Marshaling at Fareham Parkrun

I woke up this morning to the wind blowing an absolute Hooley! I put on my warm, waterproof clothes and made my way to Fareham Parkrun to don the high viz as a run marshal. Tomorrow I have local race (The Purbrook 5), and as I have just returned from injury, I thought I would give my legs a break today. It’s also Volunteer Week! 🙂

Fareham is my home parkrun and there are a lot of familiar faces, I usually run this course but it’s important that we all do our bit – did you know that if you volunteered at your local Parkrun, just once a year, Parkrun would never need to request for marshals. Parkrun can’t take place without the volunteers so it’s an important job, it’s also really rewarding..

Arriving at 8.30am, I was given a large high viz, emergency contact information and a ‘KEEP LEFT’ sign (which was fun taking to the check point in the storm!).  My spot today was at the 2KM point whereby there is absolutely no protection from the wind, so I took the full force of its fierceness. The views were amazing though!

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Today was a little bit muddy with some puddles.  Neil Driscoll (from the Fareham Crusaders) couldn’t resist showing everyone how it’s done.  The Fareham course is quite flat but there is an incline at the end, it feels a lot worse than it is – especially if you’ve gone out hard in the first two miles or so.

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My job today was to make sure that everyone kept left and that everyone was safe.  There was one fall today and the runner was directed to Kirsten at the next check point for some plasters from the trusty first aid kit.

I really enjoyed encouraging the runners, having a little chat with some of them and pumping out my 90’s dance music! It certainly made the runners smile! Vengaboys anyone?!

I love how friendly the runners are, and it made me recognise just how important it is to acknowledge and thank the supporters – which I do always try to do when I can breathe adequately!

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It’s so easy to volunteer, simply opt in to the volunteer emails on the Parkrun homepages to find out when your local run is in need of support. If you would like to volunteer on an Ad Hoc basis, you can email your local Parkrun and they can tell you the spots they need.

Happy Parkrun! Oh and don’t forget your barcode! 😊

May your miles be long and your injuries few

Kezza x

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Baby, it’s Cold Outside…

Running in Winter

It’s that time of year again when the temperature is rapidly dropping, and it can be difficult to get out the door.   There are also other aspects to consider whilst running in the winter;

Safety

Ensuring that you put your safety first. It’s important (especially if you are female) not to take unnecessary risks and stick to well lit areas.  It’s also now the time to get the high viz clothing out even for well lit areas.  As well as reflective clothing, you can also purchase lights which can be strapped around your arms or legs and lights that clip on to your trainers.

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Be Safe! Be Seen!

 

Running with Others

Now is a really good time to get social. If you don’t know any other runners, how about joining a run club in your area so you can run as a group.  Also, knowing that your running buddy is waiting for you at club is every incentive to lace up those trainers and get to club in the cold and dark evenings.

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Running Buddies!

 

 

Putting Pressure on yourself to break PB’s

PB’s are more difficult to break in the milder months.   If it’s windy, raining and snowing, your times are bound to be a bit slower.  Use winter to work on your gait and for building strength.  Most asthma sufferers really struggle in the winter due to the cold air so it’s important to remember to take your ventilator on a regular basis.

Kit

I am well known in my club for dressing inappropriately in the winter. No, I don’t wear too little, I always wear TOO MUCH and always end up TOO HOT by mile 2. It’s wise to wear DRI FIT or something similar so the sweat doesn’t stay on your clothes and make you colder quickly.  I have just purchased a new base layer from Ronhill which dries quickly and has a thermal layering to keep you warm.  I also like it as it’s long in the body – more often than not, the base layers I have purchased rise up, so my midriff is on show. (not a good look)

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Chris rocking his kit

 

Not Warming Up

I learnt the hard way on sat, it was one degree at Parkrun and I just couldn’t be bothered to warm up. This was a massive mistake!  My quads were frozen solid, and I felt like I couldn’t even move my legs.  The cold was a bit of a shock to the system.  A warm up is always a good idea, even if you don’t fancy it.  It’s also important to warm down even if you do fancy just getting home and curling up on the sofa with a hot chocolate as it means that you keep the muscles supple and prevent unnecessary pulls.

Hydrate

Although its cold, it doesn’t mean that you won’t be sweating. Dehydration is another key cause of injury, and you’re more likely to get the killer DOMS if you are not adequately hydrated.

 

Enjoy your winter runs, it makes the hot chocolate even sweeter

May your runs be run and your injuries few.

Kezza x

Finding Mojo….

So, I’m back. I’ve not blogged since April. Mainly due to losing what they call the ‘running mojo’, I think I lost it somewhere around mile 18 of the London Marathon. It happens to the best of us – one minute I was setting goals, reaching new milestones in my training and then after the marathon I avoided any kind of running. Instead preferring to spend my time lifting weights and attending gym classes. I just felt like marathon training became a real ‘chore’ and more like ‘work’. I also discovered that my pace had slowed right down and it really demotivated me.

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Having spoken to running friends, I realised that losing your running mojo is a real thing. Especially after such intense training for a marathon. I realised that I needed to set some new strategies for getting out the door…

Using the run as a ‘keep fit’ – This advice one came from one of my running friends. It was good advice. Just forget about your speed, distance and just look at it as a ‘getting fit’ run.

Cut your runs down – so you’ve been marathon training, you can relax in the knowledge that you no longer need to spend 18 miles and umpteen hours of your Sunday morning out there running.

Sign up for races– Run for fun, or go for a new PB – or even treat the race as a training run… there is also bling at the end! Everyone is a winner!

Run with friends-Running with friends can take the pressure off pace (depending on what friend you run with of course!) and ensures that the miles just fly by. I do love a good ole natter but also can enjoy a couple of miles ‘just listening’. Many of my long miles with friends have been to stop in the shop for an ice cream or a drink and to take pictures.

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Try a different run– why not try a different route altogether? Even if it means driving to a new location…

X Country – I LOVE a bit of mud. Bring it on! I find X country so exciting as you never know what’s going to be around the corner and there are always some fantastic routes and views to be had.

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Don’t stress about it-It doesn’t matter if you’re not running as long as you’re moving. Take the time to try out some classes or new exercises until you get your fitness and running mojo back!

Try something different to running that you’ve always wanted to try! I am really enjoying my stand up paddling at the moment.  Why not try paddling or kayaking? We have had a beautiful summer so far so why not try something different and give your legs a well-earned break!

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Lose the Garmin – If you’re someone who has been running for a long time, then you know for sure what your pace is. Even if you tell yourself you won’t look at your Garmin, don’t believe it – you will. So, just leave it at home! Run free, at whatever pace feels good and liberating.

Join a run club – you will meet some totally awesome and inspirational people. Enough said..

Buy some new trainers – it’s the answer to everything. Plus, won’t it be great to just go test those baby’s out!

Change up your track list – my track list varies so much – I have gangster rap right through to slow ballads. It depends on what kind of day I have had as to what I choose to listen to.

Stretch!

Lastly, Run because you Can!   Remember that running is a privilege. It’s something YOU get to do for yourself. After all, not everyone has the ability to run. Some are sick, or physically not able to, and some just have no time. Be grateful instead that you have legs that are mobile, lungs that are strong, and a body that is healthy – all of these things mean that you “get” to run today.

Have you ever lost your mojo and have you any new strategies to getting your love for running back, I would love to hear them!

May your runs be long and your injuries few…

Kezza x