After a later-then-expected night following some bad poker playing on my behalf, dragging myself out of bed this morning was made easier by the brilliant blue sky that I could see through the velux.
My final five weeks of my fundraising and running challenge for Maggie’s Centres has been mapped out in detail to give me the best chance of stretching my target to 1,100km, with the hope of stretching the fundraising total to match!
The schedule showed a 16 kilometre run for this morning, that’s 10 miles to you traditionalists. Eleven months ago the thought of running 16 kilometres would have been laughable; I was only just capable of running 10 kilometre in one go.
With my trusty Oakleys heading for their first outing of the year, I set off into the sunshine. The shady side of the streets were still very cold so I tried to get into the sun wherever possible. I knew once I got out of town it would be less of an issue with no building creating shade.
My selected route would take me out of Witney via West End to head through Hailey and Poffley End to Ramsden, with its snowdrops out in numbers, before turning back towards Witney via Whiteoak Green and Hailey.
I chose to head down Milking Lane to bring me into Witney on Crawley Road which turned out to be less gravelly than I remembered! The lane was a touch muddy in most places but puddles of mud in others so it was a tricky but fun downhill stretch.
Heading back up the Mill Street hill was hard work so close to the end of the run but dropping down Woodford Way helped to take the strain of the legs on the last kilometre.
I felt great, albeit tired, and only felt better when I started to look at my split times. Firstly, I managed to improve my best 10 mile time by 2 minutes, recording 01:24:54. I also managed the fabled negative split, covering the second half of the run in a quicker time than the first half of the run, having covered the first 8km in 00:43:36.
On looking at the first 10 kilometres I also noticed that I managed a negative split for that also, showing I managed to keep getting quicker throughout the whole run. I’m feeling stronger and stronger and just hope that the progress continues over the next 5 weeks so that I can finish my challenge on a high by securing a 10k personal best at the final run of my challenge, the Carterton 10k.