Milestone Run: 18 Miles of Exploration

To be completely honest I was feeling a bit wiped this week after last weekend’s trail run, and my legs were reaching a worrying level of soreness that just about bordered on injury. But nonetheless, my focus at the moment is resting up and recovering properly in order to avoid the complete burnout I experienced first hand earlier on in the year. So following an early night on Friday, my alarm went off at 6am, I made breakfast, coffee, and was out the door by 7.

 

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My long run took me to Greenwich, along the river to Tower Bridge, across the river, through Shoreditch and to Highbury and Islington. I had about two wonderful miles following the canal in the sun, taking in the beautiful scenery and most of London just waking up. Right at the end of the canal I came across a runner who’d taken a nasty fall and hurt her knee- and so I swept in like Mary Poppins, offering plasters and Haribo from my all-day rucksack. It was really odd just going up to people like that and getting involved (which is unusual in London) but I’d like to think someone would do the same for me.

 

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Somehow I ended up in Finsbury Park and then on the Capital Ring for miles 15-18. It was essentially a lovely path through a shaded forest, and I even managed to pick up my pace – but then as soon as my watch hit 18 miles I collapsed in a pile on the floor for what has to count as one of the most glorious lie-downs I’ve experienced in a while.

 

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Overall this long run was a huge struggle, but I’m glad I did it. I’m happy to be building mileage early on in my training so that I can focus on speed later on. I’m concerned that my long runs are very slow right now, but I have to remind myself that I’m doing the speedwork, and that I’m still 9 weeks out, and that it will all come together in the end. Or at least I have to hope it will.

 

A few key stats:

 

Breakfast: Toast, peanut butter and apple butter, with strong coffee and almond milk. Also- some berries.
During my run: A sugar-free Snapple iced tea (how have I only just discovered this), a sugar-free Ribena, and about half a bag of Haribo.
Weather: Hot and humid first thing (around 7am), but then a breeze set in which cooled things off a bit.
Aches and pains: A weird inner-ankle/low shin pain which caused me to limp slightly, plus a tight right hamstring/glute that would ease up as I got going.

 

Highlights: Seeing sleeping swans on the Thames somewhere near Rotherhithe, and then running along the canal.

 

How’s your training going this week?

 

Lots of love,

 

Pippa

 

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9 thoughts on “Milestone Run: 18 Miles of Exploration

  1. Hi, I am new to running and as of next week I will be new to London (moving next thursday!) so its great to see some wonderful sites to keep me motivated about running. Have you got many suggestions for places to run?

    I really like the blog.

    Simon x

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  2. Nice work and great pictures! You’re building endurance during your long runs, not speed, so don’t even worry about the pace. It’s easy to get caught up thinking that you won’t be able to run the marathon at a faster pace, but that’s really not true. Staying slow will help you avoid that burn out and injury.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I’m guess I’m just freaking out about pace since I’m following the “Run Less, Run Faster” approach to training which has a lot of focus on pace, even during the long run! But yes, you’re right, i need to freak out less 🙂

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  3. Sounds like a beautiful run! I remember my first 20 miler, I finished only about a block away from my boyfriend’s place, right in front of a store that we frequent regularly. I was this close to going inside and asking them to call my boyfriend to come pick me up. 😛

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  4. Nice Pippa. I like an early morning run too. It’s the best feeling. Being up before lots of folk. Do your thing and then get on with the rest of the day.
    I’m attempting a 5k tonight to see if the legs still work.

    Liked by 1 person

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