Weekend long runs – Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff

This weekend’s big runs were 15 miles on Saturday followed by ten miles today. I’m still trying to keep one run hilly and the other run fairly flat to get the miles in but give my legs a bit of a break.

Saturday – Caerphilly castle and back

Saturday’s adventure was my first trip up to Caerphilly castle in a couple of years. The last time I arrived on a coach as there’s a brilliant race called Castle to Castle, which is run from Caerphilly Castle down the Taff trail to Cardiff Castle. It last ran in 2019 and was cancelled for obvious reasons in 2020. It’s been shifted again to September 2021 and I really hope it goes ahead of it’s safe as it’s a lovely route.

Caerphilly Castle

This time I ran most of my Caerphilly Mountain route and then just before they very last climb to the top of the mountain I dipped down into the town itself and across to the castle.

It started to snow about four or five miles in but it was really light so felt more like rain than snow. My efforts to get a picture or film of it were rubbish as it was so light.

Whilst it was cold I had the foresight fortunately to layer up so I didn’t get too chilly for most of the run. The last couple of miles though were really tough going. My face felt like it was frozen and the wind had whipped up and it felt like the snow was just battering me as it was really icy. My face hurt by the time I got home and I was so grateful to come back to a warm house.

I might not have my run data but my watch distance said 15.5 miles and I climbed 181 flights of stairs

I ran solo so listened to some podcasts and then some music. The podcasts were part of a series by Xand Van Tulleken and Kimberley Wilson called Made of Stronger Stuff. Each episode takes a body part and links the body and mind. The episode on lungs is particularly interesting if you run. I’d highly recommend listening to the podcasts.

I really enjoyed my run and was looking forward to seeing what the data showed afterwards, especially about my elevation, but at 13.2 miles my watch discarded my run. A runner’s worst nightmare! I’d stopped at some traffic lights to wait to cross and somehow knocked my watch with my glove I think and next time I looked down I could see my run being discarded. It was like being in slow motion and there was nothing I could do. Fortunately, I’d spotted the distance, although didn’t get the time. I’ve added it manually to my Strava as I need to use the miles for a couple of virtual runs. I think it was my longest run ever to date and I was a bit cross but I’ll be running further next weekend so I’ll get a new record then.

Sunday – a little tour of Cardiff

Normally for a ten mile run I’d head to the Bay. I’m so glad I didn’t today as although it was supposed to be 5C outside the wind was so chilly, even in the protected areas.

I had company today. I ran with Elaine, she met me at mile two and then we parted at mile eight. We just ran locally around a couple of parks. We’re very lucky in Cardiff to have lots of green spaces to exercise in.

At Roath Lake

We almost ended up running our running group’s route. Not that we’ve run as a social running group in the past year.

It was lovely to catch up although Elaine did take us down what looked like a muddy path, and I was wearing my new white trainers. Fortunately it’s been so cold that the ground was fairly solid so we didn’t get muddy at all!

I’ve got a rest day tomorrow. I can’t believe that next week marks the start of week seven of the training plan.

Celebrating the end of week 6 of training

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