Monday morning it was back to the Ridgeway with my friend and running partner. This time we went from Sparsholt Firs heading east (and back) for a total of 14.5km @ 6m 12sec/km.
It was a good bit of the trail with a decent running surface for the most part and no really bad hills. The temperature was OK, although there was a very cool and brisk headwind on the return leg which made it a good deal harder – I’m surprised that we did it as quickly as we did. It’s a bit counter-intuitive but at some stage I need to practice running slower as (for me) that is (much) too fast for a 100km ultra.
The route of the ‘Race to the Stones’ is largely East to West but the prevailing wind is a westerly – 100km into a wind like the one we faced on Monday would be no fun at all. I like the route but a ‘Race from the Stones’, running it west to east is tempting.
Turbo on Tuesday – 45 minutes @ 29.5km (18.3mph). That was my best for nearly a month, immediately after my longest run for about 4 months. I still do not understand this exercise lark. Hill reps on Wednesday, I’m nothing if not
boringly predictable consistent. Another 9 reps for 9.5km and 317m of ascent (nearly 6 miles and 1,040 feet).
On Monday the house electrics had tripped – which I diagnosed (from the depths of my general ignorance of such things) as the element in the fan oven. New element ordered on Tuesday and it was delivered and I fitted it on Wednesday. It often seems to be getting harder to get stuff delivered so credit where credit’s due.
On Thursday we did a shorter run – time off for good behaviour – just 5.6km (nearly 3.5 miles) and Friday was the inevitable gym and bike shop. In the evening I went to the cycle club’s very good winter dinner (I felt a bit of an interloper having hardly cycled recently – but I think my hours in the shop, meetings and cycle teaching justified my attendance).
I ran with my wife again on Saturday, one of our shorter runs for 7.2km (4.5miles). I nearly ran again on Sunday but thought better of it as I’d already done seven straight days with exercise and it was still very windy (winds that had, I assume, contributed to our power cut on Saturday night).
Common sense prevailed but I’ll take some comfort from the fact that I felt that I could have run. A slight shame not to have got to 50km for the week but no prizes for being in decent shape in February and then getting injured.
During the week I signed up for a ‘swim doctor’ session at the local pool. I’m not entirely sure what it is but it’s on Monday. For an investment of £3 can I expect the ‘silver bullet’ by way of advice that will double my swim speed for half the effort? I wait in eager anticipation.
Interesting stuff this week
1. African wise words: Striking the ground with wood doesn’t scare away an elephant
2. BBC News website: Learner driver arrested twice on same day in same car
A learner driver was arrested twice on the same day, in the same car – for the same offence. The driver had a provisional licence and was arrested for driving without supervision on Wednesday. His car was seized and he returned later to get the car from the police pound. Officers said he was later arrested in the same car for, again, driving while unsupervised.
The driver of a car that picked up the arrested man for the second offence was also arrested for driving while disqualified.
3. BBC News website: Own goal by Europe’s football governing body
Uefa has decided not to take legal action against a German restaurant and its ‘Champignons League’ pizza.
European football’s governing body says its prestigious ‘Champions League’ competition can “happily live alongside” the mushroom pizza just a few days after sending the restaurant a letter threatening legal action over the name.
4. BBC News website: Historic bridge to be dismantled for Jeff Bezos
A record-breaking luxury yacht is being built by Dutch firm Oceanco for Mr Bezos. It is reported to be 417ft (127m) long and too tall to fit through Rotterdam’s Koningshaven Bridge which blocks its route to the sea.
Locals are not necessarily impressed and although it has been reported that the bridge will be dismantled (at Bezos’ cost) to let the yacht pass, Rotterdam’s mayor has denied that any decision has been made.
A bridge too far?
5. BBC News website: Cyclist updates
Egan Bernal is to have further surgery on his spine following his crash in his native Colombia after he hit a stationary bus while riding his time trial bike in January.
When using tri bars I am pretty cautious as I care about my ability to see properly – and I am nowhere like the position pros get into on time trial bikes.
The news about Amy Pieters is not great – she is said to be stable but still in a deep coma more than a month after her crash in training.
So sad, I’m still hoping for the best
6. BBC News website: Tom Brady retires
I’m not one to go with all the GOAT stuff – to many changes over the years to compare stars of one era with another, in my opinion ….. but with Brady I’m tempted to make an exception