Category Archives: runnersno

Races to run in 2016

I am currently making a lot of fast choices – just booked an airline ticket to Tromsø (Northern Norway) to go run the half marathon at Midnight Sun Marathon in June. This will be a combined trip – my parents live there, so I can make one of my much too rare visits. They are getting older, but are still so busy, so they are not totally sure if they will be at home that weekend. I do hope so!! 😀

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Will you join me in beautiful Tromsø?

This means I have 3 races in my calendar for 2016:

  • Berlin Half on April 3rd
  • Ecotrail Oslo on May 21st (18K)
  • MSM half (Tromsø) on June 18th

If I am ever going to complete 100 half maratons, I desperately need to add to this list. And, I have to say – running the 18K ECOTRAIL in May is kind of stupid: First; it is not a half marathon. Second; it is much harder than a half marathon. Third; I hated it so much in 2015, that I blogged about it! I need to say – everything around the race was perfect, brilliant experience in the finishing area, and the weather was wonderful. But the trail part was too rough for me. I am not a trail runner – more like an asphalt junkie 😉 The last 10K of the race are more my stuff, but the first 8K broke me completely.

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When approaching the Opera House you are getting close to the finish line.

My goal for 2016 – the too much talked about 2500K over 366 days – might not be compatible with attending too many races, since I always cut down on mileage the last week before the race. So for every race I want to run, I need to add extra milage in other weeks. But races are so fun!

Usually I would attend the Oslo Marathon in September, but this year I have not registered yet – there are so many races that month, so maybe I should try something new? But Oslo was great last year – a lot of music and fun along the course. Much more music than when I ran the Rock ´n´roll (Half) Marathon in Lisbon, strangely enough.

A race I have been registered for earlier, but did not run due to injury, is Kystleden half marathon – in 2015 it was arranged on August 22nd. There is still no info about 2016.

Kystleden halvmara flyfoto
You run along the coastline – I am pretty sure that this is a worthwhile experience.

The last 2 years my son (17yrs in Feb) has attended a Viking Race on the same date, and I really love to see his great results there – in 2015 he finished number 18 among almost 500 participants, mostly adults. If these races are not on the same day this year, I might attend Kystleden.

But the first race will be Berlin. I love Berlin, and cannot wait for my first ever run in this beautiful city ❤

Please join me in running the new year – run it slow or run it strong, but always run happy!

Me-

(and sorry for borrowing all photos from “the world wide web” – I couldn´t help myself…)

Berliner Fernsehturm in der Dämmerung

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Whatever am I doing?

How did I ever decide to run 2500K in 2016!!?? Oh my. I am overwhelmed by a strong feeling of “this can never be done by me, I can never do this”. Then I calculate again, and find that it is possible, after all.

I have to laugh – only 3 -4 days have passed since I set (one of) my goal(s) for 2016, and I am already doubtful.  But let´s see what I have done so far – on the first 4 days of this year?

January 2nd – 16K
January 4th – 12K

This adds up to 28K over the first 4 days. If we divide 2500K with 366 days (since there are 29 days in February this year) I need to run 6,83K per day, on average. 4 days equals 27,32K. I am right on schedule, and with absolute no stress. Hey, it´s only been 4 days, mostly weekend, so how ever could this be stressful!? I just need to be confident that I will be able to find enough time during the work week, and if so, this is possible.

I need to focus on why I set this goal: I want to find a way to make sure I don´t drop out after small setbacks. I need to get back into the game real quick after colds or other interruptions in my plans. One week off is OK, sometimes even two weeks can be necessary, but the way I usually fall out for maybe 4-5 weeks, is totally messing things up. With this goal, I will add 10-20K some weeks, and then get ahead of schedule, making room for the necessary pauses that most likely will be needed – due to illness, aches and pains, holidays etc.

My main goal is therefor not really the 2500K in 2016, but the steady work of building form and strength through consistency. The number is merely my dangling carrot.

And now it is 89 days until the Berlin half. I am getting a bit excited now – I might not manage to PR with 10 minutes, as originally planned for, but I will find some kind of speed and strength before the race, that I am sure of. If anyone reading this blog is planning for Berlin on April 3rd, please let me know!

