Dieting is a funny old business. This past week, I’ve not done anything exceptional in terms of eating (too much) and, if you read my post yesterday, you will know I walked 24 miles on Saturday. (My brother’s gizmo, counted over 59,000 steps). BUT, my weight has gone up!
OK, I accept that I had another cooked breakfast and a few beers following our walk, but nothing much more than the week before, when my weight went down – albeit only slightly. So I’m a little confused. But, as I’m now back home in good old Switzerland (and not tempted by bacon and real ale), it’s time to really concentrate on my intake.
As you will see my graph is very red, so I’ve already cut out beer and wine for the past 2 evenings and plan to continue with that this week at least. My sugar intake (e.g. in tea) is being reduced ever so slightly, maybe even until I’m weaned off it. Cakes and biscuits are definitely off the menu. And I plan to do some exercise every day if I can, even if it’s only walking to the shops and back.
As for my training last week, thankfully, it’s a much better story. It’s fair to say that I’ve been inspired by all the running blogs that I follow (and all that talk of tempo runs and interval sessions, etc.) I’ve mentioned to a few people that I’m now one-paced, but I figured that there’s no real reason why I can’t do some intervals, or whatever.
So, knowing that I would be walking at the weekend, I decided that for my main (and one and only) run, I would drop back to the 13.1 mile distance of Week 9. I decided to ‘make an effort’ for the first 11k, to see if I could beat my previous time and I did, by 1 minute. (I think that might be what you youngsters call a tempo run). My left calf was a bit tight on the way, but I still decided to do some 500m ‘sprints’ on the way back. (Is this an interval session or just a fartlek or both? Whatever…)
I had 10k to cover, so I did 5 x 500m easy followed by 500m at a ‘fast’ pace, then a 5k ‘warm down’ run to the finish. Remember this was the first time I’ve tried ‘sprinting’ in years… So I took the first one easy and I timed it at 2m 25s. For the 2nd one, I forgot to start the watch, but it would have been about the same time. The next three were done in 2m 20s, 2m 16s and 2m 14s respectively. Feeling pretty pleased with myself, I began the last 5k at my normal (marathon type) pace and, with 3k to go, I noticed that I was on for a good time, so I made an effort. (‘Twas ever thus, I’m afraid, when confronted with the possibility of a good time). I finished the 13.1 in 1h 54m 56s, which was about 4.5 minutes faster than 2 weeks before. Not bad I thought for 2, or was it 3, back-to-back training sessions.
On the way home, and to put this all into context, I worked out that these ‘sprints’ were at 4.5m per k (or 7m 15s per mile), or 22m 30s for a 5k, (which is slower than my mate Pete has been running his 5k Park Runs recently – so I’m very impressed with his ‘comeback’ performances) or a 3h 10 min marathon (which is slower than I used to run them 16 years ago). So they weren’t so fast after all! 😦