Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Midas Touch - Midnight Star

Another day, another excruciating massage from the man more commonly referred to as 'massage extraordinaire' in the Salter-Coleman abode. Paul White has kindly sponsored my massage treatments leading up to M2M and as you are probably aware is accompanying us on our trip to Oireland. He continues to inflict intense pain everytime I see him but I keep going back for more so it must be doing some good!

On a serious note, he has managed to keep an array of 'issues' at bay including achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis and runner's knee. If it hadn't been for my frequent trips to Loughborough over the past few weeks I know I wouldn't be feeling confident about finishing next week. He really has had a crucial impact on my preparation for next week and I can't recommend him highly enough...

Thanks Paul, you are a genius.

<If you need Paul's help, his number is 07717 170218>

Unquiet Slumbers for the Sleepers - Genesis

It's a quiet time of the year, this first week of June. Even the ULTRArace June newsletter is complete and coming out to you tomorrow morning...

It's Half Term for the kids, the nation is glued to the rubbish acts on 'Britain's Got Talent' or more accurately 'Britain's NOT Got Talent' - locally in Breaston nothing is stirring not even a mouse.

Apart from in OUR house, where it's all systems go for our trip to Ireland for Jenny's GWR and for her and annoyingly for me it's total taper before six days out on the road in Ireland. I'll be bloody glad when this one's over now! :-)

Don't get me wrong as it does have it's upside as Jenny now has 'Superstar Runner Status'... judging by the media interest she is getting and she richly deserves the recognition for what she is taking on. Nice one Jenny... as it's no picnic running 345 miles in less than 6 days!

Anyway, I am off to pack a few more clothes and get my next orders... Should be nice though as we've ordered Sunshine for the whole trip.

Monday, 30 May 2011

Laid so low - Tears for Fears

On a weekend where there has been an enormous amount of physical activity on ULTRAs all over the UK, my old back gave me a few warning shots last week and so I decided to lay low, literally, and I have decided to take a well earned rest before we set off on yet another extreme event in our busy 2011.

Jenny's M2M Guinness World Record attempt preparations are now in full throw in the ULTRArace office. Our three person crew has just four days left to prepare for nine days out on the roads of Ireland, from North to South. We know that good old Lou Herron, Jenny's MdeS tent mate of 2009/10 has already endured Miss Salter for 24 days at close quarters and has the knowledge needed when things get tough on the running front. She is so switched on and is a perfect choice for this type of challenge...

Paul White, him of the healing hands, has a tough task ahead of him to keep Jenny's body going for 345 miles. My job is to get all of them working together and keep the wheels on the World Record rolling down the length of Ireland. I wonder who has the hardest job?

What I do know is that it will be interesting to watch it all unfold... and hopefully you will be with us every step of the way watching Jenny's blog.

More later and 'Well done' to everyone who undertook the GUCR145 at the weekend... I was most jealous!

Friday, 27 May 2011

Cars - Gary Numan

Tell me, why do a lot of advanced aged male drivers wear a flat cap to drive their cars? It can't be for protection as most don't seem to reach much above thirty and seldom 4th or 5th gear, well not in front of me it seems.

Recently I have become more and more aware of the be-capped 'Mobile Chicanes' as I call 'em. Also, why are most of their cars 'Y reg' pristine Nissan Micras?

Get 'em off our roads I say, they are a blinking nuisance.

It's worrying that I might become one of them in less than twenty years time and it does make me wonder when my wardrobe will turn beige, slacks will replace my jeans and I will need an OAP's uniform to drive a car.

Gosh, it all sounds most worrying... and hopefully I won't get too like Victor Meldrew in the picture... what you say? I am already - I don't believe it!

Missing - Everything But The Girl

Rorz is out tonight and I don't like it! It really makes me realise how much we live in each other's pockets - this house is horribly empty:-( On the plus side the house is now clean from top to bottom, there is no washing pile and I have dinner planned for the next week (part of that isn't true;-)...

Tomorrow I am heading up to Manchester to do some recording for Woman's Hour which is being broadcast next Wednesday 1st June. I'm not sure why they decided not to go live tomorrow but I'm guessing they found a more interesting guest, so my advice is listen in tomorrow:-))

Anyway, short but sweet tonight, but I hope you are missing Rory's blog as much as I am:-)


Thursday, 26 May 2011

Take it to the Limit - The Eagles

I must say that I am looking forward to getting back in the swing and conquering marathon 678... it's eluded me for sometime now and I'm starting to think it will never happen.

