Today is my 47th birthday. I hold no qualms over telling the world my age. I feel fitter and more content than I ever have. I wake up knowing that I’m already a size smaller than I was on my 46th birthday and a heck of a lot stronger. Today was also the day I ran the furthest I’ve ever run before.
My half marathon training (no, I still don’t know which half I’m training for exactly) asked for 8 miles today, regardless of the special occasion. So 8 is what I did. And because of that I’m having the best birthday I’ve had for ages!
Breaking through barriers, be they just psychological, is a phenomenal feeling. Knowing that you’ve achieved something you’ve never managed before gives you that edge. That I can do anything today feeling. Welcome to planet Julie!
I set off in drizzly rain, happy of the cooling benefit of the weather. I’d had to waterproof my iPhone with gaffatape to make sure that there would be no water ingress (still looking for THE all-singing all-dancing armband) but to be fair the rain lasted only for a very short part of the outward part of my run.
It was nice to listen to my old ipod tunes and they kept my pace steady. I didn’t want to run at race pace. I’d not run this distance before and I needed to feel that I could finish it comfortably.
I had the immediate problem of converting miles to km; Jeff Galloway wanted 8 miles but Runkeeper was in km and on my first walk break I was quickly trying to convert those 8 miles. I decided 13km would do, slightly more than 8 miles but near enough. And that meant turning back at 6.5 km. Ahem.
At 7km I remembered to turn. Oops.
I ran a 4:1 ratio. It meant my runs were consistent and manageable. Finishing my 8 miles in an hour and a half was right on the pace I dared to hope for. Fab! This birthday run was a great present!
On returning home I decided on a cold bath. Another first. Dear God! That’s something I know I need to do in the future (instant relief) but won’t look forward to!!
So there we are. Not the final frontier Jim, but boldly going where I haven’t been before!
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