Thursday, 31 January 2013

Destination Anywhere - The Commitments

'Commitment to Task' - it cropped up a lot today during my training and training calls. In the past, I've been guilty of not preparing and not researching the task in hand. I remember going to the Desert Cup in Jordan in 1999 without really thinking about how I was going to keep warm during the night on a 100+ mile race in desert and in the mountains around Petra...and I really paid for it. A couple of thermal tops and a safety blanket just doesn't cut the mustard when its -15 degrees with the wind-chill.

With that experience in mind, I went back the following year with a 'Duck Down Filled Jacket'.

The thing I am finding myself asking my people is just how 'Committed' they are to their fitness goal...and guess what, the response is a complete spectrum of replies.

If you asked me, my answer now is a clear 100%...that's 100% to fitness and it has been since 1994 but also to what to expect and what to take to any event that I have planned to do. Presently, I'm looking for a UTMB expert to get me prepped and ready for the race.

How committed are you? What are you doing to make sure you reach your goal?

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Relax - Frankie Goes to Hollywood

I must admit that I'm finding it hard to relax at the moment as the weekend's race appears on my horizon. Don't get me wrong, I'm not worried at the prospect of running 2 x 33 milers on consecutive days but I'm finding it hard to wind down and STOP running lots of miles and taper down.

You see, the Big Picture is still the MdS and I'm dead set on doing well there this year and I have to go there 100% in the right state of mind to give it a jolly good thrashing...

My heart is saying 'Get out there and Run' but my brain, (being sensible for once) is saying 'Calm Down Coleman and Run your nuts off over the Weekend'... let's hope sense prevails for once eh?

More tomorrow...

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Dreamer - Supertramp

I'm tapering down to the weekend's Double 33 mile ULTRA at The Pilgrims Challenge on the North Downs. For me tapering is a series on Easy Runs of either 5 or 3 miles leading up to race. I do this to keep my legs turning over but also to just do enough to satisfy my need to run and not damage the event performance I'm about to undertake.

I really want to do well at the weekend as I've put a lot of training in recently and I want to see just how much I have improved of late.

As ever this race is going to knock a two-week whole into my training for MdS. You see there's a concept that a couple of 20 mile training runs at marathon pace would be more beneficial but racing is just too much fun. It's always a tough call and having run so many ULTRAs its too simple to take them easy and not get the best training effect from them.

I'm hoping that I can stand a couple of 33s and keep on training without much recovery... as it's good practise leading upto Morocco. Well there's always hope eh?

More tomorrow...

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Beautiful Giants - Timewave (Deep Fog Remix)

After a day off to let my sore Sartorius' to recover, (yes all that treadmill running takes it's toll you know), I went back to basics and smashed a lap of the Sand Dunes in Merthyr Mawr with Jenny and Rocky. I worked really hard to keep up with both of them if I'm being honest but all my recent hard training is starting to pay off and I ran this loop a couple of minutes faster than the previous times which as I remember left me totally destroyed.

I can't stress enough just how much the training in Sand really helps ones training and the people who are coming to my Dunes and Mountain Training Camp on March 2nd and 3rd will get a real insight into what's in store in Morocco. I was only managing 10.30min miles on the sand!

However it's given me loads of confidence and it's far better than a three mile out and back to The Norwegian Church in Cardiff Bay that I can do in my sleep at 9 minute miles.

Maybe it's Time to Step Up for those needing to get a Step On...

Today's Route and Stats are Here

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Gravitation - A-Mase

After yesterday's 5th treadmill session of the week, it's been a day of rest in sunny Cardiff for me today. It will give my nipples the chance to grow a new layer of surface skin that has slowly been ground off them during the five hours I been bashing my body in the sweaty gym environment. But it's been worth it...

The results of my running have seen me lift my distance covered by 1.33 miles in an hour and my dismal 9.25 minute mile pace is a far more credible 7.47 minute mile pace at the end of this experiment. I have already blogged before that people, including me do all their training runs at 9 minute miles!

