Great Edinburgh Run 2016

Great Edinburgh Run

My first race this year, Sunday 17th April 2016, I made my way to Holyrood Park for the start of the Great Edinburgh run. I felt a little tired when I got up however after a big bowl of porridge, honey and berries I was ready to get my game face on!

porridge

I’m lucky enough to live close by and walked to the start after meeting my friend Tiffany. I packed for the race the night before so my start wasn’t too early.

great run

I’ve run this race for the last three years and it’s a favourite of mine. It’s a hilly ten mile course through Edinburgh city centre. Half the course is up hill and the other half downhill starting and finishing at Arthur’s seat. I really enjoy running the streets I regularly run and it’s a true reflection of hilly Edinburgh!

I got to the start five minutes before the start during the warm up so I wasn’t able to get close to the start line but still managed to wiggle past a few people. Luckily, the weather improved, Edinburgh was grey and wet all week up to the race. Dare I say perfect conditions, over cast and dry however a little windy in some places across the course.

running

I felt good at the start and the energy was palpable from the other five thousand competitors. My laid back approach to arriving back fired slightly as I spent the first mile running around other runners. After the first mile I was able to get settled in, my own space and start first hill run, up the royal mile from Parliament building. I unexpectedly saw some friends spectating and their cheers spurred me on up the hill.

This year due to works at Scott Monument, the course was changed, instead of running along Princes Street gardens and up the Mound we went up Market Street (another steep hill) but it’s not quite the same as the iconic Mound. To make up the extra distance they added an extra short, out and back section on Lauriston Place.

Miles three to four the sun came out and I instantly regretted not taking my sunglasses and took my gloves off (I‘m used to carrying my gloves in training so no real problem). I felt pretty strong at this point and continued my pace.

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Mile five went through the Grassmarket which was well supported, thanks for all the cheers and also half way point. I looked down at my watch: thirty seven minutes, I was determined to get under forty five minutes at six miles and pushed on.

I found mile six the hardest it’s a long incline from the Cowgate, up the Pleasance to the Royal commonwealth pool. I started to dig deep, knowing once I got to the top we were going downhill again. I was picking out other runners and slowly catching them, I’m quite competitive and like picking out people at similar paces to push me further. I heard the bag piper at mile six and looked down at my watch forty four minutes, whoop!

Miles seven and eight I let my legs go down the innocent railway path and to Duddingston village. The last hill is up Duddingston Low road but totally worth it for the views. After hitting the mile nine sign its downhill with a short flat distance to the finish. My legs did feel a little tired at this point but the end was in sight and my legs went with it, I even managed a sprint finish for the last two hundred metres!

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I looked down at my garmin, 1 hour 13mins and 40seconds, I was very pleased. Two minutes quicker than last year as I can’t complain with a personal best! I checked my chip time online and was the same as my watch. Overall I was twentieth woman (crazy) and eleventh in my female age group 20-34!!

race

I had a great race and I would highly recommend anyone to enter.

Jenwaar

Training Week Eleven

Training week eleven

 

Sunday 12th June doesn’t feel that far away…..  Eleven weeks in and only 8 weeks to go!! I completed three swims and four runs this week. The weather was bad so didn’t get out on the bike; I have no excuses for not going on the turbo trainer…… oops!

blackford hill

On Monday I went for a long run with my friend Katrina and fellow madwife. We ran eight and a half miles up Blackford hill and around the surrounding areas.  I really enjoyed running with someone else, it makes a change from running by myself. Kat had just finished nights so our pace was slow but I enjoyed the company and catching up.

running

On Tuesday I went swimming between my nights. I got to try out my new long hair swimming cap. I swam 3.5 kilometres in sixty one minutes and I only needed to adjust my cap once. The cap is much bigger and able to stay over my ears throughout the swim. This has made a massive positive impact in my training allowing me to swim continuously like I would in a race. I’ve now ordered more and would highly recommend if you have a big head and long hair like me!

