I had a two day rest this week to give my legs a wee chance to repair all the little micro tears on my muscles. It was a good idea as it 'appens, because this morning I went out on my 7K route and felt pretty darned good!
Getting my clobber on before a run now is almost like a religious ceremony. Mrs Dan is brilliant, as she always makes sure each article of gear is freshly laundered so as I don't offend the general public with repulsive old unwashed running gear!! Sometimes for a joke I say "I won't bother washing any of the gear darling, it'll last another outing" - to which her reply is "Noooooooo!!!!!" - Hahaha!
I have become particularly attached to my running tights. Don't worry, it's not sexual but there's something about the skin tightness of them, clinging against my skin which gives me a huge sense of freedom. I still wear my super tight lycra compression shorts underneath and I'm over any embarrassment I initially had about "man bulges" and the "peachy posterior" scenario and now quite happily burst out the front door, looking like a man on a mission!! Cue big LION ROAR!! AArroooorrrrrrr!!!!
I'm always incredibly interested in how each run is completely different - not the route I take, more how I react to each kilometre. I'd decided to do 7K today as yesterday we went to a friends wedding and took rather an unhealthy interest in the evening buffet which should have had a big sign above it saying "WARNING! DEATH BY CARBOHYDRATES POSSIBLE!". Having consumed slices of pizza, deep fried prawns in batter, stir fried noodles and anything else that I usually steer clear of these days, it was time to run off those excess ounces! - Now where was I ? Oh yes. Being surprised at each run. The first three kilometres felt absolutely fine and I kept to what I call my "7K PACE" which is roughly about 6'10 per K. I did try a short section where I would only run landing on the front of my foot, and to be honest I think if I could master this style it would benefit my speed. But as usual, after thirty paces doing this my calves started to say "Daaaan?? What the **** are you doing dude? I'm in f****** agony!". - So I reverted back to my shuffle/jog/running style.
There were loads of runners out along the Thames this morning between Twickenham and Richmond. I felt as light as a feather in my bright fluorescent yellow long sleeved running top, my blue running tights (with rather nifty yellow strip down each leg!) and Brooks shoes keeping me upright. I wasn't aware at the time but I was getting faster. The 4th, 5th and 6th kilometres - each one was faster than the previous one and I nearly fainted when I noticed later that the fastest lap was the 6th K!!! Normally I'm foaming at the mouth with exhaustion around this mark, screaming at myself "Oh dear Lord Jesus in Heaven, I'm gonna die I can't go on anymorrrrrrre!!!" - but not today! Even the final 7th K was a healthy 6 mins 10 secs.
A few lovely folk on here have said that I can eventually reach the Holy Grail distance of 10K if I just add a bit on each week. I have discovered that each of us progress at different rates and I know eventually when the time is right I will most likely get there. But for the time being I'm enjoying the fact that I can now run 7K without too much swearing and cursing and I'm gonna just enjoy that for a bit. When and if I go any further, you lot will be the second to know! Promise.
A long luxurious jacuzzi bath was my reward as I listened to four blokes on the radio discuss why Arsenal were tonked by Liverpool yesterday. Can life get any better than this? Yes it can! Because Mrs Dan had made her amazing homemade vegetable soup for luncheon, and I wolfed down a large bowl of the sacred chunky broth. Heaven.
Keep running out there folks. You're all amazing.