Well, I’m in Honiara for 10 days or so for a training course, so my “long” run this week was on a flat, paved road. What a difference! Good and bad. The bad was that even though I got out fairly early, by about 7:30am the sun was up and hot and on the road out of town the trees are few and far between. I thought I’d drunk plenty the day before, but by the time I hit about 5 miles I could tell that I was pretty dehydrated. Aaagh – legs dead. No energy. Blech. I mostly ran to Panatina Plaza and got inside where there were a couple of the cafeteria services open. I went to one and asked for a glass of water. This confused the girl behind the counter. “Did I want ice and with lime juice?” “No,” I said, “I don’t have any money, just plain tap water.” “But the tap water is not good,” she says screwing up her face in a look of disgust. “It’s fine,” I replied. She reaches for a bottle of water in the fridge, “but I don’t have any money,” I repeat. “It’s alright, the owner will pay,” she says. “Thank you, thank you!” and I stood there and drank the entire half litre down. Yum, yum.
Unfortunately, although it quenched my thirst, it didn’t give me the burst of energy I was hoping for. So, in the end, I ran about 7.75 miles and walked probably another half mile. Does not fit my pictures of a “long” run, but it’s a lot further than I’ve run in awhile. Hmmph. And it was much, much faster. Flat and paved took a good minute to a minute and a half off my pace compared to the rocky, muddy hills around Buala.
I need to get myself on some sort of program so I can feel like I’m making some progress. I’m shocked at how much “shape” I lost in the transition time between Cameroon and the Solomons. It’s hard to not be really hard on myself. I was thinking I’d take up the Hanson’s “moderate, consistent” plan, but that would have called (on the more aggressive version I was looking at) for doing 6 miles today. Hah! I did a bit more than 4.5 and that was plenty, thank you very much. It did include one steep hill near the beginning and a bit of rolling hills in the middle, but still. . .
I hate not being in shape. On the good side, I have started to lose some weight which I know will make a huge difference. I calculated that every 5lbs slows me down by 30 seconds per mile. That makes it *very* motivating to lose the 15 extra pounds I have on me – that’s 1.5 minutes per mile! The focus now is to keep losing weight while I’m here in Honiara where a) I have access to much, much more food than on Santa Isabel and b) I’ll be in a training workshop where they’ll bring out food at least 3 times during the day (2 tea breaks and 1 lunch). Yikes! But just ‘cause there’s food there doesn’t mean I need to eat it. (That’s my mantra for the week.)
In the meantime, I’m gonna enjoy the paved roads, the relative flatness, and the absence of mud!