The Sun just rising over the local village at the end of the cool-down walk today.
It still surprises me when I find that I can do the intervals with the new longer running time for the week. Also that the three minutes running that took all my effort last week gets kicked toward piece-of-cake territory this week. There has also been a new feeling of - what's the right word - comfort (not quite), relaxation (sort of), confidence (certainly).
This week has been an eye-opener. Before this week I have had to concentrate almost entirely on just getting one foot in front of the other, and on getting enough air into my lungs. Somehow, someone has thrown the light switch and I am able to run much more relaxed. Instead of having my focus fixed rigidly on the road ahead, I can look around and enjoy where I am and what I'm doing and start to appreciate my surroundings. My mind is able to do other things than just concentrate on running. It's quite amazing. I'm getting hooked.
My run is dead straight apart from a single 90-degree turn about half-way. On making that turn on day one this week, and heading almost due east, I was able to look up and see the contrails of a number of airliners heading out to Europe and beyond. They were lit by the sun that, for me on the ground, was still below the horizon. It was an amazing sight, the white trails going off into the distance, the perspective making them appear to come together somewhere way out to sea. It would have been good to stop and take a photo, but I was a bit busy at the time trying to glide over the tarmac and under strict instructions from Laura not to stop.
That Laura - she's a bit of a taskmistress. But I've been married a long time and know when I'm beaten. Resistance is futile, just get on and do as you're told. It's easier that way.
I think the distance covered each day will quickly increase now and I'll get further away from my starting point. My running shoes have been over what is for them new territory. If I peer into the distance, I can almost see what would be my 2.5 k turning point to do a 5 k round-trip.
I'm so looking forward to week five and a big challenge. I know what to expect. Am I scared? Yes. Will I do it? Try to stop me.