A week’s worth of waffle

I seem to be getting into the habit of posting weekly at the moment and usually after my long run. Well here I am again.

After my longest run ever (LRE) last weekend I spent the next few days in relative luxury celebrating my birthday in the English Lake District. The hotel we stayed at had a spa complete with pool, jacuzzi and a GYM! How sad is it that I was excited to see a small cluster of gym equipment nestled in a room outside of the pool?! Very sad indeed; only other obsessives would share my glee! You know who you are!

I tried everything bar the treadmill. Like a kid in a sweetie shop!

As I was really just keeping Grant company I had a short blast on each of the other machines; 15 minutes on the cross-trainer, 5 on rowing machine and 10 minutes on the bike. All good fun, especially the rowing machine. I think I might have been a Viking in a former life the way I was getting into it. I’m glad that Grant had his back to me otherwise I might have been renamed Helga!

Since then I’ve had a week of shorter runs pacing and accompanying Grant on his 5k training programme. He’s doing really well and it takes me back to just over a year ago when I was doing the same thing. Each longer run asked for that extra bit of effort than you thought would kill you. Now I run happily alongside him at ease, not really challenging myself and hardly out of breath. I know that irks him, but he’ll be the same in a few months. It’s hard to believe just how much I’ve changed from the huffing puffing overweight asthmatic I was a year ago!

He’s at the stage of doing one 20 minute run a week. It was a tough step up from his longest run being 8 minutes and we took a walk break half way. I was disappointed that the GPS broke down and I couldn’t tell him how far he’d covered, but thank Crunchie for Google Maps!

Today was meant to be my long run for the week. Next Sunday I was meant to do 9.5 miles, but as I have a 10k race on the Tuesday afterwards I didn’t think that was a good idea. So today I combined a 3 mile faster paced run on my own with a slower paced 2½ miles with Grant. 5½ miles would have to do. Call it tapering!

My 3 miles were quite hard. It’s a very windy day here and, living so close to the coast, the wind comes straight off the sea with nothing to stop it. Whichever way I went, the wind seemed to be in my face. I took too many walk breaks which surprised me as when I was doing my 13k/8 miles I stuck religiously to my 4:1 ratio without any difficulty at all, albeit at a slower pace. I was running fast today though, maybe too fast and it knocked the puff out of me. I started off running 8½ minute miles, but these levelled out to 9 – 10 minute miles. I wish I could stop myself from starting off too fast! If anything that it my greatest difficulty. I can run all day at a steady pace, but suggest a short distance and I go crazy.

By the time I arrived home (elegantly sprinting along the road I live on, past any neighbours who might be looking!) I was tired, hot and knew I’d run hard. It was a reasonable run in the circumstances. I never do well running into a headwind, but it’s a great training tool! Two minute turnaround and I was out again with Grant doing a 5 minute warm up walk, 5 minute run, 3 minute walk, 8 minute run, 3 minute walk, 5 minute run and a 5 minute cool down. It actually felt pretty good. On the last run I was aching to sprint off, but I could see that my husband was tired and didn’t want to irk him further! Me being able to run 3 miles at pace, then 2½ with him is beyond his belief at the moment.

So there we are. I am now showered, have dined and am now sitting in the garden room writing this as the light slowly fades. Beyond the trees is another sunset I’ve apparently missed, but I have some satisfaction in knowing that I am getting closer and closer to my 500km target for this year.

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