Maybe I'll go and do the Ostmotherly Phoenix in July? By then I will be rested and ready for a good run out. Until then I will be sitting back and I'll will be watching the GUCR145 and Jenny on her Ireland, Guinness World Record.

She's on Women's Hour tomorrow morning at 10am on Radio 4.

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Walk like an Egyptian - The Bangles

There seems to be more and more 'Police Cars' out there on our roads, which is good news, I am sure. I lost count today as I went to Heathrow and back to take my Daughter Hannah, to the airport. Even in darkest Breaston, every second car seems to be white with day-glo markings.

Now, I am not saying that's a bad thing as we need to reduce crime and install order but judging by the size of the officers, most of them must spend most of their time at Mcdonalds Drive-Thru's.

I would rate my chances really highly against any of the ones I saw today catching me in a chase! As The Bangles sang 25 years ago in the States, 'If you wanna find all the cops, they're hanging out in the donut shops'...

Looks like the sames happening here... you mark my words? Them coppers, they're getting right Porky!

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Dogs - The Pink Floyd

I like Dogs... there I have said it! I have decided that it's their stupid owners that I don't. Tell me why do most Dogs have stupid owners? They are, I meet loads of them out on my runs especially at tea-time when they are on exercise and pavement fouling duties.

And yes I am Cynophobic (scared of dogs) but thinking about it, I'm not really; it's the uncertainty of the owners capability of 'Canine Control' that I am more sceptical of. Dogs have minds of their own - Fact!

Bring back Barbara Woodhouse I say and maybe what's needed for most unruly pets is a muzzle for when they are out on walkies. The 'Don't worry Fido won't bite' rule doesn't work with me and a license is definitely needed for the mad bull terriers we see so often out on our runs which are seen as being a fashion accessory to make one look hard.

I wonder if it's the same in Ireland? Good job I will be driving a 3 tonne motorhome, might have to get some stickers made for the drivers' door...

More tomorrow...

Monday, 23 May 2011

Into the Valley - The Skids

It's Monday so I must be in Breaston, Derbyshire... Since our return from Morocco, we don't seem to have been in one place for more than two minutes it seems.

This weekend we had our first 9bar Cardiff ULTRA with 50 miles of the Taff Trail from Brecon to Cardiff providing the scenery and a complete spectrum of weather conditions supplying some unusually hostile running for the competitors.

We've already had some great feedback on the event already and it looks like it has the potential for greatness in the ULTRA-running calendar. Let's hope eh?

We march on towards Ireland and Jenny's M2M Guinness World Record attempt... so before that I am going for a world record sleep... I need it!

More tomorrow...

Warm Hands Cold Heart - Des'ree

OMG, I have been trying out the best toy I have had in years - gloves that actually WORK... ladies, for all of you who suffer from freezing cold hands even when the rest of your body is overheating on a boiling hot day, I have FINALLY found the solution. Terra Nova have sent me a pair of their Mountain Mitts to test-run and they are soooo effective.

I got a great chance to try them out during a long day at our Cardiff Ultra yesterday (well done to all of our runners, btw!). I had to take them off whilst writing down timings, etc. but as soon as I put them back on they took the aching cold away. They are made out of some sort of magic and I shall treasure them whilst I'm in Ireland.

THANK YOU Terra Nova:-)

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Ayo - Slow Slow (Run Run)

Well it's been a day out adding extra marking for our '9bar Cardiff ULTRA' competitors tomorrow. I must say that the Brecon Beacons looked amazing as we went up the valley and the route will hopefully stay dry for the first running of this event.

National Cycle Route 8 provides the backdrop and the 150 competitors will be able to enjoy the Talybont Reservoir, Pontsticill, The Cefn Coed Viaduct and a great 25 mile downhill run into Caerdydd itself.

We are up at stupid o'clock to get ready for the 5.30am bus ride with 90 of the runners up to Brecon... it's quite a hllly old run... and what I do know is that I won't be taking our trailer off piste too much as some of the hills are 1 in 5... so therefore I am at CP 1 and the finish. Jenny has the hilly CP4 later on!

I am interested to see if anyone can beat Irish International, Martin Rea...

More tomorrow from the race...

