Sunday and Monday slipped by without any running. Monday I intended to but the weather was horrendous. On Tuesday I faced the 10mile course with trepidation. Being less than 4 weeks until London the 14 and 15 mile Tuesdays at marathon pace are finished with. But in place of the distance there is more speed to be aimed for. 6:20 had been our target pace since xmas and more recently I have been inside 6:15s, but could I run tonight inside 6:12s? The wind was reasonable in strength and directly in my face for 5 miles, then directly behind me all the way back home. The first couple of miles felt great. Even with the headwind I could tell I was moving rapidly. A quick check of my watch as I covered the 2mile section we use for reps showed 12:30. Spot on.
Once I had the tailwind I actually found it difficult to run fast enough to keep my CV system working as hard as it had been on the way out. I may have lost a little time to this but once I was in the final 2 miles the effort made itself felt once again and I forced on to the finish. 61:31, 6:09 pace. Very happy with that. Hopefully manage sub 61 next week.
Wednesday was the first time I trained with Milly for several weeks. Just a 7 mile jog but great to catch up with the crack and lay some plans for the next couple of weeks and indeed the marathon strategy. Milly told me the wind at Wilmslow was horrible so I'm pleased I didn't bother entering it. He more or less quit at 8 miles and jogged home inside 81 minutes.
Tonight (Thursday) I was alone again for the interval session. As with Tuesdays run the distance is reduced (to 5miles from 7 last week) but the intensity increased. I did 800m x10. Due to having very tired legs before I even began, and as it was really very windy tonight I decided to complete the session without using a watch. I would only have been disappointed to see poor times recorded and figured that as long as I did the work then it didn't matter what my times were.
Tonight my good pal Appleby Stu* was over to give my tired legs a much needed rub down. Painful! At 41 (birthday yesterday, no cake, still resisting all such bad foods) you would think I might have learnt to look after my ageing body a little better. No stretching, no warm downs, and warmup for me means jogging to the course and doing the first rep 10% under effort.
*Appleby Stu must not be mistaken for Penrith Stu. Appleby Stu is the epitome of a dedicated, professional, hard working, internationally qualified sportsman. Penrith Stu is some bloke from Penrith who I met up a fell one day!
(To be fair though, he does seem to know which way up to hold a map, which is more than I can boast.)