Its around about this time of year that mileage has to increase so I have been gradually building up distances over the past fortnight.
Last Wednesday, myself and Mark H walked together to Castletown on an absolutely gorgeous day - it was a pleasure to be out. It came to just over 11 miles which we did in a shade over 2 hours. This is faster than I intend to walk the Parish but it was a good session as I felt comfortable throughout it. Also during this week, I did some hill sessions around my estate and an 8 miler around Douglas which is a regular circuit of mine.
Then yesterday, the pair of us upped the distance to 14 miles which again was a good session as I learned a few things. I stupidly didn't bring any liquids with me and I struggled from about 9 miles onwards. I will not be making that mistake again! Also, we maintained a pace of about 11.5 minute miles throughout the walk and I discovered that if I walk the Parish at this speed, I will not get to Peel ! I finished really tired and aching all over, so much so that Mark christened the walk the " Dave whining " circuit ! The good thing to come out of this walk is that I now know at what pace I shall be walking the big one - I intend to start at just over a shade of 4 mph and hopefully crank it up gradually as I get into the race. I do not intend to waver from this plan !
The other good news is :-
1 / I feel fine this morning with no aches or pains, which I put down to a 15 minute soak in a cold bath straight afterwards. I really can't recommend this procedure enough as it speeds up recovery time. Once you get past the first agonising minute, it's not too bad.
2/ I still have 3 months to try out new things and up distance which will help my fitness levels. I have entered the 50 mile Fireman's Walk on 22nd April and may well walk 25-30 miles as a training session. I don't intend the go any further than this as I won't have done enough endurance work to justify going on - and I certainly don't want to compromise my Parish chances.
My intention from here onwards to is to go on one longer walk each week, increasing distance by about 2 miles on each walk, hopefully building up to a 30 mile walk by the end of April.I think it's virtually impossible to train for a 85 mile event and I just hope I'm doing the right things. One thing is sure though - my admiration for the top guys of both past and present increases by the day. How Sean, Robbie et al can walk the course at 6mph the whole way is nothing short of sensational.