Thursday 20th October
Left bedraggled after The Friday Night Grind this week was about bringing the joy back to the challenge. Early mornings are better than late nights for me and when you invite Renee McGregor and her dog Bailey along there’s not much choice anyway! My first coaching session of the day today was 8.30am. Starting a run before 6am is certainly a first for me this year but I would definitely do it again. I’d planned to meet Renee at 6.20am on the other side of town so my aim was to have covered 5km before I met her just to break things up a bit, another tactic for avoiding The Grind again. I headed out on a tourist route around Bath taking in the Abbey at Pulteney Bridge, beautifully under-lit in the dark. It was cold, dark and dreary this morning but if you just look up the architecture is stunning and is enough to keep me occupied. As planned, I met Renee at a not-so-scenic Tesco Express and we immediately climbed towards Victoria Park and straight up the backside of Lansdown Hill. Super-steep in places, Renee’s gentle camber just speeds up and away she goes. This is the third 1/2 marathon that Renee has done with me this year. Week 3 we did The Hilly Heights of Bath and Week 14 we did The City Paradise Surprise in Bristol. This time I felt like I had a lot more in reserve (should hope so considering I’ve done 30 of them since we last ran!) and for the last 5km she squeezed the pace heading back towards Weston. Back at Tescos we parted company, just pausing for a photo and a hug and away I went to cover the last 1.5km back to the car… I turned to run and SNAP… my right knee gave way… cramping calves or hamstrings… or both! Either way my knee wasn’t lifting at all. To the commuters on their way to work at 7.30 I must have looked like a complete idiot out for a run on a Thursday morning, training through injury. I cracked 21.1km just as I reached my car. I jumped in and up the hill to get to work. I joined the commute up to The Sports Training Village, cleaned myself up and got on with the day… just don’t ask me to move any faster than walking pace and I’ll be fine!