I’ve entered the 70.3 there for June 2010. That’ll be my first A race, the second will be the New Forest Middle.
I did the Bracknell Canicross race last Sunday.
After a fantastic run on Friday, Tango just didn’t get the hang of Canicross. I think he was quite nervous at the start with about 30 dogs around him, many of them barking and snarling. He is deaf in one ear so can’t tell where the sounds are coming from so I think it confused him a lot. He did make friends with a few dogs until I dragged him away to the start. On “Go”, we didn’t go as fast as Sparkie did last year. Last year I remember Sparkie sprinting for the first k. Tango jogged.
We went past someone on the top of the first hill. Then he ran next to me trying to jump up and get attention like he does sometimes. I stopped patted him and we carried on. Someone with a husky ran past us. Then a couple of minutes later he jumped up again, and we stopped again before we carried on again. Not a good start. A bit later we caught up with four or five runners and there was a little bit of fighting going on between the husky that overtook us and another one. The one that overtook us was pulled over to the right a bit straight towards Tango. The husky went for him a bit and Tango turned round, growled and barked assertively and then we carried on past the husky – not seeing him again.
After about 2k there was a downhill and Tango decided to pull hard down it. I ran very, very fast. After a few hundred metres the downhill had gone and Tango was back to slow trotting to the front/side of me. I always held the lead to stop it going too dangly. We passed a few more people but he then stopped for a wee so we got re-overtaken. Then we got to a long path with a lot of puddles in. He slowed down going through each of the puddles, as if trying to decide whether they were clean enough to drink but deciding not to. A few more people overtook us, especially when he stopped for another wee.
Overall, we did it in 22 mins 31s. The results say that it was 5k but I was working really hard (with little help from Tango) and so I would say it was around 5.4k. This is what last year’s results say it was. We came 7th out of 15th in the age group. A pretty poor result. But 16th out of 106th overall. That definitely sounds better.
I am planning to do another in January at Alice Holt.
Well not too much!
Wifey’s broken foot has meant that I have not done as much exercise as I would have liked. I’ve not been on my bike, I’ve done little swimming in the morning but a reasonable chunk of running. Trouble is the running has been a little sore where I hurt my knee with the bikejoring. Also, a few weeks ago my foot “crunched” walking down the stairs and that still hurts. As does my hip (as of Friday). Actually, all these are on my left leg.
I am going to go for a swim in a minute and then take Tango for a Canicross race. Tango and I had a bit of a practice on Friday and we got a new PB around a local loop (29:42 for 6.67k). The route is quite hilly, quite muddy in places and I wasn’t trying to go all out. However, it was over 4 minutes quicker than we had ran it before.
I was running through Greenham Common yesterday when I came across someone who was Bikejoring on a scooter. He basically had a husky tied to a scooter with large wheels. He was scooting, the dog was pulling and they were going along.
I read up about this and saw that you can also do it with a mountain bike. I have all the other kit that I needed so I gave it a go this morning. I went out first with Tango, an English Setter that loves running. It was a little bit tricky getting started and after 100m or so we came across a mad black lab. After a bit I let Tango go and they played for a while. Then it was back to the bikejoring.
This went well-ish for 400m until we got to the woods. Then he stopped quickly and when he restarted the rope was on the wrong side of the handle bars and as I pulled it lose it snapped off the bit that indicates what gear I was in. Then there was a lot of tricky, fast riding through lot of chicanes with holly bushes, low branches and big tree routes. At one stage Tango veered off suddenly to get a drink from a tree that holds water. I survived that and got back ok.
Next up Sparkie. Another English Setter who loves to run. He’s probably not as fit as Tango but he pulls harder. The start was better and I got better control of what the rope was doing. We were probably going faster through the woods as I was putting effort in so that I stayed with him. Then we got to a chicane bit that has lots of lefts and rights and at the same time lots of little up/down bits. I was doing well to start with and then I got to the hard left turn that was on quite a steep downhill. I overcooked it and came off. Blood all over my knee and hands. I got up and called Sparkie over. Then I straightened the handlebars and got on. Only to find ot that the wheel was back to front. Off again. Grip the wheel with me knee and turn them through 180 degrees and carry on.
Then on a shallow downhill bit I could see that there was a sharp left turn, around the roots of a fallen tree, then a sharp right across a bank about 2 foot high before a left back down the hill. Just before I got to it, Sparkie stopped. I braked hard and veered to the side to miss him. The brakes were too good. I went straight over the handle bars. Not a good plan.
So, no more bikejoring for me. It’s too risky for me and (if I don’t brake quick enough) the dogs.
I could see it being easier on a scooter with big wheels. As I can’t help as much, we would go slower and that would be safer.
If I ever do do it again. Remember to use gloves, long trousers and the back brake!
I would have liked to do all three days but it doesn’t tie in with my goal of getting quicker. I feel that I’d have to do too much slower stuff to be able to run three marathons in three days.
I was also thinking of the doing the Extreme version of the Endurancelife Devon Coast 2 Coast race. This appeals but again I don’t want to go long next yeat. I want to get quicker.
Right, tomorrow’s the race and I haven’t thought about it properly. Or even got my kit together yet. So here’s the plan:
Start horizontal in the water. Go hard for at least the first 100m. After that find a good draft. Concentrate hard on keeping the draft.
It will be cold (about 8 degrees) so I will put my bike jacket on. I’ll also put some thin socks on and use my old bike shoes.
I’ll aim to go moderate for the first 2 hours, with a bit harder on the hills (say 240W). I will then go hard for the last 40 minutes or so. I need to make sure I drink enough with the gels – so I will take a couple of gels I can take without drinking.
Aim to push through the pins and needles that I will get after 30 mins or so. Don’t take my shoes off to massage them. It will be hilly and I will run all the hills. Most of the run is on-road and so that should be easier on my feet. Make sure I have some gels I can take without water and eat at least three of them.
Fortunately it is not my foot that it is broken.
Unfortunately, it is Wifey’s foot.
She’s in a lot of pain and it hurts to hobble around. We went to A&E on Tuesday and saw an x-ray of a broken 5th metatarsal. The next day we went up to the hospital to see the fracture doctor. A two hour wait followed by one minute (literally) with the doctor before a nurse Wifey got an inflatable boot. Still lots of pain.
It’s also likely she won’t be able to drive for four weeks so this will really disrupt everyone’s lives. The dogs won’t be able to get a walk and we have to find different ways of getting the kids to school.