I'd recce'd the route the day before, trudging through the sparkling snow, (joining a small girl throwing snowballs at her Dad who was sledging down the field) to link up some footpaths that I'd spotted last year. Now, 24 hours later, a lot of the snow had melted and the ground was just beginning to get squidgy, making it lovely to run on. The sun was just beginning to set, suffusing the air and remaining snow with a soft pink glow. It was cool and still. Perfect. I ran as strongly as I have since before Christmas and glided up the hills almost without effort. Perfect. Inevitably, runs like this - from stile to stile, gate to gate - turn into interval sessions and I rang strongly across the fields. Perfect.
I got back and looked at my watch: 26.15. And my first, instinctive, reflex, thought was 'Pity I didn't break the 26 minutes'. And that is why I think there is no such thing as a perfect run. It's not the run, it's the essential dissatisfaction we all feel whenever we do go for a run. We always want to do that bit better. So, not perfect, but then no run can ever be (discuss). But it was pretty damn close.