Monthly Archives: September 2009

TREES FOR CITIES Tree-athlon 5K | London 19 Sep 2009

The Tree-Athlon is a fantastic fun-filled family festival full to the brim with races, activities, live music, food, drink and entertainment. The main event is the 5K fun run through the beautiful tree lined paths of Battersea Park that leads straight into the Tree-Athlon festival village. The central focus of the Tree-Athlon is the 5K fun run around one of London’s most beautiful parks. It’s an opportunity to be out in the open with hundreds of others, all running to raise money to plant tree in parts of our cities that need it most.


190909 – RACE DAY

okay okay, I do apologise for not keeping up the blog. The past week has been very draining on me with a close bereavement, as well as more messes and stressed people on my plate to deal with. So I arrived early to the race, and I was calm, yet when the fun warm up began, my mind was far far away and I couldn’t focus. I was totally distracted and I felt glum. This was not the way to feel before a race. I had to keep momentum. Everyone was star jumping and squatting in time with the music, whereas I felt distant and removed. Being out of sync also didn’t help! I have no rhythm at all to dance stepping warmups! I knew I had to go through with it and in a way,

I looked down at my bib which stated what I was running for:

and I knew I would do it. I would dedicate this run to my dear late friend Thomas. I found it hard with all the waiting around and by the time I went to the line up… I suddenly becam very hungry. I was absolutely starving that I wasn’t surprised if people made a false start due to the sounds coming from my tummy! Porridge doesn’t fill me up at all, Either that or that warm up and long walk burnt it all off. No wonder on a normal working day, I eat two-three breakfasts! At the starting line, I made a friend and he helped me take my mind off things and focusing on the race ahead fell in to place.

We chatted about other races and he mentioned my next one (Finsbury Park) and he said with a sharp intake of breath “That’s a tough one with all the slopes up and down. It’s not flat” …!! I left the starter line after the pistol with a worried smile on my face.

I shot off and by my pace watch, it was telling me to keep speeding up.. I was way above my normal pace i soon realised as I was catching up with the advance runners.. and even though the pace was comfortable to run in, I was worried I wouldn’t have enough energy in me left at the end, as I had never run at this pace before. I kept it up and on occasions I was told to slow down by beeps. I certainly didn’t mind from this unusual pace, as my tummy started having a stitch. It was the worse time to have one and I’ve never had one during a race. I had to go on. So I know from training to control my breathing to a slower pace to even it out and it soon went away.

People were beginning to walk and even though iI felt like stopping or slowing to help motivate them, I had to focus on myself and stop the stitch before any injury to myself. made it through.. and then I was at the straight stretch of the last half k. I forced my dead legs to push and I sprinted the rest of the way into the cheering supporters. It felt good. I felt slight sick for a first time, from hunger.. but it was great!!! FANTASTIC!!

I made it past the finish line and stopped my stopwatch at 26mins. So between 25-26.
Very good and beat my own time of 27-28. Very Happy!!!

I turned round just to see my friend make it over too with a huge grin on his face and we went over to pick up our goodies! Where I got a baby tree sapling! An English Oak and my friend gave me his Silver birch sapling! Where I live there isn’t space to grow plants, which gives me more reason to give it to my nephew Kyo so he can plant it in his garden and watch them grow together!! The Oak needs to be outside, whereas the Silver Birch can be indoors to begin with. I will grown try to grow the Birch at mine to begin with.

Very psyched up. Very hyper. That same buzz. The troubles and stresses seems miles away. But the lack of sleep is catching up on me. The journey home was interested as everyone looked on at the saplings with curiosity. My friend who had done this race last year, had said this was one of the only races that was so relaxed afterwards with live bands and lunches to be ate, enjoyed and lots of things to see and do afterwards. Very friendly atmosphere.

Glad I did my bit for a greener London!

190809 – I’ve been unwell for past few days and had decided to be sensible and rest instead of pounding the treadmill. Today was to be one of the hottest days of the year, but I couldn’t another day go without some training, so I decided to go later on in the early evening when it should be cooler. I was pleased. Despite my legs jelly, I made over an hour again, went around Viccy park, but got bored so wandered onto the streets which is what I love best I’ve decided. Its all the unknown roads and exploration of side streets that cars zoom past. Its a sense of buzz and before I knew it, each time I saw a familiar way home.. I turned again and took a new road.. I wound up by Hackey, near Shoreditch, went over to Liv street, round again, lapping over Hackney, behind Bethnal Green and then through some more parks which were filled with BBQ smokes and children playing, I then headed over towards over to Mile End, which ended up over an hours run and about 11k by my Nike+ which seemed accurate today. My Garmin was playing up so I couldn’t figure out a pace, I felt I was going much slower which I know is tougher. Towards the end as I went past Stepney, I felt the twitches in my knees again and I became angry at myself. I didn’t want to make it unbearable or injure them more, but I wanted to carry on.. From the other crazy run I did, I notice that after I get past a certain mileage, I am fine and can go on and on.. Brilliant!

090809 – insomnia kicking in, instead I sprung out of bed from its frustrations and ended up doing a crazy run. I covered 13-15k in just over an hour.. and the madness of it, is it was all across town starting from base. I loved it! The only reason I stopped was because I got lost! I always carry my keys, £1.50, and my phone for safety. This time a friend had advised me to take my Oyster card as well in case, and good job I did, for when I started seeing signs to Lewisham, I was a wee worried! Where on earth was I heading?? No more stations or red buses to be seen.. I went through Docklands, which was ideal, as all the bankers are away, and I get to see its amazing vertical shiny structures towering over me, passed many pubs on what seemed to be one of the hottest weekends, and noted I went pass a GRamsey spot, which looked lovely, must make a note, then onto Tower Bridge, which I took a sharp turn around to avoid the tourists flooding my way, through the back streets and into the city of Fenchurch, Monument, then crossed over London Bridge, and the sights were just so calming on such a beautiful day I had to carry on.. through London Bridge, and via back streets, found myself going pass E&C and then into NCross.. which is where I was a little worried as Im not familiar around there.. It was a great run, surprised myself with my pace, my time and also my distance… tired? nope.. felt excited… and challenged, knowing I could do it…

070809 – picking up a pace now of training 4x a week. chatted to some marathon friends, who encouraged me to try half marathons perhaps, to get a feel. however when it came to me trying to slow down, thinking of saving energy.. I found it much tougher and harder to do.. it set a slight worry in me. friends advised its all about going your own pace and finding whats comfortable.. it is possible.

Signed up for Treeathalon and back in the game. Had a lovely break from training and now I’m ready to go at it again. Lined up a this race and a second. Would have liked to aim for a half marathon, only the problem is that I simply wouldn’t have had the time to raise their agreed amount in such a short time for September. Raising money is not as easy as it logically is in this time. Excited to see more places around which is a factor in how I am choosing which races.

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