Monthly Archives: May 2013

One Year Ago: A Running Recap of the Edinburgh Marathon 2012

I can’t quite believe that this picture was taken one year ago this weekend. This weekend sees the festival of running in Edinburgh and last year I took part in the Edinburgh Marathon as my first attempt at the distance. When I look back at everything that happened  to my family last year and the things that I had taken on alongside training for the marathon I do feel a sense of pride in myself that I got to the start line and that I completed it.

After training for nearly 6 months in the cold and dark I don’t think anyone could have predicted the scorching heat that welcomed us in Scotland. I had picked Edinburgh as I thought there would be a chance of drizzle and that the temperature would have been comfortably cool. Well the Running Gods were clearly having the last laugh that day as Edinburgh turned out to be the hottest place in the country at a balmy 30 degrees. The sun bounced off the tarmac everywhere, blinding you as you walked round the city. I therefore decided that I MUST have sunglasses. Cue my husband and I walking around Edinburgh for most of the day before the marathon looking for some. Not good marathon prep!

The evening before the marathon we ate at a beautiful Italian restaurant. It was no real surprise that it was full of runners and the lady serving us said they had been really busy. Back in the hotel I made my pre race preparations: painting nails, defuzzing, arguing with myself over which shorts to wear, ironing on my name letters. I remember the Eurovision song contest being on and drifting off with Graham Norton’s commentary in the background.

I woke fairly early, probably way before 6am on the morning of the marathon and headed over to Cafe Rouge where the hotel breakfast was served. The options were really limited. There was porridge but I’d stopped eating porridge before running as it messed with my stomach. I asked for toast. The waiter looked at me with concern and made sure I was certain that was all I wanted. It was, I felt sick to the stomach with nerves and the thought of putting anything in my mouth to eat made he physically heave. The waiter must have taken pity on me though because along with toast he brought out a basket of pastries which I did nibble on under the watchful eye of my husband. I recall two women in running gear coming in and both asking for Full Breakfasts and I remember thinking how on earth can anyone eat a plate of fatty food before they run?

After breakfast and a final check in the hotel that I had everything, we walked down to the start line at the end of Princes Street. The sun was already high in the sky and you could tell it was going to be a scorcher. I checked Twitter and Liz Yelling had tweeted good luck to Edinburgh Marathon runners with words of caution which were along the lines of: it’s hot, don’t go for PB’s, in this heat run to perceived comfort. Perceived comfort, perceived comfort. These words from a marathon expert, an international athlete, lodged themselves into my brain. I think it was the best advice I ever had.

Running the marathon in that heat last year was brutal but I did as Liz Yelling said. I found a pace that felt comfortable in the heat and one that I could maintain. Before long you could tell the people that had started off maybe too quickly and had started to walk. By mile 16 the number of people walking had increased further but with no real tree cover we continued to be exposed to the beaming sun. The organisers of the marathon brought out extra water supplies but I think my favourite part of running for me had to be the people of Edinburgh and Musselburgh. They brought out their hoses and sprinklers. They handed out cups of water and jelly beans. Little kids sprayed us with super soakers (though I’m sure that was also for their own entertainment). People were generous and supportive and yet again a marathon brought out the best in both runners and supporters.

Running through the grounds of Musselburgh House at around 19 miles it got tough for me. The heat was taking it’s toll and I really had to dig deep mentally to keep my legs moving. It hadn’t helped that I had accepted a gel from a volunteer. Yes, rookie error. I learnt from my mistake the hard way by taking a gel that I was unfamiliar with. It had caffeine in it, something that I hadn’t tried during runs, and I had a massive head rush and felt dizzy and sick. Once I realised what the problem was I drank plenty of water to try and flush it through a bit. Gradually I felt a bit better and carried on with the ‘digging deep’ efforts.

By about 21 miles the course was not a pretty sight. We were starting to see more supporters again but this didn’t stop many runners dashing off to the side to vomit as the heat really started to effect people. Seeing vomit usually makes me want to vomit so I had to put my head down and blinker myself to the vomit fest around me.

