Not so cold

After more than a week in which I complained about the cold and wimped out on several opportunities to run, I can at last report I ran today. Not only did I run, but I ran quite a bit further than I had intended!

We live on the top of a hill, at the bottom of which is a river and what used to be gravel pits, but is now a series of lakes. Some are used for fishing, others by the sailing club. And round the lakes there are a variety of footpaths, such that I can run in loops to vary the distance but without running miles from home. When I was in training, I used to be able to get to over 10 miles without running the same path twice and without being more than 3 miles from home. I also used to know the distances of each of the various loops and segments, such that I could piece together a run of the required distance. That information has clearly leaked from the brain, as I miscalculated the route by over 20%!

It was still showing frosty in shady spots when we got home from ringing this morning, but I was determined not to have another weekend playing at being a sofa bear. I’d already spent Saturday on the sofa, in front of 2 rugby matches. Which meant I made progress on a baby blanket I’ve been supposed to have been embroidering for over a year now, but it didn’t involve any exercise more taxing that shouting at the TV occasionally and fetching another cup of coffee. So, in changed and out the door before the sofa could exert its gravitational influence and suck me in…

It was fresh out, and the hands certainly took time warming up, but it was quite warm in the sun and not too windy out. Lovely blue skies, and the river and lakes were showing very blue in the sun. Except where they were showing frozen, leaving the seagulls looking most bemused and standing on the ice. The ground was a similar mixture. In some places it was still crispy underfoot with the frost, in others is was just very very wet and squelchy. Being on clay,a lot of the paths just tun to a fine sludge when they are wet and it retains the water so you have puddles on top of a layer of mud. I remember why I don’t own any running socks that stay very white…

Plan was to run down the hill, round past the sailing club, then cross the river and take the far side of the nature reserve, before crossing back over the river and coming back down the railway path before heading back up the hill home. About 5 miles, said my mental arithmetic. That would be over 6, in fact. oops. The idea was to run 10 minute periods, which I mostly maintained. The walk intervals were augmented by walking to get over stiles, through kissing gates and crossing bridges. The muddy conditions meant that all the bridges were very slick, as were the steps up and off them. There’s no point going base over apex by trying to run on a poor footing – that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it. What with the effort of running through a significant amount of mud, the run sections may have been kept to about 10 minutes, but the walks did tend to increase over the 1 minute. But as a first run of this duration or distance, I think 6.07 (at least half off road) miles taking less than 90 minutes is reasonable. It was lovely out once I’d got myself out there and warmed up. Must plug in some more willpower and go for a run more often…

2 responses

  1. Sounds like a good place to run – in daylight! I’m sure that it will come into its own over the next few weeks as the days lighten up, and the ground dries out😊

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