Maybe you've been watching my results and might well want to emulate the sessions to see what happens to your running. I feel faster do you?

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Goodbye Hooray - Red Hot Chilli Peppers

I discovered this track 45 minutes into my 4th treadmill session of my Treadmill Week. Good job too as I was blowing quite hard towards the end of this battering. I must say that I am finding the whole experience very challenging and most rewarding.

During the day, I'm actually psyching myself up to go and beat the previous days distance and it's really speeding me up... it's also making me very light as I'm 79.6kgs today - the first time in nearly three years I've been under the 80kgs mark.

I'm going to have another bash tomorrow and I'll keep you posted. It might be well worth a try to do an hour a day on the Treadmill to see if it improves your running as much as it's improving mine. I'd be really interested to hear your thoughts and results.

More then...

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Forty - U2

I being badgered and goaded by Mick McGeough (One of Wales Greatest EVER Runners) into running The Barry 40 at the end of February. I can cope with 161 laps of Barry's Jenner Park Stadium and even have Jenny as a lap counter BUT it's only a month away and I need to get this race straight in my mind if I am going to give it my best on February 24th.

I've run 26.2 miles there before (just 105.4 laps) but safely made that inside the 6hr time limit and I KNOW that even at my best in 1999 I did 38.5 miles in six hours.

The problem is that even if I run the 40, I won't do it in the time limit and it will therefore be a failure in my book... and I don't do failure as it's psychologically negative to both my running AND to my thinking before and after the race.

What's your thinking as I would love to do this and shut Mick up!

One Direction - Moments

There are times when this running lark just feels simply perfect. My legs move easily, my breathing is wonderfully easy and it's totally pain - IT'S JUST AMAZING.

This happened during my previous day's Power Hour just for a brief time at that dreaded 33-35 minute stage of the run.

Today's episode was even better and really for most of the hour I felt very relaxed and happy to be running in a kind of peace and trance of an inner world of a bubble in a very busy and hot gym environment.

It would be easy to say that it's a euphoric state caused by an increased level of Serotonin agitation we call Runner's High but it does feel that I am getting fitter.

Running lots of marathons has recently increased my body fat I've found and has wastesd my muscle mass...this training is reversing that process and providing good therapy along the way.

Do you get the same feelings when you run... am I barking mad?

Monday, 21 January 2013

I've got the Power - Snap

I got well and truly boiled again in the gym today on The Dreaded Power Hour. The gym's temperature seems to be set at 'Scorcio Morocco', rather than 'Cold Cardiff' at the moment so it's quite a task to get thru the 40 minute mark still wanting to finish the hour.

It's hard but I have to go back and do it again tomorrow and get thru another 60 minutes of 'Brain-Drain-Pain.

What I do know is that in just 75 days, I will be SO glad I did...

More then...

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Tattva - Kula Shaker

I needn't have worried too much about yesterday's 26er in the ice and snow of South Wales with MdS#13 Wannabe Simon Pryde. It was actually a lot easier than I thought it would be and my Saucony Peregrines provided all the grip I needed to make the whole run, tot
ally skid free.
Simon was most interesting as he is a sports reporter from BBC North-East and being a lifelong Sunderland lives in hope, one of the assets needed in running the MdS!!!

Anyway, all of the running I am doing right now is really conditioning my legs to the multi-days we are rapidly heading towards in April and this morning there is NO discomfort in my legs except a little notch of ITB soreness in my left thigh. I will definitely be out running tomorrow.

What I AM interested in now with just 76 days to go till race day is getting more conditioned in my upper body and getting stronger and leaner for the race ahead.

More tomorrow...

Friday, 18 January 2013

Cold - The Pines

If like me in Caerdydd you are snowed in, you are enjoying a welcome break from training and enjoying some warm food to keep the cold at bay. Staple diet for the past two days at Pembroke Road has been a hearty stew. This becomes a Stroganoff, Bourguigon and Curry as the days proceed but it's full of meaty goodness and vegetables most of which I don't like but can take after they've been stewed to death.

