Dopey Training w/e 27/09/2015

21/09/2015 – DRY NEEDLING
22/09/2015 – 4m Run – Unscheduled rest taken
23/09/2015 – 3m Run – Unscheduled rest taken
24/09/2015 – 2m Run – Completed
25/09/2015 – REST – Completed
26/09/2015 – REST – Completed
27/09/2015 – Ealing Half Marathon – **Completed with PR**

15 Miles


So…. After struggling at the weekend with our 12mile run I got myself back to physio on Monday and I had needling treatment again. I was feeling really nervous about my half coming up on Sunday as it was proof of time race for Dopey. My Dad and Sister ran their half in 2hrs25mins so I really wanted to get that time or beat it so they didn’t have to drop back for me. My Dad flew to London on Friday so that he could run with me, it was really nice having him over for the weekend. I moved to London two months ago so it was his first time visiting me. I struggled mentally again this week. I was frustrated with my injury and concerned about running my half without my mid-week runs but I knew that in order to be in the best shape for the run I needed to rest after treatment.

I’ve spoken about dry needling before and I’ve found it very affecting for quick recovery, I came home Monday after treatment with my leg hurting quite a bit and then I did something really stupid. I stood on a nail. It went right into my foot and I had to pull it back out. Luckily it wasn’t a rusty old one but my foot was sore and tender afterwards. NOT the way I want the build-up to my half to be going!!

Week in Review

Mid – Week Runs

24/09/2015 – 2m Run – Completed
Only one mid-week run and it was a short one at 2miles. I felt pain in my big toe on the same foot I stood on the nail so that didn’t really help my pre-race nerves.

Long Run

27/09/2015 – Ealing Half Marathon – **Completed with PR**

Race-Recap coming soon! ​


Dopey Training w/e 20/09/2015

14/09/2015 – Deferred 18miles – Completed 12/18miles in 3parts & Tag Rugby
15/09/2015 – REST – Completed
16/09/2015 – 4m Run – Completed
17/09/2015 – 5m Run – Completed
18/09/2015 – REST – Completed
19/09/2015 – 12m Run – 8m/12m completed
20/09/2015 – REST – Completed



I’m feeling a little bit emotional


Or a LOT emotional… That’s probably more accurate.

As I posted lasts week I missed my 18mile and then tried to catch up on Monday. I’m feeling the weight of our first marathon next month. My legs felt heavy last week and I figured with the rest taken over the weekend that I’d have fresh legs but come Monday’s run they felt heavy again.

Fast forward to our long run this weekend and we don’t manage to complete it. I generally try to stay focused on the positives with this training and I feel like so far I’ve done pretty well with the mental battle of this tough training and in particular during our long training runs like our 16miles two weeks ago. Right now I’m questioning whether or not I’m going to be up to this. I’m getting so frustrated with my legs and confused about what I should be doing for the best. I feel guilty when I miss a run but then when I run and my leg is hurting I wonder if I should be resting to avoid injury but then if I rest I miss more runs… :confused3

Just to explain a little further about the issue I’ve been having with my right leg.


Originally my issue was with the Gracilis muscle on the inside of my leg. It was really tight and causing discomfort in my right knee. I went for physio and had several rounds of dry needling (Myofacial Trigger PointDry Needling) which is NOT A FUN EXPERIENCE PEOPLE but it really did help. I wasn’t able to run the day I had treatment or the day after but I was able to continue running on other days and just not increase my mileage so it didn’t impact too negatively on training. More recently I’ve had the odd tighness in the same muscle and some similar issues with a few muscles in my right quad. I had further dry needling before our 10mile and since then I’d felt pretty good. The last two weeks that tightness is back so I’ll be going back to physio this week.

I have my POT next weekend so that was also playing on my mind this last week. I would’ve just liked to have a positive training week.

Anyway… it is what it is. We still ran on Saturday and I’ll hopefully get the right treatment to loosen my muscles for next weeks half marathon.