The benefit of having my name on my vest soon occurred to me as I realised that the Kat everyone was shouting for was me. My whole body was screaming at me to stop but instead I decided to take the Madagascar penguin approach ‘Smile and Wave Kat, Smile and Wave’. Someone shouted that I was looking fresh. I wanted to stop and say ‘seriously, you think that helps? I don’t feel fresh, I’ve run 23 frigging miles’. It was weird little conversations with myself like this that helped to distract me from how far to go. But then something amazing seemed to happen. 23 turned to 24 and 24 turned into 25 and then 26 and a grin erupted on my face as I realised I was turning a corner into Musselburgh Primary School. And there was the finish line.

I shouted and yelped and screamed as I crossed the line and the volunteer in front of me asked me if I was ok. Seriously? I wanted a high five and a bear hug from someone, not a concerned look! It took me a few minutes to find my husband but it felt like 10 or even 15 minutes as I tried to keep moving my aching legs to find him. Then it was a quick stop in the Macmillan tent with the fantastic Physiotherapy Student volunteers and the best cup of tea I’ve had since the one I had after giving birth for the first time (I’m not joking, if you have a baby or run a marathon, those cups of tea are the best).

A hot sweaty bus ride then had to happen (boo) where husband presented me with this:

20120527_150213 (1)And then when we jumped off the bus at the end of Princes Street my husband dragged me into the first pub we saw by the theatre where this happened, plus some chips and a chat with a German man in is seventies who had also run some marathon. I shared my chips with him, seemed only right.

After the marathon I had some time off and I had a plan in my head about what I wanted to do in running. I had set myself some goals but as with life and sometimes our races, things don’t always go the way you want them to. A stressful year, illness and injury were the prevailing themes for the rest of the year so I still can’t quite believe I managed to train for that marathon and run it in that time on my first attempt (3.39 baby). Writing this has made me wonder if I will run another marathon. I hope I do because it seems a bit cheeky to refer to myself as a Marathoner when I’ve only done it the one time.

Good luck to everyone running in Edinburgh this weekend. It is my favourite city in the UK and it is a fantastic place to run a marathon. I also highly recommend getting everyone to give you a pre marathon bear hug to fill you with positive, good luck vibes. Enjoy it, embrace the atmosphere and smile!!

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An Actual Week Of Running and Training!

As I ran with my fellow Write This Runner’s at the end of yesterday’s amazing conference it dawned on me: this run marked the end of my first week of full training and regular runs in 6 months.

Six months ago I was in agony. Six months ago my husband was having to help dress me. Six months ago I was getting, at the most, four hours sleep a night. Yet here I was running 5k, behind Scott Overall nonetheless (behind = he jogged a 5k and we all followed about 10 minutes behind). Six months ago I never saw myself at this point. Last November I really thought a prolapsed disc had ended running forever. For me that is, not you, dinae’ panic.

I wasn’t exactly shy about kicking off my week of training. I think this has come from my new ‘On it like a car bonnet’ mentality. Last Monday it all started with a little jog round Windsor for the She Runs Windsor event. I didn’t exactly sleep well that night. My body throbbed from the sheer effort and the lack of training I’d had going into it. I’m still proud of what I did that day because it showed me that I’m a stubborn old so and so who won’t give in. I had an awful night’s sleep following that race and my hamstrings were killing me so Tuesday I had what I feel was a well deserved break.

Wednesday saw a steady run. Well I say it was steady, more of a stroll to loosen everything off again. The old hammy’s were still a bit achy but no heel pain, no back pain, no pins and needles or numbness. I did wonder if I was daydreaming and was I really back running after all this time, but not being one to argue with my body (much) I went with it. 40 minutes or so with a nice jaunt along a new riverside path they’ve built by our village. Lovely.

