Yes, I intended to start today’s 8 miles at something far closer to 5 o’clock than I managed, but had a few e-mails to fire out having seen the attempts of two subbies to sabotage hopes of completing on Friday and time slipped. Still, at just after 5.30, I was off (my Garmin taking about 2 seconds to find a signal, having taken 2 minutes from exactly the same spot yesterday. Odd).
I fancied mixing my route up, but didn’t want too many hills, aiming for an 8.12 pace as I was, so decided on a hilly start, my first ever try at two laps of the park (which can only be an average up and down, but mentally I was convinced I went for the harder of the two directions. My mind will only stop amazing me at how cretinous it can be when I keel over, I think) to see how bored i’d get, followed by a run down to the prom and along to make the mileage up.
And it all went splendidly. The first hilly bit was taken a touch too quickly, what with wanting to set off slowly and that and then up the pace, my two laps felt fine, just watching the Garmin and keeping my virtual partner just behind me at all times so he could catch up a bit on the uphills without getting ahead, the run to the sea went with a bang and a fizz, too. Then I changed plans a bit and ran uphill on a reverse half marathon route up through the old town to avoid too much flat seafront and thus easy route. Well, of course I regretted it as my calves started to wince, but it was a change, so I think was worth it.
When I did venture onto the prom, I was greeted by man and dog looking identical, as if in caricature of each other. He was grey and tightly cut curly frizz. His dog was a Bedlington Terrier. They looked fine together. Wonder if his wife puts his dinner in the dog bowl by mistake.
And my 3 mile loop was completed in the last 1.3 miles by following a guy who was warming up as I ran towards him, set off as I turned around, ran my pace for about 50 yards, then simply fucked off. I can put it no more politely than that. He simply went. Well, for about half a mile, anyway. I now had the wind behind me and wanted to hear at least a bit of I’ve Never Seen StarWars, so picked my pace up to (now I see it on SportTracks) 7.33 a mile, but he was gone. I caught him stretching and starting off again about a third of a mile later and chatted about injury, recovery and how smooth and quick he looked before I had to turn off the prom and back to the office. If I get as quick as him when I ditch the miles for 10k pace, i’ll be disappointed with 40 minutes, let alone 42.
But i’ve got a marathon to do first. So today, Matthew, I ran 8 miles at 7.59 average pace, and that’ll do. Slow tomorrow to recover for 17 on Saturday. Shame my legs feel heavy. Maybe it’s something to do with having blocked ears. My right one feels fine now, but my left is still underwater. If it’s not better by tomorrow, i’m phoning the doctor. Painful ears I can do without, thanks. Maybe i’ll have to pick things up to two mince pies a day. Will that cure it?