Wilmslow Half Marathon 2019 – 18, 17 And 14 Days To Go

18 days to go…

After the previous Saturday’s long run, I had some proper aches in my left hamstring and right quad so I judged what I wanted to do that night based on how I felt after my warm up.  I do a dynamic warm up that I know from experience is good at ironing out the kinks.  I felt OK, but decided to go on a bit of a fun run along my 7km route.

I had to drop off a birthday card that had been misdelivered which was the first stop on my run.  The second stop was accidental.

I was running in the dark and there isn’t always street light when I am.  I was concentrating so hard on making sure that I didn’t fall off the footpath that I ran in to a tree branch, splitting my lip and getting a small cut on my eye lid that stung like crazy when I was sweating!  I also wonder why cars insist on shining full beam headlights at you on the footpath making it hard for you to see anything other than headlights, but dip their headlights for the vehicles.

I think there’s something in my running jacket that can turn off the tracking on my watch, so the second “stop” is actually accidental.

I really felt good on this run.  I felt that I was really cruising the first 4 kilometres, like I wasn’t even trying.  The last bit needed some effort, but it was largely positive.

 17 days to go…

This was my football night.  I got to the pitch early cause I wanted a proper warm up.  My 8.5 mile run has given me the confidence that the half marathon is getting done as long as I can stay healthy, so I did a 15 minute warm up before we started.

One of the people at work who runs was interested to know how football would go with this sort of training.  The theory is that recovery times from sprints should reduce.  They might have done, but I felt so heavy legged.  We were on a funny shaped half pitch with a strange number of players on each side which always affects me (I’m weird, I know) but I found the game hard to concentrate on and actually somewhat lacked the inclination to make the sprints.

14 days to go…

Again lacking a bit of inclination, but this time because of the weather.  I avoided the rain in the morning but forced myself out because, quite frankly, there wasn’t another time to run and I had to get more significant distance in.

My outbound journey felt like I was always heading in to the wind whichever corner I turned, and the wind was gusting to 25mph according to my weather forecasts and it was hard work.

I think I mentioned that I like running loops.  I actually ran round B&Q this time!  The running round it should have tipped me over the 10 mile mark but I kept thinking about pushing it a bit further.  I’ve said in earlier days that I don’t want to do this, and just to stick to the plan.  However, at the end of the 8.5 mile run I felt that I had a bit of energy left and could have gone further, so this time I did.

This gave me more headwinds to deal with, and it seems like I felt all the detriment from the headwinds but that the tailwinds were far more sheltered.

While my watch stopped tracking half way again, my total distance according to a route mapper was just over 11.5 miles, and the time was around the 93 minute mark.  I’m figuring about 10 minutes more running would do the job, but two of my kilometres (including the last one) were timed at over 6 minutes which is much slower than I usually run.

Those two kilometres were a little strange, because the rest of the splits were bang on average, as was my cadence.

Anyway, I found this run to be absolutely horrific.  I really didn’t enjoy it at all.  I didn’t feel too bad when I got home, so had something to eat because I was really hungry (I began to notice this after about 10 miles), drank my pint of isotonic drink, did my cool down and sat in the bath for half an hour.  After that I felt awful.  I felt that I had absolutely nothing left in the tank and could have fallen asleep there and then.

I think the lesson is the preparation when it comes to eating and drinking, and this is something I need to look in to.  I never expected to actually feel hungry, like tummy rumbling hungry, while running.  I felt so bad about an hour later cause I was thirsty.  Once I’d downed my first pint of Diet Coke at the pub after drinking a bottle of Lucozade on the way, I was much better.

I definitely know I’ve done it at the time of writing.  I’m dreading waking up tomorrow!  But this is distance in the legs.  Stay healthy and I’m good to go.

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