... You realise you've just achieved something you didn't think you could do... however small that may be!
Fuelled with copious amounts of hangover following a fab night at the theatre, watching Oliver, last night, I didn't expect much more than a vague attempt at plodding back and forth along the same stretch of road several times when I joined some runners from club today. The session, mainly aimed at the marathon trainees, was the Yasso 800's; but rather than doing them on the track, we used the same stretch of road we had used on Monday night's session. For those of you unfamiliar with the session, it's built around 1/2 mile reps - which the others were aiming to run in 4 minutes (as they're aiming for a 4 hour finishing time in the Manchester marathon) - followed by 1/4 mile recovery in the same time. This is repeated 10 times.
Yep, that's right. You read that right.
I'll be honest, I turned up to the session thinking I'd have a go and see how far I got. I wasn't aiming to do all of them and I certainly wasn't so presumptuous to think that I'd be able to keep up with the rest of the group, who are all much faster runners than I.
So, you can imagine my amazement when I finished the first rep only slightly behind the rest of the group. Followed by further amazement as I continued to keep up, falling only 15 (or so) seconds behind on each rep. Of course, there were two perfectly simple reasons for this - neither of which involve any kind of hocus pocus, Harry Potter style wizardry!
The first is that the rest of the group, although faster, were running slower; proven on the final rep when Pete knocked his time down from 4 minutes to 2 minutes something (I don't even know what the something was because my brain got distracted by the number 2 at the start of the time!).
The second of the reasons is that I cheated. Cheated myself that is. Not wanting to fall behind the others, on the 1/4 mile recoveries I took a reduced recovery time. this meant On the next fast rep, I started with the rest of the group and ignored the extra recovery time I should have (technically) taken.
All of which led to 'that magic moment'. On each fast rep, I expected to fall further behind. I expected to slow down. I expected to tire. Yet I didn't! In fact, my last two reps were my fastest of the lot, hitting 8.10 minute miles (a pace that hasn't been in my running vocabulary for a very long time!) As we ran back to the cars, taking our total distance to 10.5 miles, I realised just how well I'd run today; and so, Twitter might be obsessed with '#that awkward moment' but for me, today was all about '#that magic moment'!