I have found it very interesting and informative, and when they mentioned that they were doing the Magic Mile Challenge through September, I thought, "Mmm, interesting!" Basically, it was training to run my fastest one mile. There would be three teams - UK, USA and Rest of the World. And, all the results would be age-graded (best bit!) and I could run it between 3rd and 16th September. I registered and decided to run my Magic Mile on 12 September.
So, this morning, being Magic Mile Day, I went out and ran my one mile! Well, not quite like that. Steve said he would come with me on his cycle (which was great as it is a real challenge to run REALLY hard on my own and it's always nice to have his support!) and I jogged up the main road for 2kms. Then, I started my Garmin and I jogged another 1600m (one mile) along the R43 so that my one mile would be run back and I could see exactly where I would finish. I took note of which way the wind was blowing too, but I didn't go and try to find a big hill to run down ('cos that's not allowed in the rules!)
On the way up to, and along, the R43 we saw a (brown?) woodpecker sitting on the telegraph wires, and then a couple of Fish Eagles circling overhead, calling, (obviously waiting with one eye on me, so that when I started my one mile, they thought I wouldn't make it, and they would have a meal waiting!) There have also been thousands and thousands of little caterpillars in the road for a few weeks now. It has been impossible to run around them, there are too many of them. At least, there WERE too many. There don't seem to be many left now! Lots of them have been squashed into the road!
The weather was bright and sunny for the run, but it wasn't too hot, and there was some wind, but not as much as there has been in recent weeks. I chose right for once!
So, at the end of my jog, I stopped my Garmin and put a stick on the side of the road so that I didn't forget where the Start Line was, then drank some water from my water bottle. OK, ready...
Garmin on, and off I started. Not too bad to start with - I could see (a mile on) where I would be finishing - at the junction! Steve encouraged me by telling me how fast I was going, and he said he would keep at a constant speed so that I knew if I was speeding up or slowing down. I didn't find the first half too bad, although it is very difficult to judge distance when all there is at the side of the road, is bush!
I decided after a few minutes that a whole mile is actually quite a long way, and the end wasn't coming up very quickly. But I was keeping my legs going as fast as I could! I had no idea how fast I was running as I had no intention of even peeping at my Garmin until the end. All Steve was saying to me was, "You're at about 11 now." "You're well over half way now." "Oh, you're just dropping down a bit. Speed up!" "Keep going. Nearly there." "Only about 500 metres now."
I wanted to stop! Less than a kilometre to go and I wanted desperately to stop. I slowed down, but I couldn't stop yet, (Come on, woman!) and then sped up again! Keep going! Keep going! And, then, I was there! I had done it! I hoped it was less than 9 minutes. I was sure I could run a mile in less than 9 minutes. I had been practising my speed after all for the last couple of months.
I ran it in 8 minutes 36 seconds. Hooray! Which gives me an age-graded time of 6 minutes 35 seconds. OK, so I'll never break a five minute mile, but I don't care. It's good to me. I'll just have to try and improve further now.
And all those extra calories I had earned too! Yummy! :)