So I've made a change. I'm going to do more shorter, interval-type, sessions and introduce elements of fartlek into my longer runs. That way I hope to stay fresher and feel quicker. I know it's not rocket science, but unless I tell myself to do these sorts of sessions, they don't get done.
With this in mind I set off today (stimulated by runningbear's tales of hills and urcollie's new bike) to do some 200m reps. I was going to do 400m reps, but that would have meant disturbing the sheep in the field too much. The field I use is like an inclined dinner plate. The sheep were all at the lower edge of the plate (enjoying their dinner as it were) So, rather than go round the field, and spooking them, I did my intervals along the top rim of the platey field. (I hope I'm giving you a fine agricultural picture here!). And I realised very quickly why I tend to put off doing them. I was crap. Shocking. Wheezing and spaghetti-legged. It was the sort of session where you say to yourself 'Can this be doing any good at all?'. It was all the more galling because it was the most perfect day for running in. Bright blue skies, classic, chocolate-box, fluffy white clouds, smoothly nibbled soft grass and a beautiful cool breeze. Ah well. It was great to get out. Let's hope the weather holds for a bit longer.
I'm off to dig out Hal Higdon's marathon schedule now. It'll be a laugh if he says that all you have to do is develop a good plod and then learn to do it for longer and longer...
Smiley rating 3/10, but 10/10 for the weather