Midweek catchup

Yes, sorry, midweek runs were done, but not reported. I know, slap wrists.

Tuesday’s run got canned, due to book club meeting being moved from the 1st to second Tuesday of January. Had a good discussion of this month’s book and picked up the one for discussion in february – fortunately only a slim number, as we’ve now only got 3 weeks to read it! I also tried out the course following function of my Garmin, in preparation for Saturday’s long run, more of which later.

Wednesday should have been the first of the midweek long runs which are a mixed pace run; 5 miles easy, the rest at marathon pace. Didn’t quite work out that way! I usually run with Janet on a Thursday, and she usually runs with a group from work on Tuesdays. They had to move to Wednesday this week, so I joined them for the 3 mile loop they run, then carried on to dot he 8 I had on the plan. Janet runs slower with me than she dies with the rest of the group! We set out at a minute per mile quicker than I wanted to! oops. Once we’d got back to work, I carried on. Having run 3 miles at that pace, I found slowing my a minute per mile rather difficult, such that I ended up doing over 8 miles at the same pace, just finishing with a final 1/2 mile cool down. Not on the plan, but pretty good running, nonetheless.

Thursday was me out on my own for a tempo run. Pretty good outing, apart from the level crossing gates coming down and then I struggled to cross the road when the traffic was released. Weather had started to turn colder, with a clear night and lots of stars visible. Also, my wish for some wind free running was being granted, much less blustery than the weather has been of late.

Facts & Figures: Wed/Thurs (pace)
Distance – 8.72/ 5.65 (3.36)
Time – 1:37:06/ 1:02:25 (34:08)
average pace – 11:08/ 11:03 (10.09)

There’s been much hilarity at work about my heading out for a run. I suppose it’s understandable, I do look a little bit daft; lycra clad, with high-vis top and head torch on. I’ve been likened to a mobile Christmas tree! It’s certainly somewhat different from my usual attire, sober business attire with a cardigan; as I’m always cold. But the people who’ve laughed have, in good grace, agreed to sponsor me to run this marathon – and you can do the same, by following this link to my fundraising page.

It’s a long long way

Had one of those runs today. Dire. Awful. Nightmarish. Energy Sapping. Sprit Draining. Just Awful. One that makes you seriously question why you’re running.

Schedule said 16 miles tomorrow. Unfortunately, we’ve got the in-laws coming for lunch, so tomorrow was out and if I was going to get 16 miles in this weekend, it had to be today. So, alarm clock set, up and breakfast; porridge, that staple running fuel. Then down the road to do the shopping before coming back, drinking and changing before setting out. Plan was to do an 8 mile out, then run back – making the required 16 miles. Take gels with me, to have at miles 4, 8 and 12, neatly dividing the run into 4 segments – makes it easier to mentally consider the 4 miles to the next gel than thinking about the entire run at once.

All should have gone to plan, but it was just awful. Not sure why exactly. Conscious that I was going to have to run for further in both distance and time than I’ve ever run before, I set of slowly. Maybe too slowly? It’s possible, as I just didn’t feel comfortable. My calves ached, I had pins & needles in my feet. I must have stopped to stretch, to walk and at least 5 times to re-tie my shoes in the first 4 miles (which took almost an hour – that’s snaily slow, even for me!)

But, in a triumph of determination over logic and common sense, I carried on. After the first 4 miles, it did start feeling a bit better – I won’t go as far as to say it felt good, but I found a bit of rhythm, even if there was no pace to go with it. And (apologies if this is more than you want to know) I must have misjudged the water intake, as I spent most of miles 2 to 7 desperate for a wee. I’m far too shy to partake of alfresco weeing – especially on a fairly busy route while wearing luminous pink. At mile 7 was the visitor centre, and I have never been so pleased to see a convenience! This discomfort meant that I’d not been taking on liquid – already had too much of the sloshing about the system! But had my gel at 4 miles, then 8. I did drink the water in the bottles at my waist belt on the way back, every 2 miles I had a swig.

And so it went on. Slow, ploddy and not a whole lot of fun. 

Distance – 16.13 miles
Time – 3:33:13
Pace – 13:13

Didn’t even have the energy or enthusiasm to make the distance up to a round number! 16.13 was the end of the road, and that was as far as my legs were going to carry me. When I got back I was so tired and dispirited that I just wanted to curl up and hibernate. However, a milkshake, some hot buttered crumpets for lunch, a nice bath and some TLC from the husband has restored a bit of balance. There are some positives to take from today:

  • It took me 3 attempts to run 14 miles, this was my first attempt at 16 miles.
  • I don’t have to run a marathon tomorrow – it’s still 15 weeks away, plenty of training yet.
  • I stuck at it and finished, even though at 4 miles I could quite happily have called for a lift home.
  • We all have bad runs – this was just one of mine. Rather a bad run in training than a bad race.

