I felt like I was starting off slowly but a glance at my TomTom told me otherwise with my first 3 miles clocking in at 9:13, 9:12 and 9:01 minute miles - why does it feel like I am running slower than usual but actually zooming along at a decent pace?! Mile 4 was 8:54! I carried on with a pace in the low 9 minute mile area but felt comfortable with this. As I ran the miles got eaten up and the time passed me by in a haze; I'm never quite sure where the time goes to on my long runs, it seems to just evaporate and I have phases where my mind is completely clear of any thought. I love these moments and they definitely beat what happened towards the end of my run.
At 9 miles I felt like I was breezing back home then that familiar niggle reared up in my outer thigh heading down to my knee.
My clear calm mind was long gone and was replaced with me voicing my opinion as I ran;
"F**k off, f**k off"
My new mantra was born.
Not a positive one I admit but it helped - and I checked I was out of earshot of any other crazy people out in the cold and the rain. It became quite therapeutic as I ran alongside the busy A road back home wondering what the drivers thought of me as I half ran, half grimaced myself along clearly shouting profanities as I went.
Then I was off the busy road, under the subway - whose down slope made me wince even more - then it was the quiet side roads back home. Once the 10.5 miles had passed I stopped my TomTom, slowed up and walked the few hundred yards back before collapsing through my front door.
Now this is the good/frustrating bit. Once I stop the knee pain stops. Try running again though once I have stopped and oh my...there are no words!
Following a long, slow stretching session I went upstairs for a long hot bath and a cup of Earl Grey.
And coming back down the stairs was absolutely fine!
What's that about!?
I checked my TomTom afterwards and found it had not really been a long slow run at all - well not for me. I hit 10k at my usual 10k race rate and completed this run at a faster pace than my previous 8.5, 9 and 10 mile runs.
A quick bit of maths told me that if I keep at this pace I'll finish a half in just over two hours.
Now, the competitive me wants a sub 2 hour but at what cost?
Maybe I do actually need to slow down and treat these runs as a long SLOW run!
Will I ever learn??
x x x