I’m sitting at my desk with an ice pack on my left leg, just back from this afternoon’s run.
The exertions of last week’s half marathon, running all week, a weekend of cycling, running and hiking and the fact my legs haven’t had a day off in more than five months is finally catching up with me.
I knew I was in some trouble this morning as soon as I got out of bed. My first step with my left leg sending a tense pain up the inside of my calf… but I ignored it, took a couple of Ibuprofen and got showered, but I was in no mood to do my usual early morning run. I wanted to give it an extra couple of hours before I ventured out.
When I did start running around 3.30, it obviously wasn’t right – I wasn’t running freely and each step hurt – not massive pain but the kind that just makes you wince.
Feeling sorry for myself, I decided to reduce the impact on my legs by getting off the hard pavements as soon as possible and veering into Norbury Grove, where the grass is usually short and springy.
The best laid plans and all that… the last few days rain has left the whole park waterlogged. Cold water seeped in to my trainers, my legs were splashed with mud and each step that I had to forcibly pull my leg out the gloopy mess hurt even more. It took me about two minutes to head back to the road and start feeling more miserable than Morrissey.
As an example of how slow my progress was, I finished the first mile and a half in about the same time as I did the three miles of last week’s race and I seriously thought about giving it all up.
It’s not the three mile a day challenge. I can still do that I think- hobble about a bit, keep icing every day – it’s the stuff that’s started to come with it through my upping my own ante.
I began to cast my mind’s eye back to five months ago when I started the challenge and was hurting so much after the first three or four days that I thought I could never continue to where I’ve come: seriously bitten by the running bug, signing up for half marathons and marathons, achieving a time in my first race I never dreamt I could get with legs as dodgy as mine…
And I realised I’m not ready to give it up just yet. The worst that can happen is I continue doing my three miles at a snail’s pace and finish the original challenge… or I can take it easy for a few days, grit my teeth at my annoyance at going so slow, make sure I stretch, hydrate, get the ice packs on the hurty bits, stop moaning and just get on with the bloody business of training for that Brighton Marathon …
Miles today: 3
Miles to date: 627.36
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