 The best I can say is that it’s done and dusted. Roll on week 6…

S’Wondeful, S’Marvelous!

Just a bit of prior notice (in case the title didn’t give this one away) It’s going to be one of those waxing lyrical posts again!

Having got the week between Christmas and the New Year off means that I’ve been at home during the day, so have had the time to go out for a run in daylight. It’s amazing how much difference it makes to be out when its light. Everything seems so much brighter, lighter and easier than in the dark. The past 3 days I’ve run 3 times; you’ve already heard about Boxing day’s excursion, so two more to bring you up to speed on.

Speed might be the common theme here, it could be argued that both runs were too fast. But it felt so good!

This week should have had 4 Easy on Tuesday and 8 Easy on Wednesday, with 5 Tempo to follow on Thursday. But, what with Monday’s extra one, and having to do Sunday’s long run on Saturday (the in-laws are arriving Sunday and I need to be in to do lunch) the 8 and 5 have been shunted forward to Tuesday & Wednesday. I may head out tomorrow and do the 4 Easy anyway, but it’s not going to matter if I don’t.

Facts & Figures: Tuesday/Wednesday (warmup/pace/warmdown)
Distance – 8.05/ 5.1 (1.0/3.1/1.0)
Time – 1:32:47/ 53:01 (11:23/29:53/11:44)
Pace – 11:32/ 10:23 (11:22/9:38/11:45)

Tuesday I went round the lake, including the path that I know gets very muddy at this time of year. It makes for an interesting trip, although it was a bit like trying to run through custard at times. It is just easier to head straight through the middle than try tiptoeing around the edges, so I came back slathered in mud. Saw 2 other runners out, one who looked rather hot and bothered in a fleece top – seemed a bit much when I was out in just a long sleeve top – and pushed the sleeve up before too long had passed. Again getting out in the morning had the best of the weather – it had clouded over by the time I got back. Passed lots of walkers with either dogs or children as today’s required accessory. Lots of brightly coloured wellies and a few new bikes out and about (that would be with the children, not the dogs).

For an easy pace run, I ought to be at about 11:45 to 12:15 min/miles, not 11:30 ish. I knew I was going too fast, but it felt good and each time I slowed, I must have sped up again, such that I stuck around that pace for the whole distance. Not a good idea for all runs, but it’s not often I’m too fast!

Wednesday I didn’t get out until the later afternoon. In fact I’d left it a bit late, as it was distinctly dusk by the time I got back. For this run I decided to stick to the road, and head out of town towards the next village, staying on the ridge road. 1 mile warmup took me just past the farm, then I ran through the village until I ran out of path, and then back again. I’d set off for the Tempo section too fast, such that I turned having run 1.4 miles at under 9:20 pace. I knew I’d never keep that up, seeing I’d turned into the wind and up the ridge, but sustained a good pace and made the distance to 3.1 miles – 5k. And having managed that distance in under 30 minutes, that would be a new PB for the distance. Hence my earlier statements, probably a bit too fast, but it did feel good! I got to the end of our road 0.2 miles too soon, but carried on and made up the distance.

So two runs that felt really good. Pace was a bit of an issue, but I wonder if that might be in part due to being out in the day. Mid-week runs are usually in the evening, after a day’s work, when the body is already wanting to wind down. this week I’ve had the luxury of heading out when the body is just more awake and alert, so can manage the same run at a better pace. Either that or I have genuinely sped up – and I find that hard to believe!

Won’t do that again in a hurry!

No, still not been running with a hangover, despite two Christmas parties in two days. No, todays great mistake was to have a full English breakfast and, 2 hours later, set out to run 12 miles. urgh.

Last night’s do was the Ringers’ Christmas dinner, held in the town hotel. Rather than deal with driving home in the early hours of the morning (with the associated hassle of selecting the non-drinker) and then setting off for morning ringing at 8 am, we decided to stay over night in the hotel. Made life a lot easier, drove over in mufti, then changed and just went downstairs. And it allowed me to go upstairs to bed when I was tired, and not have to wait for the wee small hours to leave. Breakfast was included, so you feel obliged to make the most of it. I’m sure some people can happily stock up on sausage, bacon, egg, mushroom, tomato, toast & beans before running – but I appear to not be one of them!

