DIARY: More Cross-Recovery

Looking at the results I can reflect happily on Sunday’s work. My average speed of 3:44min/km was 7 seconds faster per kilometre despite the slower overall time (the Phoenix Park course was short by about 400m compared to the Adamstown course).

As many of my colleagues ventured out on another marathon adventure yesterday (well done all), I felt slightly inspired and with the Dublin Seniors looming on Sunday, I knew Monday would be a good day to get as many hours work in as possible.

Clara Vale for the masses

So off I went running a short 5k loop over “Boots Mountain” at Clarabeg before descending through the forests of Ballard and crossing into Clara Vale. Here I went exploring in various directions and by the time I felt the first signs of thirst and tiredness 22k had passed by (as on all my long runs I don’t bring food and water. I’m training fat burning and an economic intake of water, so unless a run is more than 3 hours I think it’s self-defeating).

Clara Vale was very busy after the Irish Times article this weekend pulled the veil away from the face of this little gem but I have a feeling there’ll be many a dark day when I’ll still stride through the indigenous trees in tranquil solitude.

At around 27k I left the vale behind me and started the steep ascent back to my house at Clarabeg and kilometre 29 up a thin, vertical clay track was painfully slow going. Yet, done was done and arriving at my front door with 30.23k done and 2:57 on the clock, my yearning for the marathon felt somewhat sated.

Time to Rest! (in relative terms)

Today I will take care of my body a bit and have changed my marathon-pace session to a normal recovery run of 40-60 minutes. The rest of the week now looks relatively easy and it’ll need to be. I had a look at the Senior Cross-Country results from 2008 and see that people tend to be 2-3 minutes slower than their road 10k. This would put me above 40 and well placed to finish among the very last. Be that as it may, I intend to go out gunning for breaking 40 and ensuring that someone (anyone!) finishes behind me. Joining me in my pursuit in his first cross outing for the club is my fellow hill runner Jason Kehoe. Thomas Chamney unfortunately had to cancel. Such a pity as I should have loved to line up in the same team as an Olympic contender although I have no illusion of being in the same class. An exciting day glitters in the distance...