Imagine you are running on the compacted, wet sand of a beach. To your left the sea sparkles in the sun, to your right there are soft pillows of dry sand leading up to crumbly red sandstone cliffs. In front of you there is nothing else except the beach, sea and sky- the scene goes on for miles. You are running easily, barefoot, sometimes splashing in the water and for the moment feeling like a kid again.
This is what I will take back from the week - the sudden understanding of what felt good. It was most peculiar and almost accidental. On Sunday I had run back along the beach for the first time - it was quite pleasant but nothing special but I was running in my trainers. On Monday I started to do the same thing again. Halfway along, seeing others running barefoot I decided to do the same and suddenly everything felt better. My posture improved and I felt more upright, my stride shortened and my cadence increased. Before I had been heavy legged but that disappeared and the pain in my shins, that had been plaguing me, diminished.
It changed my week. I knew I didn't have the fitness to do two sessions a day and I had been wondering what to cut, the morning run or the afternoon training session. It was now clear that the most important thing was to run barefoot on the sand, in the morning