Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Cub Run

12th March 2019

Really trying to make an effort on keeping my blog uptodate! as the time in-between is so long I forget what I have or haven't done !

Leading up to the Sunday Cub run I had a good week, with a lovely morning run up to Crook Peak, this time from Kingswood, this worked well after dropping my Daughter off at work in Congsbury. It was a bright sunny morning and I thought quite warm, but found it a little chilly after all, I was just about warm enough, I was surprised to find my car was the only one parked in the popular car park for dog walkers, and I made my way up through the woods, feeling comfortable and once out in the open there was a cool Breeze, but still lots of sunshine I  enjoyed my run up to the peak and the views from the top did not disappoint again, I could even see the lighthouse round the corner from where I live white in the sunshine some 10-12 miles away, Hinckly Point sadly also showed up more in the sunshine. I worked my way back down to the carpark, it was really good underfoot and I was able to set a good pace. only 4.75 miles but an enjoyable start to the day.

I managed to get out a couple more times for a steady run including the Park Run, where I was determined not to up the pace, I was surprised that I was still well under 10 minute miles which was my target so as not to overdo it for the Cub run the following day. However it was a very windy day with a stiff headwind on the out leg by the river and sea front.
I was still a little worried about my 'niggly knee' as it didn't hurt but 'niggled' my PF seemed to be behaving, It still gives me some pain but not as bad as it was, insoles, stretching after running and the Yoga seem to manage it!

So Sunday dawned, extremely windy, but dry excepting a few rogue showers! its a good 45 miles plus now down to Seaton and the start, and I had to call in to pick up Rachel my running mate for the day, there were several Burnham Harriers in the event and I hoped to meetup down there. There was also my cycling buddy Rosie doing the event, but! I didn't manage to catch her before the start afterall.
We arrived nice and early due to my obsession with parking and we were sent down a road to park, seemingly miles from the race HQ. last two years we were parked on the seafront, much more pleasant. we made our way to the HQ to pick up race numbers after changing from Grizzly to Cub run, both Rachel and I deciding we didn't have enough miles or hills or time on our feet to complete the 19 miles and 3000 ft of climbing of the full Grizzly, 9 miles and 1500 ft  would be plenty.
we then had a terrible shower, just enough in the very severe wind to get us nice and cold as we walked back to the car to prepare for the event. Jam sandwich and coffee the order of the day as it was several hours since breakfast. I decided to take a drink and my lightweight jacket as it was very cold and windy, even though rain was not forecast, you never know, along with a few half jelly babies and broken Dextrasol tablets.

The start approached rapidly and we made our way to the line, trying to position ourselves not to get too far back into the crowds, at least it was warmer standing in the crowd!

After the ceremonies most of which I couldn't hear we were off! down onto the shingle beach, the sound deafening, I was surprised how many there were in front of us, it was a struggle at times with runners in the way !! stumbling etc. I was glad to be off the stones, it seems a long half mile, and much different from the sands of Burnham! sadly I lost Rachel on the beach and even though I looked for her I never saw her again until the finish. In fact I only saw the BH runners once on the road out of Seaton.

Up through the crowds on the first hill, before descending down to Seaton Hole and the first real climb of the 'Bitch' a walk, partly due to the numbers but, mostly because of its steepness.
Descending into Beer is always emotional with the cheering crowds before the climb up to Bear Head through the caravan park, first drink station and the first off road bit, I was surprised how good it was underfoot and seemed less slippery than previous years. we then hit Beer Head and the headwind, two paces forward and on back, it was severe! many runners struggling into it. The descent into 'Seaside' down the muddy track was a real bottleneck but again not to slippery, we had to queue and lost several minutes here. Next was the beach at Branscombe this time they were send Cub runners through the river, it was very cold and knee deep, taking your breath away, my feet and legs were now very cold! I was to discover that they never really warmed up and I am convinced affected my performance over the last few miles, I also had pebbles in my shoe, but I was too lazy to stop and remove my shoes to empty them.
Branscombe beach is always a real challenge, at least half /three quarters of a mile of shingle, but at least there was a tail wind along here, most welcome!!I was in a line of runners, unfortunately the people I was following, were very irritating as the kept stopping to chat, change direction etc, meaning I lost my momentum. the muddy undercliff was next, before the 'stairway to heaven' which is always slow and steady a walk! as we came out of the undercliff, the wind hit us once again, fortunately behind us! across the fields and down once again through the caravan park, where there was free beer!! and the cheering crowds of Beer, before the stiff steps up and over Beer cliffs, a steep descent with the finish line across the bay led us to the final steep climb up through a footpath to the road and the road to the finish, through the park before descending down to the finish line! I have to admit the final few miles my legs were feeling it and I was getting slower, never really warming up after the cold of the river crossing, I was pleased to finish my watch said 1.45.27 the official time was 1.49 the nearly 5 minutes difference reflecting the queueing at various points. I was pleased with the time as it was inline with my previous runs, and given my first Cub Run was in 2011 I hadn't really lost a lot of time, not too bad for a late 60ish runner ! I collected my goody bag, banana, rum!!! and  flapjack. I waited to cheer Rachel in feeling very guilty we hadn't managed to run together. I finally net up with Rosie and her boyfriend, finishing 5 minutes ahead of me! the Burnham runners Clive and Tracy were a good ten minutes ahead, sadly I didn't meet up again, but it was very cold in the wind, Rachel came in another ten minutes behind me and like me still cold from the river crossing.

