SPECIAL K

Well 5 actually and I am not talking breakfast cereal.

Let me talk you through my home 5k run.

I live half way up a hill and my five minute warm up takes me to the top of the hill where I have started the majority of my runs since Week 1 of C25k. On the footpath alongside the school I stop to get a fix for GPS tracking, but this morning Annabel Runkeeper-Smythe was unwilling to play ball. I waited with the sun starbursting through the mist and trees while the town, down in the valley below was totally enveloped in a silent white blanket. I never got the fix and headed off just using the timing. I know this route pretty well by now.

Along a tree formed tunnel called Tinpot, down a short steep slope and through the first ****ing gate into an open field, to be confronted with a stunning view. As the sun glanced over the hedge to my left I ran down the ridge with Dartmoor glowering in the distance, beyond the valley to my right which was a lake of cloud, with the summit of Posbury Hill ( my 10k hill route) rising majestically into the sunlight. I almost stopped to take a photo, but remembered that if I do this Runkeeper stops playing music and frankly I was already well into my choons. I have seen this view so many times and it varies each time, but I have never seen it look quite so spectacular.

On to halfway down the ridge and then cut back to run into the bright sun, back to the top of the hill and loop round the school back to my starting point. About 1.6k or a mile in old money. To one side the sky was deep blue and the other was white with the low cloud and mist. As I came back out to the Dartmoor views, the mist had started to rise from the valley bottom and the light was weakening. This ridge is my favourite part of these runs and always makes me smile.......twice every run. Through the head high maize and the steep descent of Breakheart Hill, the bottom of which was lost in the swirling white mist which slowly wrapped itself around me. Onto the lane for a hundred metres, over the railway crossing and back into the damp fields beside the river Yeo, where dark grey trees were silhouetted against pale grey trees silhouetted against the even paler grey of the sky and the weakest of suns. I met two two young runners, lads of about twelve, who returned my cheery “Hello” with smiles and greetings. I passed a familiar old dog walker and a short while later discovered his familiar old dog in the mist, wrestling with half a tree that he had just pulled out of the river.

Through a couple of fields then onto the track past the pig farm. Annabel had roused herself by now and was giving me timings, but having missed my start nothing made much sense. Back onto the road, over the other level crossing and up the road, cutting back for the final climb up the fields of Long Slog Hill. There was no return to sunlight as I climbed but “Smells like teen spirit” from Nirvana boosted me for these efforts and my heart was light as I headed back into the streets of the estate and my last few metres of running. I always stop at the same point. 5.25k and a five minute walk to home.

“Okay,” I hear you asking, “What's so special about that then?”

Today was my first 5k run since I tweaked my left achilles on a 10k run on September 6th. I was aware of it throughout the run, but it was not painful and has been fine since I finished. It will be a while before I am back up to 10k, but I am happier today than I have been for over a month. I have missed running and today's run was really special for me.

Keep running keep smiling.

40 Replies

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  • Sounds like a beautiful run! Good to know you're back, and enjoy the happy post run feeling!

  • There really is no substitute for the post run glow, thanks.

  • Welcome back! What a glorious sounding run - made all the better for it being your "return to glory" run... :)

    Sorry to hear about the injury, but glad to hear you're back!

  • Beautiful blog, good to hear you again IT... So glad you are out there getting a fix. Lovely hearing about the area, I so miss my mezzanine nights at Rookwood ;( well done!!

  • Devon is beautiful, as you know and the misty mornings are spectacular. It is such a joy to be back out experiencing them first hand again.

  • Beautiful blog, good to hear you again IT... So glad you are out there getting a fix. Lovely hearing about the area, I so miss my mezzanine nights at Rookwood ;( well done!!

  • Wot!! You again, Julia???

  • Not sure why but I i keep appearing twice- sorry!!

  • Steady on.....people will start talking......

  • Sounds like a beautiful run and as you so very special to be back out there again, long may it last. Happy running.,

  • Thanks RFC. I have lived near here for over thirty years, but it is only since I started running that I really got to know and appreciate my wonderful environment.

  • Gorgeous. Husb and I planning to retire somewhere near Dartmoor. You just made me want it even more!

  • Devon certainly offers some wonderful running....from coasts to moors as well as the odd canal and riverbank route. Why wait?

  • Child to get through 3 more years of school! Countdown has begun!

  • Great post: thank you for conjuring up some lovely images and glad to hear that you are on the mend

  • Thanks, it is a lovely place and to complete the run without any problems (no aches 24 hours after the event) is a bonus.