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Hocus Pocus - Focus

I was in the gym tonight on a bit of a refresher course for one of my top lady runners... a real baptism of fire and it reminded me so much of her first session a couple of years ago.

The volume was at 11.

Hopefully it has sparked a solid return to fitness for her and it will encourage my own path back to running happiness.

The Cardiff ULTRA on Sunday will also get me in the mood I'm sure...

More tomorrow from ARAF...

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

I didn’t blog yesterday out of despair… as I had one of my worst runs EVER. It just like I had ground to a complete halt, my Duracell Bunny batteries were completely flat. The only other time I have felt like this was during the Shakespeare Marathon one year, when I stopped for a sleep and The Potteries when over half the people running dropped out.

It must be the weather… either that or I am completely buggered.

It’s probably the latter.

What I do know is that I am going to have a bit of a rest for a month or so. I need my Duracell’s to be fully charged.
More tomorrow…

Ready to go - Republica

Well the 2 days are over and I am pleased to say that, other than a stiff achilles this morning, my legs feel pretty good today... even better after a monster session with Paul White who is simply a genius - he has agreed to come to Ireland too so we now have a great team - me, Rorz, Paul and Lou Herron (my fabulous tent mate at MdS in 2009 and 2010).

Last night I called it a day at 55 miles and learnt a big lesson - 09:30 is too late to set off on a 60-miler - it is soooo depressing running in the dark. Rorz came out with me for the last section and bizarrely I think it made it worse as I had someone (poor thing - I will be on coffee duty for the next year as penance) to whine to!!

So, under coach's instructions, I am now doing another double-60 on the weekend just to prove to him (and me I suppose) that I can do it... so one more day at home and then another 2 loooong days out on the road.

Monday, 16 May 2011

Legs - ZZ Top

This picture is of me stood at Malin Head before we started our route recce in July last year - it seems apt as it has that aura of anticipation.

That has been my biggest ever training week - 240 miles in the bag since Tuesday, including 125 on the weekend. In no small part I might add thanks to Rory for looking after me, taping my feet, feeding and watering me, massaging my legs and generally supporting me, even when I was rather grumpy, and EVEN IN THE RAIN! Thanks Rory:-)

I must also mention Paul White who is doing wonders with my legs - I saw him last week and again today after my long weekend and he never ceases to amaze me at how brilliant he is with all things massage/therapy-related. He is sponsoring me for my Ireland record and I feel enormously privileged to have him on board.

All in all my second run wasn't too bad, the last 15 were tough - I saw Rory at 45 and strangely it made things worse - I think I am better off in my own little world listening to my iPod and getting into that trance. Seeing friendly faces and chatting gets you out of your stride and reminds you how painful the whole thing is... that said, yesterday's time was only 50 minutes slower than Tuesday's and I went 2.5 miles further.

I must admit I finished yesterday wondering how on earth I could do another 4 in a row, but woke up this morning feeling like I could run again, so enough of the training - bring it on!

So, all set now - just need to book everything...

Express Yourself - Madonna

People never cease to amaze me and it was the turn of Katherine Hay-Heddle to re-write my rule book today. It's some time since I met someone with this much zest for life and a more over-flowing glass.

She's also a bloody good athlete... and it's time she had her time to shine. We are going to do some work together over the next 12 months and get her ready for the run of a lifetime.

Her four completions of the Marathon des Sables just aren't enough it seems!

Watch this space and I'll keep you posted on her progress.

More tomorrow.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Talk Talk - Talk Talk

It's very easy to say that you are going to do some massive personal challenge, it's very difficult to actually go and do it and it's almost impossible to undergo the training and commitment needed to actually do it. Jenny has been brilliant this weekend on her double 62.5 mile training runs for her Guinness World Record attempt in Ireland.

I'll be honest, a few months ago I wondered if she would be able to take on board the changes needed to her running style and speed that would be needed but now SHE is THE ULTRA expert. The best thing is that her usually rotten feet are in great shape... work that one out!

Bring on June 5th... She'll be great, you see.

Coach Coleman.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

So Far So Good - Limahl

Well I'm feeling quite pleased with myself today - I managed 62.5 miles and felt fine until about 51 when the tiredness began to set in.

My second run of my last 'double-60' actually turned out to be only 55 miles as I started way too late (09:34) and found running late at night THOROUGHLY depressing. I ended up whining to poor old Rory who had offered to accompany me over my last 13 miles (I wonder how many minutes in he regretted that decision!!). As such Coach Coleman wanted me to prove to him (and to myself I suppose) that I am capable of running the whole distance back-to-back. So I took it one step further and thought I'd do it back-to-back adding on the 5 miles I didn't run last time!!! So I am doing 2 x 62.5 milers this weekend...

