Magic Mile Benchmark

Kath has drawn up a new plan for us to get us ready for the Lakeland Trails Dirty Double in October. It’s a plan made for me that takes into account all my insecurities, weaknesses, obsessions, abilities and goals. The plan really started today – with 45 minutes steady including a Magic Mile.

I’m sure I’ve mentioned the Magic Mile before – ah yes I have here – but the basic idea is that you run as fast as you can at as even a pace as you can manage for one mile. The time you get is your Magic Mile time which can be used to predict race pace fairly accurately but more importantly for me, also shows progress quite nicely. I have a constant need to be patted on the head and told I’m doing well with running (funny, I don’t care in any other context) and the Magic Mile sort of does that as long as I run consistently and space them out sensibly. There are some 45 minute steady runs in the plan, some 45 minute runs with hill repeats built in or with surges etc, then there are the weekend long runs and the odd fartlek session.  We’ll see how we get on.

So run 1 of the programme was to go out for 45 minutes and as part of that do a Magic Mile. We set off and ran down to the canal and when we had done one mile upped the pace for the magic mile. Here’s how those first two miles played out (Kath was there but the dialogue is mostly mine – in my head).

  1. Happily jogging down Ilkley Road
  2. Turned left, still down hill, happy
  3. Glanced at watch – ‘ooh speedy’
  4. Happy
  5. What do you mean ‘ooh speedy’ – you’re supposed to be going slow
  6. Meh – shut up. I’m happy
  7. On the canal now, ‘hm, not going downhill anymore now, bit harder’
  8. Kath said we were at 0.8miles. I glanced at my watch and giggled ‘oh fuck, I’m already running at roughly what I thought might be sensible for the Magic Mile – 11.30 pace
  9. Kath: ‘And go’
  10. ‘Speed up legs, come on on, you can do it’
  11. Legs: Ok
  12. Lungs: ‘Fuck off’
  13. Kath – a quarter done
  14. Legs: Yay; Lungs: Fuck; Brain: a quarter? are you sure? Must be more. Lungs: Yes must be more
  15. Dogs in the way, dogs in the way, DOGS IN THE WAY, ok past the dogs
  16. Lungs: You have gone mad, you have to stop
  17. Legs: No – we’re fine (Lungs: Weren’t talking to you, legs)
  18. Half way
  19. ‘I wonder how slow this is’ – look at watch – doesn’t mean anything – shows average pace not current pace. Bollocks, stupid fucking piece of fucking junk
  20. Brain: ooh sweary, you’re fine, keep going
  21. Kath said something about doing well. Lungs: WTF, doing well, I mean seriously, Have you heard us?!
  22. Kath: 3/4 done, you can do this
  23. Legs (very quietly): We’re not sure we can. We feel a little wobbly now
  24. Lungs (screaming): STOP
  25. 0.8
  26. 0.81, 0.82, 0.85  – ‘wait, what? What happened to 0.83 and 0.84?
  27. 0.9. Legs and Lungs in unison – WILL YOU JUST FUCKING STOP NOW
  28. PLEASE
  29. Kath: You’ve done it!
  30. I resist the urge to curl up and die and walk instead, slowly

We make our way up the golf course, feed Dino and then set off back but Kath’s knee is a little niggly so rather than risking it we walk home. 3.6 miles to add to the total and a Magic Mile benchmark set at 10.34.

My next run will be in Seahouses and running did not go well there last time (I just looked and I don’t think I blogged about it fully – it was horrendous, worst ever in my journey and I nearly gave up running completely after that weekend – I should share that properly in another post!). Anyway, I have some demons to kill and a beach to conquer!

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