Sunday, October 12, 2014

On The Razor's Edge

My calves, which had already been sore on Wednesday, were even more so on Thursday. Classic DOMS, of course. I did not really have an influence on my run, which went just fine. As long as the pace is so relaxed, I never expect any difficulties.

I had been wondering why my HR had been fairly high for such a low pace on a couple of days. When I got some headache one evening I figured I was fighting off some bug that has been going round, both Maia and Cian had been sick for a day each. My immune system tends to do a rather good job and apart from that one evening I was fine but it would certainly explain a raised HR for a few days, and the numbers have since returned to a lower level.

I had a rather unusual encounter on Thursday when about 10 cows were standing on the side of the road and because it was still dark I only saw them when I was right beside them. I very slowly inched my way past in order not to startle them. However, since I was doing an out-and-back run I encountered them again on the way home, though they had drifted a quarter mile down the road and were now blocking the entire road. I had to very slowly walk past them, feeling rather apprehensive. Getting so close to cows is not without dangers and I was rather relieved to get by without any of them reacting.

There were actually still some of them out there the next morning, a mile away from that point, but this time there were 2 guys with them, obviously trying to gather them together. I hope that's the last of those close encounters, I'd rather do without bovine company on the road.

The Dublin marathon is getting rather close, and because of my dodgy hamstring I had not dared to run anything even approaching 3:10 pace over the last couple of weeks. But I do think I need to get some practise for that effort level, which is why I increased the pace after 6 miles on Saturday's run. The pace for a 3:10 marathon is 7:14 but GPS always measures a course slightly long and we really need to run 7:10 on the Garmin, so that was the target pace for those miles. I was pleasantly surprised how relaxed that pace felt, though I do need to work on my concentration as I have a tendency to drift gradually slower if I don't pay attention. However, at one point I felt a little ping from my hamstring, which was rather worrying, but I got home without any further incident.

However, I clearly need to be careful, so I binned the idea of some more marathon paced miles on Sunday and just ran at the pace that felt natural. I also eschewed the very hilly loop around the lake and ran a couple of loops through Killorglin instead, a much flatter road. I was a bit nervous how my hamstring would hold up as I could feel it all day yesterday, but it was perfectly fine. I get the impression that running at my normal pace is fine, but putting additional pressure on the hamstring by running faster or downhill causes problems. It really is a very fine balance. Anyway, the run went very well and the flatter route made a big difference to the pace, it was at least 20 seconds per mile faster than a loop around the lake at the same effort would have been.
9 Oct
8 miles, 1:04:44, 8:05 pace, HR 141
10 Oct
8 miles, 1:02:13, 7:46 pace, HR 139
11 Oct
10 miles, 1:14:12, 7:25 pace, HR 144
12 Oct
15.7 miles, 1:58:39, 7:33 pace, HR 144
Weekly Mileage: 71+


  1. Hopefully, you'll be fine for Dublin, those natural miles should fix you up! I like the cows, we used to wait for them daily coming home from the fields at my Granny's house, lots of good memories:)

  2. Be careful with that Hammy. I have the same issue but am not so fortunate. I gave it a weeks rest and it's still not sorted.

  3. Almost in the same boat here Thomas. After a final hard run on Saturday my right calf is painful to touch. With 5 days until race day I am fearing the worst but hoping some self massage, gentle stretching will resolve it. I hate to do nothing!