Monday, 22 December 2008

not reeeeeally training...

But I was down at saltdean by Brighton at the weekend, working out quite how to climb with crampons and ice axes. 

Used a pair of DMM superfly's, and stuck a pair of crampons on my new Charmoz'. bouldered around for a short while- and was given a bit of advice and some idea by Sasmojo, which helped. 

When I originally got on the chalk, it was a very daunting experience. I mean, really quite daunting. I wasnt quite sure what would and what wouldnt hold, ended up trapping my axes on top of each other, and at one point was very suddenly spreadeagled on the ground after being 6ft up. 

Watched Sasmojo trying to link up a couple of figure 4's, which looked fun- but my primary aim of this weekend was to get a bit of experience with sharp tools, and not to injur myself this close to going to Norway rather than piss around with stuff that really would have ended up in a bad way. 

Followed Sasmo up a II, then led it, and then a IV, which was a whole heap harder. Not just physically, but mentally. All very much about placing feet and axes very carefully and making sure that it would hold weight. All good fun. 

And now, I cant wait for the 26th. 

Roll on Hemsedal and Rjukan. 

Friday, 19 December 2008


Went to the Physio yesterday to get a better idea of what is going on with my left knee. No training of any type has been going on since the last debacle, and I have been massaging it with ice on a daily basis. 

(a minor point, but since doing that, the circulation in my hands has improved no end! I wonder if something migh come of massaging ice into my feet... must try that at some point). 

There has been no pain from walking around generally, but I know that if I start running, there is going to be a lot of pain after a very short time. 

So I saw the physio, and after a short amount of prodding I was sitting there saying... yes.. that HURTS! There is some bruising under the kneecap, and the tendons are a little sore. This is coming from a slight variation in my gait as I get tired, which means that the kneecap is slightly out of alignment with my thigh muscles and associated leg movements- which, in turn, means that cartilige under the knee is rubbing in places it shouldnt be, and is, thus, becoming inflamed. 

After looking at my Cycling posture and running posture, I was pronounced to have pretty good alignment in general, though Id imagine that after 30Km of running offroad, its likely to suffer a fair bit. 

Also, my left quad is 1/2 an inch smaller than my right- doing 1 legged leg presses I can do about 80kg with my right and 70 with my left. (though both are pretty much a struggle). so much for ever actually weight training my legs...

The excercise I have been prescribed is a one legged squat- non-weighted- heel on ground through as much range of motion as I can- on my left leg, obviously. and no running until after christmas. Which fits quite nicely. 

Im still allowed to cycle, though I have to be careful to distribute power equally through both legs. 

didnt actually ask about snowboarding... but I'll be wearing a knee brace for that. 

Friday, 12 December 2008

Knee Pain 10/12/08

Went out for a short run on Tuesday evening, just up the hill to Blackheath, and was intending on doing a circuit of the heath, nice and relaxed, taking it easy.
Got about 2.5km in and my right knee started hurting- nothing too much, just enough to think... ooooh.
then, within 500metres it was enough to think- ok, probably have to turn back before it gets nasty- that was just by the Hare and Billet.
By the time I was getting back to the edge of the heath I was walking and had to sit down because it was in so much pain.
This is pain below the kneecap, and also behind it. When I flex the knee there is a mild clicking in the joint, though not a real "click", more a feeling of a click.

got home- after only 4.23km, at an average of 5.10min/km and iced it.

Then to the pool and did 24 lengths, 3x4 at 2.16, then 1x8 at 4.32, and a final 1x4 at 2.08- not touching the ends, but swimming around at the end. All Crawl, no legs.

Home and massaged the knee with ice, after a while it actually properly clicked, but I suspect, no running for the next month or so, with ice massages everyday.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Lakes, 3/12/08

Up early to a beautiful day, snow on the peaks. 

Set off from Braithwaite and hiked up Stile end and Outerside. Icey to begin with, gradually turning to more ankle deep snow. Saw a couple of locals who were coming down the hill with walking axes, and saw the prints of a fell runner in mudclaws, who had evidently been coming down Stile End at one hell of a pace. 

Going across the valley from Outerside to the saddle between Sail and Causey Pike was really like being in the Alps, knee deep snow, and proper heavy footing. 

After getting to the saddle, we headed east to get Causey Pike, and then retraced our steps to get to Sail- which was a heck of a snow slog to get up- but made much much more easy by the fact it was a perfectly glorious day. 

After Sail, we headed up to Crag Hill summit where we sat down and admired the view, saw a guy with a pug that was scared of heights, and another local who came up, took a couple of pictures and then had to get off on the school run(!). 

