The Scribbler

7 July 2010

Running and biking

Filed under: bike,run,training — The Scribbler @ 17:16
Tags: , ,

I’m currently on holiday at home. Which has made it even more fun than usual to step back into training. No more worrying about what to fit in when and hurrying back from a run to sit behind my desk for the rest of the afternoon.

Yesterday I ran a decent set of intervals and was surprised to clock up around 8km in distance with a warm up and a cool down (literally as I finished on the beach, took my trainers off and went for a paddle – bliss!). I am so lucky to have this place to run.

I had someone on my mind as I ran. A local runner who has been very kind and supportive of me and others on a running forum I visit, and who has just experienced the most heartbreaking loss. It really made me appreciate what I have, how fortunate I am. And how running is a massive part of that happiness. In the freedom it gives me, the health, the challenge, the focus and quite unexpectedly, the friends and connections it’s formed. From the nod of acknowledgement from the anonymous fellows out on the road, to real help, support, good advice and invitations to ‘gan for a run’.

Today I met Ian for a run along the Quayside. This is a favourite route as it’s flat and we generally run it together. He’s been clocking up some amazing training, biking, running, swimming and weight training. I’m still pacing myself and trying to go for quality over quantity. I really wanted to go for a swim yesterday, but knowing we planned to rattle off a 10k, I resisted the lure of the pool.

So, just a nice flat 10k. And as it’s a hot day, we’re not pushing it, just keeping things steady. Catching up with each other, chatting pretty much the whole way along. The pace is decent enough. Not my 10k race pace, but at 21C, in the middle of a week’s training, it’s not too shabby either.

There’s a warm breeze that’s surprisingly tough to run into. It slows me right down as we head for the half way point. At the turn we look forward to it being behind us, but we never really feel it. Instead, the sweat is dripping in my eyes and the heat becoming all consuming. There’s not a lot of shade on this route.

Back to the start point and we stretch and discuss training for the rest of the week. I aspire to his level of fitness. Still I’m quite happy with 54.25 for today’s 10k.

Home, showered and fed, I have a whole afternoon of freedom to enjoy. I have to go and collect my Great North Run vest from the printers, so decide to give my bike its first run of the year. 

It’s only about a mile to the printers, and it’s a flat route, so I’m soon off and pedalling into the wind, trying to get used to the gears, but I can feel it in my legs, proving I really will have to get some bike time in if I want to do a triathlon (but that’s next year).

Vest collected and I head back home. Still a little traffic shy, I opt to stop and walk across a particularly busy right turn, but generally I’m enjoying the ride. In fact, I’m having so much fun free-wheeling past my house I opt to carry on up the coast a little way, enjoying the sunshine.

It’s only when I head back that I realise why it seemed so easy. The wind that was behind me, is now coming at me head on and my poor little legs are saying ‘What are you trying to do to us…we already ran 6 miles this morning.’

Still, I’ve done it. Got out on the bike at last. And while I won’t be swapping run for bike training any time soon, I may use it a little more to get around in this fine weather.

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