It took me a little while to get my ass out of the door for my long run on Sunday. Maybe it was because it was the first of two 20-milers ahead of the Cork City Marathon in five weeks time. Also the weatherman was promising cold northerlies which are never inviting. Eventually it was only the realisation that I’d miss the Man City v Chelsea radio commentary if I didn’t get started got me out of the door.

I needn’t have worried. I held back the pace jogging up to St Aubin and onto the Railway Walk. The Spartan 10-miler was coming the opposite way and it was nice to hear, from one of the tail end ladies who I didn’t recognise a ‘good to have you back!’ Four miles gets one to the cycle track at Les Quennevais and I took a circuit of that to add the mile that I’d need for the full distance. Then I absolutely glided down to Corbiere realising that running is, very occasionally, easy. I was really in the zone for a while there albeit I was still trying to stay slower than 10m/m. I dropped off my water bottle at the end of the track. This is at the old Corbiere Station that has been wonderfully modernised and sits on the market for a cool £2.3m! Three loops around Petit Port followed, each of 2.3 miles. There is a steep drop away from Corbiere but of course the corresponding uphill follows. Despite an energy bar and several Jelly Babies I was no longer in the zone as, after about 14 miles, I headed for home.

I’m beginning to hate the slog up what is a gentle enough slope from Corbiere back to Les Quennevais. It always comes when my resistance is at its lowest. However I count it as good mental training. My legs were definitely a lot weaker by the time I hit St Aubin again and plodded the couple of miles home. It wasn’t at all comfortable in the end but 20.15 @ 10.22m/m is pretty satisfactory. Just one more of those to come in a fortnight’s time.