Once again a lovely day out! will I be back next year, of course I will! in preparation for my big birthday the following year !

Yoga the following day was good for my PF and sore calf muscles, I had forgotten my insoles for my shoes to stave off the PF, still a great day, nice to meet up with Rosie and Rachel and also to be part of [but not much] the Burnham Harriers team! 199 th out of 529, still life in the old bloke yet!!!

Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Another milestone date passes

Wednesday 6th March

Well another birthday passes and I approach the 70 s but! Great news not for another two years! Lovely day spent with the grandchildren!
Well I have also changed my Grizzly entry to Cub I decided I couldn’t have The ignominy of having a big cross on my number at the split point. Given, lack of larger mile runs ( more than 6 ) the 19 would have been a challenge, the Cub I know I can do.
A morning run on Crook Peak yesterday was my final off road preparation 4.75 miles and 821 ft climbed. Lovely morning in the sunshine before the rains came.
Looking back over the past month have done a few nice runs, the cancelled 2 bays run at Weston super mare I did with my Burnham Harriers club, a great 10 miles with a few hills and a bit of beach and good company.
Brent Knoll from home a nice 6 miles plus run mainly off road, great views from the top, and the day spring arrived ๐Ÿ˜€
I did my 25 th Park Run last week! Still PB at just over 25 mins. Managing to volunteer once a month, marshalling or barcode checking. Tuesdays have become a regular outing with the Harriers now which is nice. BK Velo outings have reduced, the high average speeds meant I was always playing catch up ! Yoga is going well and I really enjoy it, I could do with more sessions really, I do think it has improved my Plantar Faciitis๐Ÿ‘
Not done much cycling last couple of weeks, preparing for Grizzly and weather deteriorated once again!
Feeling a little more motivated this week to get out running. Still need to look at entering more races.
Well I am hoping for a nice day out on Sunday on the cub run, weather not looking great though!
Must learn how to get my photos from my iPad to my blog, the ones from my phone never seem uptodate?? Ok on the laptop ?

Sunday, 24 February 2019

Wonderful weather

February 25 th

What a difference a few weeks makes, it’s now, dry warm and sunny! And has been for the past week๐Ÿ˜€ which means no excuse not to get out to run and cycle especially with the Grizzly only a week and a half away. Over the last couple of weeks I have managed to run up Brent Knoll from home which was really nice, especially as it was a beautiful day and views around were wonderful.

I also managed several long runs 12 miles on local roads and I am pleased to say 12 miles on the Quantocks using one of my old MTB routes as a guide, parking at Holford, going up Hodders, along the ridge to Wills Neck before descending down into Greatwood and Ramscombe via the pipeline MTB route! The climb out was somewhat hard!! I finished by going down Holford Combe  which had changed beyond recognition in places, but still lovely. It was a good trip and I didn’t feel too bad after 1700 ft of climbing! But it also confirmed the Cub and not the Grizzly ๐Ÿ˜€. I have also managed several cycle rides across the levels, giving me about 70 miles a week  on my bike and 30 miles running.

I hope the weather continues to be good, at least until the Grizzly a week on Sunday

Friday, 1 February 2019


February 2nd

What a dreary horrid month January is, after Christmas it always seems such a dark, grey month with the spring seemingly a long way off.
I failed to take up my Audax 100k deciding I hadn’t got the miles in to enjoy the day out, the weather was also forecast to be poor, though it wasnt as bad as they said! My total mileage cycling for January was only 160 miles, managing only about 30 milesish a week, my longest being 41 miles with the Wobbly wheelers to West Bay, a lovely, if cold morning out.
Running, I managed 94 miles with three good off road trips to the Mendips, two to Crook Peak and a third round Cheddar cliffs, only 6 miles a trip but at least I was getting some climbing in of around 1000ft a trip. It has been very muddy and slippery, making the trips quite difficult, having to take extra care over the rocky route round Cheddar. The weather for each trip was good, cold, windy but sunny and dry. With only 5 weeks to go to the 19 mile Grizzly, I need to up the mileage! Not looking very good at the moment, I have tried to settle into a training regime, Sunday an off road run, Monday yoga and possible run/ cycle, Tuesday run club 6 miles , Wednesday cycle , Thursday Fitness circuits, Friday rest, Saturday park run or run. But! The weather keeps changing and I do find difficulty in motivating myself to go out, particularly cycling.
Yesterday brought snow! So as usual everywhere was in Chaos, my daughter had a day off work due to the school closing. I was surprised we had snow as we are at sea level! It also meant at least two days without getting out cycling or running.
I seem fixed on 4- 7 miles no seemingly able to motivate to run for longer or further?
Below are some photos from January, Crook Peak, Cheddar and the coast in the snow

Wednesday, 9 January 2019


9th January 2019

Tried out the ‘relive’ app today


It shows today’s run in 3D minus of course the start and finish points! Lovely day for a run, AND saw my first snowdrops this year!! Summer is on the way!!

