Saturday dawned, I saw it, and had everything done, chores-wise, ready to be invaded by the gas man to change my meter. So imagine how excited I was when, at 8.17, the phone goes to let me know i’ve been cancelled again owing to the engineer phoning in sick. Yeah, right. And i’m the Pope.
So once again I find myself re-booking for the morning of the 10th January. Maybe it’ll be 5th time lucky, but I doubt it somehow.
Anyhow, it gave me some time to play with my Garmin and set the virtual partner to race me at 8.15 minute miles, this being my hope for the marathon race pace. Which I did. And I admired my mirror casing spraying handywork from last night (the woodburner made a fantastic low-bake oven simulator, almost convincing the lacquer that it was going to be gloss, not orange peel in texture – it’s just a shame a couple of bits of dust escaped and landed on the casing, but they’ll cut out next week when the coatings have fully hardened). And decided that i’d have to wear long trousers but since my tights are at work still, I opted for my mountain walking trousers, since they’re roomy, light, breathable and comfortable. I was a bit worried they’d rub, but this was unfounded. They were ace. And no-one took the piss, despite seeing another runner twice (a first to find someone else on my backroad route), two horse riders twice (I hate overtaking horses, not knowing whether to shout and startle them or run past them and startle them the same but with added danger of injury to me) as well as Greg slowing to say hello on his way back from checjking site while it’s unattended. Shame it was at 4.5 miles that he saw me, looking rough!
Anyway, I set off at 10.19 apparently, having started the Garmin once it’d taken all of 2 seconds to locate itself, set off a touch quickly and settled into a fair pace in an effort to get warm. Now, the watch wasn’t a problem at all, but my obsession with looking at it could have been, but when I accidentally touched the bezel and switched to the virtual partner screen, I was elated. How easy is that to see how quickly I am or not going? It’s great. And finding I was 26 seconds ahead, found it very useful to not have to rely on maths. Want to keep going fast? Just keep the advantage growing. Want to drop back? Why, just let the little man catch up a bit. Marvellous. And very smart indeed. The oddest part, as I look at the graphs, is how the data is arrived at. Clearly the tree cover disrupts the signal, but the pace drops right off in the process, recording 15 minute miles at one point, and mid tens quite a lot of the other times, when my pace remained constant. Why, if the signal is disrupted, doesn’t it average the times from good signal to good signal? I know it doesn’t change the overall timing, but it seems strange.
I’m generally happy, though. But I did go a bit quick ending up averaging 7.38 minute miles for the 5 mile run, with a very tight pair of calves now i’ve rested into the bargain. Balls. Just what I wanted to avoid before tomorrow’s 8 miler. Still, i’ve set my VP to 8.45 for that one, and i’m going to stick to it. Honest.
I’m also averaging a mince pie per day, so that’s all good, I just need some more running tops to complete the winter apparel wardrobe. Shopping. Poo.
Right, off already. I’ve got bits to do.