Wednesday, November 29, 2006


I guess I have to apologise to Niamh. I always used to think she was wasting most of our money on things we really didn’t need, like yet another pair of shoes. Then I heard on the radio today that the average woman in Ireland owns 30 pairs of shoes. Average, they said, not obsessed. Wow. Niamh has about 10, and apparently she’s incredibly restrained. And anyway, one look into our shoe rack would make you think I’m the one with the shoe obsession. It’s not as bad as it looks though; three of these pairs are actually worn out, I just can’t bring myself to throw them out after all we’ve been through together.

On the running front things are going well. I listened to the wise words of Mike and Mike, and didn’t try to run any more tempo efforts with an eye on Sunday’s race. Instead I inserted 8x100 strides into yesterdays run, which explains the rather high heart rate for what was not a particularly fast run. That, and the fact that two of those miles were against a rather strong headwind, which made the strides feel like hard work. I thought about doing a 50-50 mile, but decided against it. I’ve never attempted a workout like that before, and might leave it for the next 5k (possibly on New Year’s Day).

Today I just seemed to click, and running became a joy again. Maybe it was due to the improved weather with only a little bit of rain, and much-reduced wind speeds. For the first time since the marathon I attempted double figures, and while I knew that I would be able to handle it, I didn’t expect it to go so well. Getting up at 6 am was the only real hurdle, the run itself seemed effortless and I managed to zen out for most of it. I didn’t once look at my heart rate monitor or check my time, and was pleasantly surprised at both readings at the end. It went so well that I am tempted to put in another “long” run as soon as I can, but I won’t. I’ve only just started building my mileage, and I’m going to reach 50 this week, which is already 7 more than last week. All the books I’ve read warn against bigger increases, so I won’t. I’ll leave the big mileage jumps to other people (Funny, they're the ones who are running the fastest marathons).

28 Nov: 7 miles, 1:01, 8:42 pace, avg. HR 157, incl. 8x100 strides
29 Nov: 11 miles, 1:32, 8:21 pace, avg. HR 152

Consecutive days in the rain: 16


  1. I guess I'm really restrained then: not counting running shoes, I have 6 pairs of shoes - including hiking boots. I have two pairs of running shoes and the running sandals which still puts me at less than 10!

  2. 9 weeks will bring you to 100.


    What if you were to not run any workouts that robbed you of miles?

    What if you deleted all strides, sprints, hills, kicks, trails, and fast times so you could run miles?

    What would happen?

    What if you bore the vacant fatigue of a high mileage runner with you to work? And woke at 4am to go running? And made a plan that only had miles on it?

    What if each day of the week had its own unique mileage? So every week had the same outcome? And everytime you finished your run you had just finished 100 miles for the past 7 days?

    What would happen? What would happen if the mileage was 85 mpw?


  3. OMG, this shoe rack looks full! Not that I am saint with my running attire:)

  4. Glad to hear you are coming back with the miles and staying reserved. My shoe rack looks pretty similar.

  5. I am sorry to admit that I think I have more shoes than your wife, and I am a guy. I have a hard time throwing away old shoes, and now have started to accumulate running shoes as well. I guess we could donate the old shoes to some charity - but hope the people who are getting them are not runners.

    100 mpw sounds appealing since the people who are doing them, seem to be doing so well. But I wonder is it the best plan for everyone? Mileage at any cost?

  6. That's a plethora of running shoes. Best wishes in getting the weekly mileage up.

  7. I will not admit publicly how many pairs of shoes I have. I will say that a lot of my old running shoes (that look brand new after a date with the wash machine) make up some of my collections. . .

    hmmmm. Correlation between high mileage and fast runners - I think so.