Sunday 20 January 2008

The hills of Helensburgh

The lack of exertion in yesterday's x-swamp race meant that my legs were fine 'n' dandy for today's long-run. Realising that I hadn't uncovered any hidden talents for cross-country running, I headed back on the roads.

Marco devised a wee gem of an 18-mile route. Unlike his usual adventurous standards, this one was relatively normal. It didn't involve abseiling, scrambling, swimming or pot-holing. And I didn't come home harbouring murderous thoughts or looking like the exorcist. Double bonus. OK, it wasn't easy by any stretch of the imagination. It was crazy hilly. One incline merited a road sign highlighting the 17% incline. Believe it or not it was still a tame route for a man who was cross-bred with a mountain goat. Unfortunately, given the location of our house there is very few routes that aren't hilly. Fortunately that means I'm not shy on good-quality hill training.
The route started from the house to Balloch and along Loch Lomond side. Then it crossed the A82 on to the cycle path to Helensburgh and along with seafront over to Cardross. Then it up and over the evil Carmen Hill and through Renton. I had to do a wee circuit round Christie Park to make it up to the 18-mile. Finished in 2:43:11 with average pace of 9:04.
I bought a pair of Skins on Friday. I know, I'm a marketers dream. Tried them for the first time today. Deary me, they don't leave much to the imagination. They must be the modern day equivalent to Speedos. If my legs are spared even a little pain after today's epic journey then they're worth their weight in gold. I'll keep you posted. Think I'll be wearing them on the WHW. I just need to find a top, trainers and socks to match. Said half-jokingly.
Went to a core conditioning class at Kevinhall tonight. It's a combination of yoga and pilates, specifically geared up for runners. Wow I underestimated the strength that's required for something like this. I dabbled with yoga about six/seven years, before I started running. It was just one of my many fads way back then. Short-lived. If I can find the time, I'd like to keep it up long enough to at least touch my toes. After years of running, I can barely touch my knees.

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