Husband dropped me off on the way back home and I set off to run the 12 miles required today. Started with about a mile to the nature reserve Visitor centre, when I took a pitstop. Then ran a long loop round the footpaths and passed the visitor centre again. Was feeling pretty grim at this point, churning stomach and was struggling to stay under 12:30 pace. Seeing I was passing again, I stopped to take advantage of the facility.

Did start to feel better from here, and the pace picked up as I headed up the railway cycle path towards home. Took a bit of an extended loop in a few places, to make the distance up. Got to the end of my road, where I usually stop, at 11:51 miles. That wouldn’t do! I carried on, and went round the roundabout just to add that extra half mile.

Facts & Figures:
Distance – 12.00 miles
Time – 2:26:25
Average pace – 12:12 min/miles

It wasn’t as cold as it has been, and the wind was distinctly less strong. I went out in my new long tights, and the legs did feel nice and warm throughout. Single long sleeved layer on top, with gloves. These soon came off, mainly as I can’t open the Jelly bean packet in gloves, but also as my hands had warmed up by the time I went for the first jelly bean, at 2 miles. One a mile thereafter until mile 9. These seemed to sit OK in the tum, and they’re nice and easy to half chew while running. I’ve tried the Lemon & Lime ones, which are not too sickly sweet.

Pleased that the pace improved and was perfectly respectable, especially after how bad the first 4 miles felt. However, after 2 consecutive late nights and 12 miles, I’m now considering an afternoon nap!

Tick!

That’s the first run on the training plan done & dusted.

Only it wasn’t really.

The plan I’m following has 4 runs a week, long on Sunday, then shorter runs on Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday. The plan stated “Easy 5” for Tuesday. (Easy being a pace, not necessarily a feeling! – In my case it ought to be about 12:00 min/miles).  Tuesday also being club night, and usually speed work, it may not always reach the necessary distance or speed, but I will run.

It was raining cats & dogs on the way home from work, and I seriously did doubt my sanity in going out running, but the rain had passed over by the time we started, leaving it not too cold but with a very cold wind. As fate would have it, we were running straight into the wind for what felt like most of the night!

Tonight’s torture session was 150 m sprints. Warmed up the long way round to the park, then had to jog from bench to railings, sprint to the next railing & jog to the bench, turn, repeat many many times. Ouch. I hate these sessions while I’m doing them, but I know that it’s exactly this sort of session that got me running flat out at the end of the half – and a spanking new PB to boot. I’m not sure if some of the others go out too fast, or if I get faster, but I seem to start the session trailing towards the rear, but finish them comfortably mid table. The a slow (and it was slow in my case) jog back to the school and stretching.

Facts & Figures:
Should have been – 5 miles easy (12:00 min/miles)
Actual Distance – 5.51 miles
Time – 1:11:10 (although we’d started stretching by the time I stopped the Garmin, so probably minus a minute or so)
Average Pace – 12:56 min/miles.

So I got the miles in, but some of them were distinctly faster than “easy” pace, and some (especially the break between sets) at a much much slower. A speed session with the club is always going to struggle to match the training run specified by the plan, but I know these sessions do me some good (even if I hate them at the time). I think it best to accept that this run might be a bit off target, but that at least I’m out and running.

St Neots Race Report

It was cold & foggy as I got up to get ready for todays half marathon. I’d decided on short sleeve shirt, with club vest over it. I added cap (to keep hair out of my face) and my longest shorts – a mid calf length pair. At the last minute I threw in my new light gloves, thinking that with short sleeves the hands might get extra cold. To keep warm before and after, I also wore some tracky bottoms & my club hoodie. The one item of clothing you’d think it impossible to put on back to front would be a hoodie, but, this morning, I managed it. Not sure how, and it took me an embarrassingly long time to work out why it all felt quite so odd!

Breakfast was porridge, coffee & a pint of squash, just to keep the liquid levels well topped up. And off I went in the car. Really heavy fog most of the way there, but, fortunately, very little traffic until I approached the race HQ. Here there were an assortment of cadets directing traffic to parking places, so I parked up and followed the mass of people towards the HQ. Collected my number and found some other club people. Gradually sorted myself out, including having my pre-run banana, getting clothing on and putting the bag in the baggage store. We had a short walk to the race start, and I hung about at the back of the pack in order to not get distracted into going off too fast – for I had a plan…

The plan was to run at 11 min/miles until one of three things happened:

  1. The wheels fell of the wagon and I walked/ran to the end
  2. I reached the finish in a (hopefully) new PB of 2:25 ish
  3. I got to 10/11 miles and picked the pace up.