Do any of you have advice for when you’re feeling this frustration? The emotional side of it is more attached to the purpose behind all of this. It means a lot to me to raise funds and awareness for the cancer support centre my mam attended and on top of that there are other people I worry about disappointing.

Week in Review

Mid – Week Runs

13/09/2015 – Deferred 18miles – Completed 12/18miles in 3parts & Tag Rugby
I was up early this morning and off to the gym for the first portion of my long run. The weather in London has been pretty grim lately and I’m also still not all that familiar with the routes around my area in particular the longer ones. I’m not really enjoying these threadmil runs though so I think I need to sort that problem out. On the plus side I can watch some TV while I run so that’s a nice distraction. I ran about 5miles in the morning. I came back at lunch and ran a further 4miles and then 3 more after work.

15/09/2015 – 4m Run – Completed
Another run on the threadmil. The weather is KILLING ME. I got through it but my head just wasn’t really in it.

16/09/2015 – 5m Run – Completed
Same as yesterday. On the threadmil, watched some TV and legs didn’t feel great. I foam rolled and stretched as usual but just felt pretty tired and heavy over all.

Long Run

18/09/2015 – 12m Run – 7m/12m completed

This run was TOUGH. As soon as we set out I didn’t feel right, my legs were really heavy and it felt like so much effort. We were running 5:1 intervals and got about 4 intervals in when I started to feel some more discomfort in my right leg. We took a longer walk break while I debated turning back but I really wanted to see the miles out. We continued on and about 2 intervals later Rachel’s hip was hurting so we took a turn that would shorten our run. From then on it was a struggle. We took several longer walks break and I had to cut our runs short a few times when I felt some pain in my leg.


Dopey Training w/e 13/09/2015

07/09/2015 – REST – Played Tag Rugby
08/09/2015 – 4m Run – Completed
09/09/2015 – 8m Run – Completed in splits
10/09/2015 – 5m Run – Completed & STRENGHT
11/09/2015 – REST – Completed
12/09/2015 – 18m Run – DEFFERRED
13/09/2015 – REST – Completed​



Got back from Spain early this week and back to work as normal… boo!

This training week turned out to be quite chaotic. I started the week feeling really positive after our successful 16mile. I signed up to play tag rugby with a friend and her team, I’m trying to expand my social circle in London since I’ve just recently moved. Luckily two of my best friends live here already so I’m not totally friendless! The tag rugby is great fun and there is always a trip to the pub afterwards, the problem is however that it’s the day before my running week starts and it’s a lot of stop starting and sprinting which takes a toll on my legs.

Life in London is quite hectic, there is always something happening and I’m finding it increasingly difficult to find the time to run. As a result ALL of my runs this week were at the gym.

Week in Review

Mid – Week Runs

08/09/2015 – 4m Run – Completed
I went to the gym at lunch time for this run and watched some TV on my phone to keep me entertained. It was pretty average, my legs felt tired but no major complaints. I stuck to 4:1 intervals.

09/09/2015 – 8m Run – Completed in splits
Today I had decided to go for my first run with the running club I joined recently. I wasn’t sure how long the run was going to be and when I mailed the club they said they don’t give out the details on the plan for a Wednesday because it’s not a standard run, they’ll do sprint intervals or hill training or something else along those lines. To be cautious I went to the gym again at lunch and ran about 3miles.

I arrived up at the running club feeling quite nervous but luckily everyone was really friendly. The agenda for today was a loop around the area that was about 2miles where we would jog comfortably for 60secs and sprint for 20secs. We had to run the loop twice.

WOW what a difference those 20secs made, I found this run really tough. I got my first stitch in months and I didn’t recover very well on the jogs (I normally do run/walk intervals where I recover on the walk)

I made it through though and felt pretty good for it!

