Saturday, December 09, 2006

Ever so slightly hung over

For all the planning I did for this week’s schedule I didn’t even notice that I put the two highest mileages back-to-back. I guess it doesn’t really matter yet, because 9 and 12.5 miles aren’t exactly long runs, but you live and learn. I try to look at it as one of those back-to-back workouts that Mike used to do so successfully before his marathon, but I can’t quite convince myself.

I do have to admit that the legs felt rather sluggish initially on Friday, after Thursday’s 9 miles and an hour of football 12 hours previously. But they did come round eventually, and I managed to enjoy the run. The main problem was the surface. I had chosen the Kerry Way as my route, and I had initially planned to have my weekly long run along this loop, but I might have to reconsider. Four weeks of heavy rain has turned the dirt road into a slippery mess, and at 7 am in the morning the light was too dim to make out all the stones and puddles in good time. Once I did indeed stumble and fell to the floor. I managed to break the fall with my hands and avoided any real damage, but it did sting for a while. After three or so miles on this surface I finally came back onto asphalt, and managed a noticeable increase in pace. I might choose the loop around Caragh Lake for next week’s long run. It’s not quite as scenic, but it’s all on proper road surface, and since the weather is not going to improve, it is most likely the better option. I also hadn’t taken my own advice on wearing long sleeves; my uncovered arms had turned deep red by the time I got back home (have a look at the photo and notice the difference in colour between arm and hand. You can also make out the scraped knuckles from the fall). The wind and rain really make it a lot colder than you would think from just looking at the thermometer.

Cian celebrated his third birthday on Friday, and even though he certainly enjoyed the presents, he was in complete denial about being 3. I think he needs some time to get used to the idea of being a really big boy now. Mummy made an absolutely delicious cake for the occasion. We also had the office Christmas party on Friday night, but I managed to restrain myself and got home at about 1 am standing mostly upright. Still, I didn’t feel particularly good this morning. We had to drive to Limerick and Niamh had decided to leave at 10 am, forcing me out of bed at 8 to get in 6 miles. The first 2 miles were hard work, I felt dehydrated and the legs didn’t want to turn over. Eventually I persuaded them to put in some effort, which is reflected in the time. The first 3 miles took 24:58 (8:19 pace) but the return leg only 22:18 (7:26 pace), despite being into the wind (and rain). I was quite pleased with that, especially considering my less-than-perfect preparations the night before. It really is not easy to train consistently this time of the year. The storms are predicted to come back for Sunday and Monday.

8 Dec: 12.5 miles, 1:47, 8:33 pace, avg. HR 151
9 Dec: 6 miles, 47:16, 7:53 pace, avg. HR 159


  1. A late happy birthday to Cian, the cake is nice and looks so sweet; congrats to the mom.
    Don't feel .... alone, we are also under a rain storm.

  2. I'm glad you told us why your arm and hand are different colors. I thought you just had really hairy arms that looked darker.

    We've got to give ourselves grace this time of year with all the holiday parties and events. There will be late nights, too much to drink, too much rich food and too little sleep. But, we'll do what you did and stumble out for a run anyway. Good.

  3. I think it is more fun to indulge in some of the parties and pay the consequences in the morning. It's good training to be really hungover and force yourself to get out there and run. It's good ultra training as well.

  4. Ok the cake looks lovely but what about that "Asics" table cloth? Your running is all everywhere at home... or is it now that they are now sponsoring you?? :D

  5. Very nice cake!
    Is it Thomas?
    On top of an Asic's shoe box?
    My son loved Thomas and friends when he was Cian's age, he's 16 now.
    Time flies!