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July Arrivals

The second half of the year always sees a number of new shoes and updates to existing models, land on the shelves.  As ever some are better than others and is always the case the proof is in the running.
Last month saw the arrival of the Scott Kinabalu 2.0 RC and a real marmite shoe that has proved to be. A classic case of if the fit works then you will probably love the shoe and certainly the feedback from the Team Accelerate Scott runners proved something most of us now realise, you have gotta try the shoe on and check you are happy before heading out the door for a run.
You can read a review of the culmination of the testing for this shoe here >>

So for the second half of 2019 I have picked the three shoes that I believe will fit the bill for many a runner, and in the case of the Saucony Mad River a shoe that offers amazing levels of versatility and I suspect will fill the gap that exists for those that swim-run.  With that said let’s start on the roads…

Saucony Ride IS0 2
The Ride has been a staple of the Saucony stable for many years. The shoe has evolved over the years yet continues to be a cracking everyday shoe for those running around 25-30 miles a week looking for just the one shoe. Higher mileage runners will use this as their longer run-day shoe to back up their faster feeling responsive shoes for those mid week sessions.
The New Ride ISO 2 has the same levels of cushioning as in the previous modal. Traction will not change a great deal either.
The key to the update is the upper.  The ISO fit has been updated to provide greater fit and comfort around the foot. The addition of FORMFIT technologies help the shoe to mould and adapt to the shape of the runners foot, even during the run.  Certainly, having tried the shoe on it is definitely more plush and the fit does feel good.
If you are on the look out for a mid to high mileage comfortable shoe, then this should be on your try on list.  Oh yes, it’s a touch lighter too.

Key Update: “Updated ISOFIT and all new FORMFIT technologies adapt to the shape and motion of the runner’s foot”.

VJ Sport MAXx Trail Shoe
Well, if there is one thing we keep hearing from customers about the current VJ range is grip! Especially on rock.
With the same outsole compound being used in the all new MAXx we reckon that as far as trail shoes go then this could be hard to beat for grip and traction. You have to remember that it is not an off-trail shoe, it is built with trails in mind in all but the worst conditions. The square lugs are well spaced for mud clearance, flat topped so that they grip better in the wet and onto rock.
The upper is what you would expect, a sandwiched mesh for breathability and to be quick drying.

New Shoe: Well worth checking out if you are looking for grip on trails and mountains.

Saucony Mad River TR
Ok, so the name caught my attention… “What’s this?”  Is this the most versatile trail shoe yet made?
Possibly the first thing you’ll notice is that there are numerous lace holes. Simply, so that you can customise the fit to ensure a better fitting shoe.  There may appear to be less under your foot compared to say the Saucony Peregrine, yet the early reports suggest the midsole blends great cushioning with reasonable ground feel.
Now here’s the thing… especially if you are into your DIY, on the outsole of the shoe you will see a series of marked circles that are numbered. You can open up some of these for drainage so making the shoe an option for those that swim-run in the great outdoors.  The other option with these numbered circles is that they will take a screw in stud or spike for deep mud or snowy winter conditions.
Grip wise, out of the box, they are a definite trail shoe – mountain or valley and if the Peregrine is anything to by they shouldn’t be to bad on wet rock either.

New Shoe: Versatile, great if you love DIY 😉 and definitely worth checking out for anyone who swim-runs or is looking for a lower profile and responsive trail shoe.

So there you have it…July is going to be interesting and personally I just have to get my feet into a pair of the Mad River, if nothing else, for the name alone!  Oh, yes, I like a spot of DIY too!

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Great Birmingham 10K incorporating England vs Celtic Nations Masters Int. – by Dot Kesterton

Dot Kesterton is no stranger to BUZZ, with plenty of experience, teaching runners half her age how it’s done!

Running for #TeamAccelerate, as well as Sheffield’s Steel City Striders & her local ladies club ‘Smiley Paces’ – she competes within the V60 category (outdoing many in the V50 & V40) and runs like she means it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Birmingham 10K road race

incorporating England vs Celtic Nations Masters International.

26th May 2019.

Just a week after the British Open Masters road relays, (Team silver, individual gold) in Sutton Park I headed back to my home town of Birmingham for the England vs Celtic Nations Masters 10K road race and Great Birmingham Run.

I recovered well from the very enjoyable 5K road relays and was excited about running in my second England vest. As an FV65 I had the World Champion, Penny Forse and former olympian Yuko Gordon to target if I was to achieve anything so the stakes were high. I had a 45:10 result in the qualifying race in Chester in March and had won gold at the BMAF 10K championships in Blyth in April with 45:09 so I knew I was in with a chance.