Anyway, Day 1 - tick, but I suspect Day 2 will be considerably harder... so an early night for me in front of Eurovision - that should send me to sleep;-)

I want to break free - Queen

Been out today on the bike to support Jenny on her second lots of double 60 mile training runs, for her Guinness World Record in Ireland in June. Now i must say that following the addition of a monster gel saddle plus some hardening up to the task in hand things are getting a lot easier in the world of cycling lots of miles.

My only gripe is the A6005 between Draycott and Borrowash... it's possibly the bumpiest cycle route in Great Britain. The tarmac is just unridable in places, not only are there potholes, giant grade stones, bottlenecks of cycle ways into narrow lanes but also there's a place where the track just says END... it's totally bemusing. What with that and cars parked covering the whole of the cycle track, it does make you mad... can you tell I am a bit miffed? I think Derby County Council needs a look at this section... bet they don't ride bikes eh?

Anyway, tomorrow's another day and another 62.5 miles for our Jenny... I am back cycling... oh how I am looking forward to going down the A6005 tomorrow!

Friday, 13 May 2011

Lay Your Hands on Me - Peter Gabriel

It's a miracle - and thanks to Paul White for getting the old Coleman body back on the road. It bloody well hurts, I can tell you BUT boy his techniques of releasing tight muscular problems are just awesome. No wonder Jenny is taking him to Ireland as part of her crew for her Guinness World Record.

If you are suffering with Plantar Fasciitis or have a hurty achy body... go and see the Maestro at his clinic in Loughborough. It works just like magic... He's also a really nice chap... Paul is now part of my body's 'Fix-it Dream Team', Brother Dr Martyn (all things medical) , Vaughan Cooper (Osteopath), Jane Crafts (Trotters) and Dr Watson (L4 Disc) are the others... It's not such a solitary game after all eh?

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Run - Pink Floyd

On day two of the big run, it's been quite a day out on the road for Jenny. Watching the action unfold today has been fascinating and it's been interesting to witness the highs and lows as the mileage increased and how she had to her own techniques on how to dismiss the present and see the big picture.

She's 40 miles in right now and has just 20 miles to do today, so around midnight she should be about done. I did 5 miles with her earlier on and will do another 5 at 9pm to break the monotony of her looped route.

One thing I can tell you is that her Saucony Trainers are now BOTH hacked but the legs are going great.

More later...

Lose Yourself - Eminem

Wow, that was quite a day... 5am start and I was sticking to schedule at 09:00 having clocked up 24 miles - then I had a half hour rest...

I gained a whole new respect both for Rory's running career and his coaching ability yesterday as he pulled me through a 60-mile training run on the roads... I struggled to get back into my stride after stopping and at 27 miles in my legs were beginning to just feel really tired and achy and I got really grumpy (not a pleasant experience I can tell you!). Rory has this amazing intuition to know exactly what to do (give me lots of food,  drink and a 'chat'). He supported me all day giving me advice and encouragement and I felt great for the last 2.5 hours, running 5.5-6 miles/hour.

At 27 miles I was beginning to worry about Ireland...
By the end I felt great and am now excited at the prospect of getting 2 back-to-backs under my belt.


Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Hemispheres - Rush

If you EVER needed motivating come and watch someone get thru a 60 mile training run when they are out there on their own with just their own personal barriers to beat and no medals or trophies at the end... it's f'kin hard, amazing, humbling, motivating, inspiring and painful all at the same time.

Well done Jenny Salter... I am most proud.

My calf problem and general grumpiness of yesterday had vaporised... hence the Rush choice of music today.

"You need only trust your feelings only love can steer you right"

Thanks Geddy and you can't go wrong with the Canadian Pomp Rockers plugged in fired up and on full volume. Obviously the miles on the bike have helped no end (thanks Sir Michael) and I will be out there with Jenny at 9am tomorrow.

You try and stop me!

Monday, 9 May 2011

He ain't heavy he's my brother - The Hollies

I tell you what, 50% of the children I saw leaving Pearl's junior school today are overweight if you are asking me... I wouldn't like to have to push one of them let alone try and carry them. What ARE they being fed? Liquid SUGAR and FAT it seems? It's really frightening...

