Monday, August 18, 2008

So whose legs are these?

Seriously, I don't think they're mine!

I went to bed last night feeling quite tired after a screening of The Dark Knight at the wonderful Empire Theatre in Island Bay (with a VERY good single scoop of chocolate ice cream that I'd been waiting for all day). I was sensible enough to know that I'd blow out if I tried to do weights this morning and the chance to lie in was too good to pass up. So I slept till 7am and woke still feeling a bit fatigued. It was such a big weekend, could I continue the pace without a little rest?

I continued to feel tired all day at work. I had to present a paper to a steering group and after that meeting finished at 3pm my brain pretty much checked out for the day. After the meeting I sat at my desk in a little pool of warm sunshine (hitting refresh for updates on the women's triathlon) until late in the afternoon when I looked up and saw clouds rolling in from the Strait. It appeared the forecast Southerly change had arrived.

All the same it was still calm and clear when I met up with some of the former Jog Squad for a run at 6. None of us were feeling terribly energetic. The organiser of tonight's run was bowing out with a migraine. I wasn't sure how I would go after yesterday's Belmont run. Sarah had a chest cold and a couple of girls had raced in the Five Bridges 10km event yesterday.

Karen set a reasonably challenging run for us along the waterfront almost to the base of Tinakori, then up a side-street to Tinakori, up Tinakori to Bowen, down Bowen, then up and over the Terrace and back via Dixon Street. Sally took off up Taranaki Street and I thought there was no way I was going to keep up. My legs felt a bit heavy as we ran along the waterfront towards the railway station but I held my own and was still on pace when we got to the railway station. From there Sarah, Sally and I stuck together all the way to Tinakori Rd.

As we were running along Thorndon Quay Sally commented that she thought she had felt a drop of rain. A few seconds later I felt another drop of rain. As we reached Tinakori Rd the heavens opened. Within seconds we were drenched and cold. It was about this time that Sally started complaining about her legs feeling dead. I was just amazed I was still keeping up. We decided the weather was too nasty to be fun and none of us felt like running up the Terrace. We all agreed to run down Bowen then return to the gym via Lambton Quay and Willis Street.

With Sally's legs bothering her and Sarah's chest holding her back I somehow found myself in the lead. The further I went the better I felt. I bowled down Bowen and would have been first to the bottom had my silly Formotion shoe laces not come undone in the wet.

Sally and I met up again at the Terrace/Bowen intersection. We decided to run up the Terrace to Woodward, then cut down to Lambton Quay. Sarah was some way behind us at this point and I thought briefly that she might mistakenly think we'd gone the whole way to Dixon. Unfortunately I was right and Sarah went the whole way up the hill.

Once we got down to Lambton Sally and I were really sprinting along. I dropped my arms and concentrated on staying relaxed and keeping my shoulders down and chest high, trying not to lean forward. I tried to keep engaging my glutes and pushing forward. I was doing really well too, then about two thirds of the way to Willis Sally seemed to engage that other gear that I've always suspected her of having. She got ahead of me slightly and I couldn't haul her in again.

As we neared Manners Street there was a flash of lightening and a crack of thunder. The temperature had continued to plummet. I was nearly all done from trying to keep up with Sally and I let her pull ahead a little more. All the same I finished fairly strongly and couldn't work out where tonight's display of speed had come from.

We were all freezing cold and soaked so it was a very quick stretch before we all headed for the showers. I got an itchy rash from being frozen then warm from the hot water in rapid succession. By the time I got to the bus stop I was cold again, and continued to cool as I waited for the bus. It was a relief to find the heater blasting when the bus eventually did arrive.

I can't believe how well tonight's race went. I should have been barely able to walk after the weekend's exertions and yet I managed to fly through most of the run. I can only conclude that two and a half years of consistent training are finally paying off. Perhaps I finally have the strength and endurance to be able to push myself daily and yet still recover. One thing is for certain, I run faster when Sally is around. I just need to be careful that I don't get so competitive that I overdo things and injure myself.

I'm off to bed soon because I'm going to be up at 5.30 to do Dee's RPM class. I expect that if I thought I was tired today I'll REALLY be tired tomorrow. It's not idea finishing a run at 7pm at night then doing RPM less than 12 hours later. However Dee's classes are good enough to warrant it. Once Gearshifters starts I'll be able to do her RPM classes at night, and that will make things easier.

1 comment:

Sass said...

Sally is awesome as a pacer I have to say. And her running style is so strong to watch as well!