OK Spring, where are you? I was visualising nice, mild, sunny runs by this stage in the programme, with butterflies fluttering next to me and baby lambs frolicking. And what did I get yesterday for my longest run to date? -2 temperatures with a God-knows-how-cold wind chill factor - so cold it numbed my nostrils and burnt my lungs. Incredibly unpleasant running conditions.
But I did it! A nice even pace and (once my nostrils defrosted) a good breathing rhythm. I was actually quite glad of the running as it warmed me up and got the blood pumping around freezing toes and fingers.
I'm learning, both from experience and people's advice on this forum, that at this 'you're in the big leagues now' stage of the programme, extra rest days really do pay dividends. I attempted W6R1 after only 1 day of rest after the 20 min run and it nearly killed me; everything was stiff and hurt - the calves and thighs had really taken a pounding on W5R3. But giving it 2 days rest between the other runs has worked really well - everything felt loose and warm and strong. It means slightly slower progression through the podcasts, but at least I've got a better chance of success (and hopefully avoiding injury!).
I even managed a 'sprint' finish for the final 60 seconds when Laura said I could speed up if I was feeling ok. It felt amazing - running as fast as I could (probably not very:)) - arms and legs flying everywhere and giggling like a schoolgirl. Awesome!