Month in review: January

I've been a little slow in updating my blog with a weekly review so here's an overview of January as a whole. It's like a super-duper bonus four-weeks-in-one review!

Long runs
I completed a series of long runs including a couple of back-to-back sessions:

  • 03/1: 46km; 242m vertical (a flat run in Johannesburg)
  • 12/1: 53km; 1,929m vertical (Mont Tendre)
  • 13/1: 29km; 3,076m vertical (3 x 1,000m vertical)
  • 19/1: 31km; 1,225m vertical
  • 20/1: 29km; 908m vertical

By far the highlight was finding my way up Mont Tendre which is the highest peak in the canton of Vaud.

Quality training sessions
Each week I completed two quality sessions:

Hill intervals: 2 x [200m D+, 2min recovery, 200m D-, 2min recovery]

I've been improving at this session and now I feel much more comfortable running the two repeats consistently and at a measured effort. I started doing this session way too hard and often struggled with the second repeat. I'd like to increase the number of repeats, but I wasn't stronger enough to do this in January.

Intervals: 6-8 x [5min hard, 2 min recovery]

This session is one that I find useful and a cornerstone of my weekly training. I managed to improve from 6 to 8 repeats and now I run each repeat consistently and strongly. A fun training session and hard work over rolling terrain.

I have been working on my TRX routine twice a week. I like the strength work and I believe that it helps in my long runs and with downhill running. I started with two sets of each exercise in my routine and by the end of the month I had increased this to 4 sets which was solid progress.

I also have my bicycle and started to include active recovery days cycling (I bought it back home after it had been in my brother's garage for a few years!). Unfortunately all the snow means that I've only done one ride outside and all the rest have been inside on the trainer. Nonetheless I like the no-impact training and diversity this brings to my training.

32Gi (Endure, Foodbar, Gels and Recover), UVU clothing, Zero Point Compression (intense socks and ankle socks), Paagoworks Rush 7 pack, Asics Gt-2000 shoes, Nike Pegasus 30+ shoes, Adidas Riot 6 shoes, Garmin Fenix2, Black Diamond Ultra Z-pole.

Garmin statistics
133bpm (average heart rate)

A great month with lots of training and lots of consistency throughout that training. I'm pleased with my progression and looking forward to racing in a month's time.

Starting the year in the sunshine in South Africa.

An icy and snowy return to my local trails.

Mont Tendre: the highest point in Vaud.

A little tired and cold during 1,000m hill repeats in the Alps.

The amount of snow we had in the last week of January was spectacular!

Home sweet home: Aubonne.