The road to running a half-marathon; week 3

The road to running a half-marathon; week 3

So here we are at week three of my training and everything appears to be going to plan.  On Wednesday I took my dog Loopy for another gentle run along the canal.  This is the third time I’ve taken Loopy and she has now become familiar with the route. She just leads the way with the occasional stop to say hello to the swans, ducks and other wildlife we see.

Shipley Lock

My start and finish point when I go to the canal is Shipley Lock on the Erewash Valley Trail.  It has easy and free parking right next to the lock.  Car parked I head south and turn around at the third lock I come to knowing it’s at 1.5 miles.  I then retrace my steps going north to make 3 miles by the time I get back to the car.  This is my favoured 3 mile run and I’ll be doing this most weeks, especially as Loopy enjoys it so much too.

Burning Calves

On Friday I was a little short on time so I resorted to going local from my home again.  Another encounter with my favourite hill successfully completed although yet again my calves were not happy.  I made a mental note whilst  crawling up the hill that to research some stretches for next week.  I am becoming aware that I need to do something to strengthen my calves up.  I always do a few stretches before a run but I figured I need to start doing a bit more.  Stretching is a great preventative for injury which I really want to try and avoid. If it also helps me get up that hill then surely it’s got to be a good thing?

Inspirational Athletes

On the weekend I was due to step it up to my first 4 mile run.  This didn’t happen though for two reasons.  Firstly, Saturday was a glorious day and the invite to a friend’s BBQ got the better of me.  On Sunday I met some truly inspirational people competing in the Deva Triathlon.  This half Iron Man distance event involved running a half marathon which is what I am training for.

The only difference being that these triathletes had a 1900 meters swim and a cycle of 87 kilometres before they could even start the 21 kilometre run.  It made my little 4 miles seem like a warm up.  Late home from a long day watching rather than competing I decided to postpone my 4 mile run to Monday.

4 Mile Run

After work on Monday, I headed down the canal again to Shipley Lock.  This time it was a 2 mile run out and a 2 mile run back.  I started off at a fairly steady pace and felt surprisingly good although having to run past my usual 1.5 mile turn around point felt rather strange.

I turned around at 2 miles and was still going well although my legs were starting to feel tired as I hit 3 miles.  The last mile was the hardest.  It was the furthest I have run to date and my Fitbit was telling me that I was actually going faster than I thought.  At the 3 mile point I had achieved my fastest 3 miles to date (not that I am watching the clock, honest).  I completed my 4 miles and had a smile of satisfaction on my face.   I felt like my training was going well. A little voice told me the distance I had run was nearly one third of the goal I am training towards.

Week 3 complete

I am only on week 3 and I feel like I have already accomplished quite a lot already.  When I look at the graph on my Fitbit with the distances of my most recent runs It is  motivating to see my progression.  I can’t wait to see what it looks like in another 3 weeks.

Grayson's route on Fitbit

So, if you want to join me on my little journey I will share my progress with you and whilst my only goal for now is to complete the Great North Run Half Marathon without stopping I am sure I will benefit from many other health benefits along the way and that just because I used to be able to do things 30 years ago, it’s never too late to start again.

Follow me and my journey to running 13.1 miles and be in with a chance of winning a Fitbit.  Details will be disclosed before race day.

The road to running a half marathon; week 2