Pushing on

Whoop! Longest run since October and I’m running with Iron Man… actually, my running buddy for today is WAY bigger a hero than Iron Man. 

First up, Keith… aka Iron Man. Genuinely one of the most encouraging people I ever have met. Historically Keith has helped me get confident on my road bike, made sure I finished a Tri by running back to meet me and run in and generally encouraged me to push myself. And, I’m not alone. Keith has helped, supported, coached and encouraged more of the club than I could even begin to name!

Anyhooo, this formidable human is already an iron man and has a number of crazy ultras under his belt. But that’s not enough. This year, during the Tri season, Keith will complete 52 (yep……. 52!!!!!) half Iron distances. That’s TWO a week!!! You can read more here … nobody can explain his plan and motivations better than him. Keith – you are insane and amazing! 

And so, not for the first time in recent weeks, Keith has been my long run buddy. Sneakily using the ‘staying a couple of steps ahead’ technique, he has managed to get me through the miles significantly quicker than I would have achieved alone. And whilst the runs have been a challenge, they have also been enjoyable at the pace.. 😳

Today was a training sense in the true sense of the word. Lessons were learnt! I’ve recently started using Tailwind powder for long runs which is working for me. Nice taste, doesn’t make me thirsty and doesn’t unsettle my tummy. However, today I needed more… and I have a feeling today won’t be the only day. 

Around 9-10 miles I ran out of energy. Legs – fine. Breathing – good…! I’m talking seeing stars, the works!

Keith patiently walked when I needed to, encouraged me to run when he thought I’d walked enough… and then made me sprint finish!  He also talked me through some very sensible nutrition and fueling suggestions. Which I WILL be implementing. Although it won’t be including warm snot-like gels! 

Overall – this splits were better than I could have hoped. Can you spot where I ran out of fuel? 

Despite the tough route and the hard miles at the end, we finished with a push and I even managed a smile!! 

Keith – thank you for your immense generosity of spirit and encouragement (plus fueling tips). You’re training for such an immense year but still you are willing to allow someone slower than you to set the pace and walk when needed. (Although the alternative was probably that I’d crawl!!).. 

As tough as it was it was a great training run. And at the end of the day, training is for learning – not just upping the miles! 

What are your tried and tested long run nutrition choices? And conversely, what really didn’t work for you? 


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