Saturday, January 29, 2011

Day 11 - Only 77 Days Left Until the London Marathon

Hi All,

Today is one of those days where you feel like the world is yours to conquer. I pushed hard through my run today, using a mile repeat method. The results were good and I feel like I got a lot out of the training. Oh and when did Spring arrive? Today and yesterday have been beautiful - if you are in a bad mood then you must be a miserable person.

Oh and I discovered a "Power Song" feature on the Nike+ app. The last stretch was Lose Yourself by Eminem. I've got the lyrics stuck in my head. This song swirls a mixture of emotions for me. I grit down and phase out any pain with an absolute sense of focus and go for the finish. At the same, I want to punch in the face anyone who has told me "you don't have it in you" "don't get your hopes up" "you can't" "you won't". I think about everything important to me and think "I can" "I will" "I must". In that moment, I run harder than at any other point during the run. As I finish, I feel unstoppable.

"So here I go it's my shot. Feet fail me not 'cause this may be the only opportunity that I got."

Everyone has something different that motivates them. I've always been motivated by challenges especially with the odds against me. Of course, running a marathon fits me well. Did you know? Less than one percent of the World's population has run a marathon. I'm trying to find the stat but an even smaller percentage finish in less than four hours. That said, I'm no where near being ready to run it in under four hours but I look forward to getting there.

More runs like today and I should be well on my way. Thanks all for the nutrition and physio help, it is making a difference.

Today's Stats -- Distance: 6.0 miles -- Time: 52:16 -- Pace: 8:47

My run today, as I mentioned above, was a done using a Mile Repeat method. For those that don't know, mile repeats is running at a 5K or 10K race pace (tempo run*) to the first mile marker then resting 1 min (2-3 min is acceptable for runners new to training) and then back to the same pace through the next mile. I feel really good about the 8:47 pace because it includes 5 minutes of rest during the run. The goal will be to reduce the rest periods down to 30, 15, 0 over the next few weeks acheiving a sub 7 min pace.

*From Runner's World -"Studies show that one of the best predictors of distance-running excellence is your lactate threshold, the pace at which your body's ability to buffer lactic acid is surpassed by lactic-acid production, and you fatigue. Tempo runs put you at that lactate-threshold pace, which trains your body to become better at buffering the acid, thus increasing your ability to run faster or longer."

I wanted to thank my "biggest" donor to date Blake and Jenny Buckley. They donated £51.00 and left the following note "biggest donor in the house" - I got a good laugh. Thanks Blake and Jenny, appreciate you both as friends and for the support.

Please if you haven't already, make a donation. (

I wanted to share one their patient's story with you. This is Kayse's story.

Kayse came to the Trust for rehabilitation after he was involved in a road accident
Kayse watches the frog leap outA small hand slowly but surely reaches out towards a brightly coloured lily pad toy adorned with green frogs. Thoroughly absorbed, you can see the look of concentration on five year old Kayse’s face as he pulls back the lid and a small frog springs out! His physiotherapist Sue Mobbs congratulates him – she remembers a very different little boy who would never have been able to do what he just did when he arrived at the Trust.

Kayse was hit by a car on a family holiday. The accident left him unable to control his head, limited his leg and arm movements and dislocated his left shoulder and right hip. He is now unable to speak, uses a wheelchair and for a time was fed via a gastrostomy tube. Physiotherapy, part of Kayse’s rehabilitation programme, is using play to encourage his arm movements and help him regain his cognitive skills.

“Kayse is changing a lot,” his mum Ymulkheyr explains. “He is a different little boy. Before he came to the Trust he could not control his head or move his left arm much. Now he is using a standing frame daily and trying to talk – he makes a noise that sounds like he is saying ‘Mumma’.”

Kayse explores the lily pad toySurprisingly the little green frog is playing an important role! “We have tried to use other toys but Kayse never gets as much out of a session as he does with the frog,” Sue says with a smile.

Kayse is learning ‘cause and effect’. When he lifts the lid, the frog jumps out. The activity encourages his early cognition and visual skills. Kayse now understands that it is him causing the frog to leap. The movement also helps him develop the use of his arms.

The physiotherapy and occupational therapy teams have worked together to provide Kayse with a body brace, arm splints and braces to help hold his feet and ankles in the right position. Together these maintain Kayse’s posture and give him a good range of joint movement, vital as he tries to regain the use of his arms and legs. He wears them during his sessions but they do not seem to get in the way of the leaping frog.

It is all great fun, but Kayse is also learning some important skills that he is able to carry into his everyday life.

Thanks again for following my blog and continuing to comment, encourage and helping The Children's Trust.



  1. What a wonderful blog! I love your optimism, and your positive attitude. These are the days that we realize " This is why I run " ... It's that -hard to achieve any other way- "high" that motivates us to conquer the world!

    I'm learning a little more about speed work, and what the benefits are. I've dabbled in some Yasso's a little. Learning more about the science and biology behind it, is pretty cool! Thanks for sharing!!!!

  2. Thanks. I hope to have more and more of those kind of trainings days between now and the race. It gives you such an important level of confidence and motivation that is needed for the high number of miles/training required each week.

    Everytime I crack open an article on running technique, training methods, nutrition, etc. I get a little overwhelmed at how little I know and who to believe.

    Fartleks and mile repeats worked really well for me during my half marathon training so I continued them. I hadn't heard of Yasso 800s until a few moments ago when I looked it up based on your comments. Interesting. I'm going to give them a go next week.

  3. FYI Blake, you've been outdone. New biggest donor in the house is at 70 GBP. Guess you'll have to donate more to re-grab the title.