Further to last week’s post (Running Against the Rules), I have received a warning letter from the marathon police threatening to confiscate one of my training shoes for a week. This would have meant training in hopping mode, and I didn’t fancy getting in touch with my inner frog. So, despite the inclement conditions, I steeled myself to undertake the mandatory long-run today.
It was cold and foggy this morning, but thankfully the wind was more gentle than it has been of late. However, the conditions underfoot proved to be quite challenging. The snow of the past few days was beginning to thaw – and running is tough in the slush. There were also some areas where it remained quite icy. I had to adapt my running style – such as it is – to cope with these conditions. I ended up running like a penguin – and quite an accomplished penguin, because I didn’t fall over or lose my egg.
The conditions also meant that I had to take a new route for my run, one that I improvised on the way. I had a rough idea of where I wanted to go, but was going to be led by how I felt and how bad the roads were. This took me on a route that was really too hilly for a long run (total elevation = 109m), especially when we factor in the slush factor.
The combined result of running like a penguin uphill led, I believe, to increased strain on my hip flexors – it was there I started to notice the first aches and pains of my exertions. This leaves aside the various niggles and elephant legs I feel at the start off my runs – I call this the misery mile. I draw upon good psychological strategies to challenge my negative thoughts and silence the inner voice that tells me to turn round and head for home.
Notwithstanding the above, and having posted quite a slow time, I am pleased with getting another 10 miles in the bag. You could say that I’m a happy penguin.
Eleven weeks until the Edinburgh Marathon on 27th May! And I have got my fundraising page up and running! I am trying to raise funds for Kettering Mind, a voluntary organisation that provides invaluable help to people affected by mental health problems.