Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Running on empty

It has been a tough first month of training to blow away the Christmas cobwebs and shed the love handles. It started so well with some new year enthusiasm but then it snowed. And it got cold, really cold. And my feet started to hurt. And I added Sky Sports to my Virgin Media package. The schoolboy error is haunting my every move.

However, through wind, rain, snow, hale and sheer laziness I've kicked myself into action and hit the road. At the start of Jan I struggled with pace and was managing 6.5 miles at around 8.15 minute mile pace. Having given myself the target to complete a half marathon at 7 minute mile pace, I was a bit gutted.

As Jan progressed, I've gradually upped my distance to 10 miles and comfortably doing this at 8 minute mile pace. However, the killer blow was a recurrence of my old ATB injury that has meant everytime I try to increase the pace, my leg falls apart and I spend days in pain. So after much soul searching, i've made the sensible (for once) decision to stop obsessing about times and focus on being able to complete my races and keep going.

I have to admit, after the initial sulk I'm now really happy that I've made the decision to focus on distance and enjoyment rather than the illusory time. I'm regularly knocking out 10 mile runs and this weekend (Sat 30th) will be the first 12 miler.

I've also being playing regular 5 a-side football on Monday evenings down in Putney and this has helped my core aerobic fitness massively. It is also more fun than running around the freezing roads of Ealing.

So all in all, a positive first month of training and now only 3 weeks to go before my first competitive race, the Portsmouth Coastal Half Marathon on Sunday 21st Feb. If you fancy helping me reach my fundraising target of £1,000 then please visit my webpage.

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