Monday, 12 July 2010

Anatomy of a Long Run

I had about given up harassing Peter about doing a marathon this year as he was so reluctant to do any of them. "Why do you want to do a marathon?" he'd say, "You've forgotten how painful it is."
But I did want to do a marathon, for no better reason than I've done a marathon every year since the Edinburgh Marathon resumed in 2003. Even did two in 2007. And there's always the hope that I'll get quicker. And I like the training.

So last week when I came in and P says "What about the Moray marathon? We could do that." I was delighted and got the entry forms away before he could change his mind. Then I did a bit of working out how long we had and realised we really had 6 weeks effectively to train. We'd need to cram in the long runs in order to get enough in and then to taper in time for September the 5th.

Which is how come despite being pretty knackered from the Harris half race and post-race celebration on Saturday, we forced ourselves out to start long run training for the marathon today.

Neither of us really wanted to. I guess we've got some prep. in our legs from doing the Highland Fling, but for the marathon you need to push the pace on the long runs a bit more. There would be no cruising around taking photos and stopping at delicatessens. There probably wasn't even going to be any eating! Sigh. Still.

I slept very deeply and very late, dreaming that most of the running club were back at the house I grew up in and I was trying to make everyone cups of tea. It was dark and everything was in a muddle, despite there being a friendly atmosphere. Ricky Fraser had found a lemon that was going mouldy on top of a wardrobe and was teasing me about my house-keeping standards. I had no idea how the lemon got there...

Ah 11.30, probably time to get up. Rolled out of bed onto stiff legs, rotund from a weekend of over doing it. There's always the hope that food and drink calories might not find you if you're away the weekend and then drive back quickly enough. They might get lost and go into someone else's house and sit round their waist instead.

So anyway, we were both a bit fearful and reluctant but went off to do our run. We went for running from Musselburgh up the Esk, along the Pencaitland Cycle Path and Peter was going to branch round the MacMerry loop, and do 23-24 miles while I was going to turn around at 9.5 miles and make do with 19. It was a warm, cloudy day and the flies were out. I was covered in bugs in no time having unthinkingly dressed as a tree.

All but the first 5 miles were hard, but we did them. I think that's all I've got to say about that! Not quick, but  we were not in ideal form. It feels good to have been out and done it.

Met Paul Edwards back down at the Musselburgh Quayside. He's been out of running with plantar fasciitis since January and is longing to run again. We need an organised cycle for all the club members who are cycling to stay fit while injured. We don't need to stick together if there's too much variation in ability - all we need is an agreed stop half way round for everyone to regroup.

I digress. Good to get started. Hopefully the next ones will be quicker and won't feel so bad. I think we'll probably have to miss a long run the week of the Tour of Fife unless of course we do it on the rest day on the Wednesday...


Climbingmandy said...

Well done Mary on getting the long run in. Quitting or not going at all definitely wouldn't help in the marathon. It doesn't matter that it was tough. Shows you can deal with tough times :)

kate said...

so, we you run a marathon do you do it twice as fast as the fling ;)

Yak Hunter said...

Not quite twice as fast but nearly. I guess twice as fast would be a 3hr marathon which is a "little" out of reach, but 3.30 to 3.45 would be what I'm aiming at. A nice short day compared to the Fling right enough. Well done on your mountain marathon by the way. I could be doing with a navigator. Its not even that I can't read a map its that I can't be bothered to stop and think long enough to read a map. But thinking takes me a while...p.s. don't cycle down your stairs!