I had been improving all week since getting over the chest infection, but still needed to recover a bit. I did the track session on Tuesday (run to track and 800m warmup, then 6 x 800m at 4:00 each followed by a run home again) and had a recovery day on Wednesday. On Thursday I was taking part in the Kildalkey 5 miler with my BIL (a sprinter). I was hoping to be reasonably quick and was well prepared from the day before. My BIL was going to give me a lift to the race and we met up in advance and chatted about it. We arrived at the start just after 11:00 for a 12:00 start only to find out it didn't start until 14:00...doh! At least it didn't start without us!
So we went back home and I bought a chicken and cheese sandwich in a local shop to keep me going as it was around the time I have lunch every day. I knew I wouldn't last without food. We got ourselves ready again and drove over to the start, which was thankfully getting busy by now. We got our bib numbers, along with a free high viz vest, and decided to do a warmup.
We did about 1.7k warmup at a relaxed pace, then another 700m jog to the start line and a quick run through to get the fast twitch fibers awake at 4:10 pace. By this stage my gut was feeling a bit heavy but I ignored it.
There were runners from lots of different clubs there, which was great to see. When we all lined up the gun went off and I set off a bit fast (about 3:50min/k). Very soon my stomach was giving out big time and I had to ease off just so I could keep going.
I kept it at about 4:50 to 5:15 pace (depending on how my stomach felt) and kept going, knowing I should be able to go a lot faster!
I finished in an official time of 38:43, a lot slower than I had hoped. I started chatting to other runners (178 finished) and very soon my thoughts turned to preparing myself for tomorrow's workout and building up to my LSR at the weekend.
On Friday I hit the gym early and did my usual workout with an easy 8k on the treadmill, and I felt fine. No stomach issues. Later in the day I had another sandwich with cheese in it and my stomach felt the same cramps. Maybe I have an issue with cheese, I'll keep off it for a while and see.
Saturday was devoted to the family and an official rest day - absolutely no training!
On Sunday I was up about 5:45 and had breakfast and got my stuff together. My hydration pack only holds 1litre, so I carried a bottle of Powerade in my hand for the first 13k or so. It was raining slightly but not too bad. I set off on a route that I'd cycled before, so I knew roughly the distance I was going to get. My pace from the start was up & down, but then I started singing a marching song (in my head) and it was at just the right pace that I wanted to keep. That did the trick and I sang four lines of the song every few mins to remind me of my pace. The run was all in zone 2 and after my initial settling down my HR didn't go above 155bpm, which I'm pretty happy about. All in all I covered 32.5k - my longest run by over 5k to date. For the last 1.5k I was feeling really good and actually smiling! So I brought the pace up to around 5:25min/k until I got close to the house and slowed up a bit.
All in all a good bit of training and just 3 weeks to the marathon in Connemara.
On Saturday I also got to pay a visit to the shop of IrishFit, which I had only ever visited online before. I got chatting to Sean (the owner) and bought a pair of padded cycling shorts - having recently done 79k commute to/from work these are badly needed! Also, I was looking to try out a different recovery drink and Sean recommended Hammer Recoverite. I bought some and tried it after my LSR. The taste is very weak but it's not as heavy on the stomach as Kinetica (which just ran out). I'll keep on it and let you know.
Also, during the LSR I got two blisters on the toes of my right foot (one burst during the run), even though I was wearing my 1,000 mile socks - guaranteed blister proof...hmmm.