Well, this will be my first proper post here, discounting my introduction the other day.
Before I forget to post it, and in lieu of the photographs I didn't take because I was too busy running, here's a quick Relive of the whole thing: relive.cc/view/2054628604
For some odd reason I felt that today's run needed to be my longest ever, and I had worked out a nice route, which turned out to be 17.5k, great for HM training, right? Not that I've committed to do a HM yet, but even if I don't, I still want to be able to run the distance. That would still count, right? Anyway, off I set. It was a tad parky outside, about 1 or 2°C, but I donned my long running pants, a tshirt, and my cycling-repurposed-as-running jacket, remember that seemingly insignificant but important detail for later, and off I trotted.
For once in my life I got the layering just right. Although it was a bit chilly for the first 0.5k, I soon warmed up, but was greatful for the hat and thin gloves I had donned as an afterthought before setting off.
The first leg was a slow climb from High Lane to near Lyme Park, one of my running haunts with which I have a love-hate relationship, and then a gentle descent into Disley. Because of the gentle upwards gradient this is great to get me warmed up, and the hill stops me going mad and trying to run a sub-5:30 first km or anything daft like that. Next there's a kind-of rollercoaster with a down, a severe up and then a severe down, leading to the Upper Peak Forest Canal. I like canals. I completed C25K running by a canal. They are flat, due to the wonderful laws of physics! So - along the canal for a few km to Marple. I struggled more than I thought I would, and at about 6km in I was considering stopping at the nearest pub, but fortunately at 9:30am there weren't any open, and we don't happen to have a Weatherspoons in the middle of nowhere!! I digress, so yes I kept going, just reducing my pace slightly, and was soon at the point where the Macclesfield Canal branches off. My toes were now feeling a bit twingy, so I made a mental note to contact the podiatrist and see if anything needed adjusting with my insoles.
Next up was a nice downhill run to the Middlewood way. I enjoy this stretch, even though it is along a road, as it's welcome recovery for tired muscles. The middlewood way is great for tricking runners into doing hills. It's a disused railway line running from Marple most of the way to Macclesfield, and it was converted into a bridleway at some point around 1985. You think it's flat, but it's actually a long, gentle but quite punishing gradient, probably climbing about 40m steadily over the length I ran today, which was probably something like 6k. There's then a short but steep climb up to the Macclesfield canal. I'll be honest, I stopped at the bottom for 30 seconds whilst I fiddled with my music and caught my breath. Also made another mental note to sort those insoles out, toes definitely hurting now.
I finished the run with a 2.5k jaunt back up the canal to home. Nice and flat, a few dogs with or without leads to contend with, but I made it back in one piece, and finished off with a 5 minute walk back home.
I should mention at this point that at about 16.5k I had worked out why my lovely new trail shoes weren't as comfortable as they usually are, particularly on the toes. I have some othotic insoles that the podiatrist sorted for me, and they were in my other pair of ons, which meant that I had just run the entire run with no insoles at all, not even the stock ones! No wonder my feet were complaining. When I finally took my shoes and socks off, I discovered I have a nasty blister on the side of each big toe, all because I was daft and somehow managed to forget to put my insoles in. Honestly. OK, now you can all laugh
The other unwelcome thing was that I seem to have developed a case of joggers nipple! If you don't want the TMI bit, skip this paragraph!! I've always just run in shorts and tshirt, or maybe my long sleeved compression top which I hate because it makes me look fat even though I'm not overweight. This time, as it was particularly chilly, as previously mentioned, I had put on my cycling jacket. I've done a few runs in this, and it works brilliantly, In this case, I think it was putting more pressure and making my tshirt rub against my nipple. Maybe I need a sports bra? I would apply a little plaster, but given that I have some hair in that area, I fear the pain of removing it would be worse!
So - there you have it. If you've read this far, well done
Happy running folks!