I have some good news and some bad news…. let’s start with the good news. For most of you, we are using the week of Thanksgiving as a recovery week – a chance to cutback on your mileage and allow your body to rest a bit. Now for the bad news…. I’m away for the next couple of weeks (that part could be good news for some of you!!!) so the routes will be a bit boring. I am SO predictable. I always send everyone on boring routes while I’m away just to make sure I’m missed!
A couple of things about the Lisbon trip – the price of the flight is creeping upwards. The last I heard someone paid £217. As I understand, there are no frequent flyer seats available unless you have a higher-tiered card (silver or gold). Also, the cost of registering for the race goes up after 1 December (I think it’s maybe from €33 to €44). There still is no pressure – the race won’t over-subscribe, and the hotel has plenty of room. This is just a cost notification!
Monday (21 Nov)
- Distance Runners – most of this group is away or we’ve sorted out your runs individually. For Kelli and Patricia, you could consider The Serpentine Loop or “The Wall” – both of those routes are 6 miles.
- Pace-setters – (6 miles) The Serpentine Loop down to Hyde Park, west to Carriage Rd, then south along the road crossing over the Serpentine bridge, then down to the Lido running east, then back to SJW via Baker St.
- Flex-runners – (8.1 miles) the full Hyde Park perimeter.
- Mid-level – (6 miles) The Serpentine Loop. I’ve given Michele and Darcy this route description in more detail. So at Starbucks, just look for them and try to group up. They will set the pace and lead the group for the next two weeks.
- Gentle Runners – (4 miles) how about Big Ben?
Tuesday (22 Nov)
- EBR – (6 miles) – The Serpentine Loop. I’ve given Beth Dierker and Gayle Walsh the details of this route. They will lead you and set the pace for the group. If you’re the type who is tempted to push the pace, try staying behind Beth and Gayle. I think pace is going to be key for the EBR group. From most of you I’m hearing that when the pace is restrained, you are happier with the run. So try to keep it slow and steady!
Wednesday (23 Nov)
A fun run for all!!! Usually during holiday periods, we have a much smaller group running and despite the pace differences, the group hangs together and does something fun. We continue to meet at the same time, 8:15am, at Starbucks. You could consider the shopping route which is down through Regent’s Park, down Marylebone High Street to Oxford Street. East along Oxford to Bond Street then down Bond Street to Piccadilly. Turn left (or east) and run to Piccadilly Circus then up Regent St. all the way to Regent’s Park then back to SJW. This entire route is just under 6 miles but there are endless options to shorten it. Have fun!
Friday (25 Nov)
Everyone up the hill to Hampstead or the heath. Again, a lot of our runners will be away for the holiday, but we will meet at the same time, 8:15am, at Starbucks. Group up however you feel comfortable depending on who’s there and run whatever distance you prefer. Do pat yourself on the back as the rest of us are probably sitting somewhere, not running, suffering from the-day-after-Thanksgiving sluggishness!
Monday (28 Nov)
- Distance Runners – most of this group is away or we’ve sorted out your runs individually. For Kelli and Patricia, I would suggest the Notting Hill loop.
- Pace-setters – (6.5 miles) – Kelly Ezickson will lead you on a speedy route through Notting Hill. These ladies will probably be getting warmed-up running with the group down to the canal. Once they hit the canal, they’re taking off. If you’re not wanting a fast pace, let them go and try not to get sucked into their wake.
- Flex-runners – (8 miles) an extended Notting Hill loop. I’ve asked Kathy McMahon to lead this group – she’s traveling and I haven’t heard back from her. I tried to time it perfectly when she would be sound asleep in the US. So, we’ll just assume she’ll say yes (fingers crossed!!!). This route follows the normal Notting Hill run but after about 4.4 miles you break off at Chepstow and head to Hyde Park. If you’re wanting to do this route, just look for Kathy at Starbucks and she’ll take good care of you!
- Mid-level – (6.5 miles) Notting Hill. Darcy and Michele will lead you – I’ve given them a more detailed route description. There are a lot of turns so don’t worry if you get a bit lost. The pace is more important than the exact route. Try to keep it steady and not too fast. You can see that there are other runners following this route. Try to group up together at Starbucks so you don’t find yourself miles into the route running with the super-fast girls.
- Gentle Runners – (4-5 miles) I have a couple of suggestions. You could go out the canal towards Notting Hill running at a pushed-pace once you get on the canal. Run out about 15 minutes (start the clock once you’re on the canal), then turn around and jog much more slowly back home along the canal. Another idea would be to run out the canal towards Notting Hill, come off the canal at the A4207 (just before where that skateboard park in the old pool is on the canal). Cross over the canal and run to Harrow Rd. At that major intersection of the A4207, Fernhead Rd., Harrow Rd, Elgin Ave, and Walterton Rd., take Walterton Road to Shirland. Turn right on Shirland for less than a block then turn left on Kilburn Park Rd. Run to Carlton Vale where you turn right heading back to SJW. Run up to Abbey Rd., turn right and run along Abbey Rd., then take Grove End back to Starbucks. That route is 4.25 miles.
Tuesday (29 Nov)
- EBR – Beth Dierker will lead the group again – Gayle won’t be running that day. The route is 6 miles in total. You run out the canal past Camden to “The Wall” then turn around and come back the same way you ran out. Beth has the specifics on the route but basically it’s like we ran to Runner’s Need except you don’t come up off the canal at “The Wall”. This will be a very tough run. There are no street crossings – you get no breaks at all. So watch your pace! Keep it slow, very slow. Don’t be disheartened if you have trouble. It should be hard. Get the pace right and you’ll be fine. You can complain when I get back!!!
Wednesday (30 Nov)
- Distance Runners – most of this group is away or we’ve sorted out your runs individually. For Kelli and Patricia, you have 9 miles on your schedule. Maybe the Hyde Park loop (that’s 8 miles) plus a little 1 mile loop either in Hyde Park or Regent’s Park?
- Pace-setters – (6 miles) The Wall
- Flex-runners – (8.1 miles) The Wall
- Mid-level – (8 miles) Hyde Park full perimeter loop. Again for this week, I’ve given Michele and Darcy this route description in more detail. The speedsters are heading out the canal east so you’ll be on your own going down to Hyde Park. This is a great route to work on finding your natural pace. Instead of running fast, think of trying to keep an equal speed all the way around the park (as though your body is stuck in gear 2). Just steady, steady, steady.
- Gentle Runners – (5 miles) Your choice – maybe the canal east stopping at the railway bridge short of “The Wall” or down to Hyde Park adding a 1 mile loop from Speaker’s Corner (take one of the diagonal paths down to the Serpentine, run through the holiday carnival area, then back up to Speaker’s Corner). Then return to SJW by the US embassy and Baker Street home.
Friday (2 Dec)
Everyone up the hill! The mid-level, EBR, and Gentle groups are shooting for 5 miles so the Betsy route is a good option. Most of the rest of our runners will be doing the old route in the heath which is 8 miles in total. For those of you joining us in Hampstead or along the way, you’d be getting in 6-7 miles.
I’ll see you in a couple of weeks.