1 shouldn’t happen, 2 was my probable scenario and 3 was going to be all my Christmases come at once.

The gun went off and we gradually moved forward to the start. It was still rather foggy at this stage, although the sun was threatening to break through. I set off at approximately my planned pace and it didn’t take very long before I found myself pretty much last. I can’t say I spent a lot of time checking to see if this was the case, but I was certainly not aware of anyone behind me for easily the first 3 miles. This race has a 2:30 cut off, and there are very few, if any, times beyond this in previous years. But I tried not to let it bother me, and just to concentrate on my race.

At 2 miles I dug into my shorts pocket for the first of the jelly beans I’d bought along for energy. One a mile until they ran out at mile 10. Realised that I couldn’t open the packet in gloves, so these were removed & tucked in the bra for safekeeping. Yet another reason why running is not a fashion statement sport! The hands were warm enough by this time, so it wasn’t a hardship running without them.

It was very strange to see people spreading out into the distance and disappearing into the murk! It was very still and quiet, with no breeze to shift the fog and no bird song. All in all a rather odd sensation.

I tried to keep going at about the same pace, ignoring other people, but, sometime after 5 miles, I noticed that I was starting to catch & pass people. This doesn’t usually happen to me! I tried not to get carried away, and overtake them fast, rather to just creep up on them and then overtake gradually. It’s a major mistake to speed up in order to overtake fast, as it ruins the rhythm and uses energy that you’ll need later. At about 6 miles, I caught Andy, the first of the other runners with my club. Just before 7 I caught Maria. This was her first half, and it sounded as if she’d gone out too fast, so she ran with me for the next mile & half, but was starting to slow and so I carried on. She came in with a good 2:30 time, a respectable time for a first attempt at the distance.  These weren’t the only people I caught, but the club do support each other.

As we headed past 7 miles, the sun finally came out and it was a beautiful day. Blue skies and clear, but still breezeless. Very nice to run in, actually. At 10 miles I realised I was 2 minutes ahead of my 11 min/mile target, and thought that if I picked the pace a little, I might stand a chance of 2:20, rather than just breaking 2:25. So I sped up a little, trying to get down to 10:30 min/miles. I carried on catching people, concentrating on one at a time, and not trying to speed past them, but just head down and reel them in. It seemed to be working.

As I passed 12 miles, I saw I had just about 11 minutes to get to the finish in 2:20. I thought that had to be worth a go. All the information about this race proclaims a downhill finish, so I started to really wind it up and make the most of the slight gradient. I was slightly surprised that I was able to find this in myself, and it really did start to hurt here. But that last mile went by. I hope you’ll forgive me if I didn’t bother trying to hit the lap button on the Garmin as I went through 13 miles, saved the energy for what was, by now, something approaching a steam train in full flight. No, it wasn’t pretty, but it did exactly what was required, and I stopped the watch at the finish in 2:19:58.

I can’t pursuade the picture of the garmin data to upload, so hopefully you can see it here. Doc2 As you’ll be able to see from the splits, not too bad. Certainly not for me, anyway!

I can’t decide which I’m more proud of, the fact that I ran to the race plan, and executed it so well, or the time. 2:20 is 7.5 minutes off my last PB, and this time I did it all by myself.

Time is relative

And not just in Physics, it seems.

Since saying I’m going to run a marathon, people have asked me how long I think it’ll take. I don’t have a target time in mind – for this the aim is simply to finish. If I can finish in a time faster than I could theoretically walk the distance in (about 6.5 hours) I’ll be happy. It’s also a question that is asked when you signup for a larger marathon, in order to allocate you an appropriate start pen. I went for 5:30 to 6:00 as a conservative estimate.

But for training it’s important to have a time in mind, in order to know what pace to train at. It becomes a bit of a circular argument; in order to know what pace to train at, you need to know what time you’re capable of, but knowing that before having completed is always going to be open to a bit of guesswork. So there are a number of race time calculators available, all of which use a recent race time and then produce an estimate of your likely time for another distance. They will tend to be more accurate when using distances that are closer – calculating a marathon time from 5 k is open to larger distortion than using a half marathon time. To that end I used my recent half marathon PB of 2:27:28 to see what range of marathon times were produced.

