Going out in the dark was a bit of a change and despite the early start I was quite looking forward to it. It meant I would be running when it was cool, as opposed to having a baking hot sun trying to turn me to jelly, and there would be little traffic and nasty fumes around. I was hoping this would give me a good indicator of where I really am fitness-wise, especially as I haven´t played rugby for two weeks either. My other motivation was that it was my last long run...and while I cannot put into words how happy this made me, I can give you an idea:
So, off I went. I walked the first ten minutes as per usual, then started some kind of demented stagger to try to get my legs moving like something resembling a runner. I went my usual route through the back streets and then hit the countryside, which, due to the hour of day, was pitch black:
Despite it being scary as hell, this run through pitch dark country lanes has proven beyond doubt that zombies, and monsters in general, don´t exist. The simple reason for this deduction is that if they did exist, I wouldn´t be here now. It was the perfect setting to get me. As they clearly didn´t, we can obviously put that one to rest. I hope you can all sleep easier now as clearly, the only thing resembling a zombie was me.
But then, things started to get better. I started to be properly warmed up, was making a good pace and in general, finding the whole thing a lot easier. I hope this means my plan is paying off and all those summer training hours may have done me some real good.
I carried on up through Mutxamel and then, instead of coming down through San Juan, I kept going north and headed towards the N340. It was at this point that God started showing off how many colours He knows:
Then I got a case of runner´s trots just before I hit the national road so had to stop in a garage. There is nothing more embarrassing than this - stopping in a garage when you don´t have a car, buying one poxy bottle of water and spending far too long in the toilet, so it´s obvious why you went in there. I know we all have to, but I hate rubbing it in people´s faces.
Anyway, down I went through San Juan and eventually came to the beach. Now, I don´t want to brag about where I live but I have to say that just after sunrise, the beach is possibly one of the most uplifting places you can be:
Inspired and close to the end of the run I headed back through the Alicante Golf and made it to Albufereta at about 2 hours 50, which meant I could go into cool down phase i.e. start walking. This made me very happy indeed:
When I got home, I´d covered just over 17 miles, which according to most people is good enough to get around a full marathon. I´d also done this distance by incorporating a fair amount of walking into my training, especially for the cool downs which last about 30 minutes, so I reckon there´s a fair bit left in the tank for race day itself.
Sooooooo.....3 weeks to go!!! I´m looking forward to it, so much so that I´ll sign off by sharing this short 2 minute video...
They can´t scare me. My next post will be from the finish line...happy days!