I had the most delicious run today - my third of the week. Having returned from hilly Cornwall I am back to my local flat terrain - PRAISE DA LORD!!!
The sun was shining when I set off this morning and I decided to go in the opposite direction to my usual Thames Path route. This would be towards Kew Bridge - which coincidentally is 5K from my house. I figured I'd tear along the Thames, get to 5K, have a stretch and a rest and then fire up the rocket boosters for home again! I crossed the river at Richmond Lock and jogged across the footbridge. As I descended the steps I saw a guy in a baseball cap running the way I was gonna go. "I'll pass him, no probs!" said my over confident brain.....
I followed this geezer for 4K and just could NOT catch him up. He must have been doing the same pace as me cos he got no further away and I got no closer to him! Suddenly there was a chance!!! Baseball Hat Man had stopped and was rubbing his left shin. This was gonna be my chance to sail past him like a pathetic version of Mo Farah and I was getting closer. Eventually I was approaching him and he was still rubbing his shin like billy-o, but I wasn't bothered - I was away!
However, just as I passed him he got up and started to run again. "Oh crap!" I thought. I'd been tonking along at a fair old pace at this point (my cadence is now around 180'ish) and I didn't want the swine passing me!! I stepped on the gas. Kew Bridge was still a kilometre away. My cadence got more swift and I kept upright and as light as I could be, trying to land on midfoot for maximum speed'age. I must have shaken him off cos I couldn't hear the footfall behind me and in any case, there was Kew Bridge in front of me. I jogged underneath and on for a short distance until 5K beeped on Gertie Garmin. I stopped and puffed and blew and generally dripped sweat like a menopausal hippoptamus. It was time to stretch, but first a quick look at Garminista! 27'27 it said for the 5K so far. Pretty good in my book, but I needed to stretch my hamstrings and quads. I did this until my heart rate fell back to relatively normal beatings and then I saw this bench. It beckoned to me like some sort of "bench angel" and I walked over and sat, looking at the birds on the river and the tube trains crossing the railway bridge to Kew Gardens. Another hamstring stretch was to be had (gentle enough to let them know I was caring about them!).
Anyway, baseball hat man must have turned off before I stopped cos there was no sign of him. It was time to head home and bash out the next 5. K6 was good but by K7 I was struggling. The effort put in to avoid Baseball Hat Man passing me had almost finished me off and I slowed to a crawl, eventually deciding to walk for a bit. This I did until I got my breath back and off i went again. A song came on in my headphones which makes me run to the beat - and here I was doing exactly that despite being knackered! I figured the song was about 4 minutes so I would keep the pace up until the next song then slow down. The song ended, but unfortunately for me, the next song also had a "run to the beat" feel to it. I did it again and forced myself to keep up with it but I was tiring again and had to succumb to a walk break. No matter. I'm happy with the occasional walk break because it gets the body and mind "reset" so to speak. It wasn't long before I reached the footbridge over the Thames again and then I headed home. Waiting for garmin to beep 10K took aaaaaaaaaages!! But it eventually did at 57 mins 03 seconds. I slowed to a hobble like walk pace and said "Oh GOD!" out loud!!!
So there be the tale of my run along the Thames which at some points looked exactly like a green tunnel it's so overgrown in parts. The sun coming through made it look ever so inviting to run along though.
Hope you all had splendido runs today. Keep it steady. And keep it real innit?!!