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A Tough Run

July 3, 2011

Hello – I hope Sunday finds everyone well! I’m in the middle of a lazy afternoon, doing some blog stuff and catching up on BBC iPlayer. It’s quite warm again today, which didn’t bode too well for my run today, but more of that in a bit.

After last week’s run in the stifling heat I vowed to get up early today and run before it got too hot. That didn’t happen because I ended up going to bed about 2am and I didn’t think that my body would appreciate being woken up at 7! In the end I got up at 9am and rustled up some pre-run fuel.


This is a wholewheat pitta filled with Biona mixed nut butter and a sliced banana … it was a yummy variation on my usual toast, PB and banana. I sat around for about an hour and a half waiting for my breakfast to digest before setting out on my run. I probably could have done with leaving it another hour because I had a stitch and tummy ache all the way around my route. Having said that, I had tummy ache when I went to bed last night, so breakfast might not totally be to blame.

It was hot when I set out, although thankfully not as bad as last week. As soon as I started I knew that my pace was slower than normal, which I put down to my blood donation on Wednesday evening. I spoke to a friend who is a keen sportsperson and has also given blood and he reckoned it takes a few weeks for performance to return. It was a beautiful morning, with no clouds in the sky, but I didn’t appreciate the hot sun beating down on me. However, after cutting last week’s long run short, I decided that I would do whatever I could to complete the 7 miles I had planned. I carried a bottle of water with me, so I stopped occasionally to have a swig. I also took a couple of walking breaks, which I think I needed if I was going to make the 7 mile mark. I managed to keep going to the end and even ran up the last hill (well, bridge … there are no hills in Cambridge).

The cliche goes that you never regret a workout, and even though this one was very tough, I was very proud that I did it. I have done that route before a lot faster and more comfortably, but it was cooler and raining and I hadn’t recently lost a pint of blood, so I’m not going to beat myself up about it.

When I got back I stretched and then downed some coconut water and a 9 bar nutty for recovery.

008 (2)

My appetite really revs after a long difficult run, so lunch followed fairly soon after this snack. I made a gorgeous fresh salad of romaine leaves, diced cucumber, cherry tomatoes, goats cheese and a pitta. Drizzled over the top is the cherry balsamic glaze that I bought from Wholefoods. OMG – it’s amazing, it added so much to the salad.


This coming week is a bit hectic because I’m in Sheffield on a course for most of it, but I hope to keep some semblance of a routine and I plan to keep posting.

How do you cope with tough runs? As I said, I’m not too fussed because I know that there are reasons for it, but any tips would be much appreciated!

10 Comments leave one →
  1. July 3, 2011 5:34 pm

    Wow, much respect for running as hot as it’s been today! And after giving blood 🙂
    And great minds obviously think alike – identical breakfasts… Love that combo!

  2. July 3, 2011 5:46 pm

    Two words: move on. We all have our awful runs by our own particular standards, and dwelling on them doesn’t help because so much of running is psychological. Be confident in your abilities: you ran that run (and you are a trooper for finishing) in tough conditions, terrible heat and after giving blood, which your friend is correct in assuming really weakens the body. I am the first to beat myself up over a bad run but honestly, I think given the circumstances you should count that run as a victory!


  3. July 3, 2011 6:57 pm

    I always say there’s no such thing as a bad run, you always learn something more about yourself or end up building physical and mental strength. I try and learn from it then move on a forget about it. So glad that you felt really proud for doing it! That cherry glaze sounds lovely, I have some blueberry balsamic and its amazing!

  4. July 3, 2011 7:42 pm

    They’re always hard to cope with but I love Jessica’s advice to move on and Laura’s that there is no such thing. She’s right, you went out there on a scorching hot day and did something and something is ALWAYS better than nothing!

  5. July 3, 2011 7:56 pm

    I think the best thing to do is to move on and just learn from it like the others have already said. Running on a hot day is always tough though, you should feel proud that you made it to the end!

  6. July 3, 2011 8:20 pm

    That food looks yummy! But I cannot have peanut butter or bananas before a run as they give me tummy ache so I save them for the end.
    With a tough run, I just either focus about my last good run, or think about if there was something I could pinpoint (eg was I dehydrated) and fix that for next time.

  7. July 3, 2011 8:34 pm

    wot the others said 🙂 x

  8. July 4, 2011 7:13 am

    I just keep plugging away. I’m a slow and steady runner so I look forwards to them more than the shorter runs or speedwork. You finished the run despite a stomach ache, so congratulations!

  9. Errign permalink
    July 4, 2011 2:53 pm

    Usually if I have a run I’m not such a big fan of, I spend a few minutes identifying WHY it was bad and then I move on, with those points in mind. Sometimes it’s just an off day, sometimes it’s lack of sleep or stress, etc.


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