26 June 2011

My Friend the Sun

A two-day heatwave, we are promised by the Met Office. So often apparently wrong (though my experience of them tells me that they have an extraordinary ability to show that whatever the forecast says, and notwithstanding the actual weather, they were right: when running a training course for them years ago, I joked about the famous hurricane of 1987 or whenever, and I was told in no uncertain fashion that they hadn't got that wrong, though it is generally regarded as the epitome of an inaccurate forecast), today they seem to have been spot on.

A wonderful morning for a run, so I set out fairly early with the intention of doing perhaps an hour and a half, perhaps more - still building towards running 20 or more miles on a Sunday morning. It was still a little dull as I left home, so my shades were superfluous - though not for long.

I wore my green racing shoes which are less likely to cause injury than the old Mizuno Waves, partly because I couldn't remember quickly enough how to tie the luna sandals. They might have been pretty uncomfortable on some of the stony tracks, anyway. It takes a while for me to get into the groove of my modified footstrike, but once I get there it feels good (especially with compression tights to keep the gastrocnemeus happy). I called in to feed the ponies, and ended up having to corral them in part of their field because they were tucking in to the straw bale field shelter we put up a couple of years ago. I also had to water the tomatoes, chilies and cucumbers in the polytunnel. Then I was off again.

I can't remember a more satisfying run for many months, if not years. The weather was perfect for running, the condition of the Ridgeway has improved enormously since vehicles were banned from the stretch I run and the grass wasn't too high, and I felt in great shape. However I did decide I'd better limit myself to 7 miles (about 1 hour) having spent half an hour at the field and still not having had breakfast: and it probably wasn't a bad decision to keep my increased mileage within bounds. Down the road to the school - the sixth mile - I tried sprinting between some of the telegraph poles, and was delighted to see 5:30 pace on the Watch.

I didn't get out for a second run, as I had intended: instead I planted more brassicas in the cage (tip: make sure you make a cage with a removable top, so you don't have to crawl in on your hands and knees), watched the European Grand Prix and cut the lawn. Not a bad way to use a sunny day. I'll be out running in the second half of the heatwave tomorrow. After my morning porridge.

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