Sometimes it's great to have some proper home cooking and I think we forget that in the cold we need good warm grub to keep our body temperature up and keep one feeling fit and healthy.

Tomorrow's going to be interesting as I take on 26.2 miles with yet another MdS#13 Wannabe and it will be my third long run in 8 days snow willing...

Famous last words eh? Anyway I'm off to drain my rice and serve up my Caerdydd cooked Indian Supper!

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Revolution - The Cult

It's been a Running Revolution today as I've been back on the road stacking in another MdS Day just three days after the 45 mile Country to Capital ULTRA.

After three days of rest I wasn't too sure how my legs would react to another 26.2 miles out on a freezing day in God's Country (although I don't care as long as it doesn't rain!!!).

ANYWAY, I feel just great tonight after taking Mat Evans (MdS#13), thru his paces on a day where the temperature was only 50 degrees Celsius colder than in Morocco!

I'm going to get back to my conditioning programme tomorrow and the prepare for another 26.2 miles on Saturday, Snow willing... More tomorrow!

Monday, 14 January 2013

Master of the Universe - Hawkwind

I've been enjoying the break from exercise following the weekend's 45 mile Country to Capital ULTRA. The post race recovery has been most unusual as I have replaced litre upon litre of fluids without much output if I'm not being too graphic.

I must admit to not drinking much during the race itself and I wasn't too bothered at the time but following my good friend Phil Spiers brush with Rhabdomyolysis, it is mildly worrying. At my age I thought ones waterworks got worse!

Apart from that issue, I am repairing well for another 26.2 on Wednesday and another on Saturday. As yes it's MdS silly season - if you are looking to come and see me for the 'Big Race' better hurry up as I am pretty booked up for January and February now...

Time for another cuppa I think...

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Stars on 45 - Stars on 45

Well we didn't get Stars on the Country to Capital 45 Mile Ultra, what we did get was a HUGE amount of MUD. Which represented the 22.5 miles of the race and which made the going extremely tough. What made it tougher for some of the runners is that the race is more of a 45 mile ULTRA-orienteering race and when the field strung out and without anyone in front to follow, they got very lost. Luckily with the map supplied and iPhone as a back-up, Ian Calder (my trusty sidekick for the day) and I got to the finish following the race route (well more or less).

We did really well and finished in 8.56.19, just inside our 9 hour target time. It was a good job for me that Ian was there for company as later on in the race we didn't see many of the 277 runners we saw at the start line.

Today, I feel that I could run another 26.2 miles which means that the recovery part of my training is going well and that my RANGE is getting better and that I am getting 'MdS Fit'. I've a couple of marathons this week to get in so the miles will pile up again this week.

More tomorrow following a well earned day off.

Friday, 11 January 2013

Breathe - Pink Floyd

I am trying to practise what I preach and with the 45 mile Country-to-Capital ULTRA tomorrow, I've been resting and carbo-loading now for three days. I'm really looking forward to seeing how my past few months training has improved my endurance and also to running with a lot of my clients who are running the Marathon des Sables.

My tapering regime has followed my age old tried and tested Carbo-loading programme of 2.5 litres of Energy Drink per day, along with lots of Pasta.

It will be interesting to see how close to 9 hours I can get for the 45 miles and how I feel at the end of the race...

More tomorrow when it's ALL over...

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Sound of Drums - Kula Shaker

Winding down is a tricky old thing right now as I am kicking and ready to get my teeth into the 45 mile Country-to-Capital Ultra on Saturday. I compromised today with a tempo 40 minutes on the treadmill at 8.30 pace to keep my legs going and the sweat rolling.

I think it's done me a world of good if I'm honest and I'm onto my Carbo-loading programme today and tomorrow will be just an easy run out with Rocky.

More then...

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Will you smile again for me - Worlds Apart

It was an easy two and a bit tonight following a very full day Performance Coaching, New Clients and MdS Wannabes.

