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Mixed fortunes

Good omen?

As I left my house at 5:00am in the pre-dawn gloom to start my 37km long run, I found a $50 note on the footpath.  I hoped that was a good omen, because I really wasn't looking forward to the next three plus hours.  I felt a bit tired and sore all over from yesterday's hard 10km, and had even brought along my iPod and headphones, so that I could listen to music as a distraction (something I rarely do these days).

Once I started running, I didn't feel as bad as I expected, and after the usual four to five kilometres of warming/loosening up, I settled into a reasonable pace.  The iPod took my mind off the time ahead as many of my playlist tunes are evocative of times and people I have known - a trip down memory lane.

Lake Tuggerah

After the undulating first 12km, the next 10km to The Entrance is flat, much of it along the bike path bordering Tuggerah Lake and my pace picked up to comfortably average sub-5:00/km on a superb early morning.  Even when I started hitting some more undulations after 22km, I was maintaining my pace well.  But as I climbed a gradual hill with 9km to go, I became conscious of my chronically-injured right heel becoming very tender and painful.  Within a kilometre my pace had dropped back to 5:30/km, I was favouring my right heel significantly, and I had lost the good running form I had maintained to that point.  I plodded on to the end, not enjoying it at all and hoping that my heel problem wasn't returning to dog my life as it had done up until six months ago.

The Entrance
It's now eight hours later, and the heel is still painful to walk on, though has improved somewhat.  I just have a 5km walk scheduled for tomorrow and a shorter run on Tuesday, so I'm hoping that gives it time to recover sufficiently for the 20-25km run I had planned for Wednesday.  If not, I'll have to re-evaluate my training and racing plans for the next three weeks.  Not happy!