Sunday was time for a long run, haven’t done anything more than 10 miles for a few weeks and I’m very aware I now have less than 6 weeks to the Preseli Beast 24 mile fell race….
A lovely spring morning though so I strapped on my pack with a litre of water, homemade energy bars and headed out. It was a complete pleasure to get out and run and I felt great for the majority of it. I planned 13 miles to the rivermouth in Ogmore and back and ended up doing 15. The slow introduction of speedwork seems to be working as it feels like I can run further at the lower speeds now.
I just enjoy saying and thinking it. After a seemingly endless winter its here … I swear it this time!
A quick 5 miler but done at a quicker pace – Nobody shout at me I’m doing this properly and keeping an eye on impact stress – its all about quick and light feet not overstriding and causing a braking effect. This is as technical I get but I do understand the theory now to put it in practice. So the 5 miles was done at 9 minute mile pace which quite frankly amazed me as it was a cliff run so included both elevation and wind!
After work yesterday the sun shone so I set out for a quick seven miler to Witches and back. I’d noticed a tent actually on the pebbles a few times but hadn’t been close enough to get a photo of it. I figured someone was enjoying a bit of wild camping. Yesterday I met the owner of the tent and what a lovely guy he is.
Sometimes I wonder if this is a bad running blog or a bad photography blog. I think I’ll continue to mix the two beacuse there wasn’t much to write home about runningwise, knocked out 5 miles easily enough with some speedwork but saw some stuff of interest though. So basically if I dont have much to say about one thing i can switch to the other. I’d like to call it cunning but it is of course accidental.
So I was pondering yesterday while running. I was pondering progress and how you measure it. I have a tonne of statistics since I started wearing a heart monitor at the start of the year but they mean pretty much nothing to me. I know Ive been progrssing as I feel better on runs, I fatigue less quickly, I can keep up a higher pace for longer and recover faster. All these things are instinct … I just _know_
But my statistics from my watch and HR? I dont see how you can judge improvement from numbers when there are so many external factors. For a start I run on different routes and terrains every single run, its very rare I will follow the exact same path twice. I do different distances, I run at different paces depending on what I stop and photograph or explore.
I can understand how road runners with a single route can judge metrics as they can remove the variables meaning its just their form that determines their time. For me time is relatively meaningless apart from hours on feet. I thought, perhaps I could just do exactly the same offroad route everynow and again and look at those stats … But thats not why I run, I run to be free and this is choice limiting.
So I guess I’ll look at the fancy stats each run, ponder and think “ahh fuck it I felt good and thats what counts” Cos to me thats what does.
I know some of you out there – Yes you CeejayKay – Seem to love mist. I gotta admit it has a charm all of its own and every now and again its kinda nice to run in for a change …. but this is getting ridiculous!
So 7 miles and it felt pretty easy so I as doing some speedwork on the sand. I feel like its time to shift emphasis slightly from the base building plod to subtly improving. Slowly and steadily of course, Im so so so wary of my bodys limits these days