The course was not as fast and flat as I had expected and combined with cool, drizzly weather and a head wind for the return of the out and back course I struggled to keep a consistent pace. From the Cathedral on Colmore Row the route followed an unlovely A34 dual carriageway for 5K before turning and heading back to Aston University Campus, much improved since I last passed it in in 1970’s. When Yuko sped past me in the first half mile I knew I was up against a giant of Masters athletics. At the age of 68 she ran effortlessly whilst I, a mere 67, panted and pushed my heart rate to its highest in a race this year, around 180bpm. Yuko disappeared so then I had to hold off Penny, a veteran of the Montreal Olympic Games 1976. I could hear people shouting our names and willing us on but as ever, in my running bubble, much of the support was lost as I pressed on and dreamed of being able to breathe without pain at the finish.

Happily the finish gantry emerged and I’d like to think I shot through at pace, just not the pace I needed to close in on Yuko who claimed the gold in 44:22. With a time of 46:19, 35 seconds ahead of Penny I came in as runner-up to collect my finishers medal, T shirt and assorted snacks and drinks. Yvonne Twelvetree from Totley RC came in in 5th place in 49:13. There were seven women representing England FV65 but sadly a very poor turnout of Celtic Nations at the event meant that the event was not scored. It was good to see some familiar faces, Strider, Stephen Schubler ? and Dark Peaker Paul Fauset, 35:13

The race was won by Douglas Musson, Notts AC in 30:22 and Chloe Richardson, Birchfield Harriers in 34:56. Jo Pavey ran it in 36:50.

I had a special reason to go to Birmingham other than the race. My father, Frank Lane was born to Edith May and John Wells Lane in Handsworth, close to the city centre on 27th May 1919 the last of eleven children. Dad survived the unbelievable blitz on Malta between 1940 and 1943 as a Corporal in the Fleet Air Arm. He would have been very proud to see his eldest daughter compete for England and I had the honour of retracing some of his steps around the jewellery quarter where he was apprenticed as a silversmith around 1935. I occasionally wear the silver wedding ring he made for me in 1975. Happy posthumous 100th birthday dad and thank you for all your encouragement when I was a fledgling athlete at the All Birmingham Cross Country Championships in 1967….but that’s another story.

Dot Kesterton, FV65.

29th May 2019.

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Smashing Hathersage Hurtle through PMA & focused rehab

Today, Saturday 18 May, was a pretty epic day all in all. Just 7 weeks ago, I sprained my ankle. It looked like an elephant club foot, so attractive! Having to pull out of the four inns ultra was crap. Facing weeks without being able to run wasn’t any better.

Those of you who know me well will be well aware I’m determined and ‘strong willed’ (polite way of saying stubborn). I’ve used this as a positive over the last few weeks, with the hathersage hurtle as my immediate goal for rehab and oh my God, have I worked hard on rehab . Swimming, core, strength, cycling and easing back to running . It’s been hard to ignore the inner panic voice, but I have! Staying focused, taking rest and resisting the urge to enter the midweek races have all been part of this. Keeping my eyes on the prize: Brecon Beacons marathon 29 June.

Well chuffed with today. I walked the steep climbs and ran my own steady race. Finished in 3:14 and felt strong at the finish. Awesome.

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Yorkshire 3 Peaks Fell Race – Jon Waller

Above: That’s me in the middle.

Hi, I’m Jon Waller and this is my first ever blog. Thank you to Stu Hale for asking me to write this, something that I would never have thought of doing!

 

I’m a keen fell runner and at the end of April I competed in the ‘3 peaks’, a legendary Fell Race over the sacred Yorkshire mountains consisting of Pen-Y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough. It’s 23 miles long, has 5000ft of ascent and each year consists of every conceivable type of weather, leading to the dilemma of what to wear to prevent both sunburn and frostbite. I’ve run this race 4 times now and although I didn’t quite PB this year, it was the one that meant the most. After a lengthy period of injury, it has been a difficult and long journey (a word that makes me cringe) to actually get back to this point. Although, it has taught me something about myself and changed me ultimately for the better as I enter my veteran years.

Above:  Down Whernside.

Sport has always been my escape. I’ve always had an overactive mind, a slave to my head. Even as a child I struggled to sleep due to the perpetual whirring of ideas and thoughts in my brain! I think that’s why I fell in love with exercise, it offered some respite. By the age of 13, I was mad about cycling, easily spotted in the peloton with my embarrassing ginger ponytail and shaved legs. Since then, I moved on to triathlon, ironman and eventually fell running (although I’d been running for fun on the hills for years). Fell running has been the most effective way of leaving my thoughts behind, there’s something about being in the wilds that just seems to simplify life. A pair of fell shoes, shorts and a mountain: a perfect natural assault course which had the uncanny ability to (sometimes falsely) allow me think that life’s problems had gone away. Then I got injured and my physical and emotional crutch broke!

