Where have I been?

Well, it’s nearly 2 months since I last blogged. Shocking! The main reason was the laptop deciding to give up on me (around the same time that Chris decided to put some kind of sports stream on here). Hmmm. Anyway since the fixing of the laptop it’s been a time issue, that and laziness, because when I get in from work if I don’t have anywhere to be, it’s straight on with the pjamas and E4 gazing for the remainder of the evening. I did make a new years resolution to only watch an hour a night, because it’s such a ridiculous waste of time, but for me it’s the equivalent of a lullaby. I don’t have to think, I don’t have to do anything other than occasionally giggle, and if it’s something I’ve already seen, mindlessly strum through my iphone land at the same time.

So as you can tell, 2013 has so far been a productive year for me! Apart from when it comes to running. Going good guns there.

This marathon is the sole project for the first four months of this year, and it does feel like it’s taking over my life still, more so now the long runs are ramping up on a Saturday so my social life is starting to consist solely of Saturday nights. Well, take that with a pinch of salt, my social life is as diverse and hectic as ever, it’s just instead of being booked Fridays and Saturdays, I’m just booked every Saturday from now until the end of time. Well, there’s also the website project at work which is becoming all consuming and is timed ridiculously badly with deadlines around the time I’ll be running 20 miles of a weekend… but that’s not even worth thinking or talking about now, seen as I’m not at work.

Anyway, I reached a landmark, and a bit of a mental goalpost yesterday. Ten miles! Double figures! I had two weeks off over Christmas, after only planning to have one, being full of a cold and having Christmas do’s, meals and preparation to fit in, it ended up being a fortnight, which meant I started the new year without sore legs for the first time since October.

However it also meant that on Monday December 31st, New Years Eve, and the official starting point of THE 16 WEEK PLAN, I set off on a jog through Barrowford and began to realise why you have to stick at things. I’d gone from running 8 miles before Christmas to suddenly not being able to move my arms and legs in a coordinated running fashion. I somehow managed to knock my phone and turned both my music and my mileage app off in one fell swoop. So as if I wasn’t feeling self conscious enough anyway, I was now in silence apart from my ragged breathing. I was meant to run for 40 minutes, rougly 4 miles. I ran to the mill and back and then collapsed on the sofa in a panic. Then went out and forgot all about it, smoked a packet of benson and hedges and then spent New Years Day on the sofa.

So, Jan 2nd, the fun began. I’ve opted for the intermediate plan from the marathon pack I’ve been sent, which states that if you want to run 4 times a week and can run for an hour, it’s the one for you. In my head I’m naturally a beginner, but that was starting me off with walk / jogs and just for 20 minutes, and I felt too far past that to go backwards. I may live to regret it! But it does mean that last Thursday when my left shin was killing me I didn’t feel like I was going to ruin my marathon chances by staying out of my trainers for the evening, as the beginners plan only has you doing 3 runs a week. Am doing just 3 this week also as with doing my long run yesterday my legs are a little tender today to say the least.
Macca Pacca has said she’ll do the long runs with me, so apart from this week we’ve done the last two weeks together on the canal, and it’s been great. It’s gone quickly as Kirsty’s so much fitter than me she can chat as she’s running so it takes my mind of the exercise as its good to catch up.

So yesterday, TEN MILES!! Felt absolutely on top of the world yesterday…and by 6pm, absolutely shattered! That included some pretty brutal headwinds, 2 hailstorms, and the 3 miles of gradual ascent up the bypass to Higham. When I went past the point I’d never crossed before (Which sounds a lot more exciting than it was), I found myself in Higham for the first time in years, and going downhill. Quite sharply. My mind was torn between enjoying the relief and a nice bit of down, and dreading the fact that I was going to have to go back up it. The alternative was turning round and then adding on the distance I was short of 10 when I got back to the village. Which sounded like a shit idea. So I carried on down the increasingly steeper hill, and crept slowly nearer to 5 miles. The sun came out, my legs were feeling good, and then I saw the sign for Padiham. I’d run all the way to Padiham, nearly the end of the bypass! Hurrah! If you’re not local (wait, no-ones reading this!) then this will mean nothing. But it’s a big deal for people like me. I.e. wannabe athletes. When I turned back round to finish the run my mind was exactly where it should be, I’d gone halfway therefore I knew I could do the run – stupid logic, but I had to get home somehow so therefore I would run it all. Quickest way to get back, especially seen as Mum and Paul had driven past me in the opposite direction to their home and Chris was in Bradford doing my errands for me with Dad (bless), so I had to run! Then the hill happened. I can’t imagine what it must have looked like, but I was in so much pain I couldn’t even listen to my music. I was pretty much bent over trying to will my feet up the hill. I’m making it sound like a mountain. It really isn’t. It’s quite embarrassing how much I struggled actually. And how much I’m struggling with the whole thing!!

So, in other news, I have absolutely smashed my target! I’ve got £2593. I am overwhelmed still by how fantastic everyone has been. George and Nik had a coffee morning for me last weekend, and we got nearly £300 – we sold a ton of raffle tickets and had loads of prizes donated, a lot of her mums friends came and the girls baked some fantastic cakes which we were still eating on Monday night. Then Stevie Steve came down to the office last week and brought me a signed Burnley ball and shirt, which according to a ridiculously excited Chris who wants to buy them for the house (I don’t think so) will raise quite a bit of money. So I’m going for £3000 now. Like I’ve not got a big enough goal with this project…

That’s fundraising, training, erm, yes, shin ache. Left leg is nagging somewhat. Being a non athlete and non physiotherapist I clearly don’t know what’s going on, I’m dreading it being a shin splint, but it only takes a couple of days off my feet and it’s almost back to normal so hopefully I’m avoiding that one for now. Have signed up to a Pilates class on a Tuesday, which so far the best thing about is wearing my comfy jogging pants, lying on a mat and getting to call stretching my legs as long as possible, ‘marathon training’. I’m probably doing it wrong, I’m sure it’s meant to be hard.

The hotel is booked, we’re going with a special company like I did with the Great North Run that take you and pick you up, and in this instance, give me eggs at 5.30am in the morning and hopefully comfort me as I start having nervous fits on the way to the start line. It’ll be mine and Chris’s first time in London in the 2 years we’ve been together, I only wish I that I wasn’t probably going to spend the rest of the day throwing up and being wheelchaired back to the hotel, instead of going out and drinking champagne and eating a ginormous steak. Not that there will be much of the day left, it’ll probably be going dark by the time I get round.

Well, I reckon that’s probably enough of a catch up for tonight. Must try and blog more frequently, though I’m not sure I need to look back and remember how running in the ice felt and how terrifying the geese are on the canal near Morrisons. If they have their way they’ll do me and Kirsty an injury at some point in the next 12 weeks that I’ll never forget…

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