How much fun was it to get into costume this week? You all looked fantastic!! So many great photos this week, but I had to give the panorama top billing here (and I can’t resist asking ‘where’s Waldo?’).
Running this week. Monday we are running a favorite destination route to the Tower of London. We’ll go through Westminster, across the bridge and along the Southbank, past the turn for Borough Market and along another nice stretch of the Thames past the HMS Belfast and London City Hall. Then we run across the Tower Bridge and finish outside the Tower of London. Please check the directions and map below! There is a big Starbucks near the Tower’s main tourist entrance if you have time to continue around the walls instead of turning toward the Tower Hill tube station as the run finishes.
Wednesday we will do our first tempo session, a series of short, faster-speed intervals spaced with slow-jog recovery intervals in Regent’s Park. This is a fun workout to do together! During the up-tempo stretches, your group will naturally spread out, but the people near the front can circle back to rendezvous during the recovery jog part, so that everyone begins the next tempo interval together again. You will be amazed at how quick this workout seems, and how good you feel for having done the change of pace!
Friday we are suggesting the Highgate route in the Heath. It’s 7.5 miles and takes you up around the back side of the Heath into areas of the park not on our regular route. But as always, you can find all our Heath routes here (our brilliant webmaster Amy Grace has recently updated all the maps on our website, so a big shoutout and thank you to her!). Just a word about the Heath as we move into chillier days– be aware that the pavements there freeze sooner than they do in St Johns Wood, and they stay frozen later into the morning. Do be careful up there if we have any precipitation, and look out for frost on cold mornings!
Announcements and Shoutouts. As you already know from previous e-mails this week, we have moved to a waitlist for the Prague half marathon in March. Here is the link to register yourself on the waitlist. We will move most of our Prague communications out of this e-mail so that those not attending don’t have to skim over details, but please feel free to e-mail if you have any questions about the race trip. And speaking of race trips, next weekend a large group of our alumni will be attending the Rocky Run in Philadelphia. I’ll do a proper shoutout next week on the day of the race, but I imagine a few of our London ladies might be headed out to join friends there, so an early good luck to all!
A few upcoming runs to note:Nov. 11 (Mon) – Remembrance RunNov. 25 (Mon) – Crazy Tights Run (Holland Park to St James’ Park Benugo Cafe)Dec. 4 (Wed) – Christmas Lights Run (early morning tour of the city lights before sun-up)
I’ll leave you with this stunning photo from Monday’s run, when three pace groups converged in Regent’s Park. So beautiful (and the tree is nice, too)! Wishing you a good weekend, and looking forward to seeing you next week!
Monday 4 November – Tower Hill – 7 milesToday we will be running across, along and across the Thames and in and around some of the oldest parts of London. The sights will be stunning!
We start off as though we are running to Borough Market— down Grove End and into Hyde Park, under Wellington Arch, along Green Park, through St James Park and towards Big Ben then across Westminster Bridge. At the end of Westminster Bridge, exit left down the stairs and run along the Thames Path past the London Eye, Royal Festival Hall, Blackfriars Bridge, Tate Modern, Shakespeare’s Globe to the Golden Hinde, admiring all the landmarks as you trod past. Follow the walkway to the right of the Golden Hinde and at the junction with Southwark Cathedral, turn sharp left and follow Montague Close, passing through the tunnel. You are now on Tooley Street. Shortly, you will see the “Number 1” bar on the right and a London map sign on the sidewalk (see photo below)- turn left here and go through the passage to meet up with Thames Path, where you turn right.
Continue east on the Thames Path past the HMS Belfast, City Hall and Potters Fields, to Tower Bridge. Climb the stairs up to the Bridge (don’t go under the Bridge), then run across Tower Bridge (the views!), continuing past the Tower of London (more views!) until you reach the stairs down to Tower of London Park. Take the stairs down and follow the paved path along the park. Just past the park is a junction in the path-turn right to run in a tunnel under Tower Hill Road, past part of the original London Wall and up to the Tower Hill tube station. Now, think of all the history you’ve witnessed in just 7 miles!
Wednesday 6 November – Tempo Diamonds – Regent’s Park
We are focusing on tempo running on Wednesdays. This week we will do ‘diamonds’—they are fast but also fast to be done with so give them a try!
Head over to Regents Park, the normal way. Enter the Park at the Charlbert Entrance and veer to the left path. When you reach the first intersection with the other sidewalk, it is time to turn on your running jets. You will run hard for 1 minute, then recover by running slowly for 3 minutes; then run hard for 2 minutes and recover by running slowly for 3 minutes; then run hard for 3 minutes, recover run slowly for 3 minutes; run hard for 2 minutes, recover run slowly for 3 minutes and finally run hard for 1 minutes, recover run slowly for 3 minutes.
The ‘diamond’ looks like this:
1 minute hard 3 minutes jogging recovery
2 minutes hard 3 minutes jogging recovery
3 minutes hard 3 minutes jogging recovery
2 minutes hard 3 minutes jogging recovery
1 minute hard 3 minutes jogging recovery
If you need to extend the amount of time for the jogging recovery, that’s fine, you can jog up to twice the amount of the hard run time [so 6 minutes max recovery jog for the 3 min hard run]
This type of running is best done within the park so you don’t have to contend with driveways etc. If you find you need more mileage in Regents Park, just keep looping however you see fit.
Friday 8 November – Highgate – 7.5 miles
Head up Fitzjohn’s, as usual, and continue past the Hampstead Tube and Whitestone Pond to stay on Spaniards Road. Do not enter the Heath at the normal entry point, but stay on Spaniards Road as it wraps around the outside of the Heath, past Kenwood House and past The Bishops Road where Spaniards Road turns into Hampstead Lane.
Continue on Hampstead Lane as it edges around the outside of the Heath in a gentle rise until you reach The Grove, where you turn right. The Grove is a pretty, tree lined street just before the Highgate roundabout. Run to the first right lane, which is Fitzroy Park and has a traffic barrier across the road. Pass around the traffic barrier—this is fine! And continue down the road, past lovely homes and a famous allotment on the right side. This road curves downhill to the left and takes you to the entrance of the Heath near a set of bathrooms and just before Merton Lane to the left.
Enter the Heath, run past the loos and take the path to the left as it runs along the model boating pond, the men’s bathing pond and a third pond. When the sidewalk dead ends, take a right to run along the exercise fields, track and children’s swimming pool. Exit the Heath past the swimming pool, crossing over the bridge onto Constantine Road. Take a right, running past South End Rd/Fleet Rd, past the Royal Free Hospital and cutting to the left just past the Royal Free’s entrance driveway to take a short cut to Haverstock Hill. Go left on Haverstock Hill; crossing at the pedestrian stoplight to the other side, then turn right on to Belsize Avenue. At Lancaster Grove, stay left on Belsize Avenue as it changes to Buckland Crescent. Take this to Fitzjohn’s where you turn left to run towards Swiss Cottage Library, then scoot over to St Johns Wood Park Road and back to Starbucks.
The Heath (4-8 miles) – Option #2
4 miles: A great way to ease into running the hill. Run up to the Hampstead tube station and back. If you have trouble running up, think about how easy it will be running down!
5 miles: The Betsy Route
6+ miles: The partial Heath route OR the reverse Heath route
8 miles: The full Heath route
Click here for maps of all of the Heath routes.