 

My injury started in spring of last year, after a good winter’s training for the fell racing season. Having never really been injured before, I couldn’t accept that I might have to actually stop and recover. I remember the increasing use of injury tape with each training session, cutting multiple strips for the growing pain in my abdomen and inner thighs. Running was becoming really painful and the physical joy of it all was fading, but my mind pushed on! The fear of a wasted winter of training and worse, the unknown void of not being able to run and the inevitable whirring thoughts were more painful than the physical symptoms.

 

This is where Stu Hale and the team from Accelerate step in, I owe them a lot of gratitude. Finding I was going downhill quickly, (but not in the way I wanted) the team spent a good deal of time diagnosing the cause of my injury and stopped me from running. Stopping training was a huge shock but also a relief, I knew I couldn’t go on but wouldn’t have made the decision alone. So, after 26 years, I stopped being able to do what I had previously just taken for granted. Suddenly, I found that there was something missing from my life. Writing this down makes it sound so daft, trivial even; so I couldn’t go for a run, hardly serious when you think about the problems that others face every day! But without skipping over the misty fells, I suddenly found that I couldn’t relax, my mood darkened and I realised that the link between exercise and my emotional well-being had become too strong, unhealthy in many ways. That’s when it clicked, as if someone had just turned a light on; running (which I love) had become an obsession, no longer just a hobby and I knew I had to make a change.

 

In a strange way being injured has been a blessing. The injury period afforded me time to completely rethink my relationship with exercise and forced me to find entirely new, more effective ways of coping with the ‘mind whir!.’

Over a number of months I received some great physio sessions from Pete and Izzy at Accelerate and I was given core strength exercises for my specific injury. It was the first time I’d ever done core strength work, always thinking ‘how on earth can that be more beneficial than going out for a run?’ Well, I was completely wrong! I gradually recovered, getting out of bed in the morning became pain free again. I returned to running gradually in the early winter, with Stu Hale re teaching me how to run properly after finding that the majority of my past running was ‘quad dominant’ and the likely cause of my injury. I steadily built the miles up, just enjoying the feeling of being out and about again, with Stu carefully putting together a programme that (purposely) kept me off the hills until I was ready. At the end of Jan I ran in the Northern XC Champs, followed by the Heartbeat Hobble Fell Race in the North Yorkshire Moors and Pendle Hill Dark Dash Fell Race, coming just outside the top 10 on limited hill work and mainly just speed by attending the Accelerate Thursday night speed sessions at the Olympic Legacy Park in Sheffield.

 

Serious hill work started in late March, with a family holiday to the Canary Islands, where I swapped the Peak District clag for my own personal volcano, enjoying a very different early morning vantage point. Once home the hard work continued with hill reps up Win Hill and Lose Hill, some of my favourite places.

Above:  Race start, 3 Peaks 2019.

And then the 3 peaks. I love this race, the hills, the people, the crowds, the weather and the sheer complexity of it. I look upon this course as 3 races in 1. The first 12 miles is relatively easy and all runnable. Pen-Y-Ghent is the first mountain to be tackled followed by a XC run to the Ribblehead Viaduct. 3 peaks first timers often take this bit too quick and suffer the consequences later on. It is at this point where I feel the real race begins or race 2 as I see it. At first, a scramble to the top of Whernside, the highest of the 3 peaks (the summit is actually in Cumbria, when surely the border should be moved specially on race days to make it an all Yorkshire race). Then, a taxing downhill to the bottom of Ingleborough, followed by (race 3) a climb on paved slabs and a scramble to the summit. It’s then downhill to the finish, which is about 5 miles long and covered in slippery limestone.

 

When the starting gun went for this year’s race, it felt great just to be able to run again, to feel part of the action. Catching up with some good running friends on the uphill section to Pen-Y-Ghent that I’d not seen for some time was great. I’d written some split times on my hand for the checkpoints, just to make sure I didn’t go off too fast and I used my heart rate monitor as a guide at some points to prevent ‘blowing’ later on. I met my splits pretty much exactly all the way to Ribblehead Viaduct and started Whernside feeling good, making sure I fuelled well. At the top, I felt okay with a bit of niggling cramp in my quads but managed to shake it off on the downhill. I paced myself well, wanting to keep enough in reserve to push quickly down Ingleborough in a good time. Sheltered from the wind on the ascent of Ingleborough, I reached the summit feeling the arctic like conditions, with horizontal rain and driving wind. I was glad to begin the downhill and towards Horton in Ribblesdale and started off well. About 2 miles on, I tripped on some limestone and tensed up, leading to cramp from the bottom of my right leg to the very top. I came to a grinding hold as I tried to stretch it out. Unfortunately I lost about 5 mins, but I love the way that despite being in a race, every runner who came past checked to make sure I was okay. That’s fell running for you!

Above: Feeling good.

Down to the finish line and I was through in 3h59 mins and glad to be under 4 hours.