Runworks   5:02:06
Runner’s World UK     5:07:27
McMillan    5:11:00
Running Times 5:13:24
Liebreich 5:21:18
Running Free – anything from 5:01 to 5:33

All of which leaves me really none the wiser than I was before! 30 minute spread in marathon times is a minute per mile difference, which is not inconsiderable. I may as well work on the simple half to full converter of “double it and add 20 mins”, which comes in at 5:15. That has the advantage of being in the middle of the spread and a nice round number, it works out as a smidge over 12 min/miles. Easy to remember at least.

I’m slightly surprised to see that all bar one of the predictions are under 5:30; which seems to suggest that 5:30 should be achievable. Let’s not get carried away though, finish is the goal. You never know, I could leave going for a good time for the next one…

The long and winding road

Yesterday’s run was the furthest I’ve run to date. Woohoo! I’m going to have to ramp up the miles once I start training for the marathon, and I wanted to try just going that bit further. Also I need to work on a fueling strategy; breakfast, taking on energy and liquid, all of which need a long run to find out if they work effectively. Maybe not ideal in terms of training for the next half marathon, but certainly beneficial in the longer term.

Started the day with coffee and porridge, a nice slow release energy source. Went shopping in town and returned my library books, all of which took me until about 10 am. After the half, I discussed the running out of steam effect at the club, and one suggestion there was to add a banana to the pre run ritual, about 30 minutes before heading out. So I ate my (slightly over ripe) nana and then changed. Into long sleeves and the beanie hat, rather than short sleeves and baseball cap. It’s not yet proper winter, but it’s certainly cold enough for the winter kit to start making an appearance. Found my water belt, 3 gels (High Five Citrus Burst) and headed out the door.

It was certainly cooler out than it has been, but a beautiful crisp autumn morning. Lovely to look at and quite pleasant in the sun, but with a sharp wind that made me very pleased I’d opted for long sleeves. Into the wind for the outward leg. Once I had the wind at my back, I pushed them up to the elbows, but it wasn’t short sleeves weather!

Headed out down the hill towards the sailing club, then across the river and through the next village to the top of the railway path. This then heads down the river valley to another old gravel pits that is now a nature reserve and visitor centre. The advantage of running past here being that there’s a loo for that scheduled pitstop! No bushes for me!!

It was lovely out and lots of people were taking advantage of the weather. There were also birds flitting about and a pair of Red Kites circling overhead at one point. I know they feast on carrion, but they’re enormous and I always put on a turn of speed; just to prove I’m not suitable for lunch!

Made the decision to try taking the energy gels at 4, 7 and 10 miles, with 7 miles being half way. Took on water regularly as well. The bottle belt holds about 600 mL in two bottles, so I tried to spread this out and finished the last water at about 13 miles. The gels weren’t the nicest tasting things I’ve ever eaten in my life, they have a thick texture and were a bit sweet, but not as sickly as some. There were also no unpleasant side effects either from the banana or gels during or after the run, which I imagine could be most off putting.

Facts & Figures
Distance – 14.16 miles
Time – 2:57:53
Average Pace – 12:34 min/mile
Nice and even too. Half way in under 1:30 and 10 miles in 2:05, exactly 12:30 pace. The first mile was a bit swift but not bad (for me) while the last 2 miles were slower, but that’s as they contain all the uphill in the entire run – there are major disadvantages to living at the top of a hill.

So, all in all, a very good run. Pleased with the distance and the even pace. Pleased that the pre-run banana sat comfortably and the gels were stomached OK. I can feel it today, it all aches just a bit, but in a good way.

Playing away

A bit like a team might have matches at home, and then play matches away from home, so I like taking advantage of visiting different places to have a run – a change of scenery can be interesting. There are some limitations, though, I don’t like getting lost and thigh-high nettles are not pleasant to run through! I like to try to work out a route before I go that I can follow easily, and things like rivers, canals, coast paths or railway trails are excellent.

This weekend we were in Norwich, staying with Mike & Barbara. The beloved & Mike go out ringing, I get to slope around and do stuff with Barbara, although this time I did pack the running kit & took the opportunity Saturday morning to get out & run. They live near Marriot’s Way, a disused railway that ran from Norwich to Reepham and beyond, but is now a cycle path. Navigationally easy, usually fairly level (or at least not hilly) and firm underfoot, this sounded great. So, after getting up to see the boys off, I had some breakfast & sat down to watch the Rugby semi final before planning on heading out to run 6-8 miles.

