Tonight was the second test of my leg for my comeback week. After Monday’s short morning effort and a day of resting yesterday, the Lyon Running Club’s regular Wednesday night run was going to be a little longer on my feet in terms of time, if not a whole lot longer in terms of distance.
This was the 186th time that the Lyon Running Club have got together on a Wednesday night, though it is only the fourth time I have been along for the ride. The first time was what I learned later to be an unusually long run for the group down to the Isle Barbe. The second and third times I went out with the group the sessions were shorter but still enjoyable.
In previous Wednesday night sessions I had added a run before joining the group. Generally these ‘pre-run runs’ are between 10 and 12km and serve as the main session for the night, with the group run a nice cool down with friendly people. But seeing that I am coming back from injury and not wanting to overdo things, I decided to go with the group run alone and leave the ‘Wednesday Night Double’ for another week.
We met as normal at the Place de Celestins and, also as normal, got underway 10 minutes late as we waited for the stragglers to arrive. This delay would mean that, as the run came to a close, I bailed out a few hundred meters early to race home before Jamie went to bed and, frankly, these late starts are the only thing that has annoyed me so far about the Wednesday night runs.
We started by looping through the Old City, then crossing over to the base of the Pentes. This is all familiar ground for me, as was the jump across the river on the Pont Morand and the route that cut through the 6th arrondissement. We followed the tram line down to Guillotiere, then dropped down to the river for the night’s acceleration.
One of the runners with a bit of speed in her legs was given a 20 second head start before the whole group commenced to chase her. Her goal was to make it to the next bridge along the berges, and ours was to catch her before she did. I didn’t manage to catch her, though I was just behind the first group that arrived. I didn’t want to test my leg too much, but I held a nice pace all the same and nothing was hurting so I was feeling confident that the recovery had done it’s job.
Crossing back over the Rhone, we turned onto the Rue de Republique and then, when the rest of the 25 runners turned for the Place de Celestins I kept going up the street headed for home. As I was in a rush to get home before Jamie was getting into bed, I kicked it up to 5:00 pace, then a little faster for the final kilometer up the hill to home.
I have created a nice Strava segment that starts at the Place de Opera, winds up the hill and then up the staircase to the rue des Tables Claudiennes. I called it Hills. Stairs. Quit Complaining. Just Do It. and, so far, nearly 80 people have. My best time for this fairly hard segment is 1:35 but tonight, even though I was keeping things steady and only pushing to get home, I still managed my third best time: 1:42.
The leg doesn’t hurt, the running seems to be fine, and I am feeling good. Another run on Friday, and then a final run on Sunday to confirm all is well and I can back into training for real.