This day 2 years ago I laced up a pair of runners and headed out for a 2.1 mile inaugural lap around the block with my friend Adrian as we embarked on our running careers with the aim of completing a marathon. Prior to that the total number of miles I had run in my lifetime was less than 20. Since then I have clocked up about 3,430 miles - so you could say I was hooked. However if it wasn't for Adrian and our common goal I would not have persevered through those initial months of slow slog and would probably have given up.
My time for that run was 18:10 (08:39 pace). The first 100 yards went very well and from then on it was a struggle to get around. Adrian stopped and walked with a half mile to go (who could blame him, he had just quit smoking - I was 4 years ahead of him on that score). Having learnt our lesson we took it a bit easier on our second attempt the following day, completing the loop in over 22 minutes (10 minute pace plus). But persevere we did, completing our first marathon in Dublin 10 months later.
Two years on and my pace for this morning's 6.7 mile "barefoot" recovery run of 08:33 wasn't far off that of my first run, the only difference being that I ran this morning at a very relaxed effort (120HR) despite the heavy rain and strong winds. While I was soaked through the barefoot experience spared me running in waterlogged shoes and socks. Splashing through puddles never felt better. Although the water felt cold to the feet they soon warmed up as the shoes drained quickly.
Here's to the next two years of running. In the meantime I hope to give my PB sidebar a bit of a revamp before the third anniversary comes round.
I started running shortly after my 40th birthday to train for the "once in a lifetime marathon" (mid-life crisis and all that) and haven't been able to stop since. This blog charts my progress as I attempt to go farther and faster than I have ever gone before.