Thursday 21 April 2011

To fling or not to fling, that is the question

I'm torn on this one. Do I do the 53 mile Highland Fling next weekend? Obviously my head wants to do it, but my body is dragging on the idea some what. I know it's a bit of an ask considering the 100K was only five minutes ago - a race, which incidentally, pretty much broke me - but it ranks pretty high on the wish list.

I'm sure I've recovered or at least on the mend. With less than five weeks between races, there's about a 20 minute window for training in between recovering from one race and tapering for the next next. With this in mind, I probably tried to get back into running quicker than my legs would have liked. I attempted my first run four days after the race. Officially the most ungraceful run ever. I liken it to drinking a bottle of wine and trying to run for a bus. My arms and legs felt like they weren't connected to my body and my eyes were rattling about in my head. And I don't know where to begin with the aches and pains. My calves were a mess. I lasted four miles and walked the last one. Broken. And back to square one.

After that I took another few days off and started back on the Monday. A easy week and then a cracking run on the West Highland Way. I wasn't sure if my legs were up for it, but it was so good to be back on the trails that I loved every minute of it. Twice up and down Conic Hill gave my quads a good kickin' too. It had only been two months since my last real off-road run, but it's amazing how quickly you become un-hill-fit.

Last week, I did my first speed session and it wasn't as nasty as i anticipated. If anything, it was just what I needed. That coupled with a great 18-mile run on Kilpatrick Hills on Friday and my mojo is resumed.

So, as it stands, I'm about 80% sure I'm doing the Fling.

This year - the UK's biggest ultra - will be the UKA Trail Championships and the Scottish Ultra Trail Championships. Looking at the starters list, the men's field is quite spectacular. It will be really interesting to see this one unfold. The Highland Fling is the perfect race to separate the men from the boys, so to speak. It's long enough that you can't wing on marathon training. It's short enough that you can't rely on luck and good fuelling. Hilly enough to knee-cap and road runner and flat enough to disadvantage the mountain-goats.


Thomas said...

Deb's can I copy your blog and publish it as my own one? ;-)

80% chance does not sound bad at all! So I guess I see you at the biggest race of the year as a competitor (and you are of course one of the race favourites :-)). No pressure!

May the taper be gentle to you!

Anonymous said...

This looks remarkably similar to the dilemma posed by the Piratical one recently (albeit phrased slightly differently ;-)).

The vast majority of those who offered him advice recommended he should subject himself to an 800 mile round trip to do the race, rather than mope around in the south of England feeling sorry for himself and what he's missing.

Unless you are specifically injured as such I reckon you too should go for it!


John Kynaston said...

Hi Debs

I was wondering how training for the 100k would affect you for the Highland Fling.

I really hope you do run the Fling and I won't mind when you overtake me and run off into the distance.

But it is your choice and only you will really know if you are ready for it.

With the whw in mind you'll need to do a 53miler anyway so you might as well do the Fling!!

See you at 6am a week on Saturday!


Ali Bryan-Jones said...

Just treat it as a training run and have a great day out.

The Sunday Adventure Club said...

Do it ya woose!

KarenR said...

Hope to see you there. I woosed out a long time ago and doing leg 3 of the relay :-)
Only you will know how you feel, go with that x

Subversive Runner said...

As MtM pointed out above, I have a similar dilemma, Deb. But my decision may have been made for me by the person administering the leave of the personnel of the London Fire Brigade. The same person that just cancelled my leave on the Fling weekend. Grrr..... I've just re entered my leave so we'll see. But you have no leave Nazi making decisions for you, so Fling, missus.x

Santababy said...

Hope to see you there Debs, its so easy to say just do it as training run, not so easy to follow through!

Keith Hughes said...

JFDI .. Come and have some fun !

Caroline said...

Go for it! That's what you told me to do before Edinburgh and it worked out well for me! Hope to see you on Saturday. Caroline