I’m supposed to be training for Ride 100, so threw in a cheeky trip down to Box Hill in Surrey, just to check it out before race day.
After trying to do this last week (got to Hyde Park and my legs were dead), I decided to give my Edgware to Hyde Park and back run another go for my final big run.
The run out to Hyde Park went well. Managed to maintain an average pace of 5:36 per kilometre. The return run was painfully slow though. So I averaged at 6:03 for the whole run. I need to get that under 5:40 and add another 10km to the end on race day if I’m going to get under 4 hours for the marathon.
At the start line; the glamorous McDonald’s Stanmore at the top of the A5.
Half way point after 90 minutes at sone fancy Roman statue…
Which looks so much more impressive without my ugly face.
Half time treats on a warm spring day at Hyde Park Corner.
Back at the finish line complete with farmer’s tan, stains and very painful ankles!
Those final splits were rotten! Got through the run without injury though. Two weeks till race day now, so time to recover and get strong for race day.
Flat urban streets provide the opportunity to run pretty fast, until you run into a busy road. And then you engage in a strangely frustrating game of jogging on the spot and waiting, or enacting a dangerous real-world form of Frogger by dancing through the intersecting traffic. Then there’s the smog, and the languid pedestrians. Cyclists snarl at you if you even think of stepping off the kerb. On the other hand, you can head to the countryside for fresh air. Sure, you’re not going to get your p.b. as you wheeze your way up a steep, rocky slope. But that is going to get you fit quickly and improve your agility. Plus the random lateral variations with how your foot lands is going to build strength in your lower legs.
I ventured out for an 11km run through three parks in West Yorkshire, and despite my split times being borderline shameful, it was a lot of fun. It hit me afterwards all over, unlike an urban run, but the views along the way gave me so much more than the concrete jungle ever could. The route I followed took me through three different parks in the West Yorkshire town of Bingley.
The park is over 150 years old and sits in the hills over-looking Bingley.
I used to head to this park as a teenager. This hill used to wipe me out such that a break was necessary at the top. All part of the fun and games though! I continued up this canopied track till I reached the top of the park, then got my first taste of sprinting down-hill.
The estate is over 500 acres in size and covers an area of land between Bingley and Harden.
The St Ives estate path flows straight into Myrtle Park, with only a hilly road separating the two. No messing around with rural traffic this time.
This 11.2km run took me over 1:22. Pretty slow, but an amazing workout. Yorkshire features plenty of diverse country sights with its parks, canal-paths and then there’s the Yorkshire Moors. Such a great part of the country for spending some time in on a sunny day!