A hot, horrible, wonderful run

There’s a post on the Kitzbuhel European Tri championships to come but first I’m going to write about Monday – a ‘long’ run and some fantastic advice.

Sunday night ended with drinking slightly more wine than I’d planned on, and Monday morning began with building works starting up before 7am(!!!!) right outside my hotel window so I awoke pissed off, tired and dehydrated.

Lots of water was drunk and a breakfast of scrambled eggs on lovely posh bread was had, and then an hour later my sister and I headed out for a run – around 10.30 by this point.

Jilli is just getting back into running after a few months off and a bit of a mental block on it so the plan was we’d do one slow lap of the run course from Sunday, she would head home, and I would continue a little bit faster.

So off we set, gently running towards the triathlon venue, marvelling at how empty it all seemed after the day before. Hit a bit of a snag as the route we’d planned to take was closed so we did lots of jogging / walking around the car park trying to find another way to the path around the lake!

Eventually found it, this meant a steep uphill and then a v steep downhill on loose gravel until we were gently running along the flats with the lake to the right. Still feeling good at this point. Then it was up away from the lake and into the sun. There was NO shade. We followed the path, including the steep hill out and back which I sprinted up for a bit of hill work. Then we hit the road and the heat started to get to me. It seemed never-ending, running along the road in the full heat of the sun with no shade anywhere.


Back down the hill and I left Jilli to run home while I went back to the lake and on another path around it, hoping to stay slightly more on shaded paths. It was not to be, they just did not exist. I tried to pick up my speed but my dehydration from the wine the night before wasn’t helping, and the sun and heat was absolutely horrendous. My thoughts alternated from “oh my god this is beautiful what an incredible place to go for a run, there is no nicer place to run” (lake to the right, mountains in front, blue sky) and to “I am going to die, I literally might die, I hate this, this is horrible, why is there no fucking shade?”.

kitzbuhel run 2

I contemplated jumping into the lake fully clothed but wasn’t sure how easy it would be to pull myself out again so instead I just splashed my arms around, getting the water on my wrists and all over my temples and neck. It helped for all of 20 seconds. At one point I ran, gasping, into a restaurant and begged for a glass of tap water which was very kindly provided.

kitzbuhel run

Mind alternating between “maybe I’ll do one more lap” and “I don’t know if I can run home” especially as I knew the last 1.5k would be along the road with absolutely zero respite from the heat. In the end I decided against the second lap and headed back to the hotel – 11k in 1hr 8 minutes. Longest run I’ve done in a while so I can’t complain too much but I cannot stress just how much respect it gave me for all the runners yesterday – two brutal laps in the heat of the sun and over the hills, after a punishing cycle course.

Lesson learnt: running with a vague hangover is fine when it’s a bit drizzly and cold. It does not work when it’s boiling hot and hilly!

Now the advice…. I was in a transfer back to the airport with a triathlete who is a tri coach. Sadly he had a puncture on the race course so had to retire, but he was obviously so passionate about the sport as he spent the whole two hour journey, and then our wait in the airport, giving me tips and advice on form, nutrition, training sessions…..

For example, did you know that some of the worst foods to eat before a workout are ‘healthy fats’ and salads? I.e nuts.

We all know about recovery foods and drinks – to be taken in that 20-30 min window after a hard workout. However, did you know that it’s quite good to have sugar in that recovery drink? I can’t remember the exact details but something along the lines that it stimulates the insulin in your body to do something which speeds up the start of your recovery.

Also lots of really interesting stuff about running drills – drills to help maintain a good posture, to engage the glutes.

The idea that as a triathlete, an endurance athlete, some of my most important training sessions are working on my aerobic endurance – ie keeping my heart rate stable over a 90 min run or a long cycle.

He was a really interesting guy to talk to and I am endlessly grateful for the openness of triathletes, their love for the sport and their eagerness to impart knowledge and get someone else to love the sport too!!!

Also… Juneathon blogging has been going badly of late!

Juneathon Day 23 – 64 laps of the tiny hotel pool plus lots of walking, cheering and clapping.

Juneathon Day 24 – 40 mins cycling, 30 min swimming 1000m in the pool, 40 min upper body workout.

Juneathon Day 25 – 40 min on the gym bike trying a threshold workout although I still don’t really know what that is. Lunch time will see a threshold run – or something that hopefully resembles one!



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