IMO, school must educate our children in the ways of life as well as the Three R's... who is taking the responsibility to get some of these poor kids and their parents (and boy some of them are MASSIVE) eating healthily and exercising. It's all worrying to me, am I the only one?

Anyway... on a bit of a bemused and cloudy day for me (must be the bad calf muscle), I have been on the set of Coccoon at Hopwood Services after being swept up in six coach loads of OAP's looking for tea and a WC and seen the most expensive clocks ever on endless overhead, otherwise blank gantry signs on the motorway. I know the time thanks Mr Motorway, it's on my dashboard!

Where is this world going? Do I sound grumpy?

More tomorrow, let's hope the clouds have cleared...

Sunday, 8 May 2011

On the Beach - Chris Rea

It's been a lovely day down on the beach and cliffs at Monknash in ARAF. All that sea air makes you realise what you are missing, especially when you live in the heartland of England some 100 miles inland in any direction! It certainly gives you an appetite and heavy eyelids...

There were also some great opportunities for photos as you can see and it made a good weekend break away from the ULTRArace office.

Next week, hopefully my calf strain picked up running on Friday will be feeling better. I hope so as that 145 is looming... I'm not sure if 53 miles on a bike helped but I can't just sit around doing nothing can I?

Or maybe I can :-))

Anyway, more tomorrow from Blighty...

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Bicycle Race - His Majesty the Queen

For the last 17 years I have been a runner, yesterday I became a cyclist! We put it this way, I cycled 50 odd miles and have a good old sore butt to prove it.

Unfortunately it wasn't on our tandem due to a stretched chain, no honest, but on a ladies sit up and beg bike with no luxuries except a very ggod bell, so I am not surprised I have a few aches down below.

A bigger saddle, suspension and disc brakes would have been a real help, I can tell you.

Anyway, the whole 50 miles of our Cardiff ULTRA course have been covered once again and the course is a piece of cake to follow. It's National Cycle Network Route 8 all the way... no Castle Coch to mess you up at the end and a billion signs to keep you on the trail.

It's simply a stunner of a route... you'll love it. I will too as soon as the throbbing down below stops... I am going back to running for a while!

More tomorrow...

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Love and Pride - King

With the Royal Wedding well and truly over I got to thinking that poor Wills has some time before he actually starts his job... a good thirty years or so to my reckoning at least. That will make him nearly 60 and given the health and longevity of the Royals, it might be even longer!

When he does make the throne, let's hope he gets rid of speed cameras, plastic coat hangers and Lenny Henry with his £29 hotel room adverts... I would.

More tomorrow... ARAF.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Ready to go - Republica

I started my GUCR145 preparations today and got the two Geomaps out of my map box and had a good old look at the route from Birmingham to London. Hardest part of the race will be programming the Tom Tom with the locations for Jenny to crew, I reckon. Poor girl is in for a very hard 40 hours!

Can't say that I really prepared the last few times I have done this event... as basically all you do is start, run and then stop. Sure it hurts and sure you have to have a strategy to get to the end of such a mega-distance but as yet, it's not time to consider what I am undertaking.

That's a way off yet... and far enough for a few training runs to get back into some distance. Will start tomorrow when we go to Wales.


Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Part of the Union - The Strawbs

Well it seems that I am as my good friend Dick Kearns who organises my favourite race ever contacted me today and said I could take part in the 145 mile Grand Union Canal Race. It's 10 years since I last completed this race and it's the one where back in the old days, I did pretty well.

I have finished it three times in 1998, 1999 and 2001 - it seems such a long time ago now and this year first goal is to finish!

I have already roped in my crew... Jenny of course and will now do my best to prepare for the race of a lifetime.

More later...

Monday, 2 May 2011

Back Home - England World Cup Squad

It's great to be back in home in Breaston and have some time out after 'The 9bar JOGLE Ultra'. What an adventure and hopefully you kept up with the race as it happened with us. The wonders of modern science eh?

It's only when you go to John o'Groats and start the journey down the country that you realise just how massive our nation is and just how differing the places are where people choose to live. My personal favourite was Slyne near Lancaster or possibly Shap (where hill training would be the only training)... place to avoid is definately and Paisley is now being avoided at all costs next year!

So now it's time to get back running and get rid of the cobwebs grown over the last week of crewing... more tomorrow post run.