09 August 2009

People are strange

Some people would probably consider it strange that I choose to spend my Sunday morning running ... but after ten days or so enforced rest (brought to an end on Friday) I was keen to get going again. Chose a shorter route than I had in mind when I started out, just under seven miles - my regular hour-long run.

I didn't go hard at it, because I still have a sore rib to contend with, and I stopped for a breather, or just to think, two or three times. But after the Bury Down car park I got into a good rhythm, breathing in for three paces and out for three, lengthening my stride to increase the effect of the regular breathing. The sun shone, the going was good (though it's always a little bumpy on the Ridgeway), and I even found myself thinking about running the Ridgeway Challenge - not a realistic proposition this year, I am sure of that, but there's no harm in dreaming. Sometimes that's the most I can do.

Coming down the hill back to the village, I started with the idea of running one of Rachael's Reps - this being the 1000m stretch that I use for those, on the rare occasions when I get round to trying them - but quickly ran out of steam. Later, though, a passing telegraph pole reminded me that I could use them for intervals, so I ran three or four telegraph pole intervals, each probably well under 100 yards. First one trying to run more on the balls of my feet, but I was landing while my foot was still moving forward so I was slowing myself down: then one heel-striking, which was faster and much easier: then one landing on the forefoot again, but this time keeping my centre of gravity a bit further forward, making sure my foot was pushing from the moment it hit the tarmac. I passed the target pole and glanced at my watch: the pace was around 4:30, so allowing for the fact that I had already slowed down that sounded satisfactory. I ran another like that, and the watch told the same story, but when I downloaded the data to my computer Mr Garmin told me I had hit a maximum of 3:55 min/mile. That's world record pace, or nearly - if only I could run a whole mile without slowing down ...

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