Thursday I didn’t get out to run in the day as my youngest wasn’t in nursery. He’s a bit big to push around in a buggy now and being that he’s the one I lifted when I injured myself I would be reluctant to even attempt to run and push him! So when my husband arrived home from work that evening I went over to my ladies CrossFit class. I’ve been struggling with this class since getting over this injury: the weight I can lift on the bar has gone down and I feel a bit nervous with some of the techniques. However somehow I channelled my inner CrossFit goddess and managed some handstands, some against a wall and some spotted (you know, spotted by someone, not a polka dot spot handstand). And then, AND THEN, THEN! Little old me managed three kipping pull ups on a bar on my own! SQUEEEEEEEAL. I was ‘ended’ after three but I got to ding the PB bell! Ding a ling a ding ding!

So by Friday I was feeling pretty awesome and even though it was pouring with rain I went for another steady 40 minute run in the evening. I ended up soaked to the skin despite my jacket and it was wild and windy but I felt so exhilarated afterwards. I had a sense of achievement that I’d been missing for such a long time.

Saturday I missed out on training as I was travelling but Sunday’s run with my fellow bloggers was just the nicest possible way to round of my first week of post injury training. I had managed to run or train on 5 days out of 7 last week. Six months ago driving my children to school caused me to cry in pain and yet here I was on a 5k run with behind an Olympian. If you’d told me that back then I would have laughed at you through my diclofencac/co-codamol/insomnia haze and if I’m honest right now I’m thanking my lucky stars that I’m back here, running again.

So that was my training diary for last week. A pretty good start to ‘training to train’ again. I ended the week on such a positive note that I may have agreed to go for a sub20/sub40 challenge for 5k and 10k with my fellow running blogger Cat. Well, it’s always good to have a goal!

Write This Run, Running and Blogging

As I drove home from Sunday’s inaugural Write This Run event I was full of regret. Did I regret going to Write This Run? Not at all, my regret was lots of little regrets: I hadn’t spoken to this person or that person. I had neglected to take more pictures. That I didn’t chat to Liz and Laura more (although I think they were run off their feet) and that I didn’t give more people hugs!

I’ve been blogging on and off for 3 years. I started off my blogging journey with a parenting blog but it never felt like quite the right fit for me. Don’t get me wrong, I adore the bones of my children but I never felt right about sharing it with the world. Running Mum had sat on the sidelines for a while and a few months ago, despite being injured, I deleted the parenting blog and decided to have a real crack at my running blog. This I have no regrets about doing.

Since dedicating my blog life to my running blog I have had my eyes opened to a wonderful community of people. People who are just as passionate about running as I am. A running community that throughout my injury sent me well wishes and lovely messages encouraging me not to give up. On Sunday I got to meet some of these people in real life, and even though it’s always nervy meeting strangers off the internet, there was no anti-climax. Everyone I met in the room at Write This Run was as genuine, warm and friendly as I thought they would be. Write this Run itself was a fantastic day and I learned new things but also had some things confirmed to me that I think I already knew, back there in the recesses of my subconscious.

Phillipa Moore who writes super blog Skinny Latte Strikes Back talked about being honest and having integrity. I found myself nodding along in agreement as I’ve always tried to be honest on this blog and being dishonest here never made sense. A bit like lying about your 5k PB, you’re always going to get found out so why lie?

She also spoke about content and that having good content will bring people back. This has always been a concern of mine as I’ve never quite believed that I have good content and that readers would want to come and read my blog. It still amazes me when I have comments. So content may be something that I need to continue to work on i.e. blog about something other than being injured, I mean come on, BOOOOORING!

PR stuff and stats still boggle me and I was glad that so many other bloggers, including Phillipa, stated that they really don’t worry about hits or back links or how many people have read something. It still comes back to content and blogging with honesty and integrity. Blogging and the idea that you get free stuff still feels weird to me. I still don’t feel confident approaching PR’s so I was really glad that there are bloggers out there who don’t take this approach to their sites.