Today´s run? It was cold and slow. This winter has been so “warm” up to now, with few days sub zero. Usually I kind of enjoy running in minus 10 -12 degrees celcius, but today I felt all frozen at minus 7. I should have added another layer – my winter tights from Adidas was clearly not warm enough today. I had planned for a bit shorter run with maybe some speed work added, but I could not bring myself to push hard – I was so cold that it might have led to injury. So I took it easy, added a couple of Ks and that is that. Jumping in the shower, and being served dinner by my hubby afterwords, felt wonderful. Starting good, this year. I might get optimistic, if this continues 😉

I hope you have plans, goals and dreams, and will try to achieve something special this year. Maybe not very special for others, but for yourself. This is what running means to me, at least – my own progress, the struggle to make it fit into everyday life, the joy when you sometimes get that wonderful feeling of speed and endurance – when you feel that you can go on forever and ever. I love it. I bet you do too.

Run happy, people. See you soon. Maybe in Berlin?

Me-

 

 

 

New Year, let´s go!

Dear reader. Happy New Year! May 2016 be the year your dreams will develop and grow. Fulfillment is never the only way ❤

I spent 2 hours running yesterday – 2 hours with my thoughts drifting off, laying plans, thinking back. What has happened in 2015? The underlying feeling is that I have missed out on all my goals – I wanted to train consistently and strong, to get to be as strong as before my injury in 2013, and even stronger. If that is all, I have failed completely. Still, when thinking back: I have run my first two half marathons. Not fast, not pushing hard, but I did it. And considering how little training done ahead of those races, I should be pretty pleased with my performance.

Motivation is everything. After the second half marathon I signed up for Berlin Half in April 2016, and 23 weeks before Berlin I started a training plan that was supposed to bring me back to my old speed and strength. I was highly motivated, did my morning runs happy as ever, and could feel the steady effort paying off. Just a few weeks out in the program I got a bad cold, and had to stop running. I hoped for just a week off, but suddenly two weeks had passed and I was still not feeling well. Since then, I have been running less, not pushing myself, no plan and no structure. I have just taken a run now and then, to keep on moving. What the hell happened?

Yesterday, on new year´s, I went out to run the last run of this year. I did not decide how far, but thought I might exceed the couple of 16K runs I did earlier this christmas. After a while I decided on 20K. A good number for the last day of the year.

2 mil på nyttår
On such a day, it is hard not to start laying plans for the coming year, and so I did. My head started spinning on the major challenges of my running life: how to get the much needed consistency in my training. How do I find the motivation to get back on track after any kind of stop in my training? If I get a cold, and the brake gets too long, the problem grows because I cannot make myself get back to the program as soon as possible.

Ok, I got it. I will try to make my goals more long termed. I will run a minimum of 2500K in 2016. This means that I have to run an average of 50K for 50 weeks, and have only 2 weeks for “that annual cold”. And, for being able to cut down on mileage on holidays, I have to do the 60K and 70K weeks that I need to build my capacity as much as I want.

Can I do this? Is this a too tall order for a much-too-busy woman in the year of her 50th birthday? I have no idea. But the idea came during a 20K run, while enjoying myself, so my instinct are – hell yeah, let´s do it!

So listen, good people. I will run a minimum of 2500K in 2016. Please check in regularly to see how I am doing.

What are YOUR plans for 2016? Please let me know, and I will cheer you on!

Happy New Year – and always run happy!

Happy new year

Me-

ECOtrail Oslo

Weeeee! I did it! Not an ultra race, no no. I joined the 18K at ECOtrailOslo, but it was the hardest 18K I´ve ever experienced. Never before have I used more than 60 min per 10K, but as the race went on I ended up being happy to finish under 2 hours. It was painful, hard, exhausting. And today? I realize my body took a hell of a beating.

Not too sure on how happy I was with the time. I finished at 62nd place, out of 206 women. Maybe that is ok?
Not too sure on how happy I was with the time. I finished at 62nd place, out of 206 women. Maybe that is ok?

