DIARY: Autumn season begins…

It has been twelve weeks since I did a run that could be considered as a meaningful training session apart from a few desperate races that I patched myself together for either out of duty (Wicklow Way Relay), restlessness (Strawberry Half-Marathon) and desire (Lakeland 50 Miler).

So in some ways yesterday’s two hour run with Markus Roessel and Aoife, on the Bandon peninsula in Cork, was a bit of a shock to the system. Despite the break, the old hip and feet were a bit battered after that but a cold dip at the sandy Broad Strand.afterwards undid some of the damage. Monday morning followed with a forty minute fartlek where I tried to feel my way in as the body was stiff. My fitness is ok but not as fantastic at it had been in March, yet the deconditioning of the legs is the main barrier to overcome leading into the cross-country season ahead.

I hope to partake and organise several training sessions over winter as this is an essential part of cross-country conditioning. In many ways, cross-country is the purest form of racing – no splits, no PBs, and less selfishness. It’s you and your club singlet, battling it out for every position, fighting against every man to score points for your team.

So, the train leaves the station again hoping to reach the planned destination. Not having a major race to peak for, but just focusing on racing cross-country and picking up valuable strength, tactics and experience at man-to-man racing should be extremely helpful in laying the foundations for a 2012 where I will, to borrow a phrase, “return to an old friend of mine”.