Rhalou Allerhand glitter disco pant wearer and runner blogger extraordinaire had me in absolute stitches as she decribed her journey from porn hack to running magazine goddess. I have followed Rhalou on Twitter for ages and ages and we had a very all too brief chat towards the end of the day. The girl should write a book about her running adventures in the mountains and one regret of the day is that I didn’t give her the hug that I should have done. Next time Rhalou!

Kevin Betts AKA 52 Marathon Man spoke to us about his running journey with such passion and humour that I was thrown from laughter to tears and back again. His talk resonated with me on such a personal level that I had to gulp down some rather large sobs as I remembered one of the main reasons that I started running again. Depression hit my husband so hard and has affected our family in so many ways that running became my coping mechanism and a source of strength for me. It was refreshing to hear someone talk about such an important yet taboo subject in such a candid way.

From a professional point of view I was thrilled to listen to both Donna DeWick and Karen Weir. It was inspirational to listen to Donna and how she went from a diagnosis that for some individuals would have meant the end of all physical exertion to Paratriathlete. Classifying Para-athletes is something that I would like to do as a Physiotherapist so it was a real privilege to get an insight into Donna’s life as an athlete.

Karen’s talk gave me a real buzz and I may have felt a bit smug as she confirmed for me what I firmly believe: we don’t have to go barefoot if we don’t want to. (Yes, in your face barefoot preachers! Too much?) I thought her talk about the technical aspects were excellent and put across in such a way that a beginner could easily take up running with her tips.

There were of course other great speakers and to round off a fantastic line up we were presented with Scott Overall, Team GB Olympic Marathon runner. He gave a very relaxed talk about his running history: from a kid at a local school competing in cross country, training with Mo Farah as a junior right through to the Olympics last year. He also gave us an insight into his plans for this season, which will see him make a return to the track. Scott’s talk made me all nostalgic about the Feltham Arena track which shut down many years ago (er what legacy *cough*) and I was lucky enough to catch him for a very brief chat about Feltham and our old coaches.

Following Scott’s talk we got the chance to follow the Olympian round the grounds on a 5k run. I’m sure some of us *looks at Cat Simpson* could have kept up with him but a group of us stuck together and had a really nice chat while we ran, being watched by the deer who were clearly wondering what the humans were up to. During this run I yelled ‘Flake and Cake’ at poor Claire. She must have wondered who this nutter was shouting her blog name at her but I’d spied her all day and it finally came to me who she was *dur*.

This ended our day at Write This Run. I drove up the mile long track from the golf club to the main road but as I did I stopped and gave Laura from Life Laura London a lift to the gate as it was tipping down with rain. We had a very quick chat and as she jumped out all the little regrets started. I wish I’d got to chat to Laura and so many other people. Write This Run was a brilliant day and it made me keen for more running and I was left craving more events like this.

A huge thank you to Liz and Laura who had this idea, without them we wouldn’t have been brought together. I hope that the next person Liz stalks in Bushy is my hero Sonia O’ Sullivan. She’s a regular at Bushy Parkrun *hint hint, nudge nudge*.

It was a pleasure to meet and chat to the people that I did and I really hope we can meet up at another running/blogger event. I felt a bit sad hugging Cat and Mrs B goodbye but I was equally as happy to have met them. It really was a great day and I know that we all left inspired and for me a renewed enthusiasm for running and blogging.

Find more information about future Write This Run events at http://www.writethisrun.co.uk! Go, do it now UK people!

It’s Time To Write This Run!

WRITE THIS RUN

It’s here! It’s time to attend Write This Run *girly squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeal*

I am really looking forward to meeting everyone tomorrow. I’ve had another flick through the information pack and I am so excited to hear the speakers. My Dad even had a look and gave an approving ‘aha yes, very nice’ (well you know Dads).

However despite my excitement I do have some questions *flips notepad over, clears throat, peers over glasses, remembers I don’t wear glasses, takes off glasses*

Question 1: What is a Chobani and is it edible?

Question 2: Will we need glo sticks and disco glitter pants for Rhalou’s talk?