Cycling seems to have taken a backseat at the moment, too cold, too damp, much easier to get the running shoes on.

Sunday saw my first excursion to the Mendips, a run up and over Crook Peak, which if you drive down the M5 after Bristol, it’s on your left.
I parked up at 8am just as it was light, but there were already cars there, it was straight into the climb, steady at first but getting steeper near the summit, as approached I saw a couple on the top and greeted by a very curious dog, becoming friendly after a few moments talking to her. Owners had come to see the sunrise, but sadly it was a grey misty day, no sun! However, the views out across the channel to Wales, Bristol, and south across the levels, but not as far as Glastonbury Tor. Sadly, not a photographic day to record my first venture on the Mendips . I said goodby, expecting to see them on my return as I headed over to Wavering Down and it’s trig Point before returning back over Crook Peak and a lovely descent down the ridge to the car 5 miles and 900 ft climbed. A great morning out, First of many  trips up this hill as it’s only 10 miles from home!


Not sure whether this shareable ?

I have signed up for the ‘Trail Running magazine’ 1000 mile challenge, I only managed 700 miles last year, so got to put a few more miles in, I have made a good start with over 20 miles completed already !
Finally ! A PB for my Park Run last Saturday at a Burnham-On-Sea, 25 mins 14 secs! Target is under 25 mins this year ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜€

I must get a few cycling miles in before the 26th January as it’s the 100 k Cotton Audax from Bristol into Gloucestershire ! Got a lot of work to do!!

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Last year and this year!

2nd January 2019
My blog posts have been erratic this year, sadly down to 1 or less a month!!
Sadly it also reflects my activity as stated in the title ‘cyclingrunningwalkingcampervan.....’
last year I did manage 3821 miles cycling and 700 miles running, the downside on those were, didn’t do any MTBing!! So all miles on the road bike and I didn’t run as much off road or enter so many off road events, especially being thwarted from the Grizzly by the snow! ( I couldn’t get out of the drive)

Moving house has also hampered my  cycling and running as I am now trying to learn the area! I still need to discover the Mendips for both activities ! The positive side I have now joined a running club!

Using my Camper has also been neglected, only spending a couple of nights in the van in Gloucester last January for babysitting !! That’s of course not count two nights in the van over Christmas as we were short of beds in the house as family descended !., moving meant we never really got around to arranging to go, taking coffee to Brean 6 miles away seems to be the only outings it gets at the moment!

Fell walking has not happened at all this year! So more efforts needed there!!!

We are now in another Grizzly year ! So early March sees me struggling the 19 miles and 2300 ft climbing on the Devon coast, I have a lot of training to do as my 6 mile runs only climb 14 ft!!
I still real issues with my Plantar Faciitis! Even with insoles, I seem ok up to 6-8 miles then it does kick in despite stretching, rolling etc. But! My weekly Yoga sessions seem to work. All I can do is train best I can and decide nearer the event.
I have now completed 23 Parkrun but still fail to beat my 25:52 time !!
I did the Exmoor Stumble, slower than last year, but inside the hour and the Portishead coastal, where I won my age category!

Lots to look forward to this year, trying to look some events to enter.
So happy new year to anyone who reads my blog, another challenge is to post on this blog more often !!

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Brean Down Santa challenge

Wednesday 5th December
Last Sunday saw myself, daughter and her boyfriend driving the few miles  to Brean Down, the lump of rock that is the extension of the Mendips. It was the Brean Down Santa challenge, I had only entered the 5 k but daughters boyfriend was down for the 10k. I decided that from sea level one circuit up and down would be enough, rather than the two required for the 10 k. There was a cold damp wind blowing off the sea as we collected numbers and Santa suits ! There were soon nearly two hundred other souls lining up for the run dressed as Santa!!  We were soon off and I was surprised how near the front of the field I was! As we hit the first hill probably about 25% I managed to run about three quarters of the climb, amazing thinking about my lack of hill preparation, although I did run up the down a couple of weeks ago. We came out to work our way up to the summit trig point, running into a head wind which contained some very chilly rain, but!! We were protected from the elements by our Santa suits, we then descended down a step muddy track to the old fort at the end of the down, I was still feeling good, my off road shoes giving good grip compared with those with road shoes,sliding their way down!! We then headed back along the service road climbing and descending steadily throughout, before the final 25% tarmac road descent on green slime surface, I felt I had a bit left so put in some effort to the line, worth it as I came 10 th out of 88 and 1st in the over sixties( there was 5 of us) there was no over 65 category.! Just over 32 minutes, very pleased with my efforts,nice medal and hot coffee and cake from the NT cafe whilst we waited for daughter boyfriend, he came in 2 nd place in  the 10 k in 50 minutes, fantastic achievement, we were well pleased to wait for the presentation to see him get his trophy! Great event lovely run, cold and damp, but! Who cares.managed to download a few photos