The answer to that cryptic conundrum is....ME! Yes, for the second time in my life I managed a 6K'er this morning. The weather was clement - sun shining on the Thames making the water twinkle cheekily, puffy cotton wool clouds floated along in the sky and it almost dry underfoot.
Not having to go back to work until next Wednesday afternoon, I revelled in the peace and quiet of the Thames path between Richmond and Twickenham due to everyone else being back at work. I was a tad wary this run though, owing to a niggly pain in my right shin. In fact, I was supposed to run yesterday but the discomfort was such that I didn't want to put too much strain on it so instead YESTERDAY I went for a 4K walk. Leg survived that outing so I reckoned it'd be ok this morning.
Legs felt heavy today. The first 2K's were ok but I was struggling a bit on the third K and then I thought "Oh God! This is only half way. Will I make it to the end?". I was overtaken by an impossibly slender and tall young lady who didn't look as if she was making much effort at all. She sailed past me as I puffed along. Before long she was about 8000 miles ahead of me and I decided not to think I was fading, but to look at the glorious surroundings instead, and thank my lucky stars I can actually move on foot in front of the other.
Seconds later another young lady passed me and I noticed her running style. Her foot landed on the part just behind the toes - so almost on the flat of her foot, but never on her heel. I tried to copy her for a bit, cos my feet tend to land a little bit on my heel before taking off again. I soon got exhausted trying this new style of running and returned to my "Dan Method". I'd read about the "proper" way to run and never to land on your heel, but more onto your "flat" part and I've never been able to achieve this. The other day I reported on a 9 foot giant of a man who landed on his TOES!!! He sprung along like a human kangaroo!
I had to take a quiet road away from the river as the Thames path ran out and it was here I had to stop for a walk. My legs were feeling like concrete garden posts and my bum muscles hurt. I gave it thirty seconds and then took off again. Eventually the 4th K came and went and I was into the 5th. "Right you bas**** 5thK" I said "I'm gonna whoop yo asssss!" and I increased speed, pushing my concrete garden post legs as hard as they'd go. Up the hill to Twickenham Station and I was yelling (inside my head) "Goooo on my son! Pusshhhhhhh!". Down the other side and I had to put the brakes on, lest I fall! The 5th K came and went - my fastest lap so far! Can you believe it? Only one more K to go. "I'm gonna die. I'm gonna collapse. I'm gonna......Oh great! The lights are red, I can cross the road!!" I managed to jog across the road and continue on my final lap. Even managed to pick up speed a bit until eventually I heard "YOU HAVE REACHED YOUR GOAL" in my headphones. I'd done it! Yes!
The good part of this concrete leg run was that I managed 5K in 31'08 which was far better than I thought it would be. Who'd have thought it -eh?
When I came in the door Mrs Dan met me with a face of concern "Where have you been?" she said. "I ran 6K little pockle chops!" I said affectionately. "I thought you'd fallen in the river! You were aaaaages!". I explained that actually I had been quicker than I thought I would be. "I've run your jacuzzi for you and the radio is tuned to your favourite channel" she said, and then bobbed off to the kitchen to check on the bread she was baking!
How lucky am I eh?!
'appy running peeps! Go steady out there.....