Monday, July 08, 2019


Just Imagine. You're running up that random road at a random time in Birmingham, actually heading in the wrong direction but you don't know that yet, when that woman comes running the other way and you are thinking "that's funny, she has the exact same running style as Olwyn", when she shouts out "Thomas!!!" - IT IS OLWYN!!!! What are the chances! Olwyn quipped we should have bought a lottery ticket instead of going for run.

The reason I was in Birmingham in the first place was a work trip. Just last week I'd told my new manager if I ever needed to go visit a customer in Barcelona or Paris I'm all for it. The message must have gotten garbled somewhere because last Thursday I found myself in an industrial estate in the outskirts of Burton-upon-Trent, which just doesn't have quite the same glamour. And flying into the UK early in the morning and back again in the evening is stressful enough on its own, never mind presenting to a group of C-level execs while there, and I was glad I was able to squeeze in a few miles, as a pure stress reliever more than anything else.

In general, though, it was another easy week. After that 20 miler had me knocked out 2 weeks ago I decided to dial it back a bit. I have a history of overtraining and would rather avoid another one of those episodes. One easy week later I was still not feeling new so I added a second easy week. That said, easy is a relative term. I'm still doing about 70 miles per week but without workouts and without a long run. If the lack of long runs will come back to bite me I shall see, though they always say it's better to be 10% undertrained than 1% overtrained and I'd prefer to see that scenario from the other side for once.

Tuesday was again the biggest day of the week, with the run into work followed by a group jog at lunchtime (very, very easy) and then a cycle in the evening. I generally do enjoy the cycling, though I very much prefer the actual cycling to the standing around that seems to be an inevitable part of those group rides. We had three stops and one of them was for over 16 minutes, after which I was actually frozen stiff and very uncomfortable, so when we reached Enniskerry I actually peeled off the group and went home instead of completing the loop because I was really uncomfortable, and not because of the miles or the pace, those were easily manageable. Maybe I should dress with the standing around in mind rather than the cycling.

As for the running, I couldn't tell if I went by feel alone but the watch and the HR are telling me that I'm getting into better and better shape. The pace on my easy runs is still nothing to write home about, about 8:20-8:40 seems to be where I always end up on my easy days, but even on hilly runs I average a HR in the low 130s, which I only ever get to when I'm in really good condition. You might argue that of course that the HR is low when I'm running so slowly, but also take into account the very high humidity (I'm invariably soaked through after a couple of miles). Also, on tough, steep climbs like the Quarry Road or Bray Head I'm running 20, 30 seconds per mile faster than a month or two ago, even though this is at an easy effort, at least as easy as such a steep hill allows.

Things are definitely heading into the right direction. Now if I could make use of that instead of messing it up, as as my wont, that would actually be great for a change.

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