Time trials (Or Trials & Tribulations)

We don’t play in East Griqualand. We’re tough. This morning in minus three degrees we did not one but two 5km time trials. The second one was the best one – probably because I had regained contact with my feet. And I just love the way my TomTom encourages me with it’s little messages.

A lot of work still needs to be done – that 7:12 minutes per kay needs to fall to 6:35 and then 6:00. Oh my soul, this speed thing is hard…..in my next life I want to be a skinny Kenyan or Ethiopian man who blasts through a marathon in under three hours. Barefoot.

 

Keto Favourite

I have found my perfect post-run breakfast. So good it makes me run quicker just to get at it! I found a recipe on http://www.dietdoctor.com for Keto Porridge and with a few tweaks I made it my own – perfect on a winter’s morning when you come in with ice on your beanie!

Break an egg into a small bowl, add 6 tablespoons cream and whisk together. To this add one tablespoon chia seeds and one tablespoon sesame seeds. Sunflower seeds also work if you don’t have sesame and I’m guessing a few pumpkin seeds won’t go amiss.

The chia seeds need to sit for a while so now is the time to shower. Once you’re done it will be ready to cook.

Put one tablespoon of butter into a small pot, let it melt and then turn down the heat to medium/low. Plop the chia/egg/cream mixture into the pot and stir with a wooden spoon while it cooks. It will be ready in a minute or two.

Place in your breakfast bowl along with one teaspoon of xylitol and a liberal sprinkling of three spices – cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. Stir this in and then add a handful (30 grams) of raw nuts.

Enjoy and feel good about yourself – your training is done and your post-training routine is perfect. Your porridge plus nuts contains 17.2 grams of protein for repairing and building muscle and 80.14 grams of fat which is enough to keep you fueled all day if need be. It only contains 8,78 grams of carbs – no crazy sugar spiking there, but enough to top up glycogen stores for your next workout.

The story goes that the Tarahumara tribe could run fast  for days on a water and chia seed concoction – if you haven’t read Born To Run by Christopher McDougall get your hands on it now. It’s both fascinating and inspiring.

 

Never Quit

Winston Churchill was such a wise old goat. He inspired so many and he still inspires me today.

My Comrades history must look pretty shocking to those runners that cruise the distance every year in under 12 hours – four DNF and four DNS. DNS means failure to qualify and DNF means failure to finish in time. I’ve been close – 80km on my two down runs, 60km on my first up run where I panicked and quit. Plain stupidity and inexperience. 75km on my second up run because I knew that it was physically impossible to make the timing mat at the top of Pollys at 79km.

But I ain’t bovvered and I just keep on keeping on, my eye always on that insignificantly sized medal, and my mind full of quotes from that whiskey-drinking, cigar-smoking hero.

What made me think of this is my Banting group. They inspire me as much as I want to inspire them. Some of them have been extremely successful but it has been a long road. Others still need to travel that long road to reclaim their good health. There is always some stumbling along the way and there are obstacles big and small. It reminds me of my running, especially my Comrades journey.

37 years ago I was so asthmatic that I could not walk 100 metres, let alone run. I started with walking and I walked and walked and walked. My chest got so much better so I started a bit of running. In my thirties I thought a 5 kay run was incredibly far. In my forties I eventually worked up to the half marathon. I was 50 when I did my first full marathon. Imagine if I can celebrate my 60th birthday with my first Comrades medal next year!

So my message to my Banting peeps is this – never, never, never give up! You may stumble or you may fall but you WILL get to where you are going.

 

Icing an Injury

The first screenshot is my Spar Ladies Race. Not quite what Coach Mo prescribed. The first 6 kays were great – I was bowling along at 6:15 minutes per kay which IS what he prescribed but then suddenly I lost focus near a water table, stepped wrong and TWANG went a muscle in my glute/hip. The following 4 kays were much slower and a bit painful.

 

Anyway, the medical peeps always say ice an injury so this morning I took my glute/hip muscle for a whirl in minus 5 degrees. And if that is not icing an injury then I don’t know……It didn’t really work – shock, horror, what are these people talking about? Sorry Coach Mo – my speed work has come to an abrupt halt.

What I did manage though is 6 kays without walking once (including the dreaded PawPaw Hill) and the average pace wasn’t that bad for an injured tortoise!

 

Hello Treadmill My Old Friend!

I don’t have the guts to brave the dark and the frost on my own so while the Old Goat is languishing in bed resting his pins for his 87km Fun Run I hit the old treadmill.

Coach Mo has increased my paces which alarmed me somewhat. It’s hard being a tortoise in a family of hares, or should I say a woes in a family of hard-core runners. My children appear to have inherited the Old Goat’s toughness – pushing themselves to the edge seems to be part of the fun.

ME:   I can’t increase my pace.

DAUGHTERS/OG:   You can – just get out of your comfort zone.

ME:   I’m not ready to die.

DAUGHTERS/OG:   You won’t – you’ll pass out first.

Okaaaay…..

This morning I did my (10 minutes easy, 10 minutes marathon pace) x 2 and I was out of my freakin’ comfort zone people! I usually find 100 different reasons to break the run – the window needs opening, one dog needs to go out, the other dog needs a rug, I need to fetch water….This morning I did not. Onwards and upwards!

 

Last LSD for the OG before the Big C!

 

Apart from slightly sore ribs from his run in with a cow, Ysterbok is looking strong one week out from his first crack at the Big C. He turned 60 last weekend so even being ready to toe that start line is no mean feat.

We ran a chilled 16 kilometres this morning in the most beautiful weather EG has to offer – crisp and clear. We trundled along to the sound of bird chatter and snorting cows – the bitches are probably snorting because they haven’t managed to completely crush the Old Goat yet!

So now it’s just a matter of ticking over for a week, keeping healthy and making endless lists – what to pack in the car, what to pack in the fuel belt, what to pack in the bag that goes to the start in Durban, what to pack in the bag that goes to the end in Pietermaritzburg. Me? I’ll be packing a hip flask of the best dry red I can find and my sense of humour!