So, the running. Last week's ice bath worked well as my legs just felt a bit tired on Monday but I still didn't run until Wednesday. We had about 4" of snow on Sunday night/Monday morning and this was more than doubled on Monday night. That meant Tuesday's planned run didn't happen. That was a shame as I'd made contact with someone at Abbey Runners and had planned to do a short run with them in the evening.
I was a bit worried on Wednesday as the snow wasn't melting and I'd done nothing, so I decided to give it a go, knowing I could always do 2 miles on he treadmill at the gym. In the event it wasn't too bad - slippy in places but kind of nice to be out - and the towpath was generally clear for some reason.
That meant my longer midweek run had to be done Thursday, just as another half inch of snow was falling. That was nice. Difficult to run in the mix of frozen snow, hidden sheets of black ice and fresh snow but nice to see your foot prints in the fresh snow, especially when they were the only ones there. In theory that was meant to be a speed session but that was impossible in the conditions. Not too worried about that though as the podiatrist had advised that speed sessions upped the risk for lower leg injuries for me.
On Friday my left knee felt sore, possibly from slipping on the ice but by Saturday morning felt fine. My every other day routine with the 'stick' also seemed to be helping my calves.
Saturday was the 16 mile LSR. I felt mildly apprehensive the day before, only because of injury risk in the lower leg, the sore knee and the fact that the snow and ice hadn't thawed, but a big portion of homemade spaghetti bolognese with wholwheat pasta provided plenty of fuel.
It turned out to be a slightly strange run. I set off with the temperature at -2.0c in my thickest running top, gillet, light gloves and hat but wishing I'd put another top underneath too. By halfway the sun was out, the ice was beginning to melt and I was feeling hot.
The footing was mixed. There were some sections where the path was dry and clear for 50m, others where there were large puddles of black ice blocking the way but for the most part it was a thick layer of compacted snow turned to ice with paches of frozen snow on top. I slipped twice but fortunately each time it was where I was hanging onto a rail to walk through a particularly icy bit. There were times where I needed to pick round ice or run through the frozen snow at the side of the towpath so it was probably more difficult than a normal run.
I ran beyond Saltaire this time and reached 8 miles just before a viaduct where the canal crossed over the previously adjacent River Aire. I carried on knowing there was a trail running alongside the Aire that would take me back a mile by an alternate route and had been able to see from the canal that that path was entirely clear of snow. I enjoyed that as it went past a number of boats from the rowing club on the river and past a large weir before cutting back through Roberts Park and the Saltaire Sports Club grounds.
The route back was even slipper as a thin layer of water formed over much of the ice but like last week I found speed increased in the second half. Again, I'd let myself run easilly in the first miles but had tried to stop the early miles getting quite as slow. I ended up averaging 10:08 for 16 miles in 2hrs 42 minutes.
Another ice bath later (this time still wearing socks and running tights) and my legs felt positively sprightly for the rest of the day. They're a little tired feeling today with the quads slightly sore but nothing very great and not enough to put me off my plan of going to the gym this morning.
Only downside to this week was that my orthotics didn't arrive as they were delayed by the bad weather. Hopefully they should arrive on Wednesday and i can start bedding them in.
This week should see me run with the Abbey Runners and hopefully ease through another good week's running and into the last cut back week the week after.