The cold I have acquired at the hospital kept being a very unwelcome reminder of the events from the start of the week. The sore throat was gone by Thursday but I still had some general achy feeling and wasn't entirely hundred percent. There's plenty of debate if it's wise to keep on running when fighting off a cold but my experience is that as long as you don't have any symptoms below the neck you're okay. Since I always run with a HRM I can always tell very easily how much extra load my body is burdened with. My HR is slightly elevated (or the VDOT numbers slightly lowered) but nothing I have not seen a dozen times before.
I took it very easy on Thursday. My body didn't feel up to much and neither did my legs, still feeling the 16 miles from the day before. A week ago a pace slower than 8-minute miles would have shown a very low HR but even with the effects of that cold it was still below 140, definitely an easy effort.
My sleep is still being affected but I felt better on Friday - still a bit snuffly but closer to being back at full health, and after a bit of hesitation I decided to go ahead with a planned marathon effort after all. It was very windy, so I ran on the slightly sheltered Ard-na-Sidhe road (my routine fall-back option on windy days) and kept the effort at about marathon level. During the MP segment I averaged a HR of 157, so if anything I undershot the target slightly though with 3 months to go before Manchester there is plenty of time to fine-tune the effort. The pace was 6:51, basically spot on 3-hours marathon pace, which bodes well (a sub-3 is my basic goal, sub-2:55 is the bonus goal).
I tried to take it easy on Saturday but I just felt slow. The gale force wind did not help, I'm sure, but in general it just felt like a slog. I was genuinely surprised when I saw a sub-8 pace on the watch afterwards, I would have sworn I was doing 8:30 pace.
I think the legs just had to pay a price for Friday's MP effort but I realised that too late. Sunday's run was hard work, every single step felt like a mini-struggle. I sometimes feel like that early on and things improve after I'm warmed up but not so today. Again, the really strong wind did not help, nor did the brutally hilly course, the latter obviously being my own choice. I had to grind out every single mile and eventually had enough, cut the run short and headed for home. I tried to run the last 2.5 miles at marathon pace but 7:10 was all the legs had in them, no matter how hard I tried. Obviously it was too early after Friday's effort - I'm slow to learn the lessons of recovery.
My left achilles gave me a few twinges the last few days. I'm fairly sure it's nothing serious - I've been through a fair few achilles issues over the years but never any serious ones.
- 21 Jan
- 10 miles, 1:21:08, 8:06 pace, HR 139
- 22 Jan
- am: 10 miles, 1:10:57, 7:05 pace, HR 153
- incl. 8 miles @ 6:51 pace, HR 157
- pm: 2.5 miles, 21:09, 8:27 pace, HR 122, treadmill
- 23 Jan
- am: 8 miles, 1:02:39, 7:49 pace, HR 139
- pm: 4 miles, 32:15, 8:03 pace, HR 135, treadmill
- 24 Jan
- 16.3 miles, 2:09:29, 7:56 pace, HR 143
- last 2.5 miles @ 7:10 pace