Couch to 21k: entry three

Faculty: Science & Technology
Category: Sport

17 January 2018

Picture of a bridge across the lake in Hyde Park with blue skies

The two weeks since my last training blog have flown by, but I’m feeling more prepared for race day.

I increased the distance of my long run again so as well as doing two 5kms after work, I also did a 12km run which I did on at the weekend. I was quite nervous before it as the furthest I had done so far was 8km, so to do one-and-a-half times that distance was daunting.

To make it more exciting I tried running somewhere different instead of my local area, so I went to Hyde Park which was a decision that paid off. Despite the cold, it was a sunny day which made for really nice views, especially along the lake in the middle of the park. The picture on this blog is from that day and it doesn’t have a filter on it!

I managed to do my 12km in 1:09:19 and I picked up 27 trophies on Strava due to all the segments I ran through, so I was happy with that!

Last week, I went along to the OSB training seminar for the Cambridge Half Marathon which involved a short group run, an opportunity to get a get gait analysis from Saucony and some talks about different aspects of running. I was a bit unsure about the evening because I didn’t know anyone there, but any nerves I had were immediately gone as I started talking to someone who said she reads my blogs. I ended up meeting a great group of people and we’ve got a WhatsApp group where we motivate each other to train.

The run before the talks wasn’t too hard either – we went to Parker’s Piece by the Cambridge campus and did four reps of threshold running for about three and a half minutes each.

Then came the seminars which covered a wide range of topics including injury prevention, nutrition, training/pacing and the actual day itself. I learnt a lot from each of them and even though the nutrition one made me feel slightly guilty about my post-run habit of eating some chocolate, I’m glad I went because all the information will help me prepare for race day. The injury prevention section was also very eye-opening as they mentioned the importance of doing strength and conditioning and stretching using foam rollers. This isn’t something that I have been doing so far, but I will try to add it into my training.

I am also going to try out isotonic gels to see if that helps with my longer runs and the recovery as after the 12km in Hyde Park, I was exhausted for the rest of the day. The gels will be at the water stations during the half marathon so it’ll be good to try them out beforehand.

By Karan Gadhia

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