  • Wow you live in a beautiful place!! I know this because you described it so well I felt like I was doing the run with you. So very pleased for you. Having had such a lot of time out myself, I know exactly how you must feel to be running again. I'm sure it won't be long before you're running your old distances again - after all, who could resist spending even longer running in such a perfect place. Happy running :)

  • How is your progress back to running?

    I have had to curb my enthusiasm and give my decrepit old body a decent chance to recover. Patience pays off, hopefully.

  • I'm not doing too bad, thanks for asking. Being very restrained- although I've got a bit of a knee niggle this morning after doing some hill work in preparation for my race in November which has a mega hill at the end. Suspect I'll be taking things very easy for the rest of the week. Apart from anything, I don't have your beautiful scenery to inspire and tempt me!

  • Well done, that sounds like a great run and you describe it beautifully :) excellent news that you are back out enjoying yourself , can just imagine nirvana song would be a great one to run to......... :)

  • My music worked wonderfully on that run, being capped by Paul Weller's "You do something to me" as I started my warm down walk. It was like a love song to running, coming at just the right moment.

  • you have good taste in music! :)

  • Brilliant post, oh it sounds so beautiful where you are. Its good to hear that youre back in the groove, and long may it continue .

    All the very best to you xxx

  • Thanks, poppypug. It beats pounding the streets and I have never got bored with that route, although I do like to ring the changes now and then.

    And all the very best to you too!! Keep running, keep smiling.

  • Wonderful post. Glad your Achilles didn't cause you grief during the run.

  • Thanks, Annie, I am definitely on the mend.

  • I think that I am always going to feel that there is a susceptibility to injury there from now on, but to get that 5k under my belt was a milestone on the road to recovery and a great relief.

  • Lovely post, so glad you're off the couch and back out there xx

  • Thank you CG. We are all so lucky to have discovered this wonderful thing and it really is a total s**t when it gets taken away from you. I wish I knew for sure what had caused it.

    Keep running, keep smiling.

  • Wow, that is a great result, and I simply love the story about what you experienced. This is what makes outdoor running so worthwhile :)

  • I can't imagine dreadmilling, although I am sure it has its advantages in the worst of weathers, so the outdoors has always been my running track and I love it. Good to hear that you are out and about again too, Tomas.

  • Wowwwwwww......what a brilliant tale. A very Special K (5) indeed! Glad the achilles is better - that must have been sh** to deal with.

    I love October for running cos the air temp is cool and fresh and the vegetation has that special autumnal aroma. Gorgeous!

    Keep 'em coming IDT.

  • Howdy Dan. I agree with you about the temperature although the lack of light in the mornings has meant that I can use the excuse of my injury to avoid doing headtorch runs before work, leaving only the weekends for running. I will be working at home in a couple of weeks so hope to get back to three runs per week then. The frustration of not being able to run is the worst part being injured but it is great to feel that I am coming out of my self imposed lay off.

    PS I forgot to mention that I thought of you before the run, as my warm up track was "Freefalling" by some old time rock hero of yours!!

  • Hey Tim, what a lovely post ...felt like I was out there running on beautiful Dartmoor with you :)

    I'd been wondering lately how you are doing ,so it was really great to read this and that you are starting to recover....good to get that 5K under your belt.

    Take care ,chum x

  • Thanks Mme Chum. Life is good when you can run.

  • So happy to hear you are able to run again. Your route sounds spectacular, especially on a misty morning. Makes me a wee bit envious but mostly I am just very pleased that you are back out there, running and happy :)

  • The people on this forum constantly amaze me, you included, with the empathy and care that they show for others. All this support is wonderful, especially when things are not going to plan. Thanks for your thoughts lizziebeth. Keep running, keep smiling.

  • Dear Ian, you are quite a poet as well as a good runner. I love the description of the countryside. I am more placid, vecause I have lung disease.So I only started last week on the static bike. I must press the conversion button to know what km I do rather than .65 miles! You are really doing very well. Nurse your ankle.

  • Dear helingmc, thank you for your praise and I am glad you appreciated my post. I have read your plan of doing C25k on a static bike and applaud you for making the effort and wish you well. Remember, it does not matter whether you do miles or kilometres, the important thing is to try to do the time and arrive at constant exercise for 30 minutes. Good luck and keep us posted with your progress.

    PS the real name is Tim

  • A wonderful, inspiring post as always, and thank you for letting us know how you are doing. Fingers crossed for future injury free runs.

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