Running up that hill

After a monster headache that started Thursday afternoon and only subsided Saturday, I’ve not been out since Tuesday. But the weekend means it’s Long Slow Run (LSR) time. If I had been organised, I’d have made the most of the extra hour to run before the Indian GP started at 9:30 (GMT). But it didn’t quite work out like that and we stayed in bed dozing until too late for that to be an option. So I popped a load of washing on the line, had breakfast, watched the GP and cleared the ironing pile – how’s that for productive!

After the GP, I changed and headed out for a run. After last week’s 14 mile, this week was a more sensible 10 miles. Beanie hat and long sleeves, as it was quite breezy. Overcast the entire time, with that humid, rain threatening sensation in the air. It almost rained in the last few miles – not real rain, more water in the wind, but enough that I was very pleased I’d got the washing in before I left!

Headed out at a fairly steady pace, settling into something a bit slower than 12:00 min/miles. Stayed between 12 and 12:30 for the entire run, with the exception of my monster hill. It was a bit slippy underfoot in places, with the clay soil that comprises most of the locality starting to get into that slick, sticky mud state that is such fun to try and run through (NOT!) My nice pink and white trainers are certainly no longer a bright white.

At one point I run from the edge of the sailing club lake, across a field and a road, then up a monster hill, before heading across yet another field. That section is 0.75 miles, but goes up almost 40 meters, most of which is in that one hill section. Killer hill. Today I actually ran up it for the first time. I’ve always resorted to walking between telegraph poles 2 and 3, which is the steepest bit. OK, so the pace over that section dropped to 13 min/miles, but I didn’t actually walk. Nearly did me in, but that’s a different story!

From there it’s mostly road and fairly level. I had an eye on the watch and worked out that if I picked the pace up I could do the 10 miles in 2 hours. So I made a concerted effort to pick up the pace. Last 2.8 miles were under 11: min/miles, with the last half mile seeing the pace in the 9:s. I ran towards the roundabout praying that traffic would be clear, as standing waiting for a space to cross would ruin any chance. Fortunately, one lane was clear, and there was a convenient gap at the second; so no need to stop, nor any risk of being squashed.

Facts & Figures:
Distance – 10.0 miles
Time – 1:59:14
Average Pace – 11:55 min/miles

Which is pleasing. I think that’s the first time I’ve run 10 miles in under 2 hours (except in a race scenario) And it felt good to find that pace at the end. I could just do with a week that actually has some training in it now, after a few disjointed weeks. Fingers crossed.

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