Sunday's mountain run took less out of me than expected. It really is amazing how quickly the body can adapt. Only four weeks ago a shorter session had me almost crippled for a week, now I can do significantly tougher workouts without being particularly affected the next day.
That's not to say that I didn't feel the hills in my legs at all. There was definitely some soreness on Monday and some stiffness on Tuesday, but compared to last month the difference was truly remarkable. Actually, I would have been worried if I had felt no soreness at all - good workouts produce some aches, otherwise there won't be adaptation.
After taking it very easy on Monday and Tuesday (not only was I recovering, this is also the start of the taper), I ran 10 faster miles this morning on the Killorglin loop. It was a beautiful morning, sunny and no wind, just perfect in time for the solstice. I haven't done any tempo runs in a while - you can't do everything. I can clearly see that the faster paces have suffered. The workout wasn't bad, I averaged 6:44 pace after easing into it over the first mile, but compared to the shape I was in only four short months ago, this is disappointing. Back then I would have been able to run about 20 seconds per mile faster with the same effort. Of course, I wasn't training to churn out great tempo runs recently. It shows.
I tried to break in a new pair of shoes that I am considering for Bangor. They gave me a hot spot. They might still come good but it's the first time in several years I have come even close to having a blister.
"Can't do everything" could stand in as the theme of the entire training cycle. There were less than three months between Connemara and Bangor and between recovering from the former and tapering for the latter it did not leave an awful lot of room for training. I managed to squeeze in three marathons and an adventure race, so I'm sure my endurance is rather decent. But I never got in those really long runs I had been planning on doing (real life interfering didn't help. I do have a wife, a job and four young children) and my overall mileage was fairly modest because I spent much of the intervening weeks recovering from those efforts.
Bangor is only 16 days away. The training has been done and any heroic workouts now would just backfire. I'll just have to work with what I've got.
- 18 Jun
- 5 miles, 40:12, 8:02 pace, HR 137
- 19 Jun
- 5 miles, 38:56, 7:47 pace, HR 143
- 20 Jun
- 10 miles, 1:07:21, 6:44 pace, HR 163