Okay, now I know I'll never be the fastest runner around. So my pleasure derives purely from pushing my limits and seeing how fast and far I can go. It's personal. And weirdly happy-making.
On Tuesday, we had what could have been our last spin class, except it looks like it will be extended another four weeks. I'm happy to stay inside. I want it not to be cold before I get outside riding in the early morning. (I know, Nath, I just need to dress better! But I'm a cold-wimp on my bike. Or maybe just a wimp.) Anyway, started Tuesday with spin class.
In the afternoon, I led a little running club of neighbourhood kids (including two of my own) on a 3km training session. The pace was not blistering, but the kids were thrilled to have made it 3km. It took us 20:52 (or thereabouts). I was wearing my GPS watch which greatly added to everyone's pleasure. "How far now?" We also stopped and walked for one minute between kilometres. I must say, the pace was so easy it wasn't really like runinng, for me. But it was super-fun.
And then, about an hour later, I took my daughter to soccer practice. And I got to run again. Again, my GPS watch greatly added to the pleasure. I'm getting rather addicted to it. I decided to run 5km as quickly as I could manage. There was a stiff wind and the loop was hilly, but hey. That meant sometimes the wind was at my back, sometimes in my face; couldn't complain. For the first kilometre, I didn't push too hard. But as I went on, I started to see my /km time on the watch drop, until I was running fairly consistently at 13km/hr. I got it as high as 14 with the downhill, and tried to keep it better than 12 even on the uphills. My goal was to finish 5km in less than 24 minutes. And I did it! The last km was brutal, but I kept my feet turning over as quickly as I could. I even passed two cyclists (admittedly, they weren't going very fast, but they looked pretty surprised). My time was 23:54. And then I ran two more kilometres, just to make it an even 10 on the day, and finished 7km in 34:35. So the pace definitely slowed, but it also felt easy. I used the last 2km as a cool-down.
What I loved about the run was imagining training myself to run comfortably at the 4:40 pace. That would make 5:00 pace feel easy. And then I could conquer the marathon in 3:30! Of course, I was pushing to my limit to keep it going at that pace, but, still. My limit used to be 5/km. It's all in the training. Training myself to accept new normals. And I'll need to add endurance training in too.
The next morning, early, I ran another 7.7km, for a total of nearly 18km in just over twelve hours. See? Happy-making!
But I've neglected my strength exercises. Must add these back in. Start watching TV again? I need to do pair them with something because I find them so boring, it's next to impossible to motivate myself now that my hip feels fine. But I could easily slip backwards, and I know it, if I get neglectful.