Ok, picture the scene.
Long day, freezing cold, icy footpaths, foggy, dark, the on set of a previous injury because of running in worn out runners.
What do you do? obvious really, you get changed and leave the fire and the telly behind and head out the door. Then when you are lying on the physio’s table in 2 months time trying to work out what went wrong you wonder where all the common sense went.
Not tonight though. I am staying put and up dating this blog. That is my dose of uncommon common sense.
Yesterday we had a family funeral (elderly aunt in law) so I was wondering whether I’d go for the run before or after the funeral. I decided to sneak in a 4 miler that would double as the start of my interval/fartlek/lactate threshold training before the funeral. The plan was to do a warm up mile, a hard mile, a recovery mile and a hard mile. As the army say – men plan and God laughs.
The first mile was a respectable 7:39. Then the hard mile a 6:24 at 166bpm. This was my first sub-7:00 minute mile since August ’09 so I was thrilled. I did spend the next 2 miles wondering what the Swedish for ‘speed-pain’ was. A combination of ice on the paths and a belly full of coffee and blackberry jam sandwiches made the next two miles pass in 7:39 and 7:32. I ended up finding the only piece of boggy ground that hadn’t stayed frozen and went up to my ankles in the mud. Still – every journey starts with one step.
With the number of local races being cancelled recently because of the cold I’m not even sure why I had bothered in the end. Then I remembered my Christmas present – a full physical test at the local university – lactate threashold, VO2 max, body fat and all that jazz. That is my new goal.
Tuesday’s run was one of those drudgery ones. There was a baltic breeze and despite all the layers I never warmed up. 8.26 miles in 1:07:45 (8:12/mile) @ HR avg 142.
And I fell – while avoiding the ice – I tripped on a branch and had a spectacular slow-mo stumble and fall (knee, hip, hand, shoulder, head – in that order).
This shot is from my holidays in Italy. running in 35 degree heat, bottles of iced water, sweat dripping of your head, thick air, the sound of crickets.