It’s Friday and pretty much the last day of the feria here in Italy, most of our Italian friends are back to work on Monday, and the upcoming end of month means we will have some ‘white night’ celebrations too.
Having given myself a new running plan, today was meant to be a 10km run, starting early to take advantage of the cooler weather. It didn’t happen, although I was out just after 8am. In my mind, I’d like to look like the pic above, all perky and healthy and smiley. However, after an interrupted sleep due to heat and a fighting bird at 3am (who the hell picks fights at 3am in birdland?) I looked little more like Waynetta Slob.
I trotted out towards the usual route Mill Lane – Bendy Scary Road – Royston Vasey – Fish Shop Village – Cafe. I wanted to do the same run as yesterday, just to make sure I hadn’t cheated on recording my distance. I felt I ran really quickly yesterday but I could only approximate my distance because of the GPS failure of Map My Run – more of that later. All was quiet and sleepy as usual, I didn’t see a soul until the bendy, scary road. First up two older cyclists, dressed in matching kit – they were wearing fluoro green and black shorts, and so was I. They were very pleasant and waved and said Buongiorno.
A bit further on, three more cyclists this time in blue tops and I got a Salve, Buongiorno and Buon Di (which is local dialect for good day). Never has one of my runs been so friendly, and my pace was nice and tidy, given it’s a bit cooler here, I could actually respond to them all, whereas often I can only wave feebly, due to my lungs bursting with exertion. On my way down towards Royston Vasey, I’d crossed the road to run-on one of the very rare pavements, which also was benefitting from shade – that’s a big win in my book – no sun and no traffic to be scared of. On the pavement a little old nonna, with her shopping trolley – she looked at me, smiled and also said Buon Di.
So far so friendly, I’m about 6 km into the run and I see I have made a better pace than yesterday, which is somewhat strange as I was definitely running faster yesterday. Through Royston Vasey and a lone cyclist struggles up the hill – he was a ‘comfort not speed’ man and he smiled weakly as he went past. On the way to fish shop village, I stop to change my water bottles over and re-start and I get overtaken by my bodyguards, they are in their car. I did think briefly that it might be nice to hitch a lift, but opportunity lost as they pootle off in the distance, leaving me to plod on.
At fish shop village, all is deserted and I make my way to Bin Lane and past the local kids club, which appears to be doing an Italian version of ‘musical chairs’ only using very loud and rather aggressive rap music. I hit the 9km mark and realise that I must have slightly undercounted yesterday’s run. On I go, although my pace is slackening a bit, out of Bin Lane, when a fellow runner came the other way wearing a cap and rather natty and orange and taupe running kit – all nicely co-ordinated. he also said Buongiorno.
At the cafe, I couldn’t see Mr JCR and registered that this run was actually a touch over 11km, which lends credence to my thought that yesterday’s run was faster. I did a mini loop of the car park – always embarrassing doing that, as people look at me as though I am slightly stupid – which of course, yes I am…
Run done 11.55km. Based on my ‘fag packet’ calculations yesterday I thought I’d run 10.77kms – at an average pace of 6:50, when in fact the distance was 11.21kms and my pace was 6 minutes 35 seconds – I’m really happy with that, the scorchio days are coming to an end and so my pace improves.
A nice realisation, after a lovely run, meeting (even though briefly) some very nice strangers along the way.
Playlist – Country/Places on my Spotify, (but no Italian place oriented songs)
Lost In France – Bonnie Tyler
Une Nuit A Paris – 10cc
Strong – London Grammar
Penny Lane – The Beatles
Boston Tea Party – SAHB
Rio – Duran Duran
Vienna – Ultravox
Belfast Child – Simple Minds
Going Down To Liverpool – The Bangles
Tokyo Joe – Bryan Ferry
Black Eyed Boy – Texas
Massachusetts – Bee Gees
Grease – Frank Valli
Big In Japan – Alphaville
Africa – Toto
Midnight Train To Georgia – Gladys Knight & The Pips
New York Minute – Don Henley
Streets Of Philadelphia – The Boss
Pleasant Valley Sunday – The Monkees
Wonderful World – Sam Cooke
Japanese Boy – Aneka
Solsbury Hill – Peter Gabriel
California Dreamin’ – Mamas and Papas
Average Pace 6:42 mins/km
Elevation Gain 48 metres
Kms Done 1420.85
Kms To Run 597.15 – yes below the 600 marker!