Marathon Training and Nutrition

<Marathon Training and Nutrition>

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Milton Keynes Half Marathon

Sunday dawned cool and slightly overcast which looked great for a half marathon. In all the races I've run I've never ever had good conditions but Sunday was great. My only complaint would have been that it was slightly muggy by 10am.

I am so annoyed that I was unable to capitalise on the great conditions and I posted a poor time of 1 hr 58 mins 23secs which was a big disappointment to me after indicating below that I wanted to get nearer 1 hr 45 mins. The problem was that I was really tired before the race started. I've been working long hours all week before and just wasn't up for the race - nor did I give it the respect it deserved. 'It's only a half' type attitude.

I did 3 mile split times and went from 23 mins to 26 mins to 28 mins and then 29 mins which is not very good, is it? Maybe I went off too quick and just died?

The race itself was well organized and its a lovely flat and reasonably scenic route often running alongside a canal or a lake. I was just in too much pain to really notice I'm afraid and hated nearly every step.

I'll probably give it another go next year and hopefully I'll be in a better frame of mind next year. Sorry guys for being so negative but that's how it was.

Back to building up City Local, Hemel Hempstead now. Take a look please at

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Monday, July 20, 2009

Marathon Training Resumes - July '09

Well hello again! Yes I hold my hands up and confess - I'm useless (when it comes to maintaining my blog). Basically after my bad muscle tear in December of '07, which I sustained whilst running the Luton Marathon in atrocious conditions, I have been on a slow path to recovery. I felt like giving up completely when in Feb '08 I tore a muscle in my thigh and could hardly walk never mind run. I just didn't allow my calf muscle enough time to recover and my thigh muscle tried to cover for it ... unsuccessfully. I left it again and as my last posting indicated I developed tendonitus whilst in Turkey and then a couple of months later developed burs in my hip.

Well, as you can imagine, I was in despair and actually considered giving up running altogether. From August '08 through to Christmas '08 I hardly ran at all except for a few very light jogs but since then the first 6 months of '09 are proving to be very encouraging and I have managed to regain my fitness, build up my muscles and begin to post some good times in training.

Initially my 10k was down to 1 hour because I was so out of condition and scared to pull another muscle but I've slowly built up my confidence and last week I finally dipped back under 50 minutes for the 10k and also ran 14 miles in training, in 28 degree heat, without any adverse effects.

I am running the Milton Keynes Half Marathon next Sunday (26th July) and I promise to let you know how it goes. I'm aiming for 1:50, would be delighted with 1:47, and over the moon with 1:43!

Meanwhile my training has suffered just a wee bit because I've started a new business called CityLocal, HemelHempstead which is consuming my time and energy. Going for a run is now as much about relieving stress as it is about fitness. I am loving it though. Basically the business is about promoting small to medium sized businesses in Hemel Hempstead and providing a means for them to get a web footprint very cost effectively. If you are local Hemel business person reading this and want some help then give me a call or drop me an email. BTW the web address is so go and take a look.

Anyway, I'll keep you posted on the half in MK next week. Til then - stay fit.

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Monday, May 12, 2008

Struggle Continues

Hi, I'm back after a lovely holiday in Turkey which was marred by me developing tendinitis in my right calf. The opposite calf to the one I tore in December. What can I do? Be patient I suppose. Anyway I've had another couple of week off running but I did go for a very intensive cycle ride on Saturday with my iron-man triathlete brother-in-law. We covered over 32 miles and I was very exhausted at the end. Its the first real cycling I've done for about 6 months. My bottom is still sore and my neck is also stiff! Still, all-in-all I'm chuffed that I managed to keep up most of the time and at the end my sore leg was perfectly fine. No twinges or anything.

On another note, take a look at the brilliant picture below. If you ever want to say sorry to someone then this picture should do it!!


Sunday, April 20, 2008

Progress Continues

Over the past few weeks I've been slowly getting back to more competitive running. I've completed a number of runs over 10 miles in length without any setbacks in terms of tweaked muscles. At first I was really slow and was really concentrating on every stride just to make sure I didn't put my feet anywhere that might cause me to slip a pull another muscle. That's not a very exciting way to run and it was basically just a way to get my fitness back up to decent levels. I felt that I'd really lost my fitness big time and struggled to even complete 10ks without stopping but over the past couple of weeks I've started just running for the pleasure of it and trusting that my legs are okay. So far so good.

I've done two 10 mile runs in the past 3 days with no adverse results except feeling a bit tired after the second one.

I'm off to Turkey tomorrow for a couple of weeks so I'll get in some running in good weather - can't wait. Check out our website to see exactly where I'm going


Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Want Strong Bones? Skip the Milk!

So how do we get enough absorbable calcium into our diets if we aren't consuming dairy? Far healthier sources of calcium come from plant foods. Here are a few excellent choices:

White Beans
Soy Beans or Soy Nuts
Baked Beans
Collard Greens
Mustard Greens
Turnip Greens
Swiss Chard
Bok Choy
Brussels Sprouts
Sesame Seeds

Also, Juice Plus Complete® is an excellent source of dietary calcium. Make a shake with chocolate or vanilla Complete and soy milk if you need a quick snack, or as a pre-or-post-exercise drink. Lastly, as important as it is to eat calcium-rich foods, it's equally important to do weight-bearing exercise, which strengthens bones, muscles, and ligaments.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Green Shoots of Encouragement.

Over the past couple of weeks I've been getting back to something approaching regular running. Only sort of 8-10ks but maybe three times a week, and at increasing pace. So far the muscles have remained okay but I am aware (or is it all in my mind?) of a tightness on my right thigh (the opposite one to that which was giving me trouble a couple of months ago).

I did a reasonably fast 10k on Saturday with Andrew (who had just returned from mountain climbing in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco and was feeling very fit) with no resultant injury. Triumph! By reasonably fast, I mean about 53 mins.

My brother-in-law, George is coming to stay with us for a little while, either a few weeks or a few months depending on the job. He is an Ironman Triathelete so I'll enjoy doing a few training sessions with him. He's a fitness fanatic and I'm sure he'll give me a kick up the backside for slumping into inactivity because of my muscle problems.

On a completely different and rather random subject - my son, Christopher, is doing rather well in his band and seem on the verge of a real breakthrough. If you want to listen to some of his stuff then go to


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Easing my way back to fitness

Over the past few weeks I've been slowly getting back out onto the road again. Nothing too demanding, just a few short runs and a few 4 milers. I couldn't believe how difficult the first couple were but I've been doing this for long enough now not to panic at having to stop at the worst hills.

My past three runs have been over the same 4 mile course - includes two big hills - and my times have dropped from 40 minutes to 36 mins to 34 mins today. Still very slow but at least there is no further damage and I actually enjoyed the run. My target is to run today's course in under 27 mins. I will get there.

May and I have entered a 1o miler on May Bank Holiday Monday near Milton Keynes. Hopefully I can get some uninterrupted training in before then. The physio has signed me off so she must think I'm ready. Just before that we are out at our apartment in Turkey again for a fortnight's break (absolute heaven) and a chance to do some running in the sun after what seems a long winter. If you'd like to see where I'll be running then take a look at the photo below. I run right around this bay - can you see why I'm looking forward to it?

If you'd like to see it for your self then go to and see a few more of my pictures and my apartment.