It took a bit of planning to encourage someone to join me on a run of the Sheffield Round Walk
but it was arranged and today we did it. I was hoping for a slightly larger group but potential members decided they weren't fit enough or they had a better offer elsewhere. So we were two.
We set off from the usual saturday morning point with the goal of doing the 14 mile park-centred walk as a slow run in around 2 and a half hours. The main thing was to conserve energy early on. The weather was going to be lovely. The first half of the walk is attractive, the third quarter adequate and the final quarter 'mixed'. Until sometime in the late 1980's the walk stopped at Graves Park but 'recently' the loop was completed. Brincliffe edge is superb, if short, but the section around Lees Hall rather unkempt.
Anyway we were very pleased to reach Bishop's House but as both of us had different niggles, my calf muscles had become quite tender, the descent through Meersbrook was not speedy. We completed the loop in 2 hours 20 minutes and estimated the distance to be closer to 15 miles.
Our pacing wasn't good as we set off at 5:15 minute/km and finished closer to 6:30 minute/km. That's quite bad practice! I'm ploughing my way through the 'Lore of Running
' and was taken by Galloway's scheme of walk-run
. The essence of the idea is not (necessarily) to give aerobic breaks but to give the locomotory muscles a chance to recover and thus delay fatigue and soreness. I need to try this in the near future.
Anyway, despite the slowing I think that was pretty good going and I managed to get a PR of 2 hours 1 minute for the half marathon distance and a fastest 20km too. Also first run to exceed 25km. All of this is in the right direction.
I took along a Blueberry Clif bar
and found it quite agreeable to break off bits and nibble en route. It tasted like real food, unlike the SIS drink I tried a few days ago, although the ingredient list isn't quite what you'd have at home in the kitchen.
The only question remaining is "Are we going to do this every other month?"