Week 7 of training for the big run in the USA has me thinking that I'm currently well ahead of where I need to be with 2.5 years of training left. Not only that but I'm continuing to develop a whole new level of mental toughness. This is going to be essential to get me through the thousands of miles that I need to do between now and August 2011.
Thankfully, the chest infection I had last week is a thing of the past. This week saw me bounce back with some good running and average minute per mile times coming down to below 9 minutes. I enjoyed a cracking Beach Bootcamp session on Saturday and what I can only describe as the best steps session to date afterwards. I ran 9 times up the steps in King Edwards Bay with a lot less recovery time in between each one. The burn levels were nowhere near as bad as previous weeks and Dave Fairlamb agreed at the end that this was the best attempt yet at what is a difficult explosive style session that gets my heart rate near the red zone every time! It should have been 10 times up the steps but Dave said that if I could beat a passing female jogger who was running up them (with a good head start) then I could drop one.
This week's steps session drew the largest team of people ever to attempt it since I've been doing it. Each person took it in turn to accompany me on each attempt. The encouragement and support from each one of them was brilliant as ever. At the end, my legs were a bit shaky but that didn't stop me from doing a 5 mile run from Tynemouth Beach to Spanish City and back. It was slow on the way out with a toilet stop at the lake (the toilet's at the lake not the lake itself by the way!). I got just past Spanish City when my GPS watch read 2.5 miles. I was much quicker on the way back with the last 2 miles around the 9 minute mark. It was one of those runs where I felt I could have gone on for loads more miles. All in all, it was a very good couple of hours of exercise. The plan now is for a run to become part of the Saturday morning routine after Bootcamp and the steps. There is no festive rest and the next session is this weekend. 6 miles will be on the cards this time. I might be running to Blyth and back by the time the Summer comes!