05 July 2010

Free four

Four miles easy on the schedule for today, but - as expected - my legs were stiff this morning, plus my right arm is suffering badly from some form of repetitive strain injury and has been since I got well into writing my last book. It seizes up at night and becomes very painful, though it's OK once I start moving it, at least up to a point. Incipient old age.

I postponed the four miles until this evening, and then set off gently with a view to running past the Site to Rowstock. On the footbridge over the A34, though, it crossed my mind that I'd do better on the road up towards the Ridgeway, the site of my Rach's repeats sessions a few months ago (not yet repeated, much, but on the agenda for the future!).

"Easy" in this context meant 8:45 minute miles, and with my virtual partner set at 9 I was pleased to find I was keeping ahead of her. The tarmac surface is conveniently three-quarters of a mile, and it was half a mile from home to the start of that stretch, so two repeats were all I needed to do. It's slightly uphill on the odd numbered reps, downhill on the evens, and on the second and last downhill one my 8:45  pace had become 7:03. I was dicing with muscle strain. I cut back, but still reached home well ahead of VP.

I kept to my forefeet for the first portion of the run, but was anxious about the developing knots in my calves so went back onto my heels, or at least more on my heels. Much more comfortable: is that just because  it's what I know? I was running an interesting three paces/three paces as I breathed in and out, which became two and two as my pace crept up, and taking a leaf out of Roz Savage's book I started reciting a little mantra - "tougher than most", two syllables for the intake of breath, two for the exhalation, and it helped me get into the Zone - which, at this stage of my training, is probably not where I want to be. Well, if I'm getting into a zone it needs to be an 8:45 or slightly faster one, not down near 7.

Just before I headed out an email came in from the Kielder Marathon - well, purportedly from Crammie, but they don't fool me that easily. It said they hoped my training was well under way! Well, I guess it's going a bit better now ...

No comments: