Easy running if not an easy run

The world of exercise is always intriguing and this morning came along with a fresh head (was a little concerned after having a spot of Theakston’s Old Peculiar last night, only to pop over the road and wash it down with a pint and a half of Strongbow – small quantities of both seem thoroughly refreshing!) and an intention to avoid the showers that seem to be categorising this July as something of another April.

As well as this, I fancied a clear afternoon to allow odd activities to be fitted in without the usual running out of weekend rushing that has been 2011 so far.

So with a clearing in the cloud, 11 o’clock came along and demanded I slip into my running gear and head out of the door.

Strangely for a morning run (I ususally hate them aside from races and struggle to get going) I found an easy rhythm and settled into a decent pace, venturing on my little mile loop to increase the run overall from last week’s 6 miles to a more half marathon training like 7 miler.

The fresh wind that was in my face did nothing to dampen spirits, a little shower coincided with tree cover much like recent outings and as three miles hoved into view, I felt really really good and fresh. Which was silly considering I was just keeping a merry pace, not slowing down as I fear I should as run distance increases, but while enjoying my running I have little desire to make it less pleasurable.

Which is possibly my change for running from now. Whenever I set a goal and determine to achieve it, I seem to fuck things up (with the exception of the Royal Parks Half two years ago which went flawlessly). I set a goal, adjust speed/distance/training to achieve it and it all goes wrong along with the running becoming a chore rather than the pleasure which is what I’ve always done it for. This year, every run I enjoy will be done in the spirit that feels right. If everything goes wrong and I get injured, at least I’ll have enjoyed it up until there. If all goes right, maybe it’s the adjustments that are at fault. My thinking is that each time a marathon training niggle hit me it was due to slowing up to allow a longer run without injury (beacuse that’s apparently what happens), while the two hundred mile months preceeding the niggles have been healthily outed at sub 8 minute mile average pace.

Which is a long paragraph way of saying that while I wasn’t flying, I kept the pace decent all the way home, enjoying seeing a vole scatter from the road in front of me, seeing a rabbit dart for a section of hedge only to execute a u-turn when it realised the gap wasn’t where he was heading and seeing but 8 cars on the whole 7 mile outing.

Very satisfying.

A slight tightness has crept into my calves which wants another stretch but otherwise it’s hard to tell I’ve been out by my physical demeanour. Which belies the 7.31 average pace I toured around at. More cycling equals easier running, it seems. And long may it continue.

440.21 miles to go.

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