Quick update post long run yesterday.
I did it… guess that’s the main thing to say. However, I attempted it at Kielder around the lake. Anyone who has ever been there will know it is largely a bikers’ track. (The route I ran part of is described as “moderate and suitable for intermediate cyclists and mountain bikers”.)
That means hill after hill after hill. I ran higher than I’ve run to date, but it wasn’t even that. It was the gradient and the relentlessness. You battle up a steep hill, with your head down and a determination. Then you revel in the downhill, taking care not to put too much pressure through your knees, enjoying picking up the speed for that hill. Then, before you’ve found your pace again, when it’s barely levelled out, you’re climbing, levelling out, then climbing, climbing and climbing still. And repeat.
I have run the hills around where I live, many of which are long, steady and continuous for miles. Some which are steeper and still seemingly relentless. But this never-ending up and down, up and down, took it out of me like nothing to date. Bring into it the fact I ran my furthest to date – 16.5 miles – and I used up every ounce of energy I had.
It will be a great training ground for my knees, legs and stamina, but I think perhaps using it to run further than I’ve ever run before may not be the most sensible way to do it!
Crashed last night and am exhausted and stiff today – and dreading tomorrow’s stiffness when I return to work after a work off. Hopefully gardening and then three hours standing in a Carlisle park today to watch the Roman Turma may have helped loosen me up.
The biggest thing I’ve learned though, is the impact of such exertion on my body. It was the first time I’d done a long run after a medium length run the day before (I did the eight miles on Friday). My Garmin told me I’d burned 1,596 calories in yesterday’s run. That’s probably as much as I ate the previous day – without taking into account the calories I burned in that eight mile run. I need to seriously look at what I’m eating and how much, to ensure I have enough fuel to go on. We’ve kept half an eye on it, but it’s driven home just how vital it really will be as this challenge approaches.
Still, lessons learned. Now to hope I ease enough before my six miles tomorrow night! Gulp…