I seem to have discovered my running legs again, which is probably fuelling my desire to run as much as possible. Nothing triggered this really, just the fact that I can feel each run getting easier, and that simple fact makes me want to push harder and faster. Although I am aware that I’m made of glass so I have to be careful not to break.
The past two weeks have seen me complete back to back 40 mile weeks which I’m really pleased with, and they didn’t particularly feel like a chore or hard work. I’ve steadily built my long runs back up to 10 miles and whilst they don’t feel easy they certainly are comfortable. I was telling my brother about this and then asked what he’d been doing. So on the Sunday he won the Great Yarmouth Marathon and then put in a 150 mile plus week. It was at that point I decided I was adopted. But joking aside mileage is a personal thing, 40 miles to me is an achievement, a stepping stone to 50 miles a week. 50 miles to my brother is an easy weekend. 40 miles to someone who runs 5 miles a week will seem enormous and impossible. But mileage isn’t what’s important ( feel free to tell me I’m wrong ? ), as runners we get hung up on that. What I feel is important is the effort that you put into your running. If I jogged round 40 miles and never pushed myself that doesn’t make me better than the lady who is so far removed from her comfort zone on her 1 mile run that she feels like throwing up. You have to work hard if you want to progress, you have to make small changes to make big gains.
For example on Wednesday night I ended up running 10 miles and joining the COLT mob for some 500m intervals. Normally I would go out hard and just blast them until I was knackered, usually seeing my clubmates disappearing into the distance. I made a change this Wednesday. I deliberately held back, set off comfortable, with the aim of running a negative split. I was running with Kel, a really strong athlete who put a couple of hours into me in Lanzarote. She’s quicker than me and I used that as a pace guide. I wanted to stay within a certain distance of her as we finished each one. Surprisingly I found myself speeding up in the latter half of each rep as the gap narrowed. Motivation surged to my legs and my cadence multiplied taking me past her in the last 100m of each rep. Now if I’d gone off too fast, I wouldn’t have had the reserve there, instead of catching I would have been flailing as the gap lengthened. Top be fair Kel is coming back from injury, and on top form it would be a different story. BUT that change of gear I found on tired legs this past Wednesday is making me want to run more and more. But like Wednesday I have to time it right, now is not the time for blasting away from the start and dying on my arse down the line. Steady now, build and then smash a negative split from the spring to the summer as the Outlaw draws close.
Timing is everything.