Monday, August 22, 2005

Back on the Beat

I stopped running for about 10 days, and started again a few days ago. I did 6.7 miles on Wednesday, at an insane speed of 6:24 per mile, and that over a course with a climb of 60 or 70 meters elevation. I didn’t even know that I could run that fast, never mind doing so after being out injured. I obviously had loads of energy to unload. Subsequent runs were a bit more relaxed, and on Sunday I tackled my first long run, 17 miles, but on a very flat course. I’m on Valentia island at the moment, and the Good Thing about running here is that the roads are very quiet and you have a good choice between running along the shore (flat as a pancake) or up the hills. The Bad Thing is wind – lots of it, and then some more. If you take a map of Ireland, well, Valentia is right there at the western edge, and then there is nothing but water – nothing to stop the wind. Hence half of my 17 miler was run against an increasingly strong headwind, strong enough to nearly causing me to stop a few times, but I eventually managed to toughen it out. It is amazing how quickly your endurance goes. Four weeks ago I ran 20 miles without any problems, and yesterday I felt an overpowering urge to do anything but keep running after only 9 miles!
I also bought a new pair of shoes, because I had done 400 miles in the old pair, and I have decided to replace any recovery runs with cycling, to give my shins a bit of a rest. That brings my weekly running mileage to about 40 or 45 miles, and I hope that I will be able to handle this without aggravating my injury any further. The marathon is only 6 weeks off, and another injury would surely stop me in my tracks.
Here’s hoping for the best.

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