Thursday, 1 January 2015

HNY Portobello Promathon and free dook

It was windy and rainy and hard to get out the car before the race today. I'd meant to take a rain jacket to warm up in and then totally forgot. Remembering there was a bin bag in the back of the car was the boost I needed. I put it on and went for a "warm up" on the wet and windy prom. My new waterproof camera is not the best of cameras but I love the fact I can take it out in the weather without worrying. It's not very big and fits quite easily in my hand so I decided to run with it and maybe take a few live action shots.

I didn't have much hope for my running. I went out yesterday and felt terrible. Stiff, achy, bored and hungry. Not much of an athlete. The last 2 years I haven't been able to crack 8 minute miles at the Prom and I didn't see why I should do better than that today. I've been running but not doing any speed training apart from the Borders XC races.

The thing about having no hope is it's quite relaxing. I felt okay to start with and was very surprised and pleased to see I'd run 7.20 for my first mile. The wind was behind us for most of that though, and that was my quickest mile. Getting along towards the end of the Prom I could see the leaders coming back and I thought I'd try to capture some of the action. Messing about with my camera took my mind off things and I don't think really slowed me down. Maybe I've discovered a secret!

The last mile was uncomfortable and boring too. Every inch of that prom is ingrained in my memory and there's no kidding yourself you're "nearly there", not until I was past the entrance to the "Entertainments" did I dare speed up but then sped up quite convincingly, taking a few folk on the way. I was pleased to see I was well under 32 minutes which meant that at last I was beating that 8 minute mile mark. Funny how it doesn't feel any different. As soon as I'd stopped and was queueing to get my number recorded I saw that the dooking was already in progress.

At the start of the race I was pretty sure I wouldn't be going in for a swim. But now, after the race, it seemed like a great idea...I was impatient to get my stuff out the car and get down there!
There was a great atmosphere down on the beach and the air temperature was much warmer than it has been of late. There was a good Dunbar running club presence as well as lots of other Porties. It was still a considerable thought to duck right under the water - I kind of wondered if that was REALLY okay when you've just been pushing your heart rate up well into the red - (but Neil, if you're reading this, it was much, much warmer than it was when we went in with you and Ryan).

Johnny Lawson of Portobello had turned 40 today and he was having an open gathering in the Espy along the Porty prom. We went along after the swim but it was shut until midday so we went further along to where the Porty Dads were supposed to be having a swim at 11.50. At exactly 11.50 we met Ian McMillan who was sitting on a wall with all his clothes on and looking relaxed. What the Porty dads were doing was building a fire. I don't know what time they finally got in but I doubt it was soon after that...

In the pub the chat turned to - well it was runners - running goals for the following year. All I really have in mind is the Edinburgh Marathon. What should I try to do with it? Should I train hard for it? Should I have an aim? I don't know! The runner's world has this race time predictor where you can plug in a time for a recent race and it will calculate what you should be able to achieve at a different distance, provided you're trained up for it. It says I should be able to do a marathon in 3.43 and some change. So maybe I'll use that as my starting point.

Another fine day, and it is over so quickly. I am loving being on holiday so much.

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