Posted: December 10, 2014 in Marathon, running
Tags: , , , ,

It’s 4am, I have been awoken by my eldest child and returning to sleep is not something I do well.

Blogging regularly is something else I do not do well.

In fact, here are ten more things I don’t do well:

1… Head out for a run less than 40 minutes after I’ve decided I shall head out for a run.

2… Stick to a training plan.

3… Not eat all the biscuits.

4… Dance.

6… Count.

7… Wrestle crocodiles*.

8… Run up hills.

9… Motivate myself.

10… Ignore grammatical errors and just get on with my life.

*It is, admittedly, quite possible I am brilliant at crocodile wrestling – I just haven’t tried.

This is obviously not an exhaustive list. There are many, many things, but it would be rather depressing to go through them all right now.

Some things I am aiming to improve on, however.
Namely – points 2,3,5,6 and 8.

The running mojo has been somewhat lacking recently. As has the general, getting-on-with-life mojo.
So I did what many of us folk who pretend to be runners sometimes do… I entered a race.

A local 10k track and trail type race, with, I might add, a Christmas pudding at the end for all finishers.
About 3 years ago I really pushed myself to run a 10k in under 50 minutes, so with that in mind I…(blah,blah,blah…might edit this later to give a bit of a race report….but let’s face it, I probably won’t…) managed to cross the line in 50:18.

Not too shabby, I thought (but sub-50 would have felt better) and I then immediately blamed the unhelpful habit I have of cycling to races. That would surely have been worth twenty seconds off the final time.

It’s funny,though. I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the goal. I even, sort of, enjoyed the thrill of being so close but not achieving it. That means it was a good goal to have set. It’s no fun if you know you will attain it.

So with that in mind, I went and entered a marathon again.

Actually, that’s not strictly true. I haven’t actually entered, but I’ve thought super-seriously about it, planned transport, written the date in my diary, and told my wife…which is as good as entering.

The thing is, I promised myself I’d not run another marathon unless I felt prepared and ready. I have nothing to gain anymore from ‘just getting around’. I’ve done five marathons now, I know I can ‘get around’ the course. But I also know it is not much fun if I’m not fully prepared and fully trained. I have told myself that even if I have paid to enter a marathon, I will not run it if I don’t feel prepared. Oh, and I definitely won’t cycle there.

So I have restarted writing here to record what I’ve been doing to prepare. To be (a little bit, at least) accountable. I will try to be a little bit more regular over the next four months (I hear prunes help) about recording my training here (oh…I see). I need to see progress, or I won’t actually run it.

I have four months. The marathon is mid-April. The day after my birthday. Huddersfield. It’s hilly. I need to run hills.

So I’ve entered a hilly race in March ’15.

That one is a twenty-miler. It should be the perfect prep run. And tough enough to make me take it seriously enough in its own right. Hopefully stop Mr from saying to myself, “ahh…It’s ok..That marathon is still a long way off…you can still get loads of training in before then…go on…eat that entire packet of biscuits….they’re nice!“.

So for the last few weeks, I’ve been getting out a bit more regularly, visiting my local hill (a now abandoned ex dry ski slope) and doing increasing numbers of reps there.

I also have been trying to lose some weight and although I don’t want to turn this into a weight-loss blog, it is a part of this, because it stands to reason that dragging my current, 92kg frame around 26.2 miles of Yorkshire hills is going to be a lot harder than dragging say, 80kg around the same distance.
I’m not a sports scientist, but I’d say that sounds pretty good as a hypothesis to me.

I’ve been parkrunning a little more regularly again recently, managing an equal-to-the second-why-didn’t-I-just-push-a-little-harder-? PB on a local (Forest Rec) slightly hilly (but nothing like as hilly as Parke) parkrun. I get overtaken on hills – a lot. I catch up on the flat, then lose folks on the hills again. I need to run hills.

Oh and the other, maybe slightly less than perfect (8 days before the planned marathon) prep run could be that a few days ago my brother, who has his 40th birthday a week before my (not 40th) birthday, has asked me to celebrate with him by joining him on a ‘wolf run‘. One of these run-through-mud and climb-over-big-walls sort of events.

Ankle-twisting-tastic mate!

  1. shazruns says:

    Welcome back. I need to work on number three but personally would love you to work on number 10! Can’t wait to follow your training for the marathon. Very brave of you to enter a hilly one.

  2. runorgocrazy says:

    Brilliant plan! Welcome back 🙂

  3. Thank you folks 😊

    Brave? …or…

  4. running-along-behind-puffing says:

    Good to see you back! Don’t “they” say the first step is the hardest? What happened to no. 5? May I come and watch you and your brother do your WOLF run?

  5. Hels says:

    I dunno, I think trying crocodile wrestling could be a janathon exercise? Worked out ok for Steve Irwin…it was the stingray that got him, after all.

    Good to see you back 🙂

  6. plustenner says:

    good luck with the marathon training – here we go again (mine is on 12/4) 🙂

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