Question 3: How in all my years of travelling on the 111 to go underage drinking in Kingston did I not know where Hampton Palace Golf Club was?

Question 4: Will anyone be watching how many biscuits we take with our tea?

Question 5: There will be biscuits right?

Question 6: Cake?

Question 7: Will there be change left from a tenner to pay the toll for the bridge back into Wales after buying a drink at the pub? (non alcoholic obvs)

Seriously though, really looking forward to tomorrow. I’ll try not to behave too much like a bottle of fizz about to pop or try to lick anyone’s face (it’s a sign of affection in my house these days). Catch you laters!

Finding My Race Head at She Runs Windsor.

On a beautiful May bank holiday I found myself in Windsor Great Park getting ready to run the She Runs Windsor 10k. Up until the Friday or even the Saturday before I still wasn’t sure whether I should run. My comeback from back injury had not been smooth. I have had a niggling heel problem and a little bit of achilles pain so I had been forced to pull myself back in training. And when I say training I mean starting from scratch and building up my steady run time, no actual 10k training. To say I was a bit naive daft to enter this race a few months ago is an understatement. I think I did because I needed something to focus on but unfortunately the super running comeback hadn’t gone according to plan and I was woefully unprepared.

How unprepared? Well I only managed to run regularly for 30 minutes 3 weeks ago. Last week I increased this to 40 minutes because my heel pain was a bit better. Yesterday the furthest I had run since my back injury had been 4.5 miles. So here I was just hoping I would fly by the heals of my rather lovely new neon pink compression socks.
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At the beginning of last week I wasn’t going to run. After a few runs in the week I decided I would. On Saturday I was in Legoland being distracted by the joyful faces of my children and people dressed up as Star Wars figures. On Sunday I decided I would definitely run after being to the Exoptique. And then in the park on the day itself I stood and started bargaining.

‘I will just enjoy it’

‘I won’t race, I’ll do my own thing’

‘I’ll try and stay in between the 45 minute and 50 minute pacers’

‘I’ll start off easy and then see how it goes’.

‘I’ll pretend it’s just a hard training run’

With these thoughts whirling round my head I stood on the start line and then we were off. My thighs felt heavy for the first kilometre and I started feeling low. I felt like I had no leg lift and I wondered how running another 9km was going to pan out. It wasn’t going to be pretty. Plus I’d forgotten about the hills. Windsor Park is full of them, an undulating, beautiful park which was to become my nemesis for hopefully under an hour. People came pat me, I went past people and my hope of staying with the pacer carrying the yellow 45 minute balloon disappeared round a collection of trees. Mentally that was tough to swallow as fit and well 45 minutes should be no issue for me. However I acknowledged it and carried on.

For some time during the race I just felt like we were climbing hills. My legs were burning and the peaks of some of the hills were so steep that at times it felt a real effort not to come to a complete stop. On one of the hills the negative thoughts started pouring in as I became aware of the pacer with the red 50 minute balloon behind me.

‘You’re rubbish, why are you doing this. You haven’t trained enough. You’re going to be overtaken by the 50 minute pacer. You may as well stop and walk. Go on walk. You can’t keep going, it’s too hard for you’.

Instead of fighting these thoughts I let them come out one by one. Get them all out now, I thought to myself, get them out and then they’ll be gone. And they were. I acknowledged these tough feelings and I was able to carry on doing what I was meant to be doing. Run! It also helped that I had a stern word with myself which went along the lines of ‘Fuck off Kat, you’ve run a marathon, this is nothing. Dig deep and then dig in some more’.

All of a sudden we were going downhill and a it felt like a blessed relief to let go and let the hill take me. I could see the 9km marker and the finish in the distance. Windsor Castle was sparking in the gorgeous May sunshine and I realised with a small smile, accompanied by some grimacing, that I was about to put a hard six months of heartache and injury behind me. My legs hurt but I lifted my knees and powered forward. The cheers of the crowd lifted me and I tried to sprint forward but I don’t have my speedy edge back just yet. I crossed the line and a huge sense of relief washed over me. I’d done it.

