Soggy

Growing up in Australia, I formed the impression that English weather is mostly grey and damp, so it was a delight to discover when I first arrived in the UK nearly four decades ago, that the sun shines frequently between the rain showers. However today was more typical of my childhood image of English weather. It was raining at dawn and the rain continued to fall from a bleak grey sky throughout the day. Nonetheless, dismal weather often appears more daunting when viewed through a window than it does once you are outside with fresh air in your nostrils, even if there is rain splashing on your face.

In mid-afternoon I set off for my run. I planned to do 3x2Km at 10K pace. The riverside path was covered in puddles, but nonetheless preferable to running on the road in poor visibility. At the end of my third week of moderately intense training, my legs felt a bit heavy as I splashed ponderously through the puddles. My times for the three 2K repetitions were 9:15; 9:15 and 9:20. Mean heart rate measurements were 142; 144 and 144. The mean heart rate measurements were higher than during my 6x 1K repetitions a week ago even though my pace was about 20 sec /Km slower. Even allowing for the fact that mean heart rate over 1Km seriously underestimates steady state heart rate because it takes about 2 minutes for pulse to rise from warm-up rate to near steady state, it is clear than my performance today was sluggish compared with last week. I hope that my current 10K pace is a little faster than 46 minutes, but today I doubt if I could have run any faster. I am afraid I was as soggy as the weather.

As I jogged home the rain eased off, the cloud cover lightened, and a delicate pink sunset lined the south-western sky. In crude paraphrase of Shakespeare: ‘Lo the day, in russet mantle cloaked, crept quietly away o’er yon south-western brae, after all was soaked’. It is now only a little over a week until solstice.

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One Response to “Soggy”

  1. Ewen Says:

    Thanks for the reminder! I type this looking out the window and it’s still light at 8:10pm. Ah, the long days of summer!

    The sogginess of the track obviously hurt those repeats. I imagine 45 or better for 10k is doable if you have the endurance. I think I was around 9 minutes, maybe slower for 2k repeats when running 45+. They are probably a good test of 10k race-pace and HR – especially the last one.

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