This morning's run bears testament to the oft-quoted line that it takes two weeks for a training stimulus to show up in your physiology. Yep, the old heart rate test again.
The protocol in brief for those who come in late: third lap of Komazawa Park, first lap at around 138 to 143 HR, then second lap getting the HR up to 149, then the third lap is the comparison lap.
Two weeks ago the time of the third lap was 9:15 (4:18/km) and that marked the first measure after I had really started to pick the training load back up following the knee soreness. Then last week the lap time was 9:23 (4:22/km), which might have been discouraging if I were not a man of great patience and forbearing. And today, ta-daaaahhh ... 9:03 for 4:13/km! Yeeeahhyy!! It might have been exaggerated slightly by the fact that partway through the second lap I had to stop and tie my shoelace, thus giving the cardio system some recovery time. But still, I had a sense right from the get go this morning that my aerobic system was in pretty good shape as I felt I was putting in quite some effort with the legs, and the pace was reflecting that on my watch, and yet I was breathing easily.
So things are coming together on the general aerobic fitness front. Endurance is going to be another thing as I feel a bit underdone for long runs. Never mind, at least I'm getting to a point of developing enough confidence to have a go.