Saturday, 4 May 2013

Getting back to the Art part of running.

This blog has become more about running and less about art, which is ok, but not what it was intended for. So I'm going back to the art aspect very soon with an experiment with film.

There is a monthly trail run near me organised by Jog Derbyshire where I intend to make time lapse movies over the next year. Next weekend will be a trip out to play with a Go Pro camera and body harness so that I can get used to how it feels and to record some sounds of the Hear Here sculptures.

First bit of research has been via You Tube, which suggests a body harness may not be a good thing after all! This is purely for my own research, but if you want to watch, the video is on the following link:

Trail Running with a Go Pro

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Training, half marathons and snow

I've woken this morning knowing that the Island Half Marathon is taking place and I'm not running it. Boo!

I realised that I would struggle with it after christmas, there was no way I could train properly on a recovering sprain, flu that had sent me to bed and the thick layers of snow that insisted on sticking around.

However, it did make me determined that I would do a half marathon this year and I have my eye on two, the Robin Hood Half in Nottingham and The Tissington Trail Half which is through the Peak District along the old railway lines. That really appeals!

But I'm happy to be currently working on my core fitness and training for the Derby 10k in April at the moment. This is going well with no injuries or snow! I'm really enjoying the longer runs, they really take me to a place of meditation where it is just me and the music.

Friday, 11 January 2013


Yesterday I set off on a cold frosty morning run. The clouds were lying low so by the time I'd got up the hill, I was jogging slowly in and out of visibility. The reason for the slow jogging, stopping and staring was the beauty that is on my doorstep. Beyond the supine clouds the sun was shining through and it was casting the most beautiful eerie glow on the icing sugared fields.

It reminded me of why I head off across the fields with just my dog trotting along side me and why I love the exhilarating feeling of freedom as I run over the hills.

These views, my dog and the freedom. That's why I run.

Friday, 4 January 2013

New shoes

I've just had a pair of fell running shoes delivered. I have no idea about fell running and have never done any, but they look nice and grippy and as though I could get across moors and fields in them.

Just got to find a time to head up onto the Peak District with them to try out!

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Trying to run....

I've entered a half marathon called The Island. Sounds auspicious but really it's a very scenic run along the Anglesey coast to Beaumaris.

Training had started and I'd managed to complete a 5 mile run and was feeling happy with my legs feeling stronger. Then on the Following Tuesday I went out with my running group and we tackled a 4mile cross country route over frozen fields. It was beautiful but as i jumped off a stile my ankle twisted and I landed flat on my backside. By Wednesday morning I couldn't put any weight on my foot so no running for me for at least a week.

Now sat at home with a really bad cough I'm still unable to run.

So at this moment I'm not sure I will manage The Island HM, but if I don't do this one, I will find one to do in 2013.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

First Race!

I have run my first race! It was a relay race in Derby and the Jog Duffield group I go to decided to enter as a team and I'm proud to say that after 7 weeks of running, we were honourably the LAST team in! Yay!

But lets put this into some perspective, we are all new to running, I've been going slowly since January, but only in the last few weeks have I been really pushing myself to run for a longer period of time.  The longest I have run for is 24 minutes and managed to run up my first hill a couple of weeks ago without having to have a gasping recovery.  I also gave up smoking 6 months ago.
Darley Park, Derby. When its not wet...

So when the first group at the Hairy Helmet Relay set off at full sprint and returned after about 15 minutes, I had my suspicions that we were not going to be up with the winners! So when Linda returned and tagged my hand, I set off on our second leg way to fast for me, the need to run not jog out of the start was too strong and I paid for it when I reached the hilly bit and couldn't sustain it, not only that, I was breathless and worn out before 1km. Duh!  I never really got into any kind of pace and my usual counting didn't help.  My plan of taking it steady, using the downhill to recover from the uphill to then go steady on the rest of the flat course disappeared.

As the testosterone sprinted past me time and again, I tried to calm myself and enjoy the race, but to be honest, I hated every minute of it.  I was way too far outside my comfort zone and my Monkey Mind was screeching very loudly.  I trotted in puffing and panting at about 26 minutes, unable to speak despite having walked part of the course.

So as a first experience of a race, I found myself asking if it was a good one and I have to say categorically YES.  The support and friendliness was amazing, I chatted to one lady at the start who said she was there for the fun of it and for having a goal to aim for, she advised me to build up gradually before setting off on her lap, the whole atmosphere of the event was great, our last runner was joined by two members of The Derwent Runners who ran the course with her and kept her company.  Our team of from Jog Duffield, who 7 weeks ago couldn't run for 10 minutes, stood and cheered her over the finish line. 

My learning curve was massive, don't let the nervousness and tension of anticipation ruin my run, to try and relax into the running, to try and get that usual pace that I am comfortable with so I can sustain the running, to ignore the sprinters charging past me and don't let that demoralise me.  I am running my life at my own pace and that I should be proud of what I achieve.  For someone with self esteem issues, this is a massive realisation.

I'm already planning my Race for Life strategy for July using the above factors.

The free pint of beer at the end was possibly the best I have ever tasted.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Word Art Competition with Arvon Foundation.

I've just submitted a piece of work to the Arvon Foundation for their Word Art Competition and feel rather pleased with myself.

I wrote a short piece trying to capture how it feels to run early in the morning and painted the route that I often run in a slightly abstract way, trying to capture the colours I feel after I have been for a run rather than something representational.

This is a new departure for me, I have often written words and thoughts but keep a lot of my creative writing secret.  So to enter a competition with a company that I, dare I admit it, desperately want to go on one of their courses, feels rather exciting.

So a big thank you to my sister Sylvia for pointing this competition out to me.

Running at 6am
This is a second version I have made, the first was a little book.  However, the little book has had a massive fit of shyness and has refused to come out and have its photo taken.   I cannot coax it out of its hiding place or in fact find its hiding place...