I must say that it would have been all too easy not to stretch the legs tonight but my recovery run at 9pm of just 2.25 miles really helped me get the slight stiffness out of my legs from yesterday's 26.2 miles.

Getting myself prepped for the weekend is now my aim and I start carbo-loading tomorrow!!!

More then.

Monday, 7 January 2013

Foals - Inhaler

I chose the song today as it's just ace! And is a reflection on how I feel right now - I'm really kicking. Two months post Pneumonia, and with miles in the dunes and hills in the legs and a further 26.2 with Marathon des Sables '13 Wannabe Phil Lester, today, I feel GREAT. My preparation for the weekend's Capital to Country 45 miler has gone better than I could imagine. I hope it's going to be a great run...

I'm looking forward to running with a lot of my clients and having a great day out on my 185th ULTRA-marathon and official 750th Marathon.

I'll see how my legs feel tomorrow after the past two days run to work out what else I can do this week to prepare me for Morocco, otherwised I'll taper down for Saturday's run.

Happy Days... and today's run is here . More tomorrow...

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Enter Sandman - Metallica

We (Jenny, Rocky and Me) did a six mile run today with Andy and Paul, two of my MdS 2013 clients today in the sand dunes at Merthyr Mawr. It does bring it home just how hard running in deep sand really is and just how much more training like this is needed over the next 90 days prior to hitting the real thing in Morocco.

This was all done in a very cushy 8 degrees and not the usual 50+ degress that we have to endure each year in Merzougas famous 8 miles of sandy hell.

Doing this run with clients has brought it home to us just how useful this training is to ANYONE running in Morocco as the Big Dipper is the largest single sand-dune in Europe and the Merthyr Mawr is the best simulation there is for what's in store for any MdS Wannabe.

We're going to combine this with a mountain running day around Pen-y-Fan (at 886m, it's on a par with the Jebels in Morocco)on March 2nd and 3rd. I'll be updating my website with the details this week on how to get involved in this specific MdS Training that will be so useful for those who want to see just what it's like to lug a pack over some terrain that's a lot harsher than their local park can supply.

If you are interested, as some of you have already have, please let me know. I'll be going back as much as I can for more of the same as I need to get my time in on the sand as much as possible.

More tomorrow... after another 26.2 miles on yet another MdS Day :-)

Saturday, 5 January 2013

19 - Paul Hardcastle

I opened my Birthday Card this morning - sent to me ,by ME, to congratulate my 19 years of alcohol abstinence. My 6939 day record (don't think that there was a leap-day in 2000) is something that I'm really proud of and I'm a long way on from where I was on that 5th of January 1994.

To celebrate I went on a very similar style run to the one I did on my very first day of fitness. It was a poignant celebration and at just 2.24 miles it reminded me of that first ever run. That night, I went out wearing my winter coat, over my day clothes and my leather work shoes... in contracts to tonight's sports kit and high mileage-trainers.

What I can say is that the satisfaction from both runs, 19 years apart, was just the same and hopefully it will stay that way for another 19...

I'm so glad I went for that run...

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Skin - Rihanna

After a couple of days enforced rest with 'Extreme Nipple Damage' due to running in the gym in my cheese-grater 'Woolwich Foot Tunnel T-shirt, (which is only marginally less painful than childbirth I believe), I was back out on the Penarth 8 giving it my best shot.

It's a tough Tempo-Run for me and, following a disappointing run just before the New Year, I knew it was time to get a good run in and smash a few running demons.

Using the Saucony Mirage 2 for this run really helped me keep up on my toes and the continued thought of beating my time on 'Mapmyrun' and my own hill climb PB to beat - I really had a go at the hill back up from the Pier at Penarth uphill to the town centre.

Dodging the pedestrians and keeping off the wet slabs as the Mirage are like running in slicks, I managed a couple of minutes off my previous time and its good mental preparation for my next ultra, the 45 mile 'The Country to Capital', next weekend. I now feel quite strong and confident about my running.

Let's hope my new found confidence continues, and today's run is here...

More tomorrow.