Well I know one thing – Murph can run a half marathon because he did yesterday. We were just enjoying being out and as we had waited for the tide and it was midday I took a running pack with food and water. And when you’re out and having fun just ticking over you just keep going.
So we did the run to Witches and then up and over the top, back to the beach and then a full length run back to Atlantic College which meant that was around 9 in total so by the time we hit up the cliff path for a strecth (variation for Murph as we’d been on rocks for a while) and then the beach back to monknash and home. Making it 13 and a half. He wasnt even tired, I was hurting in various places though holding up better than I thought I would on my first “longer” run again.
I believe in karma. Or essentially what goes around comes around. It works both ways, bad and good karma. Learned the hard way and seen it happen thankfully to others who deserved it (Yes I have a mean streak a mile wide)
So yesterday I had to go out mid morning and decided to fit in a quick 4 mile or so run to the Barrow mound on the cliffs as the tide was in. When I got there it was beautiful and sunny.
So I headed back and passed coming the other way a group of kids doing their Duke of Edinburgh type stuff, all with their packs on etc I met one group at a stile and the first two kids just ignored me stood there dripping with sweat and breathing hard and then a girl at the back said “wait everyone let the person through” (Im not sure that they knew what gender I was due to the long hair) and so I hopped over and thanked them and ran on.
A mile or so later I got to the beach and found one of them had dropped their sleeping mat. So what do you do? I was in a rush as I had an appointment to keep, I had already run 3 or 4 miles hard pace and they were headed in the opposite direction and all uphill. You know what – the tipping point of making me grab it and run as hard as I could to catch them (they move fast these damn kids) over 2 miles or so at 6-7 minute uphill pace (good training hey) was that the girl had called out to let me through and they did.
So I caught them eventually utterly fucked and they were I think amazed that I had done that for one of them – all I could gasp was “Its a bastard sleeping out without a mat” and trotted off – thankfully downhill and home. Ok so I was a little late. So what – And thats karma. Just the little things can come back to you. And maybe those kids saw a small gesture from a stranger and might just try it themselves.
Hill sprints yesterday at Cwm Nash. I never quite know how many I’ve done so I used nature to help me count. Sprint up, jog down and pick a buttercup on the way, drop it in a pile at the bottom of the climb, I think it’s 20 its kinda hard to tell. Whatever the exact it’s almost inconceivable that I can run around 20 of these, 2 or 3 used to kill me not so long ago. Plus I ran back home at pretty much full beans. Feeling good. Please body hold out a month like this :p
Is it possible to feel too good? Some days I just want to fly and I know if I fly I can break. It’s at the point now where 8 or 9 miles after work (Gotta love BST) feel compltely fine and natural and keep my head in such a good place. I can go faster but I know I dont actually need to go faster. It’s just a matter of having to put the brakes on and it’s hard to drop pace, I naturally keep dropping pace to around 8 to 8.30 minute miles which over that terrain is ridiculous and unsustainable for my body but it just feels so good to fly.
I was torn on sunday about whether to run until I saw the weather and then figured my fankles (new word covering my feet and ankles) would survive one more push. The last few runs I’ve been trialing a thin ankle support and it seems to be making a difference. Plus I wanted to get used to running on tired legs and so another longish run was the order of the day.
A further 12 miles with as much climbing as I could get in (going all the way up Witches Point as hard as I could go after 7 or 8 miles surprised me)
I also had some sad news on saturday night – Master Robert had died. He was a lovely old guy who lived in the big house at the Cwm and owned the Bruce Estate. He loved the beach and area as much as I do and was always picking up litter. Guess I’m the only one left doing that now.
So in the last 4 days I covered 37 miles of pretty hard going terrain. The fankle, although aching a little is holding up. I’m just utterly knackered. Few days off I think
Short midweek run this week of 5 miles up the cliffs as the tide was in. Only the one run in the week – unheard of! The ankle is still niggling me so I figured more rest would help it plus I’m doing a little more work on flexibility and recovery including taking first steps at yoga! Yes indeed yoga. My suppleness could be best described as like an old oak tree, the trunk and major branches dont flex at all but I can move my twigs.
Where the hell do you start with yoga? I started by asking the best in the business – Ceejay! Who very very kindly sent me huuuuuuge emails with instructions, videos, advice and encouragement for which I’m extremely grateful. Also brought it home how much support and help I get from the readers of this blog. Something I certainly didnt anticipate when I started it. So huge thanks to Ceejay and to all of you, the smallest messgae always means a lot and raises motivation =)
So I’ve done it twice now and its harder than I thought, the 20 minute starting video I followed was manageable as long as I paused it long enough to work out how the hell to bend over there while keeping this bit straight over here. So I did what I could and one day I will flex more and will be able to follow properly and better.
As for the long game – Well UTMB released their qualifying rules this week and as per usual I kinda jumped the gun, OCC now requires 6 points in 2 races this year onwards and not 4 – So the races I have planned this year get me 4 and to get the 6 I will need to do a 4 pointer or higher. Thats out of the question this year – its planned, 3 ultras I really want to do, Preseli, Scafell and Sweden plus various other plans. And 4 pointers are basically 50 miler minimum. So I guess thats for next year. It’s a long game and I’m more than happy to be patient and wait a further year. I’m not pushing and breaking myself to rush a 50 or qualifying, it happens when it happens.