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If it wasn’t for sport and athletics inpartically I am not sure what I would be doing right now? At the age of 10 realised I was good at something and that was running fast. I was in year 6 at primary and was part of the relay in the Ashford district sports championships I took the baton and run the race of my life winning the race for the team. From that moment on I fell in love with athletics. At sports day I won the sprint race and then I joined the local club Ashford AC.
Athletics got me on the right track in life and my first real memory of international competition was the 1991 World Championships and the historic epic long jump competition between Carl Lewis and Mike Powell. The latter breaking the world record to win. I am going share a memory from each year since 1991. I hope you enjoy it.
Well it’s been a while since my last blog so lots to update you on!!!
I have continued with my training making sure I do enough to keep progressing at a steady pace without getting injured as April 2014 is still a long way off.
I have started to go further on my Sunday morning runs going for up to an 90mins in my first run I managed just over 10miles which I was really pleased with as this is the furthest I have ever run in my life. It wasn’t too hard either just at a steady pace…
As I was a sprinter I still like to keep the speed going so will be doing lots of 5k park runs and 10ks to make sure the speed is there. In early October I ran my second Maidstone Park run; I was aiming for a PB and sub 23mins. I went out hard and carried on to finish is great time of 21.40mins so smashed my pre-race target. A very happy runner!! The week after my park run I took part in the Givaudan 10k road race starting and finishing at the Julie Rose Stadium our home track. I was looking forward to running in my home town and helping the club raise funds. I woke up on the morning of the race and looked out the window it was raining (in fact it was more like a monsoon!!!). I drove through the pouring rain to the track and arrived to find the track flooded with rain water. OK today’s race was going to be interesting and wet!! I warmed up and went to the start area where the organisers said there was a major road flood just over the railway bridge which is outside the stadium. The starter Derek Seamon got us on our way and went out hard (perhaps a little too hard) we approached the railway bridge and at the bottom was the flood. I just followed the runners and went straight through the middle which was the quickest and shallowest part of the flood. That said my trainers where soaked. I went through the first 1km in under 4mins which was a little but too fast as I started to feel a bit heavy legged at 3km.
I carried on pushing and as the race went on I got wetter and wetter but was feeling ok. It was great to see all the volunteer marshals on the route many of whom gave us a cheer as we went pass them. Just after 7km I was greeted by my family who braved the rain to cheer me on. Claire my wife who’s birthday fell on the same day deserves a special mention for coming out in the rain to support me!! See them all gave me a boost and I pushed onto to the finish. When I entered the stadium gates I glanced at my watch thought sub 45mins is on. I didn’t want to sprint too soon but once on the track I went for it. As I crossed the line I wasn’t sure if I had done it… An hour or so later I found out my time. 45.03mins so close yet so far!! Anyways next time.
Following the 10k I have kept training up and ran another Park Run PB this time at the first park run in Ashford. My time of 21.14 was good enough for 16th overall. Didn’t feel great so lots more to come!!
Finally this morning I went out for my long Sunday morning run I headed out and was going well. At 5miles I was at Hamstreet woods I decided to carry on towards Woodchurch hoping there would be a right turn to take me back towards Stubbs Cross/Kingsnorth but it never came. I decided to turn back and ran through to Shadoxhurt and realised that I wouldn’t get back home in the allocated 90mins so called home to let them know I was going to be late. I ended up running 13.1 miles in 1hour 49mins which is a Half Marathon!! I have to say my legs are killing!!!
That’s enough for today… Hope you enjoyed the update!!!
Race time!!!! So after about 3 weeks training I decided to do a race and see how I was getting on. I decided to do a Park Run which is a Free 5k run for any ability. I had done one before in Whitstable on a cold and windy January morning in 2012 on that day I finished with a time of 27.49!!!
So I set myself a target of running sub 25mins and went off to the Maidstone Park held at the Museum of Kent Life. It was a lovely sunny morning with a little bit of a chill in the air. I dug out my vintage Kent vest which I won as an under 15 sprinter…Yes it does still fit!!
As I arrived I saw some familiar faces from Ashford AC – Jenny Brown, Amanda Jukes and her mum. I was a little nervous but ready to see what shape I was in. I was told that there was a killer hill at the end of the course so I kept this in mind.
They called us to the start and I got to the front ready for the off. The Ipod was ready with a mix of old and new tunes to get me round. I also used my GPS watch to help pace the run (just like a distance runner the finger was posed to press start at the beginning of the race). The hooter sounded and we were off…
I went off fairly fast and then settled into the run at a steady pace (remembering the hill) looking at my pace I was running well under 5min per km so I guessed I was on for my target. Running along the tow path of the river Medway was lovely and as we crossed the bridge to do a small loop of a park returning back before the run for home. I felt good and relaxed.
With 1km to go I still had in the back of my mind the hill at the end so I held off; with 400m to go I edged closer to the finish I thought “the hill must be here soon”. As I turned the final corner I thought this must be it… but it was a small 50m climb to the finish. I crossed the line in 50th place out of 179 with a time of 23.23mins… I had smashed my target!!! Well happy with the result.
