Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Moving House, South Devon Trails & Auto-Belaying

The past few weeks have been pretty busy for me, despite being the Easter holidays. I came home from uni on the 8th, which gave me five days to pack before moving house to an old village shop that my parents renovated themselves in the space of 12 weeks. When we moved in there was no shower, no kitchen lights and, worst of all, no wifi: until I traveled down to stay with the BF almost a week later I had almost total radio silence (first world problems, I know). But now I'm back in Swansea and can write a blog post in order to procrastinate writing my essays!

On the Saturday before last, me and mum visited Bideford parkrun, which is the closest one to the new house. It's a very fast and flat 3.5 loop course, and while walking to the run briefing we got talking to a parkrun tourist who is currently trying to run at every parkrun in the south west, having already run at every one in Wales. He also said that he'd signed up for the same 10k race that I've entered in September, so hopefully I'll spot him amongst the 3000 other people competing.

While visiting the BF, we went for a 2.6 mile trail run, following a river through some woods and into the town. The scenery was so beautiful that we had to stop every few hundred metres to take photos!

On the Thursday, we took the train to Exeter to go climbing at the Clip & Climb. This is the more "fun" area of the climbing centre, although no less challenging than the uni climbing walls, and instead of having a belay partner the climbers were attached to auto belay machines. I hated the auto belay machines. It took about half of the session for me to trust them, and you had to be clipped into and out of it by a member of staff, so there was a bit of waiting around between finishing one wall and going onto the next. But other than that, the wide variety of routes, as well as the difficulty points system, made it a pretty fun experience!

After climbing, we took another train back up to my house, and in the morning before we left for uni, me, mum and the BF attended Tamar Lakes parkrun on the Devon-Cornwall border, which was my home parkrun before my break from running last year. I was pretty pleased with myself because I ran the whole 3.1 miles without walking!

advantage of having a boyfriend who is faster than me: he can wait at the finish to take photos ;)
Since returning to Swansea we've done a handful of runs, including a 5k to the waterfront museum today, and yesterday I watched the London marathon coverage. Between Josh Griffiths beating all the British elite runners despite starting from the masses and Matthew Rees helping another runner to the finish, Swansea runners got a lot of attention on social media, which is weird since I can see where the Swansea harriers train from where I'm sitting now.

Hopefully now that I'm back at uni I can post more often, but for now I have an essay and a presentation to write :(

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Welsh Varsity, Microbiology and Stress Relief Running

So I haven't posted anything for over a week, which is bad of me, but honestly there hasn't really been anything to qualify a standalone blog post, so this is going to be a week review more than a real blog. Do let me know if you prefer/hate this format!

Saturday (01/04/17) parkrun PB! I managed to run the first 2.5 miles before taking a walk break, so progress. I got 33:01, about 30 seconds faster than last week.

Sunday (02/04/17) planned to go for a short run and failed. 

Monday (03/04/17) microbiology lab! I've recently become really interested in bacteria (as weird as that sounds) and I'm considering taking it as a career path, as its the module I've enjoyed the most so far. Yet again failed to go running.

Tuesday (04/04/17) empty day. Went food shopping, revised.

Wednesday (05/04/17) VARSITY! Me and 6000 other Swansea students descended on Cardiff for Welsh Varsity, the biggest inter-university sports event in the UK over than Cambridge v Oxford. I watched one of my flatmates compete in her badminton matches, walked through the beautiful Bute park to the Principality stadium to watch approximately half a rugby match. 
Me and the BF left at half time because I was feeling pretty bad watching my old team competing where I dreamed of competing before I quit the team for the sake of my mental state. It wasn't helping that one of my flatmates kept making comments like "I bet you're glad you're not on the team" and "if you were playing, you'd be the first to get injured". At this point I was just tired, and me and BF caught the train home.

Thursday (06/04/17) First run of the week! Pushed myself to run 4 miles with negative splits, and by the end I was exhausted. 

I evidently needed a good run, because I felt so much better after it, and we walked down the beach to soak our legs in the sea (the best kind of ice bath).

On Saturday I'm returning to Devon after parkrun, so over Easter there'll be less photos, but at least I'll get in more hill training in the absence of the lovely flat coast path.