How things can change in the presentation of a red card. Call me less than dedicated, but I didn’t want to watch the Welsh playing out of their socks for 60 minutes, only to lose to the French – a team who barely deserve to have made it out of the group stages. At half time I changed plans and made tracks for the door.

It was lovely out, with clear blue skies and loads of lovely sunshine, but there was a distinct nip in the air. This was especially noticeable on the trail where it was under an arch of trees, once out of the sun it was somewhat cool. But, short sleeves were the order of the day, it would warm up later.

I’ve been reading and now posting on a marathon thread on the Runners’ World forum (here), where it has been suggested that I ought to try a run at ~ 11 min/miles for ~ 10 miles, to get me to push myself a bit, and see if my recent half performance is just race day speed, or if I’m actually faster than I think I am. I’m not fast, I know that! But after glancing at the Garmin and seeing that I’d set of at something under 11 min/miles, and knowing that the trail extends for way beyond 5 miles, I thought I’d see how it went. It was a lovely run out, passing through different woodland, narrowly avoiding being hit on the head by falling acorns, views across fields and the river. Also loads of runners, cyclists and walkers out and about as well. I managed a cheery, two-tone, “mor-ning” to them; it got less cheery later on!

After 5 miles, I hit the lap button on the watch and turned for home. At this point I realised that I’d been heading almost entirely in the same direction as the wind – and now had a headwind to contend with. Not horribly strong, but enough to notice. It was also uphill, and I hadn’t noticed that I’d been running gently downhill for 2-3 miles; both factors might well have contributed to the unusual turn of speed displayed on the outward leg.

At ~ 7.5 miles I decided to stop pushing the pace. OK, I wasn’t going to manage the 10 miles at HMP, but better to manage 10 miles with some of them at reduced speed than run myself into a heap. So the last 2.5 miles were at a more comfortable “get me home” ploddy pace.

Facts & Figures:
Out – 5.0 miles in 52:58 minutes
Average pace – 10:34 min/mile
Back – 5.0 miles in 58:40 minutes
Average pace – 11:45 min/mile (under 11:00 for the first 2.5)
Overall – 10.0 miles in 1:51:39
Average Pace – 11:10 min/miles

So, all in all, not exactly what it said on the tin, but a good run nonetheless. 7.5 miles at 11:00 minute miles shows that the pace in last week’s half marathon should be just about what I’m aiming to run the next one at. It also shows that my 10 k PB should be due for a serious battering when I next find a race. hmmm – where’s there a nice 10 k to fit into the schedule?

In the cool of the evening

Another day late posting – this was Tuesday night’s effort. Working away from home sure does mess up my posting…

After a really foggy start, the day brightened into the gorgeous indian summer we’d been promised. I never have that much faith in the weather forecast, but clear skies and sunshine was promised and duly arrived. So come end of work, I do a quick change and head out. It’s still nice and warm at 6 pm, so short sleeves were the only possible choice. Come 7 pm and the end of the run and it’s an entirely different matter. The temperature dropped really obviously as the sun dipped below the horizon, in a blaze of crimson clouds streaking across the darkening sky. At that point I did begin to wonder if long sleeves wouldn’t have been a better idea – just a tad chilly!

Beginning the run in to my next half marathon, so not going out for distance, but this one was intended to get into the habit of running at my intended half marathon pace. To get round in closer to 2hours 30, I need to be running 11:30 min/miles, so that was the intention.

Figures:
Distance – 5.76 (yes, I overshot the 5.75!)
Time – 1:07:13
Average Pace – 11:41 min/miles.

On the surface that looks pretty good. However, if I look at the run, I can see that each time I stop and have to start, I set off too fast, pace down in the 10:xx min/mile range. Having said that, I do tend to settle down into a steady pace after a short time, so maybe I just need to make sure I’m not stopping & starting. At least in a race scenario I’m unlikely to have to wait for the lights to change or for the level crossing to lift – both of which got in the way of a consistent run last night!

It actually felt fairly easy. I was getting a bit concerned about pace and, at least to start with, spent  some time checking the Garmin and its pace readout – both instantaneous and lap average. However, as I settled down, I checked it less and just went along with the feeling. Steady breathing at 3 strides for inhale and exhale seemed to work for almost the entire distance, which is a useful piece of information. I felt I could have gone on quite easily, although if I’ve got the capacity to run more than the distance again at that pace, I’m not sure. I’ll just have to set out and see where the wheels fall of the wagon – and hope it’s not at mile 7!