I thought I’d be disappointed with my time of 48 minutes and 43 seconds but I’m not. I thought I’d be more annoyed that my PB performance would have me in at least the top 3 women, but I’m not. Yesterday was more of a mental achievement for me. I needed to put my demons to rest and to let go of the fear that I had of racing. I needed to know that I could run alongside other people. I needed to know that when it got hard I wouldn’t give up, because that was what was scaring me the most. I was terrified that my determination and will had gone. But it hasn’t. I found it in the shadow of one of the most beautiful landmarks in the UK.

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I hate running really, I just run for the bling and the free bananas.

There were no records broken for me yesterday but I think I will look on the She Runs Windsor 10k as a milestone in my recovery from injury. I really enjoyed it and I was thrilled to have been part of a fantastic event. Now I know I’ve still got the taste for races it’s given me a boost and I’m excited about getting stuck into some running and training.

Race Review: She Runs Windsor

A sunny 6th of May, Bank Holiday Monday saw the inaugural She Runs Windsor 10k event. The setting for this event was the stunning Windsor Great Park with the start and finish line on the Long Walk with Windsor Castle as the backdrop.

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I wonder if she watched us?

Communication leading up to the event had been excellent with regular email updates and information forthcoming. The day before there was an ‘Exoptique’ which enabled runners to pick up their race packs and browse the marquee for running treats. With sponsors including Shock AbsorberCEP sportswear, Halo Headband, Yurbuds and Clif Bar to name but a few, this was a lovely expo which was obviously developed with the runners in mind. Not one to shirk the opportunity to shop I managed to purchase some neon pink CEP compression socks and a Halo headband to get geared up for the race.

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Can you tell how much I love my new socks?

The organisation was slick and I didn’t encounter any problems when collecting my number or picking up my t-shirt and canvas bag. Parking was plentiful and there were no issues with access on the Sunday or on the day of the race itself. The only problem for runners who left it a bit late to arrive on Monday morning may have been hitting the traffic that was heading for the Star Wars event at Legoland Windsor!

I couldn’t fault race day. Again it was really well organised. Plenty of toilets (always important) and lots of information forthcoming over the tannoy. Apparently 27% of the field were running their first ever 10k which is fantastic. The music in the build up was just right to get everyone in the mood and the atmosphere was brilliant. There was also plenty for family and friends with refreshments available from a Coffee and Cake camper van and a Toasted Sandwich van.

We were introduced to the pacers who were all wearing matching CEP kit. Each pacer carried a different colour balloon which had a target time written on it. I did see one of the pacer balloons drifting off in the sky just before the start but the organisers quickly got round that. I found myself near the 50 minute pacer at one point and she was really encouraging.

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Pacers rocking their CEP gear minus one balloon.

There were some supporters scattered round the course and there were water stops at 2km and 6km. The course was really well marked out and took us on a really lovely route through the Great Park. Maybe I’ll take the family back and I’ll walk it and take in the scenery properly!

This course had one of the nicest finishes I’ve run in a race with the castle coming into view as we turned onto the final downhill and into the last kilometre. Support was heavier round this part of the course and really helped to lift the runners as we came in.

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Kat was thrilled to discover the medal matched her nail polish.

As we made our way out of the finish area I was presented with my rather stunning medal and then confronted by a welcome plethora of goodies: bananas, water, Luna bars and crisps (yeah was surprised at that one to be honest). As I exited the goody area there was a live band playing and there was a real carnival atmosphere. We couldn’t stay for long after I finished but I said a quick thank you to the guys from CEP for helping me pick my compression socks and then I was off home, buzzing from my first race back after a long time away.

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Overall: a great inaugural event for She Runs Windsor. It was good value for money (£25) when you consider the venue, the Expotique, the amenities and the goodies which included the canvas bag and a technical t-shirt. There was a lovely atmosphere and if they did this event again I would have no problem taking my children with me. The organisers did a great job which meant a headache free, turn up and run, day for me. I would highly recommend this as a women only event for runners of any ability.

