Monday was my last day in South Africa so I took to the hills (I had no choice, they're everywhere) for my final recovery run at altitude. I skipped my run on Tuesday as I really wasn't up for a run after out flight. I got plenty of sleep on the plane but also too much free booze :face_with_head_bandage:.
Wednesday was interval day again and after a good long warmup, I hit the intervals and felt really good. I managed to run each interval quicker than planned and without too much effort. I think the week at altitude and skipping a run on Tuesday to catch up on sleep may have helped.
Thursday's medium long and Friday's recovery runs both went well and I felt really good.
Friday evening I decided I'd do parkrun on Saturday. As I'd been feeling so good this week I decided I'd put a bit of an effort in and see how I'd get on. Well, I can say very very well. I managed to keep a pretty good fast pace for all but the 4th km, which includes the little "rise", and finished strong with my quickest parkrun time for the season, which was 1sec quicker than the previous fastest which I did on tar in Singapore. Given it was breezy and a bit wet, I'm pretty sure I could have gone quicker… especially if I didn't slack a little on the 4th km.
Sunday was my last long run before Berlin, though given all the medium long runs in the 20-24k range I've been doing midweek in my build up, it feels odd calling Sunday's 27k run a "long run", but it is and it was a fantastic run :-)
I started off keeping my HR under 144 BPM for at least the first 30mins as I normally do and it felt like I was flying and looking back, I was. I was averaging 4:38/km for the first 41mins of the run.
After 41mins I bumped up the pace into my standard MAF range and it felt easy and incredibly fast, despite the hills and a slight onset of fatigue. This final 1h23m averaged at an even quicker 4:34/km with many k's down at or below 4:30/km. This is incredibly quick for a Sunday long run at MAF for me.
I'm not sure if the running at altitude had anything to do with it or if it's just a culmination of all the training falling into place, but overall this week was fantastic. I was starting to having the usual "have I done enough of X or Y?" doubts you get just before a major race but this week's training clearly answered those: YES!!
I'm really looking forward to Berlin now. I'll be employing a slow taper over the next two weeks. I just need to make sure I look after myself and try my hardest not to drink too much.