Lunch was pitta and cheese, also oat bars, which we are trying as opposed to geobars- quite good, but harder to break in the right place, we went off west down into the valley- again knee deep snow, you could have boarded on- good powder as well, then north up sand hill to Hopegill Head, again, beautiful views. 

Finally took in Grisedale Pike on the way back down to Braithwaite.

An immensely delightlful day. Beautiful weather, a good 6 hours on the hill, about 18km, snow on the ground, and not a bad thing to say about any of it. 


DAR Malborough Downs

Back to the Malborough downs for a DAR. We remembered how muddy and claggy it was cycling last time on a questars, so were fairly adamant that we were going to get more of the running points than the cycling. 

The weather was cold, foggy with occassional sleet.

Starting out running we took the loop out to the south east taking in 19, 20, 21, 35, 22 (with good use of the open access land and good compass work), 34, 23, 24, 27- which wasnt actually there, and we spent far too long looking for). at this stage it was a toss up whether to go straight back via a couple of points and then bike it, or whether to clear the running course, just to see if we could. we decided on the latter, and went south to 28, 33, 32 and 29, then up into the wood. 

By this time it was easily 4h 30m in, and we were flagging, but with the hill training from the week before fresh in our minds and legs, it was astonishing to find that we were running up the hills, still. 

More astonishing was the fact that we continued running past checks 30, 26, 25, 36, 31 and home, 32k in all, and 5 hours in total. 

ok, if we were playing for points, it would have been more intelligent to get the higher pointage running ones and then leap on our bikes, but as we had never finished a running section before, it was a good thing to do. Especially as a year ago, it would have been an impossibility- physically and mentally- unless we walked. 

Transition was about 20 mins, 

onto the bikes, making sure that we werent going to go south, we headed out west to 8, then north up a horrendous path- used by greenlaners, which was not pleasant to cycle on in the gathering dark, and into the wind, down to 13 and north from there up the bridle path to 14. 

By this time it was freezing, we couldnt feel our fingers, I couldnt feel my feet, and visibility was down to about 5 metres in the fog. 

Rounded out to 17 with less than an hour to go- so we bombed down to 18- deceptively hard to find- as it was dark and foggy- you couldnt make out the trees literally on the roads' edge, there was a plan to go to 16, but we were so cold an knackered, we just headed straight home along the roads via 10. 

Had we curtailed our running, a few more points would have been taken on the bike section, though how many, I dont know, we were in a seriously bad cold way on the way back. 

I think the next specialist thing is bike technique training. It seemed to work for the running, very efficient as we have the endurance base now. Just need to get up the speed.

Hill training. 23/11/08

Rob came over- after a few glasses of wine on the friday evening, really a heavy long day wasnt going to happen. 

Got up late, mooched around and then headed out to Greenwich park for a bit of hill (or as much of a hill as you can get in London) training. 

The idea was to keep the rhythm up as we went up steep hills, not to stoop, and to keep good posture as we climbed.

There is quite a good, short steep hill over to the right of the park as you come in the bottom gate, so using our inov8s to good effect, we launched up the hill- a rep took about 1.30 or so with peak heart rate coming out at 167 for me. Then a break as we walked down the hill to the starting point, and did it again. 7 reps, up the same slope, but varying routes up it. 

After the short, sharp hill drills, we went on to long hills- well, a convex profile instead of concave, and did 4 reps up that, and finished with a jog home. 

All in all a useful, aerobic session, which was pretty much stealth knackering than totally mindcrushingly knackering.

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

easy 6.36

Just a short jog today, out with cyclops.
Left knee felt a little dodgy this morning- a pain on the outside, just below the kneecap.
twinged a little throughout the day, but nothing serious.

Took a route over Blackheath,
average pace of 5.46m per km
average heart rate of 141. Considering my max hr was 159...

a little chilly, but not too bad, was barely sweating, but a good jog. easy talking pace.

Sunday, 2 November 2008

beasted on the south downs

went out yesterday, South Downs with Rob.
wet, cold, windy.
3hours 37 mins, 24.24km.,
total ascent, 1005m,
total descent, 1010m
average HR, 136
Max HR, 171
average pace, 8.58mins per km

went through 10 geo bars and a sugar bomb- burning more calories in the cold, it seems.
nearly hypothermic by the time we got back, couldnt feel hands and could barely hold anything.
let alone a conversation.

could have been interesting if we didnt get back to Brighton quickly.
seriously, totally knackered, and did nothing today (sunday)

so I havent yet worked out how to create an image of my training log to embed on here...

as and when I manage to do it, I'll add more complex stuff on.