I’ve just reached the end of week 2 of my Hal Higdon Intermediate I program. Because, yes, I’ve taken the plunge and booked my flight – Chicago, here I come! Via a very long and winding trip (Humberside, Amsterdam, Detroit, Chicago) I arrive in Chicago on the 9th of October and head back via the same route on the evening of Monday the 13th. So those of you going out there to run – I’m there and looking to meet up with everyone!
And so the training has an edge now as well – I have made the financial decision to go, now all my body has to do is follow and train. And so far, so good. Admittedly, the first two weeks are not too high in mileage and although I had to miss a run last week because of the most unbelievable streaming cold (can you believe it? In June?) I managed to get every run in this week. I went out for 9 this morning with Sally which was great – just like old times. Except for the fact that my former protegee has completely overtaken me in fitness and ability.. Remember this woman who, in February 2007, joined me for her first ever 10 miler? And who very quietly and underconfidently trained for her first marathon in October and then helped me get a PB? Well this wonderful woman ran Edinburgh a few weeks ago and despite her fears about running it alone and some major major stomach upsets along mile 22 (which slowed her down considerably) she went round in 3:51:41 – a time I can only dream of. What a woman! And there’s no slowing her down – she had a tough week at work this past week and unwound with 10 yesterday before joining me on my leisurely 9 this morning. Honestly! If I didn’t love her I would resent the hell out of her, but believe me, it’s impossible to do so. She is just such a lovely person, you really do wish her the fastest possible times (most of the time – and it would be great if she could just pass me some of whatever juju it is she’s got going). So here’s an old photo of us together at our first race, her first half marathon and the first time she pushed me to a PB. and may there be many more to come – though somehow I doubt it. She has just herself out of my league I fear…
In other news – the ongoing saga of the knees – all seems to be under control at the moment. Plenty of stretching, walk breaks in my long runs and some painful sessions on the foam roller ( just like Akshaye ) seem to be doing the trick. Back to the osteo this week and a bit more acupuncture as well – it didn’t seem to make any difference last time but apparently you need more than one go to see if it works. So I’m going with that for the time being. The way I see this developing is that, hopefully, with a bit of tweaking and loosening from the professionals, my knees will be happy with the slowly increasing mileage and not go insane again. We shall see!
Finally – I am fast beginning to realise that the real enemy of my schedule is not my knees (thankfully) but the encroachment of the rest of my life. Work is incredibly much busier than it has ever been in a previous training cycle and the squeeze that puts on the rest of my life, never mind my training, is taking some adjustments. Right now I’m intending to plan ahead – I can see some obstacles up ahead and I’m just ducking and diving, switching training days and commitments around to get (most of) my training in. Next week I’m off to London with my son to hospital – nothing as serious as the last time around but nonetheless pretty intense and unpleasant. I hope to get a run in – running saved my bacon last time round – but won’t beat myself up if I can’t.
So no shocking news for y’all – just an update to tell everyone I’m back out there and training hard – so someone book Giordano’s for the Sunday night! (I don’t think we can justify that the night before, do you?)
Stay healthy, stay happy, keep running…