10/09/2015 – 5m Run – Completed & STRENGHT
I’ve been worried about my strength training (or lack thereof) and a girl that I work with was doing a circuit class this morning at my gym so I decided to join her. I was up early and on the tube by 7AM for the 7.45AM class. There were 6 stations at the circuit class, the first was squats with a resistance band to hold up over your head like you were doing the Y from YMCA. Second was an arm workout with a long cylinder weight you held with both hands and punched out. The third was HORRIBLE you had to get down into a press up position and kick your legs up high (like a really bag handstand but kicking up with force) and kind pull your knees in and then back down. I was getting all sweaty and thought I was going to faceplant one of these! Next was stepping up onto a high block holding weights and back down. Station 5 was another arm workout that included a bend down to the floor to pick up. Last was a side plank with a twist with a weight in your free hand. I HATE THE PLANK. Each circuit was followed by a ‘tough minute’ of a cardio move which today was a side step and floor touch.

I was really feeling it towards the end but I completed the four circuits.

I completed my run at lunch as well. Again on the treadmill and uneventful.

11/09/2015 – REST – Completed
Stupid circuits.

Long Run

12/09/2015 – 18m Run – DEFFERRED
Part of my busy scheduled also includes a new person in my life, we’ll refer to him as prince charming, who very nicely booked a weekend away for us. I was planning on running while there but on Friday when I was packing I was in SO MUCH PAIN I just decided I’d do the run on Sunday when we got back. I had a lovely weekend and it was so nice to have a weekend with no running.

13/09/2015 – REST – Completed
So… I didn’t complete my 18m on Sunday either, It was about 6pm when I was home and I just didn’t feel up to it. I’d enjoyed my weekend and we’d actually had a drink with Sunday lunch so my body was not in the right state for an 18mile run. I decided I would run Monday instead.

I felt so guilty on Sunday night but I knew I would probably only feel worse if I went out. I was in bed and asleep by 8.30PM. It felt so good to have a break. ​

Dopey Training w/e 06/09/2015

31 /08/2015 – REST – Completed by the pool soaking up the SUN
01/09/2015 – 4m Run – Completed
02/09/2015 – 8m Run PACE- Completed 7m/8m
03/09/2015 – 4m Run – Unscheduled rest taken
04/09/2015 – REST – Completed
05/09/2015 – 16m Run – Completed
06/09/2015 – REST – CompletedTOTAL MILEAGE: 27 Miles

GeneralSo we’re still in sunny Spain this week! I fly home to London Saturday evening the day of our 16mile run. This is a big one. This will be the longest run I have ever done. Last week would have been at 15miles but we only managed 12.5miles which is shorted than the half marathon I completed last year. I feel ready for it this week unlike last. We learned a few lessons last time and we’ve more time to adjust to the weather now as well.

After the ‘difficult’ run last weekend I was thinking about what we could do differently in particular to help our mental game as I feel like that really defeated us on the out portion. I’ve been suggesting for a while now that we try run /walk intervals which we kinda already do but with no real structure. We take a walk break when we ‘need’ it but when we’re having a bad run we tend to ‘need’ more which is what happened last weekend. Not only that but when we stop the length of the walk break is not specified. If we’re running strong it’ll be just enough to get some fluid maybe a cliff block and slow our breathing down a bit so we’re talking 40secs – 1min. On a difficult run when we’re struggling it could be upwards of 2mins. I feel like having a set interval will help, I know for me if I’m struggling and feel I ‘need’ that break and look at my watch and see that I’ve only 30secs to go until a scheduled break (or you’ve got a landmark up ahead like a water stop in a race or a set point we’ve agreed to stop at) I’ll push that extra bit and take the break then. With it being so hot I figure a 4:1 run/walk interval would be a good place to start.

I’ll also start including our average pace on here for reference.

Week in Review

Mid – Week Runs

01/09/2015 – 4m Run
For our first run of 4miles we stuck with our original style of stopping when we needed it and it was an alright run overall. I actually probably struggled most this time with sore legs, not where I’ve been having issues in my quad but again in shins and calf and I think this could still be down to breaking these new runners in.

We did an out and back along the same route, we’re happy with the route, there is a good path and it’s well lit which we need as we’ve been running before sunrise to avoid the heat.

Our pace for this run was 12:09/mile

02/09/2015 – 8m Run
This was a great run! Rachel had been feeling ill so didn’t join us this morning. We decided to try the 4:1 intervals so I programmed that into my Garmin 220 and off we went. We had plenty of fluids with us and I settled in easily to the structure of the intervals.