A week later my friend and fellow runner Matt Hogben convinced me to run the Charing 10k and I thought bring it on. This time I set a target of sub 49mins and I was told of another killer hill in the course!!! I thought “let’s see what this hill is all about”. I set off at a comfortable pace and was running around 4.30min per km up to 4km then came the hill. What a hill it was!!! It seemed to go on for ever and as I ran up it I noticed a few runners actually walking up it!! The hill lasted over 1km and my split for this km was around 5.55min. Once I was at the top of the hill it levelled out for a couple of km until we descended down the hill back to the finish. I made the most of this and relaxed. Coming round to the finish I gave it a bit of the sprint finish and crossed the line in 53rd place out of 140 runners… My time well again I smashed by pre-race target of sub 49mins finishing in 47.43mins… I then realised my training was finally paying off!!!
I hope you all enjoyed part 1 and that it gave you an insight into why I am doing the 2014 London Marathon.
So 6 weeks ago I started training for the BIG one the London Marathon; I downloaded a 24 week intermediate training plan for the London Marathon website and set about following the programme.
At first it was a real shock to the system getting back into a formal training routine (Something I haven’t done since leaving university in 2003); but I knew it would be worth it and had to get on with it!! The first week involved running for 6 out of 7 days (although I ran a leg of the 4 x 100m relay at our final SAL match) meaning I ran every day. The first session was an easy jog for 10mins followed by a run for 10mins… The week ended with an hour run which I successfully managed and so it began!!
Week 2 involved 5 days of running including what should have been a 60min run on the Sunday but I thought it said 75mins so that’s what I did running 12.9km… Feeling happy after that run!!
After week 2 I invested in a new pair of runners and after week 3 a GPS watch to help me pace myself.
Week 3 and 4 was pretty much the same with a mix of easy jogs and Fartlek training. I was at last feeling fit again. I have been getting up early in the morning to do most of my training runs as I want to get them out the way before starting work.
There have been days when I was like “I need to say in bed” but I just got up and started running.
What have I experienced on my training runs??
Well not a great deal to write about at the moment the highlights so far being a dog running along with me for part of my run and one of my sponsors cheering me on whilst walking their dog. I will make sure I look out for some more interesting things on my runs.
That’s it for part 2!!! In part 3 I will let you all know about my first two races plus anything else interesting.
6 weeks ago I started to prepare for my biggest sporting challenge running the 2014 London Marathon. I know it’s early and many people haven’t had their places in the race confirmed but I am lucky enough to have secured one of my athletics club places (hopefully).
There are many reasons for me taking on this challenge these include getting fit again, I’ve always wanted to do the London Marathon etc…
The main reason I am doing this race is to raise money and awareness for two very special charities; The Royal British Legion and CLIC Sargent.
On the 20th December 2012 I lost my Granny Ogg someone who I was very close too and who inspired me to achieve all I could in my life. Granny Ogg was part of the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) during the Second World War and as a highly skilled radio telegraphist and worked punching messages onto tapes at Bletchley Park. Her skills as a hand Morse code operator were then used to relay messages behind the lines during D day.
Throughout her life she was a supporter of the Royal British Legion and I want to continue this support in her memory.
Earlier this summer I found out that a close friend had been diagnosed with Leukaemia and was receiving support from CLIC Sargent during their treatment. CLIC Sargent is the UK’s leading cancer charity for children and young people, and their families. They provide clinical, practical, financial and emotional support.
It was a shock to find out someone so young, fit and active was suffering with this horrible illness; that it inspired me to do something to help them and everyone else who is fighting bravely against cancer.
I thought running 26.2 miles will be hard but it is nothing compared to what these young people are going through and hopefully it will raise some much needed funds for the charity.
OK that’s it for part 1 but don’t worry in part 2 I will tell you all about how the training is going and what I’ve been up to on my training runs and my races!!!. I might even share some interesting things I have seen (I can hope!!!)
After securing the European Indoor Championships qualification standard last weekend, Asha Philip (coach: Christine Bowmaker) has set her sights on a top two finish in the 60m at the British Athletics European Trials & UK Championships.
Philip, who won the World Youth 100m title in 2007, ran 7.24 at the Birmingham Games to send her to the top of the UK rankings for 2013, and will be considered one of the favourites at the EIS-Sheffield this weekend.
Ashford Leisure Trust is running there first open Sprints and Jumps athletics competition at the Julie Rose Stadium on Wednesday 19th September 2012. The competition will include 100m and 200m races run with the wind behind, plus Pole Vault and High Jump competitions.
Date: Wednesday 19th September 2012 Venue: The Julie Rose Stadium, Ashford, Kent TN24 9QX Start Times: 100m (19:00), High Jump (19:00), Pole Vault (19:00) and 200m (20:15) Entry:Entry Form and Information or Online Entry