Nearly a year since my last post, that can't be right...can it?
It is! Oh well, let's skip past the awkwardness and get right back into it, like long lost friends.
So I basically have zero excuses now. Nada. Zilch. Cero. Nil. There was the knee operation, then the wedding, then the holidays, then torn ankle ligaments (showing off coming down Ben Lomond) then the travelling across America, then the emigrating to New Zealand, then finding a home, moving into that home, getting a job and finally Christmas. Now there is nothing. I'm fresh out of excuses. I suppose I better get back into the running again... :)
I feel like I have been starting from scratch. No miles in the legs and 2 stone of extra insulation (aka fat) has helped remind me how hard starting from scratch can be.
So I start with the basics, flat short lunchtime runs have helped me back back out. However after weeks of churning these out I see zero difference. I still struggle, I'm still 2 stone heavier and I'm not getting any faster. Consistency, I remind myself. Consistency.
So at the weekend I decided to crank it up a notch. Hubby and MY work mates were going a mountain bike ride on a trail up and around Mt Oxford. Come run whilst we bike, they said. It's only 10k, they said. Great idea! 10k up hill on trails is a great progression from my completely flat road airport lunchtime runs, so I sign myself up.
We meet for coffee en route and it is mentioned that they THINK it's actually 10k out and then 10k back. Okay, this is longer than planned, but will now be my first long run in...well a long time. Thankfully, after growing up with Brother Calderwood, I prepare for most of my runs to double in distance, so am prepared for a 20 mile run rather than a 6 miler.
We drive our car to the car park. Meet lots of other bikers. Great day everyone is saying. I'm still not 100% sure what a "great day" in New Zealand means but my Scottish interpretation means I am already dripping in sweat and I have only walked 10 meters! But sure, "it's a great day for it", why not.
To be fair, a great day was had. I paced myself well to the top. Got to the "saddle" before the bikers (as they were waiting on the slow yins at the back, runners don't need to wait on anyone) Now at this point most people kept continuing to the "Hut". Hut or saddle. Hut or Saddle. I couldn't remember where I was supposed to meet everyone. HUT OR SADDLE? Hut is only an extra 5k - I'll head to the hut.
Mistake number 2 of the day - MUST start checking if 5K means 5K out and THEN 5K back or TOTAL 5K. So that's another 10K added to my run.
I head on which is all downhill. Sweet. In the euphoria of the downhill it slipped my mind that I was on a out and back run, therefore I had to about turn at the hut and then head back up the hills the hills I was sprinting down a few minutes ago.
I meet the Hubby and Rik on the way back who tell me we were SUPPOSED to meet at the Saddle and the others have headed back. Wimps. Thankfully the next section is mostly downhill, but downhill on tired legs means I face plant into a bush. Thankfully not a rock or tree, so aside from the shock, I am completely fine. Nothing like a face plant to get the heart rate up :)
All in all a solid 17.5 mile run. I started to tire towards the end, even on the flat and downhills. I was feeling sorry for myself the last 2 miles and counting them down and had to have a stern talking to myself. I reminded myself of how completely lousy I felt in The Fling and that was nearly 3 times the distance. MAN UP HEATHER!!!
Finito! We head for coffee and cake afterwards to round up a great day. I've ran the route since and taken a wee video of it so I will get that up later this week so you can see what it looks like.