The first time we stopped I did feel it was a bit soon to need a walk break but easily but the second stop I was starting to feel the heat again. By the time we were hitting the 4th and 5th interval I was pushing myself to get through those 4mins before talking a walk. Just as I suspected I would want to stop but took a look at my watch and push until the next walk break instead. I also noticed that the walk breaks felt really short. Like I would breath deeply take a sip of water and poof 40secs were gone and it was almost time to run again. This makes me think that we were taking long walking breaks before.

Only once did we break from the scheduled stops and it was about halfway through. We took an extra min walk followed by a 3min run to stay on the interval notifications from my Garmin. Other than that we were pretty strict.

So with the run being quite strong why did we cut it 1mile short? Well… we didn’t realise we did! We obviously hadn’t checked our plan properly and thought we were only down for 7miles… DOH!

Our pace was 11:13/mile so I guess that speaks for itself, a better pace on a longer run.

03/09/2015 – 4m Run
We took an unscheduled rest today. We’ve been struggling to sleep with the heat (about 80degrees overnight), we’re staying in my uncles villa and there is NO AIRCON! I was having a great sleep when my alarm went off at 6am and so too were Dad and Rachel so we quickly agreed to sleep in and try and catch up on some lost Zzzzzzzz’s. It was the right choice. I slept for another 4hours. We are on holiday after all so I’m not going to be too hard on us for skipping this one.

Long Run

05/09/2015 – 16m Run

Today we were up at 4.45am on the last day of our vacation in Spain to run the longest distance we’ve ever run. I got up and had two slices of bread with peanut butter and two cliff blocks. This time we were more prepared hydration wise. I filled my bottles for my fitletic belt with water, my dad had a full sports bottle with water mixed with a hydration tablet and we each carried a 500ml bottle of water and poweraid. We froze some of these bottles that we’d be dropping off along our route. We started with a short 2.5km out and back in the opposite direction to which we normally run. From there we continued out to do a 10km run along the path we’d been running all week. It was a little bit cooler today which was so nice!

We decided to use the 4:1 intervals again and I feel like they worked really well. I felt comfortable and never out of breath. The route was quite hilly and I found that tough on my right leg (the one always causing me problems) and I could feel every now and then a slight twinge in my right knee but nothing major.

We dropped a few bottles on the way out and took sips of our fluids on each walk break and a cliff block about half way out. Eventually we came to our turn-around point. We had driven the same route the night before for dinner and it still amazes me how far 16miles is and just how far we had run at the half way point! By half way I think we had taken maybe 2 or 3 longer walk breaks making it 3:2 on those intervals.

I’d say we got about halfway back when he hit a bit of a struggle, my legs at this point were TIRED but other than that mentally I felt good and my breathing was steady as was our pace. We took an extended walk break and a cliff block. From here on out it was more difficult, Rachel was starting to struggle a bit and we had a few more extended breaks between our intervals but still the intervals provided us with good targets to aim for running wise. Collecting the frozen bottles was so nice, by this stage they were just really cold and the poweraid was a welcome boost. We managed ok until about 2miles short of the end when it got really tough, Rachel was getting some pains and running became more difficult but I think for me I feel the last few miles is the mental challenge. My legs were shot at this point, they felt like jelly and were really tired but I knew I was going to finish and mentally I felt strong so I was fine running, putting one foot in front of the other and just getting closer to home. The funny thing was even when Rachel was the one to ask for a longer walk when she actually ran and had her head in it I was struggling a bit to keep up with her! At some point during the run something funny happened with my Garmin, it beeped to signify the end of a lap (being 1km) at 3mins which was not right but yet my distance compared to my Dad and sister was about .2miles short. So strange!

Running to the end I was still feeling good and already proud that we had managed the full distance, I had to run past our finish point and loop around our complex to complete the full 16miles on my Garmin.

I’m so so happy with this run! Not too long to celebrate though, next week is 18miles…