad it was only four laps. Into transition once more in fairly good shape, bike racked, helmet off and it was the last run. Legs feeling heavy I gave it as much as possible and although slower than the first run I managed to gain a few places and finished only slightly slower than my time from last June last but much faster than last April, not bad considering the amount of cycling I’ve done since Christmas (I’ve only been out twice to make sure the bike works).

Wendy was on her cyclocross bike this time and in a reversal was a lot faster on the bike but slightly slower on the run, no doubt due to the fact she’d done a lot of bike training for Parbold duathlon and her bike being lighter than the previous years mountain bike. During the winter and spring running took a slight back seat as she got used to the new bike.

The event was great – especially the kids mini race at the end, the marshals and organisation fantastic and we’re both looking forward to June for another go at it. I may even try some more ‘road like’ tyres on my bike if I remember to get some.

141 duathlon kids race

Run: Long And Slow

After getting home in time for an early lunch and feeling not too battered after the mornings exertion we both did our long run of the weekend that afternoon. I was scheduled to do 18 miles which equates to 28.8 km so to keep the numbers easier I did 15 km out and back along the canal (19 miles), keeping it steady and trying to keep my heart rate relatively low. Wendy’s run was the same route but a slightly shorter 10 km out and back (20km in total).

The weather during the afternoon stayed warm, with a stiff wind along sections of the canal which in the Lancashire lowlands can be very exposed. The run was good although we both started to feel the after effects of the mornings race towards the end, I think we under estimated just how much the 141 duathlon took out of us. The canal was quite busy in places with dog walkers, families and mountain bikers all making good use of the well kept tow path. There was even a beer festival going on in Burscough which I ran past, not something I ever intend to do again as I’m sure not stopping for a pint at a festival specifically about beer is against the law, or at least it should be.

With an abundance of early butterfly’s, bees buzzing and birds singing it was a beautiful afternoon for a run which we finished off into the evening with a well earned Chinese take away.

long run training lancashire

Relax : My Kind of Yoga™ Workshop

Sunday morning saw us getting up at a relatively normal time as we’d done the weekends long run on Saturday. We’d managed to secure a couple of free tickets to a 3 hour yoga workshop with Ann-See Yeoh who is the founder and owner of My Kind of Yoga™, which aims to make yoga more individual, it’s about the feel not necessarily the shape.

I must admit that I was a little anxious as I’ve never been to a yoga workshop before and my legs were protesting after yesterday’s runs. On arrival it was good to see that a few of our regular yogis were joining us and after introductions and a chat where Ann-See shared with us her vision of what yoga is to her and her background which has resulted in a practice which fuses eastern yoga and more traditional sports science and helps apply this practice both on and off the mat.

The first practice lasted maybe an hour where we were taken though various poses as Ann-See explained the reasons behind them while making little corrections if needed then towards the end we joined all the elements of the practice into one for a final flow. This first hour was great and was just what my aching legs needed after the previous days running.

After a small break where a few of the girls ventured downstairs to The Chocolate Rooms as it was their first time here, we were shown a few tools and techniques that we could apply to our own practices or when attending other groups. The two I took away are corkscrewing arms and legs outwards to keep tension and strength in your limbs which worked brilliantly and I used it during last Monday’s vinyasa class where I definitely felt stronger and more stable in some of the poses. The other is breathing, something that should be simple but is at the heart of yoga. The main point for me was putting the movement within the breath, ie, start to breath in (or out) slight pause, move, slight pause, finish breath (in or out). If you don’t have time to do the pose either slow your breathing or move faster, as Ann-See word say, it’s your yoga, do it at your speed, in your way.

The morning flew by and after the three hours we were ready for our lunch which we had downstairs at The Chocolate Rooms, after all, after telling everyone at the workshop how good it was it would have been rude not to go ourselves…


Trail Marathon Wales 2015 – Training Plan

Amended 24th April

W/end Miles (km) Activity Route
Mar 8 12 (19.2) Local loop to Hesketh Outmarsh x 2
Mar 15 6 progression 3m local loop x 2 plus .5m cool down
Mar 21 14 (22.4) 14 done, the Rivvy half marathon route plus extra up to the pigeon tower White Coppice to Rivington
Mar 28 Rest or bike Rest, naff weather
Apr 4 16 (25.6) 16 done, Rivington Pike, Winter Hill and Great Hill 3 Hills
Apr 11 8 (12.8) progression 10 done, 1m warm up, 2 x 4m loop round Anglezarke, 1m cooldown Round Anglezarke Resi
Apr 18 18 (28.8)  18¾ done, Out and Back along the Canal, Sollom to Parbold Canal Out and Back
Apr 25 Rest or bike
May 2 20 (32)
May 9 10 (16) progression
May 16 22 (35.2)
May 23 Rest or bike
May 30 24 (38.4)
Jun 6 12 (19.2)
Jun 13 8 (12.8)
Jun 20 Race

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