Tuesday 16th August
Whenever I chat to people about what I am doing, they always state that you must be getting so fit…. and then assume that I must be getting faster. The reality is very different and
today’s run was yet further evidence to me that I’m getting worse. Today’s run was a 13.1miles down the cycle path from Bath to Lawrence Hill, Bristol. More-or-less uninterrupted and a flat course, warm and dry conditions. I was well fed, hydrated and free of major injury. Today I gave it my absolute best shot and finished in 1hr44mins29secs, 4 minutes off my current PB at the Bath 1/2 Marathon of 1hr40mins39secs. I spent 104mins trying to trick my mind into just keep going on the edge of what I could maintain yet it was 4 whole minutes off what I could do in March. I’ve run 22 1/2 marathons since then-pretty depressing… Not really…
… I’ve got a confession: I don’t run much between 1/2 marathons. My appetite for run training up until recently on top of the runs has been minimal. My challenge this year is about a lot of things for me and very few are to do with the times that I run. Paramount is a challenge so meaningful to people that they will donate their hard-earned cash to helping me fundraise £8000 for The Bristol Children’s Hospital. I also want to connect or reconnect with people for whom a half marathon will be a significant event in their lives. That could be in memory of a loved one or just overcoming a challenge that they never thought possible. For myself, I chose this format of challenge to focus my scattered mind beyond a single event. Each run provides me with a truly raw 2 hour experience with the singular focus of just getting to the end. I think this is unique in my life today and I cherish it in a weird love-hate kind of a way! Lastly, physical training is something that has been a big part of my life for a long time now. Last year that love had started to wane and I found myself where so many others do, just going through the motions and not achieving what I wanted from my training. 2 hours of focussed effort releases me from the guilt I used to feel of not going to the gym every morning. Now slowly, my desire for training is coming back.
Do I want the times to get better…. of course but there are many things that are so much more important to me than the times. I’ll keep plugging away and see where this journey is going to take me in the next 19 weeks.