So..... I've gone and done it again. I've set myself a new challenge to keep myself motivated.
After 18 months of riding high on the euphoria of finishing the Brighton Marathon in April 2011, I thought it was about time I got my arse in gear again. Not that I've been doing nothing since then. No, but I have let my body slip into comfortableness when I run. I've silenced my inner voice urging me to carry on when the going gets tough and just stop and walk. Why push myself? Why hurt?
Now, even a five mile run is a struggle for me and newbies are striding on in front of me and my self esteem has got the better of me. I don't want my fitness to slide anymore than it has so drastic action was taken a month ago. I signed up for the Reading Half to be run on Sunday, 17 March.
I've done it before. Twice before in fact. Once when I was about 23 when my time was around 3 hours and 30 minutes. Being young, I didn't think it would be hard. 13 miles? Nah. So what if I hadn't got a training plan and missed most planned Sunday runs? And so what if I'd only done three miles as a continuous run? I was young, fit and healthy. It would be a breeze. Reality hit me smack between the eyes on the day.
My only memories of it was absolute elation when I crossed the finish line because the torture was over. Oh and an old lady (well, grey haired and about 60 I'd say) over taking me at around nine miles who gave me some encouragement to keep going. I do have the official photo somewhere of me looking like death, dressed in thick jogging pants and top with a headband to finish the look off. Well, it was the 80s and they were in! And yes, I was hot. Very hot, but not in the 'drop dead gorgeous' way. I was dripping with sweat in all that heavy gear.
So a bad memory which I laugh about now. I'm surprised I ever ran again it was so traumatic.
The second time was in 2010. I entered it because my partner did it the year before. We were going to run it together, but he had to pull out. I didn't have a time goal in mind - I just wanted to finish it as it was the first I'd done since the disastrous one all those years ago.
I'd kept the 2.10 hour pacemaker in my sights all the way around, but over took them with about three miles to go. I daren't look at my watch as the nerves would've kicked in so I finished in a respectable time of 2.03. 2.03! I kicked myself for not looking at my watch then as I could've pushed it a bit more to get under two hours.
So there's the challenge. I want to do the Reading Half in under two hours. It can be 1.59 for all I care, but it has to be under two. I will be three years older too, so that in itself will make it tough. The old body is starting to creak these days.
I found with the marathon writing a blog helped me as I felt accountable not only to myself, but to anyone else who may be reading the blog. I'd look a twit if I didn't actually take it seriously and didn't train as I should. So this is why I'm reactivating the blog. I've put it out there. People may be watching. I'm watching. It's down to me now.
I'd love to have you along side me while I train. You'll keep me motivated. You'll stop me rolling over on a Sunday morning when I should be out doing hill repeats. You'll stop me pouring out the second glass of wine when I've already had one.
As a thank you, I'll try and dig out the 80s photo which will be worth following the blog just for that!
Until next time........