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Training camp

A longer run tomorrow if I have time (which is unlikely)…

This week was training camp, which was set to be nice and also painful. I arrived in the early afternoon – just in time for a medium length run. The run was only 7.6 miles, but there was a climb of 1100 feet within the first couple of miles. Some parts were so steep that it was necessary for us to walk – man hills are hard!

The route itself was muddy and slippery, so much so that my new trail shoes weren’t fully able to cope with the terrain. This run took 83 minutes with a slower pace of 10:58 min/mile, but the view at the top of the hill made it worthwhile.

The next day I rather foolishly agreed to go for an “epic run” with a couple of the fittest men – this may have been the mistake that lowered my performance for the rest of the week. The run started the same as the previous, climbing up the same hill, but then we ran down the hill (hard on the legs) and up the other side of the valley to a second and third peak, with a total ascent of 2900 feet. I was definitely slowing down the group, having to walk some of the ascents and on the second “easy” half after all the peaks I was lagging behind.

There was a really steep downhill that the others seemed to fly down; however I was really struggling as my thighs were protesting during the whole descent. At the end there was one more climb and joy when I finally recognised where we were. The run was 15.4 miles in 165 minutes (pace 10:45 min/mile).

Later that day I decided to go out for a slow and flat run, managing 3 miles in 24 minutes – much slower than my usual pace.

The next day I decided to do a real session, which involved running to the start point, difficult in itself as the others seemed to have boundless energy at their disposal. Then we did a variant of Fartlek, which is short periods of high effort (in this case 3 minutes), followed by the same period as an active recovery. We ran this for a total of 1 hour, turning around at 30 minutes and seeing if we could get back to the start point in the remainder of the time, beating our own first half. It was a really good exercise and I would recommend it to anyone, as you can both race yourself and others, as everyone should reach the start/finish at approximately the same time. This was then followed by a leisurely jog home.

In the afternoon I decided to run to the pub to check there was adequate pathing/lighting for a nighttime run (this pub was set to be showing the football I wanted to watch the following day) – this was a simple round trip of around 5 miles.

The next day I discovered I was injured, which was really annoying, especially as I was on track to reach the hundred-point challenge on camp (59/100 points at the halfway point). My left knee and Achilles’ began to hurt after a couple of miles so I cut short my run, deciding to rest the remainder of the day.

The next day I decided to go for a walk, to see if my heel could take it – it was absolutely fine for a 4-mile walk. Then I decided to try a jog, making it half a mile before having to walk home – my camp was over!

I decided to leave a couple of days early to avoid the temptation of running before my heel had healed.

Rest for me…

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