I suppose a run that I’m disappointed with but which still came within my target mph pace is a good sign, right?
After a couple of days off I decided to go out this afternoon for three miles. It was a cold day but, in my infinite wisdom, I made the choice to go out without wearing my jacket.
My skewed logic went thus: it wasn’t raining so I reckoned I’d soon warm up, the jacket also makes me sweat a lot and messes with the display on my watch, often resetting the lap times and flicking to the next screen when I wear it below sleeve as it rubs against the material – so no jacket today.
No jacket also meant no phone, and no phone meant no music or audiobook. Apart from watch I was running as nature intended (well, apart from my clothes!).
And because it was so cold I started at the bottom of the Antrim Road and ran up it, instead of walking to the top and running back down, just to get warmed up as soon as possible.
I started off ok, albeit the first kilometre was a wee bit slower than I’d done recently but it was uphill – and when the second kilometre (along a flat section) almost matched it for time then I thought I was doing reasonably well. And I was, to be honest.
The third kilometre came and went with the pace still maintained. In fact each split throughout the entire run was at a speed I’d have been delighted with a while back, plus I was – overall – 29 seconds per mile quicker than I was during the club run on Monday.
Reflecting on it, today’s was a consolidation run. It underlined the progress I’d made recently and whilst slower than I’d have liked it was, as I said, within my current preferred range. I can’t keep setting new records with each run anyway.
But there’s still a little pang of disappointment. Maybe it was the uphill start, maybe it was no music or book, maybe it was no jacket, maybe it was just the cold.
I think it might also have been the toes on my right foot. I have arthritis in them, especially the big one, yet they very rarely trouble me when I’m running – but today they did. With roughly a mile to go the toes started to display a mixture of numb and pains and needles, if that’s possible.
It’s hard to describe. They felt heavy but not painful. Tingly but, at the same time, numb. It didn’t stop me running and the discomfort ceased immediately I stopped but it was a concern and, perhaps, made me subconsciously ease off somewhat.
I was wearing my new trainers, my longest run in them, so they could well have been caused and could well disappear through time as I get used to them. Or it could simply have been the cold.
I also ran non-stop – more or less, if you discount waiting for a bus to pass – so that could have been a reason too. I suppose I’ll only know through time, but it’s something I’ll be more aware of ….. not that it’ll stop me, mind.