As ardent readers of these pages will know, I have been hit by an almost fatal dose of the man-flu over the last week. I still have the hangover from it which is persistently remaining, and despite this, I have managed to get out for two runs in the last few days. Considering that I had missed ten days worth of training, I had to get out sooner or later before I fell too far back in my preparations. I thought that the first run would be either a kill or a cure treatment, but it went ok. It was only five miles, but if felt good and this then spurred me on for the next run which was slightly more heavy duty.
The day after I thought I would get another long run under my belt, so I attempted a sixteen miler. I kept my route fairly flat, especially for the second half, and I made sure I took it steady. I actually made seventeen miles in the end because I mis-judged the distance, and by the time I arrived back home, I was done. I became so stiff and sore that I couldn’t move. I was in agony in places of my body that I would have thought had no interest in the running, like the top of my stomach and my stupid giraffe neck. But I also had a blister on one toe, my knees felt as though they were on fire, and the soles of my feet had been covered in broken glass.
The next morning I woke up, and wondered why JCB don’t make special diggers that can lift people out of their beds. I had become so stiff, it was as if someone had filled me up with concrete through the night and I had become a living statue of myself. It hurt to do pretty much anything and walking down stairs was the most painful thing I could ever remember doing. However, gradually the stiffness began to subside, and slightly more normal feelings began to take over my limbs. I managed to get to the local running shop and asked them so many questions that they probably thought they were being interrogated for something. But, happily I have a few tips and words of wisdom that should help the next time I attempt such a stupid distance, which is actually going to be this weekend when I attempt eighteen miles.
So, I will make sure that I have a cold bath immediately afterwards next time, I have some padded socks that can soften the broken glass feeling, and I am going to consider the removal of one vertebrae in my neck although this sounds a bit full on at the moment.
The fundraising is still going from strength to strength, and the total is now up to £1,800, and I am so glad that this motivator is in place, because when I was hurting and stuck to the chair at the weekend it was the thought of this that made me get up and get on with things. I definitely recommend running a marathon for a reason to anyone that hasn’t run one before. Conscious self-discipline will definitely get tested along the way, so the more safety nets you have in place to stop you quitting the better.