15 March 2011

Diminished but not finished

When I set out to feed the horses this morning, the car stuttered before I'd even got out of the cul-de-sac, so I turned round, parked it up and found a lead for Boston, intending to give him an enjoyable walk for three miles to the field - and back, too. If I could have trusted him I'd have taken him for a run, but his approach - constant stops, lots of sniffing around, doubling back - reduces my pace to 20 minute miles plus.

We managed even less distance than in the car before he felt the need to make several small deposits on the footpath, and I had refrained from bringing a plastic bag with me because I had no intention of carrying it around for a couple of hours if it had to be used. So it was back home for one, then back to the scene of the crime, by which time the window of opportunity for a walk had closed (was deemed, by me, to have closed). I changed into running kit (long-sleeved top, in deference to the fact that it is still March) and left Boston snoozing at home.

I hadn't gone more than about a mile before I was distinctly warm and wishing I'd selected a short-sleeved shirt. The sun was high in a beautiful blue sky, not quite so bright that I needed shades, and it was arming the countryside very nicely. The hedgerows still looked bare, the trees too, but they'll be budding soon, and the ground underfoot was good and firm. It was, in short, a perfect morning for a run, and I was delighted to have taken it.

I had conservatively chosen to run in my Mizuno shoes, which although old - they were pretty old when I ran the Capital City Marathon (the souvenir timing chip from which still adorns them) nearly two years ago - still give a reasonable amount of cushioning and the motion control I need. The Luna sandals will have to wait - perhaps in the coming couple of days I'll get them out. It wasn't the day even to practice pose running or any other alternative to my regular heel-banging, but it got me to the field without discomfort and after throwing some hay at the ponies I felt absolutely good enough to continue up the hill to the Ridgeway instead of doubling back. The difference, at the end, would only be a mile anyway.

I paused when I reached the ancient road and untied my shoes, even took one off, but they thought better of stripping naked (from the ankles down). My left foot was taped up to keep the plantar fasciitis under control, and it seemed to be working: the tape wouldn't last long with nothing to protect it. So I trotted along the lovely grass, so much better since vehicles were banned from it.

And so I eventually returned home, in a bit over an hour - I have varied the once-regular route to make it a little longer, but even so I should be well under an hour for this. Never mind, it's the first run of my latest comeback, on a perfect day, and very, very satisfying.

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