Jeff Galloway very instant that long training runs should be done slowly, at least 2 min/mi below marathon pace. He states that you get exactly the same amount of endurance training whatever the speed; all that matters is that you do the miles. So it is better to take your time and be easier on yourself. In fact he gives no lower speed limit.
However I am not sure that my activities for the past few days can be counted towards any form of cross training. I have been to Paris to visit my daughter and spent most of the time walking around the sights. It is true that I have been on my feet for long periods of the day, but it has only been at wandering pace – the urban shuffle that I actually find more tiring than running.
In all conscience I don’t think I can put anything other than a big round zero in my training diary. However the time has had other beneficial effects such as the feeling of well being that comes with eating good food and the lift in spirits that comes from looking at good art.
My daughter is doing something that I can only admire – taking a year out from work to learn French and understand the culture. She has fallen in love with the city and I think she is going to have some problems when she decides to resume her career. But that is in the future and who knows what will happen. At the moment she is having an adventure that all that matters.
She still runs. She chugs around a local park most mornings. The spur of the moment decision we made to run the Great North Run has changed our behaviour and we continue to be a family that runs together, separately.