Monday, 24 October 2011

Proper hills. Proper mud. Proper run.

I'll be the first to admit that my recent runs have been somewhat leisurely affairs. They've mostly been on roads and at a comfortable pace. I have justified this to myself by saying that I'm just getting over a cold, and am recovering from a calf pull and have to 'ease back into it gently'. But you can do that for only so long. Eventually you have to go back out and do it properly. And today was the day.
By lunchtime here at Hayfellaville the gloomy cloud had lifted somewhat. The breeze was picking up. The grass was drying out - a bit. So I decided to do my classic lunchtime route which I call the River Loop which essentially entails running up one side of the River Sprint and down the other. The river runs serenely down the valley, but the land undulates wildly either side of it, so it's always in interesting route to do.
I set off and immediately noticed the fatiguing effect of running on muddy grassland. I ground on along the river and past the sad little unofficial grave on the side of the path that I suspect is the last resting place of a local pet. I was shocked at how heavily I was breathing; but then, I always am. It's been a while since I've done the route and I was pleased to note that the dangerous oak tree bough that overhung the path, and forced you to limbo under it, had been removed. Also, the broken bridge that used to span a muddy stream has been replaced so the route is back as it should be. I managed to ease along up the hills, slowly but steadily, and had a lovely surprise as I bounded* down the grassy fields on the way home. In one of the fields I came across a few Jacobs sheep. For those that don't know, these are beautiful animals, white with chocolate blotches and short pointy horns. I've only seen a few in my time and they are rather splendid. I'll try and get a photo of one next time I'm out that way.

After about 29 minutes, I arrived back home. MY PB for this run is about 24 minutes, so it was hardly earth-shattering, but, with the hills, mud and buffeting wind, it felt like a proper run. I loved it.

*As in tottering in a rather more uncontrolled fashion

Smileyrating 9 for the run, 9 for the Jacobs'!

1 comment:

  1. ww have a herd near us..i thought they were some sort of devil goat..then i stood corrected.
    glad you're winging it again!