Cross Training: Running when I can’t cycle

With a busy job and house renovation, finding time to get a couple of hours out on the bike has been proving to be a bit tricky to say the least! I’m managing to get the odd couple of hours here and there, but nothing that’s a real long steady. Normally I’d be looking for a 3 hour zone 2 a week, with a 200km or better ride once a month.

So far (start of May) I’ve been over 100km once (and that was off road around the Cairngorms), and over 3 hours 3 times, all offroad at mixed intensity. Which is quite a way off. Another downside is that the pounds have come back on (I started cycling again to avoid having to change my diet too much!).

Combine all that with a fair amount of travelling (for fun and for work) where I can’t take a bike, and the fact that I NEED to get out in the outdoors for some stress relief and it was all getting a bit much.

So I dusted off some old running shoes and headed out on the trails again. Thanks to a house move I’m now in Beeston, Nottingham which means I’m fairly close to the River Trent and Attenbrough Nature reserve which gives me easy access to some non-pavement running routes.

I was running before taking up cycling again, even managed a reasonable half marathon time, but starting up again has taken some getting used to! I’ve certainly got the aerobic capacity for long runs, but that first 4k trot was enough to have me hobbling like a 70 year old and back ache to match.

So slow and steady it’s been. At first I just did 4k twice a week until I could trot down the stairs at home the morning after. It’s amazing how unused muscles become after lots of cycling. Now at the point where a couple of 10ks a week aren’t too bad.

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