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On Wednesday I was a little tired but still went out for a run between nights. I’m surprised I kept up such a good pace; it was a usual run of mine and my quickest time to date! I feel my running in the last couple of weeks has vastly improved. My times are quicker and I feel my legs are not as heavy during the run.

running

On Thursday I had a rest day. I was pretty tired after my three night shifts and sometimes you’ve just got to listen to your body. Sam and I went out to Oregano restaurant on Leith Walk in the evening and I stuffed myself with antipasto and Pizza. It was delicious!

pizza

On Friday morning I ran to swim training and back. In total I ran six miles and swam 90 minutes in the pool. As you can imagine my run in was a lot quicker than the run home, but also because it’s up hill all the way back home.

running

On Saturday I rested, preparing from Sunday’s race.

running

On Sunday I ran the Great Edinburgh run over 10 miles of hilly running through Edinburgh City centre. I have run this race for the last three years and it is a favourite of mine. I managed a personal best time of 1 hour 13mins and 40seconds, I was very pleased. The race day had perfect conditions, however it was little windy in places. I felt good most of the race, and even managed a sprint finish. Overall I was twentieth woman (crazy) and eleventh in my female age group 20-34!! My full race report will be in my next post.

race

Overall I’ve had a good week however lacking in cycling and brick training! I shall focus more on this next week.

Jenwaar

 

Training Week Ten

Training Week Ten

Ten weeks of training completed and now only nine weeks till race day, it’s slowly creeping up eeek! This week I completed four runs, two swims, one long ride, one turbo trainer session and two gym sessions. On Tuesday I accomplished my first brick session, I cycled an hour on the turbo trainer and a short run straight after.

gym

This is the first week that I felt improvements in all three disciplines. I am now enjoying training much more because of this. My swim, cycle and running times are all quicker and I can now push myself much more in training.

I am now keeping a much better pace on longer distances with swimming. My new long hair swimming cap arrived this weekend so I will be trying it out on my continuous swim session this week. Hopefully it will stay on my head!

swimming

I’m now managing at least one long bike ride each week. This week I went out with the triathlon club for 36miles after a swim session. I am feeling much stronger and faster on the bike. I also completed an hour on the turbo trainer. I need to continue increasing my time and mileage on the bike, especially now the weather is getting better.

cycling

I’m seeing my best improvements when running…. I completed four runs this week, one short 2.5miles, two medium 5-6miles and one long run 15miles. My short run was after an hour on the turbo trainer; I had that jellied feeling in my legs but after ten minutes of running it was fine. Both the five and six mile distances are regular runs of mine, I had one good and one bad run. My bad run was between nights and I didn’t have any food prior so I had no energy and was really slow and tired. The good run was the following day I ate a banana prior and ran my best time! (Lesson learnt).

running

On Sunday I went out for a group session with the triathlon club. We ran the seven hills of Edinburgh. This is in preparation for a race in June, seven hills of Edinburgh. We had a mixed group of abilities and we ran up each hill and stopped to admire the view at the top of each hill and wait for the others. In total we ran 15miles and ran up some steep hills including Arthur’s seat! My thighs were burning the next day!

running

Next week I’ll be continuing my regular training and increasing the distances during my brick sessions.

Jenwaar

Training Week Nine

Training Week Nine

Week nine has been my best… four runs, three swims, one bike ride and one gym PT session. I felt great this week even after three 5am wake up calls! My main issue this week was my swimming cap. It was rather frustrating when I was trying to do an hour’s continuous swim when every 15-20 lengths you have to adjust your cap! I have bought new swimming caps for long hair so I hope this solves my problem.

running

Running this week, I managed one long run of twelve miles, a club hill reps session and two four to five mile runs. My legs were a little sore before my long run (after my hills session) so couldn’t really push the pace. I hope that now I’m running more regularly this will ease and I can push more in my longer runs.

running

running

Swimming is going well, I’m noticing my times are getting quicker, I can swim longer distances with a stronger pace and I’m starting to keep up with some of the stronger swimmers during triathlon club training sessions. I’m going to do more continuous swim sessions like I would be doing during the race (Once my swimming cap fiasco is no more).

swimming

swimming

Cycling is getting better… I am managing to complete one long ride per week. I am slowly getting more confident handling my bike and cycling in different weather conditions.  This week I went out with my friend Jill, it was a slow ride as it was wet but I’m getting out on the bike, training and cycling. Again, I need to use my turbo trainer more (the story of my life).

cycling

I managed to complete my goal this week, increasing my distance on all disciplines.  I am going to continue with this next week and also start brick training. Brick training refers to the stacking of two disciplines during the same workout, one after the other with minimal to no interruption in between. It is really essential to practice this prior the race. I plan to practice cycle into run workouts this next week.  Changing disciplines from cycling to running you get a strange feeling of heavy legs. It’s really important I practice this so my body gets used to the change in demand, for race day.

Jenwaar

running