Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Early Morning

For some perverse reason that only runners can understand, I was looking forward to today’s 15 miler. Now that my miles are slowly reaching the proper long-run stage, they somehow seem more worthwhile.

Getting up for that run was easy. I set my alarm for 5:20am, but by 5am I was up anyway, changing the baby and re-arranging the bed covers for my daughter, because “the blanket has come off the dollies and the teddy” (obviously, a grave concern!). After that there was no point in going back to bed, but I felt wide awake anyway.

Yesterday had been rather cold, -3C/26F, and the short sleeves had not been the ideal choice, so I went for the long sleeves today. Alas, today was a lot warmer, 3C/37F, and initially I felt quite overdressed and actually pulled up my long sleeves. It was very cloudy, but very tranquil initially. Then, by mile 5.5, the wind started blowing strongly, and by mile 6.5 I was running in the rain again. At that stage I was grateful for the long sleeves and pulled them down again. It finally stopped raining by mile 11, and the rest of the run was more pleasant.

I felt a sharp-ish pain in my left hamstring with half a mile to go, the same hamstring that has given my troubles before. So late in the run it was no problem to get home, and a few hundred yards on the pain seemed to have gone anyway, but I am a bit worried about this. So far I have no idea what’s causing the pain, but it is re-occurring fairly frequently.

Last week I got quite hungry around mile 11, so this time I left out a gel at our driveway, went on a 10 mile loop along Caragh Lake, came back, had the gel and some water, and then finished the run with a 5 mile loop through the wood. I had developed that routine when training for my last marathon, and it worked very well. The only drawback is a slight temptation to go home after the first loop rather than go out again, but so far I have always managed to resist.

13 Dec: 5 miles recovery run, 48:08, 9:37 pace
14 Dec: 15 miles, 2:12, 8:48 pace


  1. Thomas - nice job on the mileage build-up. I certainly understand the temptation when looping back to the house, especially after the wind and the rain.

    Glad to hear the dollies and teddy are snug and warm.

  2. Very inspiring...I have trouble waking up early already. Never think to run 15 miles during weekday.

    Perhaps it is all perspective....

  3. Very nice, I wish I could do a 15 miler just like that too. :) Someday...
    You're so good to your kids.

  4. Good job on the mid-week 15 miler. I am a return looper myself at times and the temptation to stop running is hard to resist.

  5. Could the hammy problem be a cramp? You might be getting more depleted with the upped mileage. Good job getting the run in, and tucking in the dollies. When I put my daughter down she often calls out minutes later with a request for a VERY specific stuffed animal, which is invariably hidden somewhere in the house. Then it's up to the wife and me to search it out (which can take awhile) so that she will fall asleep.

  6. I love your blog. I can't wait until I'm running over 10 miles in the early mornings. So far, I can only get myself up early once a week, to do 8 miles as a tempo run (i.e. running with a faster partner).

    My son wakes us up throughout the night to tuck him and his angel bear back in. I haven't quite been able to convince him that, as a three-year-old, he is plenty big enough to pull the blanket back up over himself.

    What sort of hamstring problems are you having?

  7. That's a pretty good pace for a 15 mile run, keep up the good work. I'm waiting for you to run a 3:30 marathon! I love running early in the morning, although you have me beat by an hour. So peaceful this time of the morning, and it still leaves you with enough time to do something else in the morning.

  8. Very good pace for a 15 miles run so early! You are on the right way...