Tag Archives: cross-country

How long?!


I can’t believe it’s been THREE YEARS since I last posted anything. So what happened?  Midlife crisis? Alien Abduction? Nah.  Like most things of mine, I just put this blog somewhere really, really safe.  And again, like most things, I only found it again when looking for something else altogether.

Anyway, I thought it was once again time to put pen to paper. Er, finger to keyboard. Er… key clicks to screen? Oh, whatever. And after my mindquake last year, or psynami if you prefer, I thought perhaps it was time to restart verbally rambling as well. Oh yes, as well. I’m doing even more walking now, and just exercise in general.It’s all part of having a healthy mind as well as a healthy body, and I just didn’t appreciate that until recently.

For example, for pretty much all of last year I did no running and very, very little yoga, so it’s no surprise that I ended last year like a creaky clockwork toy – that had lost its key.  I had been doing a lot more walking, more than the usual A to B to C functional walks, but I needed to step things up a notch.

I’ve never been a brilliant runner anyway, so now that I have a gym just at the end of my road, I’ve decided to start river-path running instead. Hee hee. I remember my ‘proudest’ ‘achievement’ in Grammar School was not coming last (out of 60 girls) in the cross country run.  And the only reason that happened was because no. 60 had the flu that day….

So, after signing up to Julie Creffield’s inspiring blog at http://toofattorun.co.uk/ I decided the time had come. So last Monday, after downloading the superb Strava app on my iPhone (yes! I finally got one!), I took the plunge. Thankfully not literally, although that river path can get a bit narrow and slippery in places!  The app tracks where you’ve run, how long it took, compares it to previous runs and lots more things that running-savvy people would understand (what the heck is a split-pace? It sounds painful).

My goal is eventually to be able to run 5km without stopping and, preferably, without collapsing in a heap. My short-term goal is to be able to run to Ladymead and back without stopping , and I’m giving myself till the end of February to accomplish this. It’s probably about 2km in total. I’ll have to check.

Anyway, last Monday, my reminder to shift my backside ran out loud and clear. I got my gear on (I thought I at least wanted to vaguely look like I was meant to be there, and not just running away from something), and off I trotted.  And yes, that’s about as good as it got. Trotting. I decided I would go almost as far as I could and then turn around and come back which, in theory, would be as far as I could go.

It turned out “As far as I could go’ was a mere 300 metres, and even then my life was flashing in front of my eyes. My lungs were threatening to disown me, too.  So that was my baseline. I gave it a day (I did something else on Tuesday and Thursday) then on Wednesday I managed to stretch that to 500m. On Friday, I stretched that to 700m, followed it up with a 1.6km walk and then finished with another 700m.

Big mistake.

While my chest didn’t feel like an incendiary device had just gone off, the legs were a teensy bit achy.

Until the next day.

I then spent the next 24 hours walking around like the Bride of Frankenstein, and making the same squealy noises whenever I tried to do something my legs muscles had banned. Luckily the following day – yesterday – I was fine again. In fact, today, I actually was able to make 1km without stopping, so that’s this week’s baseline. So – so much for recovery time increasing with age… Or perhaps mine actually has increased – but to 48 hours.  I’m just blessed with accelerated healing.

Something tells me I’m going to need it over the next few weeks!!