It may not have been a PB, but I got so much more than a decent time from this year’s 3 peaks race than any of the others.

 

So, however frustrating, an injury can sometimes be an opportunity for reflection and a time to make a change for the better, both physically and mentally.

 

Thanks to everyone at Accelerate for their support and expertise in getting me up and running again, it’s really appreciated!

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Dot to Dot – by Dot Kesterton

Dot Kesterton is no stranger to BUZZ, with plenty of experience, teaching runners half her age how it’s done!

Running for #TeamAccelerate, as well as Sheffield’s Steel City Striders & her local ladies club ‘Smiley Paces’ – she competes within the V60 category (outdoing many in the V50 & V40) and runs like she means it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chester 10K road race and England Athletics Masters Association, (EAMA) qualifying race Sunday 10th March 2019.

 

Chester 10K is described as a fast out and back course, North West from the Northgate Leisure Centre to the village of Millington and back to the town centre. I was concerned at the weather forecast for the UK which showed rain, sleet snow and blustery winds across the country so was pleased to wake to drizzle and a breeze and temperatures around 5’, unlike Sheffield which woke to snow.

After a good warm up I stripped to vest and shorts and shivered at the start line waiting for the off. The start, much like Percy Pud is ranked in five minute intervals. I wandered towards the front, ‘elite’, and discovered few athletes filling the space so decided to fill it for them. It’s a bit unnerving hanging about with young men and women who were going to leave me in the dust at the sound of the claxon but no one seemed unduly bothered so I skipped about and admired my goosepimples.

The first mile was all about trying to find a pace I knew I could sustain for 45 minutes or so. I erred on the conservative side, around 7.5 minute mile pacing and used the time to pin my eyes on the man with Chester Triathlon on his shirt running at around my pace so I could try and hang on to him. The turn, at Millington was a big boost because I was running at my normal parkrun pace, around 22:30 at the 5K mark and feeling OK.

At around 8K the course begins the ascent into the town, again reminiscent of Percy Pud. In fact I think I said aloud, “just passed the dam wall now, dig in,” which would only mean anything to a Sheffield runner.

I thought my finish would be a bit ragged but the crowds were yelling and helping keep up my spirits and before long I could see the welcome ‘Finish’ gantry. I managed to push through the pain to the end and was delighted to see the time: 45:26, gun. That would be enough to earn me an age group pb, a Striders club record and most importantly a place in the EAMA 10K race in Birmingham in May. The Chester triathlete was just ahead so that tactic worked well.

I recommend the Aldi Chester 10K road race as a fast and well organised race in a lovely town even if it is the other side of the Pennines.

Dot Kesterton

FV65.

 

Port of Blyth 10K incorporating the British Masters 10K Road Championships, 7th April 2019.

The race is billed as fast and flat, on footpath and cycleway from the quayside to Seaton Sluice and back.

I decided to go to Northumberland not to miss the delights of the Dronfield 10K or even the Manchester marathon, but to defend my 2018 F65 10K title won last year at Trentham, Stoke.

Blyth is a small town north of Newcastle. it is undergoing lots of regeneration in renewable energies so the port was an exciting place to host a race for northern AC’s and this year the British Masters Athletics Federation. bmaf.org.uk

It was cool and still on the quayside at the start of the race. I looked round for any familiar Sheffield shirts, but guessed you all had something more important to do last Sunday, so I did my customary jigging about for a warm up and pressed myself to the front of the pack for a swift getaway.

Running south from the quayside along paths and a cycle track I concentrated on my pace and form. My plan was to go for a consistent 7.30 minute mile pace and try not to fade in the last half mile or so. in the event I ran a little too fast, (first mile in 6.58), completing 5K in 22 minutes and had to draw on all my reserves to hold on for the remaining 5K. The F70 World Champion, Angela Copson overtook me in the home straight giving me the push I needed to sprint for the line.

Thanks to Angela’s appearance I managed to shave a whole second off my chip time from last month’s 10K at Chester to win the F65 title and gold medal in 45:13 gun, 45:09 chip. I’m thrilled to remain at the top of the Run Britain Rankings F65 10K ladder and 13th in the F65 All Time 10K records, at least until the next race which is in Birmingham next month.

The Men’s race was won by Noah Hurton, Milton Keynes in 31:18 and Alyson Dixon, Sunderland Strollers in 33:28. One of the more notable Masters results was Alex Sutherland, M70, Inverness Harriers in 40:49. I congratulated him afterwards on such a brilliant run. He spoke of the importance of positive mental preparation and focus on core training. I found him to be a real inspiration and role model for older athletes.

The next BMAF road championship is the 5K on June 16th at Horwich, Bolton. Check out the website if you’re over 35 years old and fancy having a go.

Dot Kesterton, Steel City Striders RC, Smiley Paces RC and NMAC.

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