Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Day 44 - upping the tempo (or not)

Type - tempo run

Distance - 5.3 miles

Time - 40 minutes 12 seconds

A quick five miles was what I had suggested to Jarlath for tonight. A tempo run, and, given Jarlath's past record of pushing me, I expected it to be a quick tempo run. The route went east from LSE along the Embankment, under the Millennium Bridge and over Southwark Bridge, along the South Bank all the way to Lambeth Bridge, over to Parliament Square, Horse Guards Road and back along the Embankment to LSE.

My legs have been giving me slight jip - a tightness and sharp pain when getting up from my desk at work or when getting up out of bed. It seems to wear off after a while, and is nothing I am too bothered about, but it does make it difficult to get up to a decent speed quickly on a tempo run. It just demonstrates the importance of stretching, repeated stretching. We start out on a warm up and then, relatively quickly, get into the stride. The route proves to be a bit tough because of severe pedestrian congestion, a few flights of stairs and two raised bridge crossings. It seems a tough run, and it feels like I am running considerably quicker than I have done for previous tempo runs.

By mile 3 I am in pain, a stitch that has built up over the past mile proving stubborn to shift and I am having to breath deeply to keep up with Jarlath. By mile 4 my legs are starting to give a little, a wobbly feeling that usually comes when I have reached the edge of my muscle's capacity or have just run out of energy. I push through for a final mile, expecting that we have done a decent time.

So by the end I am slightly disappointed that the finish time was 40 minutes. When we plotted the route accurately it was actually a 5.3 mile run, so that would take me down to something like 37 minutes 30 seconds for the 5 miles. Which is not personal best territory, but, given the difficulty of the route, not too shoddy. It certainly felt like a decent work out.

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