Training Diary and Running’s Not All Plain Sailing.

My training diary for last week isn’t actually that impressive. I haven’t managed to build on the previous week so I’m feeling a bit lost and a bit well yeah, lost is the best way to describe it.

The week had started relatively well with a 45 minute run that was nearly 5 and a half miles. I’m still plodding, I’m still not getting anywhere fast but I’m taking the approach that it’s better to get the miles in rather than worry about how quick. I suppose you’d say I’m trying to build a solid base again and regain my engine. I felt positive and I felt keen for running.

Tuesday was a bit of a disaster. Massive mood swing, plus forgetting things on the school run, plus not making it to an appointment plus a bunch of other stuff had meant that I wasn’t feeling Tuesday much. Tuesday was being a dick. So that evening when my husband came home from work I made what I thought was a positive decision: I would go to a running club. I jumped into the car and drove in the monsoon that was pouring from the sky, playing some funky tunes to get me in the mood. And then I hit all the traffic. On the motorway and on the duel carriageway. My mood dipped again, I was too late for the running club and I drove home cursing the universe. When I got home I decided to write Tuesday off and go to bed.

Wednesday was slightly more positive. I went out for a run, went out a little bit too hard at the beginning but kept going and ended up doing the longest run I’ve done in months. 56 minutes and over 6 and a half miles. It was slow, I made hard work of it but I was buzzing with my effort. Thursday is a no for running in the day with a 3 year old with me so I ventured out to CrossFit and ended up bagging myself some PB’s in the floor press and on double unders (that would be fancy skipping).

Friday I didn’t manage to get any running done but I was hoping to have a decent weekend of running. Saturday afternoon it was warm and I felt happy after a bike ride with my eldest boy so threw on my brightest shorts and headed out into the sunshine. And then I ran into some trouble. After 2 miles my feet were killing me. I felt aware of my left foot being really uncomfortable and I was sure it was rolling around in the shoe. My heel started to play up which frustrated me as my heel had been pain free. Then my right foot became sore and my right calf tightened. I tried to carry on as I was hoping to run for an hour. But no, I made the decision to turn back. My feet were so cramped I almost stopped and walked. When I arrived home I thought I’d feel really pissed off. Another run attempt shot down in flames. Buggeration! But I was strangely calm and reflective.  I identified what I thought was the issue (my footwear), accepted that what had happened was pretty much out of my control, reflected that actually the rest of me had been feeling pretty good and the result was that I was positive even though it had been a crap run. Who was this person? That doesn’t usually sound like me!

So that was my running week that was. Lots of ups and downs and little challenges to face but all in all I think I’m ok. I felt a bit of the self made pressure of not running drop off as I await my new trainers to arrive. Circumstances being out of my hands means that I feel like I have a ‘Do Not Run Right Now’ pass so I don’t have runner’s guilt. (And the footwear issue does make sense as my symptoms only occur after running in these trainers, which are actually over 9 months old. Oops). I know that there are other things I can do to maintain my fitness: CrossFit, circuits, cycling, swimming, aqua jogging. So I shall try my best to do other things this week and aim to enjoy them. Hopefully, imaginary Running Gods permitting, I will be back out plodding the pavements next week.

Training Summary for week beginning 13 May:

Mon: 45 minute run, 5.37 miles covered.

Tues: Nothing, don’t ask, don’t go there, I’m not speaking to Tuesday.

Weds: 56 minute run, 6.56 miles covered.

Thurs: CrossFit class. Double unders plus floor press (25kg for 5 reps PB). WOD 7 rounds of 1 minute on 1 minutes rest of 200m sprint plus max reps shoulder to overhead for remainder of minute (20kg on bar).

Fri: Rest and fun stuff. Sat: 3.91 miles hobbled. Sun: A little bit on the turbo trainer on the turbo trainer which has taken up the boys play room. HA!

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