00 - 25k: 25:13 25:09 25:12 25:04 25:00 25 - 50k: 24:23 24:23 24:38 25:12 25:22 50 - 75k: 25:34 25:37 25:21 25:07 25:55 75 - 100k: 26:53 26:53 27:19 27:41 28:06
The first 70k are pretty impressive, if you don't mind me saying so. The pace did slow down after that but never in a disastrous fashion. The last two laps were slower but more because I conciously decided not to push as hard and risk a cramp; had I been in a close fight for a place I'd have taken that risk, obviously with uncertain outcome.
Overall I'm pretty happy with this. In Doneadea, back in February, I started strugging after the marathon mark. In Staplestown I got to 50k before seriously feeling the effort, and in Portumna I got to 70k, which is very nice progress. I'm far better conditioned for a long ultra race than I've ever been.
That's another point that I still have to get my head round properly: training is more or less done. Belfast is only 4 weeks away. Yikes! This week is an exceptionally easy recovery week, next week will see some higher mileage, though I don't know how high yet. I'll play it by ear. It will also see the Waterford marathon, and again I don't know what I'll do there and will play it by ear (I won't be setting any records, that much is certain).
I am still undecided on what shoes I will wear in Belfast; I recently started breaking in my final (sniff!) pair of Brooks Green Silence; my pair of Saucony Kinvara, which I used in Portumna, has now over 700 miles on them, which should make the decision to opt for the Brooks a no-brainer, except that I find the Kinvaras wonderfully comfortable at the moment. The temptation is definitely there to use them in Belfast, but it seems rather unwise to use such an old pair for a 24 hours race. I'll definitely bring 2 pairs, but I have never switched shoes in a race before and don't really plan on doing so in Belfast either, so in all likelihood whatever pair I am wearing at the start will still be on my feet 24 hours later.
This week has been exceptionally easy, and will remain so for a bit longer. My tried and tested recovery strategy is to run 5 miles each day, which leads to faster recovery than full rest. Sunday's run started with a truly pathetic hobble at 14-minute mile pace but thankfully got better soon. I have been getting a little bit quicker every day, but I'm only running once a day - I think doing 2 runs a day prolonged my recovery after Staplestown. I'll see and compare next week to find out which works better.
- 17 Jun
- 5 miles, 43:48, 8:46 pace, HR 123
- 18 Jun
- 5 miles, 42:13, 8:27 pace, HR 127
- 19 Jun
- 5 miles, 41:48, 8:22 pace, HR 126