Tag Archives: Yeovil Montacute

Manchester Marathon Training: Week 3 of 18

Week 3 marked the final week of 2014, an enormous year for me running wise and ushered in a new one with new targets. It also saw the last week of training plan disruption caused by the festive period, though this was managed quite nicely thanks to some creative thinking!

According to the book/training plan, this week called for:

Tuesday – 10m GA
Wednesday – 4m Recovery
Thursday – 8m (4m LT)
Saturday – 4m R
Sunday – 14m MLR

And this largely remained unchanged, except Thursday was New Years day! I wanted to take the opportunity to do a “parkrun double” s decided to switch the Tuesday and Thursday session, and add a mile either side of each parkrun which worked quite well.


Tuesday’s LT run was much harder than when I did it a few weeks ago. A Christmas of indulgence made me pay the price by delivering a tough run. I managed to hit the splits but it was far less comfortable. Note to self: Shift the Christmas timber!

Thursday was parkrun double day! In Bristol, Chipping Sodbury and Pomphrey Hill started an hour and a half apart allowing 155 people to do both. As I was due to do 10m at General Aerobic pace, I though a mile warm up and warm down for each would be a good way of fulfilling the training obligations provided I didn’t take them too fast…. Jodie and I drove up with friends Nikkii, Steve, Paige and Kam and also stumbled across the Biss family who were also on double duty! It made for a good away day for Yeovil Montacute!


Chipping Sodbury is a 3 lap course on narrow tarmac paths around a rugby club playing fields. The tourism/NYD factor tripled their average attendance and the first lap was quite congested. This helped me keep it easy. I then started getting a bit faster as the run went on and even kicked in a solid finish before having a cool down lap. The people and marshals were lovely, though the course wasn’t the most interesting. Very flat though, and could be good for a PB in the right conditions!

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Pomphrey Hill was similar in that it was a three lapper, but had a feature hill which of course needed to be climbed 3 times! My warm up lap took me down it and it put the Yeovil Montacute hill to shame! The course is all tarmac apart from the hill and a section along the top which was woodchipping (Apparently the hill woodchippings are quite new – would have hated to have tackled it without them!) and the paths are much wider. I found the surroundings much nicer for some reason, and actually think this is one of my favourite parkruns!

In my run I decided to give it a good tempo effort as I liked the challenge of the hill. I wasn’t going all out but set a pleasing time with a good finish.

1910997_10152973371632241_4597823702280872528_oI couldn’t quite believe it but we had loads of volunteers for Saturday’s parkrun too, so I got the opportunity to run at home too! The idea was I’d do the run at recovery pace. It started well, but the competitive juices got going and upped the pace for the last mile. This was semi conscious – the last mile is ALWAYS the one my pace drops off at. So by injecting a quick last mile in a “training” run, meant I could get a psychological boost without affecting my training too much and taking too much out of my legs for the Sunday long run. I even managed a sprint finish!

16184689495_c73935357b_kThis puts me on 33 parkruns, a tantalising 17 from the 50 club!

Sunday of course meant a long run. 14 miles at LR pace. I managed to keep things nice and consistent, managed a good amount of climbing for strength building. The first 9 miles flew by, and the last 5 got gradually harder – though that’s to be expected!

Week 4 started today with a rest day! And it’s officially the start of Jantastic! The free online motivation challenge helps you to be consistent with your running, as consistency is the key to improvement. Sign up at http://www.jantastic.me to take part!


Yeovil Montacute parkrun #52

I went into parkrun on Saturday thinking about a shot at a PB. I’d pulled out my Salomon Speedcross shoes and worked out my target pace. Unfortunately, I don’t think i was mentally prepared for it. Pre-run I was busy co-ordinating volunteers and doing my favourite part of parkrun – talking parkrun with other parkrunners. I spent too much time doing that though and before I knew it, and with barely time for a warm up, the run briefing was starting!

I hit my paces OK for the first mile, but it went downhill from there. The conditions were tough underfoot, and the general consensus was that the course was running slower. Halfway round I semi gave up on my PB attempt and just ran it comfortably hard. I only missed my PB by about a minute, but I knew after mile 1 it wasn’t my day.

Jodie on the other hand, absolutely smashed it! It was her 4th parkrun of the month, and her first attempt at a new PB, and only went and delivered! A 15s PB in those conditions was a brilliant acheivement! Tantalizingly close to Sub 29, but inside the top 100! Her main aim at the moment though is to run a time faster than the “Average run time” published at the bottom of the Yeovil Montacute website, so she can say she is an “Above average runner” which is a very respectable target. I reckon she’ll have done that by the end of the year.

Some cracking photos of us taken this week too, which I’ve uploaded below. Taken from the Flickr group.

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Yeovil Montacute parkrun #50 – Halloween!

It became clear earlier in the week that I wouldn’t be needed for an “on the day” volunteer job this week, so I started psyching myself up for a tilt at a PB. It was halloween week, though I’d been so busy I wasn’t able to really think about a costume, and I didn’t want to do anything to jeopardise the PB attempt! Jodie on the other hand played the role of “Zombie Runner” perfectly!


When I got there the team had done a brilliant job decorating the scanning tent and there were plenty of others in fancy dress. It was a lot of fun.

Conditions were perfect, and Montacute House looked as amazing as ever.

Credit to Neil Biss
Credit to Neil Biss

Simon and getting paced around for a sub-21 today by our thursday intervals coach Dave. I thought I’d try and hang on with them as long as I could, knowing I wasn’t going to get around in that time. The strategy almost paid off. I stuck with them all the way to halfway and started drifting back after the 2 mile mark.



The last mile was a real struggle, especially with the killer hill at the end, which I walked up again. I’m a firm believer that if I ran up it, I wouldn’t have the energy to run quick over the last 0.2 miles of the course. But equally, I haven’t had the balls to actually test it yet!

I managed to cross the line in 21:50, 20s outside my target but generally pretty happy. I’m still on track to go sub-20 on a flat course by the end of the year. I just need to do more interval work at a flat out rate – as it was my breathing that was causing issues. So I need to push it more.

Jodie ran with Paige and a young girl for the first lap as the responsible adult for the first lap. The girl had a lot of fun so Jodie was well utilised 🙂


As it was Jodie’s birthday run (And mine I guess – I’m not running next week, volunteering instead) we had some lovely cakes made by Jodie’s dad. But Aime and Sue (Other volunteers/regulars) also came with cake!

A good day and pleased with a PB. Here’s the Garmin Activity.