How did my grand plan for last Sunday go? Hmm, well? Weather was good, still no clients so still plenty of time, motivation present, mind ready, body – not so! I decided to run out through the A2 activity park to a 5k point and then turn back again. This route takes me past the Gravesend Cyclopark and could best be described as “undulating” especially the return trip up what was the old Tollgate slip road on to the coast bound A2, a slip road that could only sensibly be tackled in second gear. I wont bore you with a blow by blow account but I got to 6.9k, just short of the summit of this hill, when I gave in and decided on a 1 min walk/1 min run routine. This lasted until 7.5k when I thought “and the point of this is?” so gave up altogether and walked the rest of the way home. This did not auger well.
On Monday morning I got back from a client and felt well up for it but decided on a day’s rest (the first since the previous Wednesday), purely because I felt that if I failed again that day, this would not do my head any good. (Sorry, crap English!) A day’s rest could only help?
Tuesday dawned and I’d already decided on a different route, almost flat apart from the road and rail bridges across the A2 and High Speed lines and a slightly longer gradual incline up towards Jeskyns Park. I calculated that should be approximately 5k so I could get to the top of Church Road and then turn around and come back again.
It’s actually 5.5k to the top of Church Road but when I got to the top I couldn’t quite face the return trip even though it would have started with a slow longish descent so decided to continue on towards home and opt to carry on passed home to 10k. Only as usual I didn’t quite make it passed home, my legs took me towards home and I managed 7.5k again but this time without any walking. Not exactly encouraging but I’m banking on the unknown supposedly flat terrain of Sheffield taking my mind off what I’m doing and enabling me to run that last 2.5k. That and the shame of having to tell the Telegraph I had to stop and walk!
This morning I decided to go out for a last short run before Sunday, no Parkrun this weekend and I’m feeling quite sad about that. The Sheffield forecast for Sunday is 16 degrees and mostly sunny and that’s roughly what it was this morning although a little breezy. Decided on a 5k route, run to the 3k point then turn around and come back and cut out the run around the lorry park. The run to the 3k point went fine, lovely conditions, friendly dog walkers and another runner actually acknowledged my existence! (Doesn’t always happen, funny breed are runners!) Then I turned back and whoa, that’s where the wind went! I certainly didn’t notice it giving me any assistance on the outward run but it made its presence felt on the way back. But I struggled on and actually made it around the lorry park and back home without stopping for a 6k. And I felt like I could have carried on so that’s left me in a more positive frame of mind. I know 6k is only three fifths of the distance but the fact that I felt like I could do some more has made me feel a bit more confident.
So there’s any ever growing pile of running things accumulating on my bed, MP3 and Garmin fully charged, emergency details completed on my number, safety pins gathered. Now I just have to wait for Sunday and keep everything crossed. This will be my tenth organised 10k, it would be so nice if just for once I could do it without walking and even better if I could do it without walking and in under an hour. Fingers crossed.
As an aside, I read this morning that Javier Gomez, the new world triathlon champion, craves beer and pizza after a triathlon. I know just how he feels, I crave wine and pizza (or chips)! Not after a triathlon, just an organised run! So my rewards are safely in the fridge ready for Sunday evening, those and the second episode of Downton.