1.56:44. Sounds really bad for an 18K race. My darling tomtom measured it to 18,7K, and a lot of people said they measured it to 19K. No excuse, still not a good time. I blame it mostly on myself, but still think it can be explained. So, this is me making excuses 😉

If I had known what kind of path the trail would include, I would never have entered the race. I dread narrow paths, with tree roots and other obstacles. I love walking in the woods, and I surely understand why people love running there – with birds singing and no traffic noise. I wish I could enjoy it. But I don´t. I have always had problems with my knees, and prefer to run on even ground. After 2013, then I tripped on a long run and got seriously injured, I have been almost hysterically afraid of running in the woods. I cannot even blame my fall to anything “woods related” – I have no idea why I tripped, and the medical doctors actually speculated in other theories – did I maybe fall because my muscle ruptured, and not the other way around? I really don´t like that theory, so the falling part is always my main concern.

My race on runkeeper, via tomtom. Love my tomtom <3
My race on runkeeper, via tomtom. Love my tomtom!

Anyhow, back to the race. It started off with gravel roads, very crowded and slow, but after a while the pack stretched out and I was able to run at something close to my target pace. But soon enough it all changed – the trail changed to those narrow paths that I dislike so much. Up, down, roots, stones, almost tripping, other runners falling, me getting more stressed and anxious by the minute. Not a good feeling, my pulse went off and it really drained my strength. Moving slow, lots of walking – and I realized that my goal of an average pace of 5:30 was going to be impossible.

Finally we passed Lysaker, I was able to pick up the pace and get my pulse down. I started to get a good feeling, and tried to focus on finding my own rhythm. Although some runners came up from behind and passed me, I was pleased to notice that I passed other runners – men included. Passing 12K, all going well, and then – I tripped and fell. Flat to the ground, with my bad knee (and my hands) taking the fall. Guess what happened to my heart rate! I need to say that all the runners around me was just SO nice, everyone asked how it went, and I just hushed them along – I did not want them to stop and get their own race ruined. Thank you so much, all of you – it is so good to know that you were willing to stop and help ❤

I got back up on my feet, and carefully tried out the knee – it was ok, not too painful. After a few seconds I started walking, still not too bad. I walked for a while, and then slowly went back to running. Trying to pick up the pace I had before the fall, but at that point I realized that it was not going to happen. I still managed to find a kind of rhythm, and was able to pass most of the runners that passed me when I fell. All in all, not so bad.

I have to say that running Tjuvholmen and Aker brygge was a strange experience – at that point I was getting tired, and it was strange to see that none of the people seemed to notice that there were people racing. Then the last part of the race – around Akershus Festning. I often run this stretch on my runs to work, just the opposite direction, but it has NEVER felt so long. I could not wait for the “1K left”-sign to appear, and there it was – together with a smiling young man, showing the way and cheering, I just had to smile back. Thank you!

The last K was hard. Someone said it was more than 1K, and it sure felt like it. Passing the Opera house, my stomack cramped and I had to stop – but then this sweet runner that I had just passed, told me to not stop, the goal was just around the corner. I knew that, but the cramps! Well heck, I picked myself up, and was able to turn the corner, and ALMOST sprint the last meters to “Sukkerbiten” and the finish line. Never have I been more happy to cross that line.

I have run 18K before, several times, so I never thought this race would be THAT hard. I was not prepared, and I should have done my homework. Trail running is not like asphalt running. Now I know. And my aching body tells me to never ever run ECO trail again. Like ever.

Well, who knows. In a few days the body will be back to normal (I hope) and I might look at it differently. For now, the e-mail I just received, giving me a 30% discount on the entrance fee for next year, is not enough. I actually said NO out loud when reading it. Not a fat chance, I said. LOL!

I am writing this with one eye on the tv and “the girl with the dragon tattoo”, having a glass of red wine. I hope to be able to go for a nice and slow recovery run tomorrow, but at the moment it is hard enough to cross the room 😉

A friend of mine ran the same race, and I am so proud of her – never to have run more than 14K previously, it is really impressing to finish this tough race. It was easy to smile afterwords – look how happy we are!

Me to the left, Anka to the right :-)
Me to the left, Anka to the right. All smiles!

Although tired and “broken”, I still feel like planning other races. I will work hard to do a good half at Oslo Marathon, and I am still thinking about doing a full marathon next year. Turning 50 is a good excuse to go the full distance, isn’t it?

Well, lets see. This is not the right time to set all details. I need to sleep on it 😉

Keep running. Stay happy!

Me-